Villagers in Myanmar Describe the Destructive Power of China’s Building Frenzy – by Carol Giacomo – NYT

“I heard this story firsthand from five farmers who traveled hours by boat, foot and motorbike from their even smaller and poorer village, Kapaing Chaung, to talk with me about their experiences when the China National Petroleum Corporation and the government of Myanmar, formerly Burma, jointly built an oil and gas pipeline from China across Myanmar to Kyaukphyu, on the Bay of Bengal.

The villagers are members of a local “watch committee” backed by two rights activist groups, the Natural Resource Governance Institute and Paung Ku, to monitor the operation. The committee is a weak but admirable attempt at community action in a country where people are reluctant to complain and nobody cared much about the farmers whose land was vital to the project but who were powerless to defend their interests.”