Stories from Quick Reads and East Asia
Beijing authorities blocked an annual independent film festival from opening on August 23, 2014. The move is seen as a sign that Beijing is tightening ideological controls. According to indie director Huang Wenhai, the shutdown was “the darkest day in the history of Chinese independent film.” Started in 2006 by independent art critic Li Xianting, the film festival is a place for indie filmmakers to share and discuss their work. Although the festivals like this had some trouble with the police over the years, it's the first time the whole festival has been blocked. The police also took away records of the Li's work for investigation.
China Media Project has more details about happenings around the shutdown.
A Guerra da Beatriz (Beatriz’s War) is the first feature film from East Timor. It is about Indonesia's occupation of East Timor from 1975 to 1999 and its impact on the Timorese society.
According to the producers of the film, it was “made guerrilla style by the men and
women who fought in the armed resistance and the clandestine movement” against Indonesia's occupation.
A recent court case in Jianxi province revealed the insider story of human kidney trafficking business in China. Charles Liu from theNanfang.com curated the local investigative report on the operation of the underground business.
… a 21 year-old man looking to prove to his family that he was financially independent. After learning from a QQ contact that he could earn RMB 25,000 for selling a kidney he decided to go to Nanchang.
The Smithsonian Channel has uploaded a video showing a digital reconstruction of Cambodia's Angkor Wat using 3D image technology. Angkor Wat (Temple City) is a popular tourism destination in Cambodia which used to be the capital of the Khmer Empire in the 12th century. It is also a massive religious monument, a UNESCO World Heritage site, and one of the most important archaeological sites in South-East Asia.
Danièle Adler, a consultant in communications strategy, gives an overview of the significant improvement of the IT sector in Cambodia:
Six years ago, fewer than 10,000 Cambodians had a web connection, and it was extremely slow. Today 2.5 million people have Internet access at home, and an additional two million Cambodians go online daily using their smartphones.
The Chinese Communist Party (CCP) announced its investigation of Zhou Yongkang, a former senior member of CCP and headed China's security apparatus on July 29, 2014. China File invited Sebastian Veg, Roderick MacFarquhar and Taisu Zhang, scholars from history and social science to comment on the political significance of Zhou's downfall.