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Recent Z Nightly Commentaries
Vltchek: Suharto Lays Dying
Jan 14, 2008
It is 4 PM, 13th January 2008. The main entrance to Pertamina Hospital in South Jakarta is besieged by dozens of journalists. Almost all of them are local, as Indonesia doesn't attract international media conglomerates, unless there is a deadly landslide, tsunami or airplane crash. Some reporters are placing the lenses of video and photo cameras against the glass of the hospital entrance, hoping to spot at least some action.
Vltchek: Fiji Tourism
Dec 28, 2007
Just a few miles from the center of the second largest Fijian city - Lautoka - child scavengers are working in the middle of enormous garbage dump, trying to make living by separating filthy objects of at least some commercial value. They are surrounded by appalling smell, flies and desperate looking dogs. At the entrance to the dump, big billboard is warning that trespassers will be prosecuted. This spectacle is apparently not for those who came to spend thousands of dollars seeking Eden.
Vltchek: Indonesia And Destruction Of Rainforest
Dec 01, 2007
Indonesia And Destruction Of Rainforest
Vltchek: Resisting Nokia E90
Sep 24, 2007
In Southeast Asia, size matters. You enter one of the chain cafes in Kuala Lumpur, Bangkok or Jakarta (if you are after foamy cappuccino or latte, one of the chains may be your only option) and you will be welcomed by the latest display of the bulky smart
Vltchek: Jakarta Voted - Keep Holding Your Nose!
Aug 26, 2007
Visit to the fourth largest urban area on earth (with approximately 23 million inhabitants) may be hazardous to your health. Although there are no exact statistics to prove it and one can hardly rely on official data anyway, the city of Jakarta is rapidly
Vltchek: Fijian Military and Culture of Fear
Aug 02, 2007
Short time after the coup, Executive Director of Fiji women's Rights Movement FWRM), Virisila Buadromo and her partner had been arrested and taken to the military barracks. "I was threatened and insulted, beaten and humiliated", she recalled. "Eventual
I have to fly ten times a year through Australia and New Zealand, sometimes more frequently. As a journalist I cover Asia Pacific and Pacific Island Nations, two enormous geographic areas. The only way to move between them is to change planes at one of t
Vera-zavala: Reading children books in Diyarbakir
May 29, 2007
Mayor Abdullah Demirbas has 17 accusations against him raised by the Turkish state. The case has reached the High Court, where he is facing charges against both criminal law and administrative law. If found guilty, he can be sentenced to prison, and both
I have to fly ten times a year through Australia and New Zealand, sometimes more frequently. As a journalist I cover Asia Pacific and Pacific Island Nations, two enormous geographic areas. The only way to move between them is to change planes at one of the main gateways: Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Auckland or Guam.
This week, Kingdom of Tonga is getting ready for a lavish wedding. Seventh in line for the royal throne, Fanetupouvava'u Tuita, 29, will on Thursday marry Kiu Kaho, an army lieutenant whose father is a noble, Tu'ivakano, and is a cousin of the royal famil
Oceania -- Francis Hazel, director of The Micronesian Seminar, remembers how one day a television crew from Israel had besieged his office in the capital of Federated States of Micronesia (FSM) -Pohnpei -. "I wondered what they were doing in this city whi
Vltchek: ASEAN - Distant Dream of Unity
Mar 11, 2007
Kuala Lumpur -- Small Airbus-319 of Cebu Pacific Airlines departs Manila for almost 4 hours long journey to Jakarta, but the service started only recently and it is not flying every day. Capitals of two enormous Southeast Asian countries are still effecti
Another day, another unnecessary loss of lives: 16 people killed and 16 still missing in floods and landslides on a small island Tahuna off Indonesia's Sulawesi.
Vltchek: S. Korean Propaganda - Travelling with Mr. Kim: From the North/South Korean Border and Seoul
Nov 19, 2006
I grew up in the Czech city of Pilsen (Plzen), just a few dozens of miles east from the ÒIron CurtainÓ and the border with then West Germany. ThatÕs why I think I should be pardoned for feeling strange obsession with the borders and division lines of all
Vltchek: Coming Back to Hanoi
Oct 02, 2006
There is a guillotine placed in the courtyard of Maison Central, its blade sharp and shining. The former Hoa Lo Prison is a gloomy reminder of dark days of torture and humiliation; this is where thousands of Vietnamese patriots vanished without a trace, v
Vltchek: Thai Coup: Old Elites Against New
Sep 23, 2006
"Notorious Bangkok traffic jams indicate that the country is returning to normalcy", reported western mass-media outlets including BBC World Service just two days after the military coup overthrew democratically elected government of Thaksin Shinawatra, t
Vltchek: Cambodia: HIstory And Unanswered Questions
Aug 25, 2006
It is hot and dusty. The stale air of the Cambodian capital is heavy with exhaust fumes. Traffic is chaotic. Street children and beggars besiege posh-looking French cafes on the Sap River; tourists and international workers pretending to lead a normal lif
On June 17, I was sitting in Jakarta, reading through an important manuscript sent to our publishing house, Mainstay Press, from far-away Ghana. It was written by Manu Herbstein, a South African/Ghanaian novelist, and it was called "Ramseyer's Ghost". Thi