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Akha Blog Page 7

Former Corban Student Accused of Rape
Jason Klontz, 21, a former Corban student is accused of raping a number of women in the region.
Statesman Journal Story

Meeting with Cheryl Bower at Sprague High
Dismiss Phil Rodin

We do not accept that because Phil Rodin wrote us the email as "personal" that it excuses his racism, as a teacher at Sprague High School. He is not a nice upstanding person. He is a racist.

Michu, Ah Pymm and I met with Cheryl Bower, principal of Sprague High School in South Salem today. We expressed that we found it unacceptable for Phil Rodin, a teacher at Sprague, to openly state that he would financially support a mission that takes away Akha children. We asked that opportunity be made to present to students who the Akha people are. We also asked that Phil Rodin gain some education about what the experience of the Akha is.

We found Phil Rodin's statement that he would support a mission that took away Akha teen age girls as insulting and racist.

The mission in question is YWAM's Chiangrai Eden House. Eden House operator Vern takes away Akha girls from their Akha villages on his own arbitrary basis that they are at risk. Nothing is said on Vern's site regarding the severe poverty that the Akha suffer under as a result of human rights abuses. Vern does nothing to address this with the Thai government or publicize it. Further, Vern has no authority to take away the children of the Akha people.

YWAM's Eden House Run by Vern

A very offensive YWAM video that portrays Akha life and culture as evil:
The Eden House Video on YouTube.com

Comments carefully allowed on the video state that unless you know the Akha people you wouldn't know why the missionary Vern takes away their girls. We watched Vern for years, take only Akha girls. They are kept like prisoners of a religion. Its trash. YWAM Salem, Oregon needs to be held accountable for their organization's racism. Phil Rodin needs to be held accountable for racism against the Akha people.

A mission that would produce a video that condemns an entire race of people is unacceptable. This is a reminder of the OMF websites that had similar content, which we asked OMF to remove and which were eventually removed.

YWAM Lies
We went to the YWAM office at Battlecreek in South Salem, Oregon, just to drop off a couple flyers and let them know the serious level that we take to YWAM Eden House Children's Home in Thailand taking Akha girls away from their villages. We have a flyer that denounces the practice. So we went to YWAM to talk about it. In the office a man was on the phone. We waited. After a few moments a woman came in the office and asked if she could help us. I told her that we were there to deliver flyers and tell YWAM admin how seriously we take the issue of YWAM Eden House in Thailand removing Akha girls from their villages, done by Vern. She told us that YWAM Thailand is seperate, that they run their own gig and that Salem YWAM really didn't have any connection, even though she knew about the flyers. I asked her how this could be in that it was one organization? She said there was no connection between YWAM Salem and the one in Thailand. I told her that I thought that was splitting hairs. But what makes this really interesting is that I talked to students from YWAM Thailand tonight in Salem, and they actually run a team to Thailand from Salem, and there is more than one team sent from Salem YWAM to Thailand, and that they go regularly. Hardly a disconnection.

Why do these people decide to lie about what they are really doing?

Akha Music CD Debut
We have released our first Akha Music and Culture Preservation CD. Akha.org "Ballads of Time" is a heartfelt call for the preservation and protection of Akha Human Rights.

Special thanks to the Akha people and others who collected and donated Akha Music tracks. The CD includes twenty songs and instrumentals from TRADITIONAL Akha people.

Support the Akha people, buy a CD today. All proceeds of the CD go to protect Akha Human Rights.

$20 via Paypal with $5 for delivery in the US. $10 outside the US.

Thaksin Shinawatra, Ex Thai PM Unfit to Own Manchester City
Thai Government Seeks Extradition

The Thai government is discussing with British authorities how to extradite Thaksin Shinawatra on criminal charges. Human Rights Watch calls him unfit to own Manchester City, and refers to him as "a human rights abuser of the worst kind.

Thaksin ordered the cold blooded killings of thousands of people in his 2003 Drug War. The US Government supported that Drug War with millions in aid, but remained silent during the killings. Thousands of Thais were murdred, many hill tribe people were murdered, and the Thai Army now puts the number at more than 4,000.

Salem Alliance Member Phil Rodin Supports the Violation of Indigenous People's Rights
Phil Rodin Shouldn't be Teaching Anyone's Children at Sprague High School

We received an email from Phil Rodin of Salem Alliance about our picket on Sunday. He states that he thinks that the work of Eden House as portrayed in their video, is excellent work. The YWAM Eden House video villifies the village life of the Akha people. Vern, the administrator of Eden house in Chiangrai, Thailand, has taken it upon himself to remove nearly 20 teen age Akha girls from their villages and culture. Other missionaries in the region state that Vern is a little bit "off, something odd going on there". Our question is "why girls?" "why anyone?". Further, Vern does not have any authority from the government of Thailand to remove Akha girls. In addition, the removal of these Akha girls is a violation of the recently passed UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. Phil Rodin apparently doesn't realize that other people have rights too. We've asked him what he would think if Muslim men came to Salem and took away his daughters and forced them to change their religion? But Phil says he will support this violation of rights when it happens to the daughters of Akha people. Yes, we think Phil is racist and we think Salem Alliance is racist against the Akha people. Our picket was in regards to Lori Crouch being in a village where the impoverished Akha were told that the only way that they could have land was if they converted. All their traditional items were burned. We wrote Lori about this, she never replied. Shame on her. Shame on Phil Rodin for thinking that what isn't OK for his daughters is just fine for Akha girls.

Eden House is a part of Youth With a Mission YWAM which also has an office in Salem, OR.

Write him your thoughts:
Phil Rodin Email

Phil Rodin's email to us:
"I am a member of Salem Alliance Church. I want to thank you for being outside of our church today. I went home and looked at your website. Unfortunately, I did not stop to talk to you, because I have 4 young daughters. I have stopped to have conversations with people by the side of the road and they become belligerent with me. (I am not saying that you would have, but for my children’s protection – why take the risk). On your website I found a link to a YouTube video about Eden House. I also did a little further research on Eden House. What a great cause. I will be looking into supporting them in the near future. I am very excited about the work they are doing."

We find increasingly from the comments that Phil and Tim and other church members have made, that it isn't only that Salem Alliance members support Lori Crouch financially, but they also support the ethnocide of Akha culture very clearly. Ethnocide is just one aspect. The removal of Akha children is the violation of the Geneva Converntion on Genocide. Apparently Phil and other Salem Alliance people support this. John Stumbo's comments that Salem Alliance doesn't support the actions of Lori Crouch are contradicted by what church members keep telling us, that their white wealthy congregation is very much racist against the Akha.

Apparently the congregation of Salem Alliance sees it as very normal white christian behaviour to take the children of non white peoples. Shame on Salem Alliance.

The Salem Keizerschool district website says that Phil Rodin is a math teacher at Sprague High School. Is this the kind of racism we want being carried around in our Salem Keizer schools?

Phil Rodin - Salem Keizer Teacher Photo Link

We have filed a formal complaint with Sprague High School.

Just say "NO" to racism and the removal of indigenous children. Stop the removal of Akha children by missionaries.

3rd Picket of Salem Alliance Church
Non Compliance: Salem Alliance Supports the Akha Ethnocide

Today we picketed Salem Alliance Church for the third time for their connection to Lori Crouch's website and actions in Thailand which are against the Akha people and exploit their culture.

The link on Lori Crouch's website still points to Salem Alliance. The church claims it doesn't support her, but in fact it does. To say that people in the church are sending her money but the church doesn't support her, is to split hairs and miss the point.

All organizations which support actions that hurt the Akha, change these actions and associations when these connections and facts are pointed out. They are shocked at what their finances are supporting.

Despite informing Salem Alliance as to what Lori Crouch is involved in, the church fails to correct the situation. What is the benefit to the Akha people by these destructive actions of supporting coercive conversion, land for religion, silence on human rights abuses, destruction of culture, removal of Akha children, all parts of ethnocide?

We oppose the racism of Salem Alliance church against the Akha people, and the exploitation of traditional Akha images. We oppose the removal of Akha children. We oppose the destruction of traditional Akha culture by white missionaries. Stop Church Racism Against the Akha People.

Akha Music CD Release
We have compiled twenty Akha songs and instrumentals on a new CD.
Send a $20 donation by Paypal and we will send you one of these awesome CD's.

All White Jury Aquits Workers For Death of 14 Year Old Black Prisoner
Aquittal
An all white jury in Florida quickly aquitted workers at a youth boot camp who beat and kicked 14 year old Martin Lee Anderson who passed out and died a day later. The court said his death was inevitable. (Beating children is normal?). The aquittal enraged the Black community.

Sports atheletes get immediate medical attention before millions of screaming fans when they fall down one time on the field. This boy gets 9 officers beating, kicking and dragging him for minutes till they can't get him off the ground and he has to be hauled away on a gurney. Think of your 14 year old son?

The Video:
Death of Martin Lee Anderson
Website:
A life cut short

Salem Alliance Just Doesn't Get It
I picketed Salem Alliance Church again this morning, Oct. 7, 2007 from 10Am till 12:51pm. Shortly after my arrival at 10am, Tim France the operations manager came out, exactly 12 minutes later. From last time around he was so concerned about what this picket was going to communicate to the congregation that he fidgeted non stop, and when people asked what this was about he would tell them they "didn't want to know". This Sunday he made motions to people that I was crazy, continued to fidget and pace back and forth and try to run church business from his phone. Efforts were made to ridicule why I was there, as clear proof that in fact Tim, and for the most part, the entire church approves of the racist actions of Lauri Crouch and Paul Vernon and their mission. Claims that they don't approve, are seen at this point as just so much white wash. During this time, Salem's finest showed up, shortly after 10am, and continued to patrol around the area for more than an hour and a half with one car, passing my location no less than seven times. A great use of city funds, defending churches from criticism. Tim France Email: tfrance@salemalliance.org

I noted other city patrol cars. I maintained my same position on the corner sidewalk. Another man walked up, hooting, GI Joe for Jesus. "I'm going to make your life hell" he said and walked over and into the church. Minutes later he came out with Tim, the Business Manager, and climbed into a cart used for picking up parking signs, like a golf cart.

They drove from the church to my position at the edge of the sidewalk and raced the vehicle directly in front of me on the sidewalk causing me to have to lean back in order not to be hit by the cart, there not being room for a golf cart and myself on the same sidewalk. To this they laughed, Tim was driving, and the young man with the red had kept his head down at the whole affair. Tim said, "This man is from this neighborhood and he doesn't like people like you in his neighborhood." Apparently another messenger from God for Salem Alliance. After a while, one of the parking attendants for the church lots came up and wanted to talk, I directed him to the website.

The church is predominantly white. There is an obvious connection between the church, the Crouch family, including Lori Crouch. The link to Salem Alliance on the Vernon Journal website remains. John Stumbo apparently wasn't around. Salem Alliance apparently believes that their racism, and the racism of the Crouch family towards the Akha people, including the destruction of Akha culture, the exploitation of Akha traditional dress for photos (christians eliminate traditional dress in "converted" villages). The villagers were told they could live on the land where Lori has located in the past, if they converted. Akha land rights are not protected. Lori Crouch's website does not mention anything about land rights. She is busy being a cute missionary.

It is quite clear that the people at Salem Alliance don't know what is going on, and further more, snug in their white lives, they don't much care. Of the one or two people who asked to know what was the reason for the picket right across from the church, it was clear that they had no idea what it was about. But what was more striking, was in that a few people came forward to ask, the majority of the people didn't care at all, nothing about the right of the Akha to THEIR religious belief. One man came and talked to me as if it was the legal right of missionaries to impose their views on others.

We will continue to build our campaign regarding Salem Alliance Church.
You may join our campaign or send in comments, all very welcome.

Want to design a better set of picket signs, let us know.

Video: White Police Officer Arresting Black Teen Age Girl
Here is a video of a white police officer having a real difficult time coping with how to detain a young black woman who is extremely distraught. Manhandle seems to be the name of the game here.
Arrest

Jena 6 Illustrates Racism, Where the White Community Wants the Right To Offend, and then the Right to Be Forgiven
What is so interesting about the Jena 6 is that the white community in the US would like to believe that it has not treated, that it does not treat black people as inferior. Maybe it is a white option to "pretend". Who should be offended just because a few white folk want to remind the black folk that they can still get hung for looking at the wrong tree? Never happened before did it? Who has got the power? Who keeps the power?

But the demographics are changing, black people aren't going to always live in the shadow of white power. Maybe the people of Jena missed the point, there are bigger issues involved here than just Jena.

When the white population is a minority, when they are shoved in a corner, when their children are taken away to "superior" families, then they will understand what this is all about.

It is not in the white consciousness that white people could end up as someone's slaves, that is the difference in view on the Jena 6. White people think it could never happen to them.

VaticanBankClaims.com - Searching for stolen gold hidden in the Vatican Bank
Court case claims that stolen gold that ended up in the Croation National Treasury was transfered to the Vatican Bank and later used to help Nazi's escape Europe.
VaticanBankClaims.com

State Board of Higher Education Henry Lorenzen Doesn't Answer His Mail
Weeks have passed since we sent a certified letter to President Henry Lorenzen of the State Board of Higher Education about rescinding the PhD. of Paul W. Lewis. This PhD. thesis was approved to study the sterilization of Akha women, a pogrom that was also organized by Paul W. Lewis. Once the thesis was written it was accepted by U of O and he was awarded a PhD. based on this work of sterilizing Akha women. President Henry Lorenzen aught to at least have the courage to answer his mail.

Isn't this about white men approving the sterilization of Indigenous Women?

Will people from other countries be allowed to come to U of O and sterilize all the white women there? A few Akha want to know.

"Prisoners of a White God"
Film about the violation of Akha human rights to sreen at Czech Film Festival

A film on the violation of human rights of the Akha in Thailand and Laos will screen on Oct. 11, 2007 in the Czech Republic at the film festival EKOFILM. This is the 33rd International Film Festival on the Environment and Natural and Cultural Heritage.

The film is produced by Steve Lichtag and will come out in Jan. 2008.
More information on film

Declaration On the Rights of Indigenous Peoples Passes UN Vote
The US, Canada, New Zealand and Australia VOTE Against.

After more than twenty years, the Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples passed vote at the UN. Now there is tremendous work to be done to enforce these rights around the world.

Lori Crouch: Does One Have to Convert to be a Land Developer in Salem?
Buy land, lay plans with the city of Salem and build houses. Does one have to convert before the City of Salem will issue permits? They would if they were treated how Lori Crouch treats the Akha. Go home carpet bagger!

Salem Alliance and the Lori Crouch Mission
We Believe That Salem Alliance Has Defacto Support for Lori Crouch's Work Against the Akha

Without evidence to the contrary, we see no reason to believe that Salem Alliance is making any clarity that they don't support Lori Crouch and her damaging work among the Akha. We find it amazing how slippery the folk are, no one ever supports doing anything wrong, just no one can explain why all the money missions are doing the very same thing in north Thailand, Lori and Paul no exception.

Maybe a better position would be to just oppose all of these missions?

And what will Faith Chapel Arvada say? Nothing, till they are squeezed, seems to be the way it goes.

What will Salem Alliance say when the Lori Crouch connection starts costing the church money and support in the Willamette Valley?

We are waiting.

Salem Alliance Picket Expands To Portland
University of Oregon Opposed for Approving Sterilizations of Akha Women

An hour and a half radio show with Eugene, Rhonda, Prof. Jim Craven and others at KBOO 90.7 FM Portland focused on Salem Alliance, Lori Crouch, the mission removals of Akha children, and the University of Oregon approving the sterilizations of Akha women. We thank KBOO Radio for this chance to publicize the Akha situation.

A letter to Henry Lorenzen was read, demanding that the Oregon State Board of Higher Education rescind the PhD. of American Baptist missionary Paul W. Lewis, for his thesis on sterilizing Akha women.

Prof. Jim Craven spoke about the acts of genocide that are being waged against the Akha to water down, assimilate and destroy their population as compared to what the Blackfoot Indians have expereinced. In both cases western missions are at the forefront of these charges.

We discussed how Salem Alliance church and Lori Crouch take part in this genocide of the Akha. Salem Alliance church can not adequately show that it rejects the actions taken by Lori Crouch or that members of its congregation have stopped financially supporting what Lori Crouch is doing.

We also discussed the role of the Thai government in continuing the Lewis sterilizations, taking Akha land, and working with the missionaries to destroy the Akha.

The work of SIL (Wycliffe) in conjunction to UNESCO Bangkok to delete a good portion of Akha language identity, and take the lead role with "protecting" Akha culture with UNESCO was identified and discussed.

We look forward to hearing from the audience of KBOO. We are glad to make presentations to groups of people in the Portland area on request.

Plans to gain air time on other radio stations are in the works.

After the show we went to "Last Thursday" on Alberta Street in Portland where we passed out more flyers on Salem Alliance, Lori Crouch, Youth With a Mission and Vern's Eden House Children's Home taking Akha children.

Salem Alliance Picket Expands
Michu and I took to the streets in Salem at the Wednesday Market, corner of Liberty and Chemeketa Streets for a couple hours, talking to pedestrians and passing out flyers. We find it amazing how ready people are to change the subject or skirt the issue. The link to Salem Alliance Church, and the funding of Lori Crouch by individuals at Salem Alliance church makes Salem Alliance a partner in events in Thailand. What is so apparent is how readily members of the church would try to distance themselves from any blame, while not wanting to renounce racism against the Akha people. Church members have time to be involved, but the church does not have time to find out what is happening to the Akha. Then let them expel the appropriate individuals from their church. Far away, far from view, not their problem?

Our Letter to the Oregon State Board of Higher Education:
Immediately Rescind the PhD of Paul W. Lewis.

Henry Lorenzen
President
State Board of Higher Education
c/o
Marcia Stuart
PO BOX 3175
Eugene, OR. 97403-0175

Dear President Lorenzen:

We are writing with disappointment that our concerns are passed about glibly by the staff of the University of Oregon and the State Board of Higher Education. We have had to contact no less than five different offices or individuals to find an answer to our concerns thus far.

In 1978 Paul W. Lewis was awarded a PhD. for his thesis about a pogrom of sterilizations that he developed in Thailand to be carried out on hundreds of Akha women. Mr. Lewis was stopped. But the pogrom of sterilizations that Mr. Lewis pioneered by his own admission for the Thai Government, because “there were too many Akha people” continues on to this day, given full permission by the Oregon State Board of Higher Education.

The lives of Akha women were savaged by these coercive sterilizations conducted far from view by Mr. Paul W. Lewis, and their lives continue to be savaged by Thai doctors who continue to sterilize Akha women after they give birth, without their Full, Prior and Informed Consent. We have witnessed such sterilizations as they continue to this day in Thailand.

We are asking that the State Board of Higher Education take the following actions:
1. The State Board of Higher Education immediately rescind the PhD. of Paul W. Lewis.
2. The State Board of Higher Education make a formal, public and written published apology to the Akha people for the sterilizations of Akha women that were conducted as part of this “research” and that have continued to this day as a result of the permission that was extended to the Thai Government.
3. The State Board of Higher Education make it clear that they will in no way support education research that is racist, coercive or discriminatory in nature.
4. The State Board of Higher Education make a written statement to the Government of Thailand, presented to the Thai Ambassador to the US, Mr. Krit Garnjana-Goonchorn, that the State Board of Higher Education for Oregon revokes any approval or consent for the sterilizations of indigenous women in Thailand under any conditions that fail to meet the requirements of Full, Prior and Informed Consent according to International Standards of Human Rights Law, further asking the Thai Government to respect and protect the rights of the Akha people.

If the State Board of Higher Education fails to take these actions, then we consider that all diplomas which have been issued by any school in Oregon which falls under the jurisdiction of the State Board of Higher Education to be worthless.

We further consider that under this precedent established with the thesis and PhD of Paul W. Lewis, which was awarded and approved by the State of Oregon Board of Higher Education, for acts and research conducted far from the public view of Oregonians, it is ok to sterilize any group of women without their Free, Prior and Informed Consent regardless of their race or social economic standing, and receive a PhD. from the State Board of Higher Education for this work until the time that the State Board of Higher Education for Oregon rescinds this PhD.

We find it no less troubling, that the Vice-Provost of the University of Oregon, Marian Friestad, finds no problem with the research and acts of sterilization Paul W. Lewis pioneered against the Akha people, or that the University of Oregon gave him a PhD. in reward for this racist work against Akha women.

For the Akha people of Myanmar, Laos, China, Thailand and Vietnam who have been affected by these sterilizations which were approved by the State Board of Higher Education,

Sincerely,
Matthew McDaniel
Michu Uaiyue
The Akha Heritage Foundation

Does Anyone Know Where Paul W. Lewis Came From?
What we find so interesting is that there is hardly a record of who this Paul W. Lewis even is. He was bent on destroying the culture of the Akha people and sterilizing their women. We are just a little bit curious where Paul W. Lewis spent the war?

We Picket Salem Alliance Church
This Sunday Aug. 26 we contacted the Salem Police and then we went to Salem Alliance Church about 10AM and began our picket of the church.

In weeks leading up to this we had asked John Stumbo the pastor, and Susan White who is the head of Missions, to please clearly explain the relationship that Salem Alliance has with Lori Crouch in Thailand. Lori Crouch's parents attend Salem Alliance and we saw that Salem Alliance was on Lori Crouch's itinerary in Salem and Lori Crouch also has a link to Salem Alliance church on her Vernon Journal website.

John Stumbo stated that the church doesn't officially support Lori Crouch financially. However we have had numerous reports that people in the church do. Therefore we asked John Stumbo if he supported what Lori Crouch was doing in Thailand. John Stumbo did not answer on that count.

I was told by the reception at Salem Alliance that I could call Becca Mann and make an appointment with Steve Fowler and Susan White. I set up that appointment but they called me back to cancel it.

I still wanted to know their position on the work of Lori Crouch.

These were our concerns:
1. The Vernon Journal website depicts traditional Akha women. If the missionaries have their way there will be no traditional Akha culture or identity left, so we feel that this is a deception.
2. The Vernon Journal website makes no mention of severe human rights abuses of the Akha people by Thai police and army. The site discusses how much the Akha need Jesus. No mention is made of the Thai army and Police needing Jesus or the fact that they murder the Akha people and take their land or the fact that the Queen of Thailand steals the land of the Akha people. Why does Lori keep back this information from the website to defend the cause of these people?
3. Lori is connected to Akha Outreach which promotes the removal of Akha children from their families.
4. Lori is connected to Akha Outreach which bought land but told told the Akha that if they wanted it they had to convert. This is coercion.
5. Lori is connected to Akha Outreach which requires that the Akha abandon their culture to get any aid, and which also burns their traditional items. Akha outreach is run by Aje and Nancy an American, and is supported by American churches.
6. Aje was trained by Paul W. Lewis who pioneered the sterilization of Akha women in Thailand. The Thais honor that tradition and continue to sterilize Akha women against their will.
A few points that concern us.

However, since no one from the church was interested to make clear what was the connection to Lori, if they supported her or not, we decided to picket the church. At this point a man claiming he was the business manager came out and stood in front of us and told everyone who came by that they did not want to know what this was about, apparently fearing what they would discover. John Stumbo finally came out, and asked why we were there, and we informed him that we were there because he didn't answer his email. We explained our case to him. As clearly as we could understand, John Stumbo did not feel that because family of Lori attended the church, and that there was possibly financial support coming from members of the church, that this was any of his responsibility. He stated that he had too much on his plate, or that the church had too much on its plate, to assist the Akha in an honest way. We noted that no missionaries have time for this. He did say, that he did not agree with taking people's children away, sterilizing indigeous women, coercing people to convert. We asked him if he would ask Lori Crouch to take the link to Salem Alliance off her website? He stated that he would consider this. We told him that we thought this would be progress if Salem Alliance does not support what Lori is doing.

Several people stopped to tell us what a wonderful church it was. Several people stopped by to ask us what the situation was about? We noted that the church was predominantly white population in appearance and commented that the white people had a history of taking the land of indigenous American Indians, and their children, and now were in Thailand and other parts of the world doing the same thing and we thought it was racism. The church wanted us to know that they help Hispanic people. They wanted to comment that there were African Americans at the church. We saw two.

We stayed for two hours, we think that the people at the church found out something about why we were there and that it has to do with the Akha in Thailand and the Crouch family. We told numerous people we are opposed to what Lori Crouch is doing in Thailand in the Akha community and want her to leave.

While John Stumbo said he would consider our interests and requests, he stated that he was concerned that we wanted to twist what he had to say. This has never been the case, but if John Stumbo had a clear idea of the stubborn resistance that white people have to admitting to how they are treating the indigenous, it might explain some of our impatience with the white church community. Very few if any missionaries in Thailand mention human rights. Very few missionaries in Thailand oppose the removal of Akha children. Someone somewhere in some church needs to have the balls to stand up and oppose what missionaries like Lori Crouch and so many others are doing in removing indigenous children. We don't seee this repentance of colonial abuse happening any time soon. John Stumbo did mention something about how badly Christians get treated in Iraq. I asked him if that was the ones we weren't bombing?

I stated that many of the original families who took Oregon land from the Indians, still live in Oregon and are still powerful here. Someone commented that this was the government that did this, not citizens. History anyone?

I told John Stumbo that I would like a clear statement from Salem Alliance that the church does not support what Lori is doing in Thailand.

White Racism Against the Akha
We Take the Case of Paul W. Lewis Thesis on "Sterilizing Akha Women" (Phd from U of O) to the Oregon Higher Board of Education

After an unsatisfactory answer from the University of Oregon office regarding the thesis of Paul W. Lewis on sterilizing Akha women, which was the basis for his Phd. we have directed our questions at the Oregon Board of Higher Education.

The University of Oregon vice provost stated that they saw no problem with a thesis based on sterilizing Akha women as these things are "always controversial". We asked if it would be ok to sterilize all the female students at U of O? All Hispanic women? All African American women? If not, then why was it suddenly ok to sterilize Akha women and get your Phd. for doing so?

Pray tell U of O?

White Racism Against the Akha
Don't CROUCH on Us
Salem Alliance Church Rejects Opportunity to Discuss Missionary Lori Crouch in Thailand

Salem Alliance Church staff member Becca Mann stated that mission director Susan White and pastor Steve Fowler decided not to meet to discuss the mission work of Lori Crouch and Paul Vernon in the Akha villages of Thailand as it appeared our "agenda was too strong according to your flyers."

We consider our response to the racist activities of Lori Crouch and Paul Vernon within the Akha community as an appropriate response to their destructive and dishonest agenda which would best be described as white racism against indigenous peoples.

Apparently Salem Alliance is more troubled by someone who would oppose this than by the activity itself.

Akha statements clearly point out that the missions destroy their culture, take away their children and require them to abandon their culture in order to gain any benefit. In the case of Lori Crouch and Paul Vernon Akha who had no place to live were told that they could live on a piece of land bought by mission director of Akha Outreach Aje and Nancy, (Lori Crouch and Paul Vernon's boss in Thailand) if they abandoned their culture. This is highly unethical. Apparently WHITE Salem Alliance doesn't get this.

We suggested to Salem Alliance staff that their refusal to address a problem that members of their own church were creating in the Akha community reflected poorly on their church and their integrity. Why should people in Salem support a church or Salem Alliance's "Broadway Project" if Salem Alliance can not answer to issues of sponsoring racism?

It is unfortunate that Salem Alliance has turned down this opportunity to answer some questions and dialogue about what is going on in Thailand. We ask the Salem community not to support Salem Alliance Church or the Broadway Project.

We have also informed Salem Chamber of Commerce that we see support of the Broadway Project as support for white racism in Salem.

University of Oregon Says Lewis Thesis on Sterilizing Akha Women "Acceptable"
I have questioned the University of Oregon on how a phd could be awarded to Paul W. Lewis for his thesis on the sterilization of Akha women?

The University replied to me that they found no fault with the thesis, you know, these kinds of things are always controversial.

What do you think?

Salem Mayor Janet Taylor Can't Explain Where the Kiosks Are?
So where are they? We post flyers there, have for years. But suddenly the Kiosks are taken down. Reasons are given, the two all powerful kiosks are driving Salem to ruin. New ones are being designed. But NOW Mayor Janet Taylor says that there is no one working on any plans for kiosks at all. So which is it, new designs or none at all?

I told her I thought the removal of the kiosks was heavy handed without first presenting their replacements. And now that no designs are being planned at all, I think its dishonest Janet.

We are waiting for new designs of the Kiosks and how they will be placed, more protected from weather, possibly on walls, some pencil necked engineer working late under his visor to make sure that the complicated designs are worked out right.

But hundreds of people aren't buying the current scam and denials.

Vote people. Protest people, city hall is not listening.

Akha Campaign Gets Visual
We've added a little bit of visual information to our campaign for the Akha in the US. Our family van now doubles as a campaign van, part and parcel of our lives.

Current Campaign updates:
Salem Alliance.
YWAM (Youth With a Mission) Vern's Eden House Children's Home
CGT Mission in Thailand.

We would note that the Australian Government is now paying out money to Aborigines taken from their parents. Meanwhile Australian David Stevenson repeats the performance in Thailand with Akha children.

Salem Alliance is silent, as is YWAM. Until their consituency begins to hear of it, they think they can get away with it.

Missionaries Stealing the Akha Children
Australian Government Has to Pay for Removing Children From Their Families

Its about time. The record will show, that there is NO legal defense for the removal of indigenous children.

From the Brisbane Times:

AN ABORIGINAL man taken from his family as a baby has been awarded more than $500,000 compensation in a South Australian court, a first for a member of the stolen generation.

Bruce Trevorrow was 13 months old when a neighbour drove him on Christmas Day in 1957 from his Coorong family home, south-east of Adelaide, to the Children's Hospital with stomach pains.

Hospital notes tendered to the South Australian Supreme Court show staff recorded that the child had no parents and was neglected and malnourished.

Two weeks later, he was given under the authority of the Aborigines Protection Board to a woman, who later became his foster parent, without the permission of his parents. He did not see his family again for 10 years.

In 1998, Mr Trevorrow sued the South Australian Government for pain and suffering, alleging he had lost his cultural identity, suffered depression, became an alcoholic and had an erratic employment history after being taken as a child from his family.

The court heard the 50-year-old was depressed due to a chronic insecurity and had been treated with antidepressants and tranquillisers since he was 10.

Justice Thomas Gray ruled in favour of Mr Trevorrow, saying the state falsely imprisoned him as a child and owed him a duty of care for his pain and suffering.

Justice Gray said that Mr Trevorrow had had a "tumultuous young adult life" and the removal of him from his family caused injury and damage, which manifested throughout his childhood and adult life.

"The plaintiff has, thus far, generally had a miserable life," he said in his findings. "He does not belong. He feels isolated. His depression has led him to abuse alcohol. This abuse has compounded his problems."

Justice Gray noted a "level of determination" on the part of the Aborigines Protection Board to ensure Mr Trevorrow and his mother did not have contact.

He rejected arguments that the child was not unlawfully removed from his parents because the Aborigines Protection Board was not part of the Government.

The Government was ordered to pay $525,000 for injuries, losses and false imprisonment.

Mr Trevorrow left court saying he would pay off his house with the money. "I thought that we would never get there," he said. "But the day's come when I've got the peace of mind to start my life."

A spokesman for the South Australian Attorney-General, Michael Atkinson, said the Government would seek legal advice before deciding whether to appeal.

The former Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Commission chairwoman, Lowitja O'Donoghue, said the judgment was "a great victory".

"It is time to understand there was a stolen generation, instead of all these history wars."

We Contact YWAM Salem, Oregon About Vern's Eden House Children's Home and the Removal of Akha Girls
We are waiting to hear from YWAM Salem about the video on YouTube about Vern's Eden House Children's Home and all the Akha girls who have been removed from the Akha villages by Vern and his wife. We oppose the removal of Akha children. Vern's website, part of the YWAM Thailand website, doesn't say anything about human rights abuses in Thailand that drastically affect the Akha. We consider it dishonest that Vern's site portrays a racially prejudicial view of the Akha while intentionally concealing important facts.
YWAM's Eden House Site

University of Oregon Granted Phd to Missionary Paul W. Lewis for STERILIZING Akha Women
We have contacted the president of the University of Oregon and asked him how it can be that a person would be granted their Phd. based on a thesis outlining how to sterilize Akha women?

We think Paul W. Lewis, who wrote the thesis based on sterilizations he did among the Akha, does not have a valid Phd. based on this work.

We have asked the University of Oregon to review this case.

Wall of Silence
Salem Alliance Won't Come Clean On Racism
We Oppose "The Broadway Project". Nice at home, racist overseas, a tree of two fruits.
John Stumbo - Senior Pastor Doesn't Answer Our Questions
What's He Hiding?: jstumbo@salemalliance.org
Susan White Director of World Mission swhite@salemalliance.org
Lori Crouch and Paul Vernon
Will Destroying People's Culture Give YOU Cancer?
Akha Outreach
Exterminating Akha Culture
We Ask SALEM ALLIANCE CHURCH if They Support Coercive Conversion and Taking Away the Akha People's Children?
Faith Chapel Arvada, Colorado - We ask the same questions.

Discussion:
We have noted with interest while Mr. Stumbo does not like this discussion on our website, we would be more than glad to know where Salem Alliance stands on the work of Lori Crouch and Paul Vernon in Thailand?

Salem Alliance told us that they do not support Lori and Paul in any official financial way. They asked us to take down our info about Salem Alliance. We asked Mr. Stumbo (pastor) if people at the church support Lori and Paul financially?
We also asked more importantly, does Salem Alliance support THEOLOGICALLY what Lori Crouch and Paul Vernon are involved in?
Would Salem Alliance, proud of its new mega dollar "neighbourhood Broadway Project" support PORN sites?

We consider the destruction of a people far "Worse than PORN".
So we asked that of Salem Alliance and Faith Bible Chapel in Arvada, Colorado, the same question, do they support the destruction of a people's culture and identity, the destruction of their human rights, the coercive removal of their children, the coercive conversion of those very same children?

We all know YWAM, the cult. Look at these girls in the following video link at a YWAM mission. Removed from their village by people just like Lori and Paul, all bent on "protecting them" into their own direction, and no mention is made of the very many other complexities going on. Just villify the culture, drugs, sex, desperation, evil darkness, yes, that is enough for any missionary to begin to salivate and take away indigenous children like they did with the American Indians.
It is not stated the theft of land, the extra judicial killings, the torture, the false cases of imprisonment, thefts of money at police checkpoints. None of this is mentioned. The missions only try and talk about what ills they can find in Akha society, not the incredible abuse the Akha face from the Thai government and security forces.

The missions do not protest to the Thai government. Why are they silent? To keep their visas?
In the end, it's all about missions taking what they want, and hoping you won't know the other details.
Vern and Eden House Remove Akha Girls - YouTube.com

Would Salem Alliance think its ok to be linked on a PORN site?
Maybe its time they get their link off of Lori Crouch and Paul Vernon's child exploitive website.
We have asked them if they will ask Lori and Paul to remove the link from their site to Salem Alliance?
Paste this link into your browser to see Lori and Pual's website and their link to Salem Alliance Church: http://www.loriandpaul.hopedenver.com
What Lori and Paul are doing to the Akha is worse than porn.

We are waiting for an answer.
We oppose the destruction of Akha culture and the removal of Akha children.

Contact Susan White: swhite@salemalliance.org who is the Director of World Missions. Contact John Stumbo: jstumbo@salemalliance.org Senior Pastor. Let the Hispanic community know what Salem Alliance is doing to the Indigenous in Thailand.
Download Salem Alliance Flyer pdf

Link to Faith Chapel, Colorado

Faith Chapel Email faith.family@fbci.org

Church at Forefront of Sex Abuse - LA Catholics to pay $660 MILLION

The LA Diocese to pay $660 million for abusing hundreds of children. Payment of church since 1950 equal $2 Billion. So why would we want ANY church working with indigenous children? Sex abuse in Thailand by church and missionary staff rampant, beyond the law.

YWAM NEEDS TO GET OUT OF AKHA VILLAGES
VERN McCauley's YWAM Cult Eden House Takes AKHA GIRLS Away From Their Villages and Posts A Video

Eden house makes out how horrible Akha culture and life is. Stigmatizes them with constant reference to drugs, and suddenly shows two well fed Americans living the good life with mostly girls they have seperated from the Akha communities. Vern hardly looks like he is starving. Vern was silent about the drug war killings, the confiscation of Akha farm lands etc. We think Vern is one sick puppy. This video was produced with help from Aje (Ajay) who is the very person and organization that Lori Crouch and Paul Vernon work for. No mention of human rights in this film. Missions very carefully manage information to justify what they are doing.
Vern and Eden House Remove Akha Girls - YouTube.com

Volunteer Protests Richard Haugland of Starfish Country Home in Chiangmai

Richard Haugland is an Oregonian who has set up a home in Thailand and is taking away Akha children. We ask you to contact him and ask him to stop.
Starfish Country Home School Foundation
rhaugland@gmail.com

Letter from Volunteer at Starfish Country Home

I worked at the Starfish Country Home School in October of 2006 as a volunteer. I am a trained Special Learning Support Assistant with 3 years training and 5 years working experience. I joined the programme to teach art for 3 months.

Richard Haughland who is the head of the foundation, in my professional opinion, is unstable and in no uncertain terms should not be allowed to have any contact with children.

The reason I managed to stay so long was because I was so concerned about the welfare of the children that I couldn't bear to leave. This man is dangerous! He has no experience or qualifications with regards to child development, care or education. The man in my opinion is on the Autistic spectrum and displays strong characteristic behaviour of a sociopath. He is socially inept and has no ability to empathise or capacity to understand how his actions affect others.

There are many things that started my alarm bells ringing from the outset but as Dr Richard unfolded his plans for the children I was shocked by his complacency and incompetance as a leader of staff or carer of children.

Firstly the school consists of 28 girls and 2 boys which I find disconcerting. Dr Haughland calls the children orphans when in fact they all have a living parent if not both. He makes out that the children are brought to him by the desperate families begging him to help. When in actual fact he goes out to the villages and picks them out like dolls in a toy shop. He orchestrates a talent contest asking the children to sing or dance. He is very focused on the children’s ability to perform. He says "this enables me to pick out the bright ones from the dumb ones, they need to have a spark'.

Dr Richard Haugland is obsessed about so called “intelligence” but he has no interests in providing an educational structure. His way of "gauging how intelligent they are is by how much English they can speak". He asked staff to correct them when they speak in a Thai accent! Thai language doesn’t use blends such as "Sp" for spoon or "SK for skin. So when a Thai person tries to speak English they will say Suh-poon or Suh- kin. Dr Richard wanted the staff to correct a child and force them to say it over and over till they get it right. Anyone with any compassion and basic understanding of child learning will know that you should only encourage and never criticise a child's efforts. This will only destroy there confidence and any effort to communicate should be celebrated. Dr Richard says this is how he can tell if the children can speak English if they say Spoon instead of Suh-poon.

These children are all tribal children so their first language is their hill tribe language. Most of the children don't speak any Thai when they come to Starfish. It has been explained to Dr Haughland many times by me, other educational professionals and trained teachers that these children are being forced to learn two languages at the same time so they will struggle with both. We recommended that the children should be given a strong foundation in Thai as this is there native country and English should be complimentary. Dr Richard dismissed any advice or expertise and in April of this year he tested the children, some of them are only just 4 years old. He tested them purely on their ability to speaking English. Some of the children had been at the school for under a year. According to Dr Haughland this was long enough.

Again using his words "the dumb kids will be sent to the city home in Changmai". We are only interested in the bright ones here".

When I asked him what experience, knowledge and training in education and child development he has to enable him to assess these children he responded "I am a Father." The city home is far from a home! It’s an empty echoey hotel block with a small car park and walls all the way round. The staffs are also untrained and there have also been incidents of abusive treatment of the children.

Dr Richard separated three sisters aged 3 7 and 11 because one sibling was having difficulty settling into Starfish. Dr Richard Haughland organised for her to be sent to Changmai. I now feel this was not only because she was, understandably, displaying traumatised behaviour which was unacceptable to Dr Haughland but because the sibling didn't have front teeth after an accident. Also she didn't warm to Dr Haughland. Dr Richard Haughland is obsessed about the appearance of the children and judges them based on the affection he receives from them. He has his favourites and makes this very obvious with inappropriate displays of affection.

The children now have the understanding that Changmai School is a punishment for bad children. When I asked Dr Richard Haughland if he was concerned that the children thought of the city home in this way he said "Well effectively that’s what it is overall".

The list of my concerns is endless:-
None of the staff have child care qualifications.
None of them have first aid training.
None of the staff including volunteers are CRB or reference checked before being employed to work and live with these vulnerable children.
There were incidences of the children been hit and pinched by staff. When Dr Richard Haughland was told about this he did nothing!
He doesn’t allow the children to go home for any extended periods of time. It was only through staff really standing up to him that he aloud the children to go home for 2 days for New Year.
Nothing is being done to protect and reinforce there culture.
The children are forgetting how to speak their tribal language.
There is no one in place to support these children emotionally and psychologically.
They are not being taught manners or respect.
There is no continuity or stability in place.
Thai police frequently turn up at the site but are payed off and leave.
These children are kept on this rural site with very little integration into the world.
Supervision is minimal.
There is no structure or plans in place for when the children get older.

After 3 months of this madness and trying my best to change what was happening I eventually had to leave. I couldn't bear it anymore and I was making myself ill with stress and anxiety.

This is really just the tip of a very ugly iceberg! There are nearly 60 children’s lives that this man is playing with. These are just the children that he is directly involved with if you look at his website you will see the amount of other organisations he is involved with. This is a very unhealthy and unsettling situation and the potential outcome is harrowing.

Since being home I have contacted the Thai Child Protection Authorities and they said that they had received many calls of concern regarding Starfish Foundation.

I can't stress enough to you how much I and the other volunteers I worked with feel this man should be stopped. I am begging anyone who reads this do not support this man. He is dangerous!

See www.akha.org http://portland.indymedia.org/en/2007/02/354569.shtml for more information.

Natasha Day

Serious Dysfunction at Amnesty International Bangkok

Amnesty International Dysfunction in Bangkok

We have noted for years that Amnesty International has ignored the situation of the Akha in prison in Thailand and other hilltribe prisoners. Not only are they targeted for higher rates of arrest that bring up the issue of ethnic cleansing, but Amnesty does not look into the conditions of their arrest, conviction, detention and care.

The following article articulates these points.

Dysfunction at AI Thailand
Law Pha, a young hilltribe man who has spent more than ten years in Thai prisons for his first and only drugs offence, told me in May 2006, “I’ve been trying to contact Thai human rights organizations, but I never hear anything from them. Can you please call any of them to contact me?”

For several years I’d been sending reports about hilltribe and prisoner issues in Thailand and neighboring states to many human rights groups, but like Law Pha I’d also not received any reply from most of them. Then on 29th June 2006 an email came from Mr. “Pat” Pongpols Samsamak, campaigns coordinator at Amnesty International (AI) Thailand, asking me to visit their office in Bangkok.

On the afternoon of 19th July 2006 I spent three hours explaining hilltribe and prisoner human rights issues in Thailand to Pat, Ms. “Noi” Pornpen Khongkachonkiet also working at AI Thailand, Ms. Puttanee Kangkun of the Asian Human Rights Commission (AHRC), and a volunteer at the AI office. A substantial quantity of detailed information was handed over, while these people expressed interest in helping to support the human rights of hilltribe prisoners in Thailand.

I was surprised at how little they seemed to know about these issues, and also at Puttanee’s later question about why I did this work. (My reply was that I was trying to help people who badly needed help and were getting little or none from elsewhere.)

Pornpen agreed that hilltribe prisoners could write to her at the AI office, and that she would keep me informed of their letters by email. Pat and Puttanee expressed interest in visiting hilltribe prisoners. I told them about Law Pha and the many other hilltribe prisoners who wished to see them.

A week later, on the afternoon of 26th July 2006, I had a second meeting at the AI office with Pat and Puttanee. More detailed information was provided about visiting and helping hilltribe inmates at the women’s prison in Bangkok, situated only a few kilometers away from the AI office, where conditions were of particular concern. A donation of 12,000 baht (about $300) was handed over to start this work specifically to support hilltribe prisoners.

On 10th August 2006, Pat, Puttanee, human rights lawyer Khun Chang, as well as Ms. Kwang and Ms. Anable from AI, visited Ms. Bu Mue Emily Soe, a hilltribe inmate at the women’s prison. The lawyer gathered information from Bu Mue concerning several sick and elderly hilltribe prisoners and a young woman who had given birth to a son while there in prison.

Not until September 2006 did I hear from Pat and Puttanee about this prison visit. The lawyer’s report was short and added little to the information I’d already given them. No concern was expressed about conditions at the prison, or the treatment of sick, elderly and pregnant inmates. The report did not comment at all on why there were so many hilltribe inmates at the prison. Nothing was mentioned about the possibility of release on medical grounds. There was a complete lack of any investigative criticism of what is undoubtedly one of the worst prisons in Thailand.

Functionally Derelict
It soon became obvious that AI Thailand, founded in 1995 as part of the world’s oldest and largest human rights organization, is seriously short of competent skills for research, coordination, management and accountability. The information, donation and time given to people at AI Thailand, rather than helping to support the human rights of hilltribe prisoners as intended has actually frustrated and not furthered their cause one iota.

Bu Mue wrote in late 2006: “On 20th August 2006 I wrote to Ms. Pornpen with another letter for you, and asked her to send it to you. I don’t know if she got my letter or not. Until today I don’t have any response from her.”

Chit Win Sein, a hilltribe man held at Klong Pai Central Prison, wrote in September 2006: “I’ve written to Ms. Pornpen in Bangkok, but until now I did not receive any news from her. I would like to know what is her problem.”

Asok Wei Yee, a young hilltribe man held at the youth prison in Pathumthani, informed me in October 2006: “I wrote to Ms. Pornpen asking her to come to see me about the petition for the King’s pardon, but I’ve still got no answer from her.”

Rattanachai Kaitshie, a hilltribe man who has been seriously ill with bronchitis in Klong Pai Central Prison’s hospital, reported to me in November 2006: “I wrote a letter to Ms. Pornpen. I gave her the names of hilltribe and Burmese (inmates) who are very sick in hospital here. I told her to send an email to you about what I wrote.”

I never received any message at all from Pornpen about Rattanachai’s letter. In fact I have not been informed by Pornpen, or by anyone else at AI Thailand, about any of the letters sent by hilltribe prisoners to her at the office!

Rattanachai became critically ill early in February 2007. He had chest pains and was vomiting blood. Prison officials reluctantly took him to a large outside hospital. The doctor who saw him there apparently rebuked the prison officials for not bringing him sooner. Prisoners who are unable to pay or get outside support for medical treatment, which includes most hilltribe prisoners, are often left to suffer with woefully inadequate treatment in prison. Rattanachai was again taken to the outside hospital on 27th February 2007 on the outside doctor’s order to reluctant prison officials. He’s now continuing to survive in the prison hospital.

While Rattanachai has been in the prison hospital many hilltribe and Burmese inmates have passed away there. His case partner, Moses Saengpo, died on 6th October 2006. Kyaw Soe Naing died in the prison on 24th November 2006. During 2006 twenty-two inmates died in Klong Pai’s prison hospital. As of 2nd May 2007, eight prisoners had passed away so far this year.

Meanwhile, there’s been no response at all to this suffering, or letters asking for help, from Pornpen, Pat, Puttanee or any other human rights staff in Thailand! No support, help or even acknowledgement have been forthcoming from AI Thailand or AHRC staff for hilltribe prisoners since their one prison visit on 10th August 2006! This is despite AI Thailand having been given donation funds and copious information specifically to enable them to do this work!

Morally Bankrupt
After months of hearing nothing from AI Thailand staff, or from Puttanee of AHRC, it was eventually learned in April 2007 from Kwanravee, the new campaigns coordinator at AI Thailand, that Pat had left AI. He hadn’t informed me, and he hadn’t informed Kwanravee about the hilltribe prisoner information and donation funds provided to AI Thailand. In fact Pat left AI taking the donation funds with him! He has since changed his story about how some of the funds were used on the one prison visit in August 2006. As a result of this mismanagement, the funds have not been available to help hilltribe prisoners, even if there was anyone at AI Thailand or AHRC competent enough to use the funds responsibly.

In May 2007, I heard from Pornpen that she too had left AI and was busy in a new job - so busy that she could do absolutely nothing with the letters she acknowledges she received from hilltribe prisoners. I’ve repeatedly requested her and other AI staff to forward the letters to me, as some of them contain messages addressed to me, but so far even this task has been beyond them!

Hilltribe prisoners continue to suffer dire poverty, human rights abuses, and even to die in Thai prisons without any apparent concern from AI or AHRC staff in Thailand, although they have been given the facts and means to support these unfortunate people. Pat and Pornpen have been found irresponsible, incompetent and morally bankrupt. Puttanee has expressed some sorrow for the lack of action on this issue, but she has done nothing more.

AI claims to stand against the death penalty and torture. Many hilltribe prisoners in Thailand are held in iron shackles for years under the shadow of the death sentence. At the women’s prison not far away from the AI Thailand office in Bangkok are several hilltribe women with the death sentence. It seems that no such facts appear in the Thailand section of AI’s 2007 report. In fact the report is pathetically inadequate in its reporting about human rights concerns for prisoners and ethnic hilltribe minorities in Thailand. I wonder why?

One tiny hope that hilltribe prisoners have, while they struggle to survive in Thai prisons under draconian sentences even for first offences and minor drugs charges, is a King’s pardon. To file a petition for a King’s pardon hilltribe prisoners usually require help with Thai writing skills and stationary materials. They must pay for this, like everything else in a Thai prison. Repeated requests for such assistance have fallen on deaf ears at AI Thailand.

One reason to be concerned about hilltribe prisoners in Thailand is that these ethnic minorities make up a far larger proportion of the prison population than the less-than 2% they officially make up of the national population. On 16th June 2004, a petition on behalf of hilltribe prisoners in Thailand was sent to the King. On 27th July 2004, the Office of His Majesty’s Principal Private Secretary acknowledged receipt of the petition and said that “the matter as been referred to the appropriate authorities of the Royal Thai Government for their consideration.”

Political turmoil in Thailand has since hampered proposed law reforms. However, the lack of any effective work, assessment and reporting by AI, AHRC, and other human rights groups in Thailand has been a serious failure which has frustrated human rights causes, and possibly contributed towards the turmoil the country is now in. Such a failure is a dereliction of the duty that these human rights NGOs proclaim to take upon themselves.

Ethically Blind
One astute observer has noted that human rights organizations are usually not very effective at exposing abuses within their own countries. Identity is perhaps the cause and solution of human rights issues. We can be blind to our own self-identities, beliefs and assumptions. True justice and rights, however, are necessarily above any national, cultural, ethnic, religious, or ideological identities. All human beings are to be considered equal concerning certain fundamental rights. To love our neighbor as ourselves is the epitome of true human rights practice.

Exclusive self-identities are like walls which can separate us and frustrate our love towards certain of our neighbors. Traditions, cultures, religions and ideologies are unfortunately allowed by bound self-identity to divide and conquer boundless life and spirit. A Thai person brought up in Thai culture is very likely to have unexamined attitudes towards prisoners and hilltribe people. Human rights workers especially need to openly and honestly examine their own attitudes, assumptions, and self-identities. Otherwise they will be in serious danger of being exposed as blind hypocrites in deed, exacerbating the very universal human rights causes they proclaim to support, but in practice don’t!

As for AI Thailand and the AHRC, is any organization better than the individuals who work in it? Will Pat, Pornpen, and Puttanee be responsibly brought to account within their organizations? The mismanagement of information and donations within a human rights organization would be utterly repugnant and hypocritical. When words loudly proclaimed in their literature do not match their deeds on the ground there should be serious concern about such human rights groups, and whether we support them or not.

Hilltribe prisoners in Thailand are still awaiting replies to their letters from Pornpen or from other AI staff, as well as badly needed support that the effective use of donation funds given to AI Thailand for that purpose would allow, if it was not for the fact that these funds remain problematically in Pat’s personal pocket.

Law Pha now has the last words, written from Bankwang Central Prison in March 2007: “Regarding NGOs, Amnesty International and human rights organizations, I don’t have any trust in them and I don’t believe in whatever they are doing here… so forget about those people in Thailand. I wrote to Ms. Pornpen, but I never got a simple reply.”

Why not try getting a reply yourself:

Amnesty International Thailand
641/8 Vara Place,
Lad Prao Soi 5,
Ladyao, Chatuchak,
Bangkok 10900
Thailand

Tel: 0-2938-7746
0-2513-8754
0-2513-8745
Fax: 0-2938-4756

www.amnesty.or.th
email: admin@amnesty.or.th
info@amnesty.or.th
campaign@amnesty.or.th

www.ahrchk.net
email: ahrchk@ahrchk.org
support@ahrchk.net
"Pat" pongpols Samsamak: pongpols@hotmail.com
"Noi" Pornpen Khongkachonkiet: noinoipornpen@hotmail.com
Puttanee Kangkun: puttanee@loxinfo.co.th

Human Trafficking
Akha Woman Imprisoned in Singapore's
Changi Prison - Why Does Singapore Imprison the Victims of Trafficking?

Why Does Thailand Allow Akha Women To Be Trafficked?

The Imprisonment of Ms. Meitinee Wongsa. Changi Prison ID S12369. She is now to be transfered to Portsdown Prison.
We request her release!
We Request She NOT Be Deported!
Ms. Amue Athu Released from Prison in Singapore, Destination Unkown.
Our message to Ms. Wongsa:
We keep fighting for you, so people know how Akha women get trafficked, how the enlightened systems all ignore what has happened to them, ignore the brothels, ignore the traffickers, business as usual. And if we walked back to your village, where I have been more than once, I could ask the Thai authorities, why they take the rice lands of the Akha people?

Thailand just doesn't get it, and neither would it appear, does Singapore.

Now an interesting situation is coming to light in the case of Ms. Wongsa. It appears that Singapore "allows" women to come into the country to "solicit". They make no note of who they are or if they are trafficked from what we can tell. Apparently Singapore needs people to come into the country to meet the needs of Singapore men who can't get enough in their own country. And then when Singapore is done with these women, they send them home, or send them home early if they don't work out.

We have contacted the Singapore Embassy and Ambassador in the US, the ICA in Singapore, an MP in Singapore, Amnesty International and a number of individuals and agencies regarding this case. We are asking that her case be reviewed and that Akha women are not made to pay the price for either trafficking or unethical Agents who put them in these situations. We are asking that she be released and NOT deported from Singapore.

Please contact the Singapore Embassy regarding this case.

Useful links:
US Health and Human Services Link
HumanTrafficking.org
ILO on Trafficking
UNIAP No Trafficking
Tip In Asia
Global Alliance Against Traffic in Women
H.O.M.E. Migrants Rights
Singapore Prison Service
Singapore Embassy Washington DC
afesip.org

The rest of the ongoing details of this case can be seen at Ms. Meitinee Wongsa


Copyright 1991 - 2006 The Akha Heritage Foundation