Newsflash: Burma’s Junta Winning Rigged Elections


The results of Burma’s first elections in 20 years are coming in, and you may be shocked to hear that the military dictatorship is winning. As there were crazy amounts of cheating before the elections, so it was during yesterday’s polls as well, from ballot stuffing to straight-up forcing people to vote the right way. Obama has already called BS on the results. There are wide reports that Burmese citizens are also, as they’ve been since the announcement of the process, unhappy with it, but so far, there haven’t been any protests. 

But there has been the breakout of a great big fight between two ethnic militias and government soldiers on the Thailand-Burma border. Thousands of Burmese have fled to Thailand to escape the violence, which apparently erupted over the militias’ dissatisfaction with the junta’s plan to force ethnic soldiers into the Burma army in the new “democracy.” The militias have captured several government buildings and government soldiers in the city of Myawaddy, and at least 30 people have been killed. Civilians are hoping that more ethnic militias don’t join the fray and further broaden the conflict.

One More Thing

And it's a big one. Mother Jones is launching a new Corruption Project to do deep, time-intensive reporting on the corruption that is both the cause and result of the crisis in our democracy.

The more we thought about how Mother Jones can have the most impact right now, the more we realized that so many stories come down to corruption: People with wealth and power putting their interests first—and often getting away with it.

Our goal is to understand how we got here and how we might get out. We're aiming to create a reporting position dedicated to uncovering corruption, build a team, and let them investigate for a year—publishing our stories in a concerted window: a special issue of our magazine, video and podcast series, and a dedicated online portal so they don't get lost in the daily deluge of headlines and breaking news.

We want to go all in, and we've got seed funding to get started—but we're looking to raise $500,000 in donations this spring so we can go even bigger. You can read about why we think this project is what the moment demands and what we hope to accomplish—and if you like how it sounds, please help us go big with a tax-deductible donation today.

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