CSIS Southeast Asia SIT-REP, Aug 13, 2015

CSIS Southeast Asia SIT-REP

The SIT-REP gives you links to all of CSIS Southeast Asia’s (@SoutheastAsiaDC) best updates and programs in a five minute read. This issue includes recommendations for U.S. policymakers to grapple with the South China Sea, a series of blog posts on Myanmar’s roiling politics, a profile of one of Malaysia foremost moderate Islamic leaders, and much more. Links will take you to the full publications, multimedia, or to registration for upcoming programs when available. To jump to a section, select one of the following:


The core of CSIS Southeast Asia’s work is our research. Go deep for insight and inspiration

Grappling with the South China Sea Policy Challenge,” by Gregory Poling (@GregPoling)
CSIS hosted its fifth annual South China Sea conference on July 21, 2015. Interest in the conference reflected the wider discussion on the South China Sea among policy communities in Washington and around the Asia Pacific. This report seeks to grapple with the dual policy challenges of the South China Sea disputes, and offers recommendations to U.S. policymakers… Read more >>

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Deep insight into developments that move the dial

Aquino’s Legacy Secure but Philippines’ Challenges Remain,” by Phuong Nguyen (@PNguyen_DC) and John Juenemann
President Benigno Aquino used his final State of the Nation Address on July 27 to cement his legacy of anticorruption efforts and track record of revamping the once-sluggish Philippine economy. While Aquino has played a leading role in steering the Philippines in the right direction over the past five years, his term will end in 2016… Read more >>

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The CSIS Asia blog features insights on policy around the Asia Pacific

Shwe Mann’s Fall from Power a Mixed Blessing for Myanmar,” by Phuong Nguyen (@PNguyen_DC)
Burmese elite politics were historically a realm of intrigue and abrupt changes, in which a high-ranking general could fall from power overnight and traces of his influence be erased almost instantaneously. This happened again on August 13, when Lower House speaker Shwe Mann – a former general – was removed from his post as chairman of the ruling USDP… Read more >>

Aung San Suu Kyi & Her Party Face Challenges Despite Opportunities of Myanmar’s Elections,” by Aung Din
Many things look rosy for Aung San Suu Kyi and her party, the NLD, ahead of landmark elections in Myanmar in November. The ruling USDP is divided and infighting between President Thein Sein and parliamentary speaker Shwe Mann is distracting the party. Aung San Suu Kyi has managed to arouse the hackles of the public against the military… Read more >>

Rohingya Is More than a Human Rights Issue for Myanmar,” by Aung Din
The majority of people in Myanmar perceive that the United States and the international community have been biased and one-sided when they approach the situation of the Rohingya, or Bengalis as they are called in Myanmar, in the western state of Rakhine. The United States should not only consider this to be a human rights problem… Read more >>

Southeast Asia’s Real Security Concern,” by Zachary Abuza
A drought in the middle of monsoon season brought on by the El Niño effect has affected farmers across Southeast Asia, hampering economic growth and exacerbating political tensions between urban elites and farmers. Though rains have recently begun, reservoirs are at such low levels that they will not be refilled in a shortened season… Read more >>

Analyzing USDP In-Fighting & the Power Struggle for the Future of Myanmar,” by Aung Din
Myanmar is about to enter the second phase of political decentralization, which started in 2011 with the transfer of power from the military regime to the pseudo-civilian government. The upcoming elections, scheduled for November 8, will determine who will lead the country over the next five years together with the powerful military commander-in-chief… Read more >>

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The Leaderboard

Two-minute read on the real people that are making news

John Momis, President of Bougainville, Papua New Guinea
Momis was re-elected president of Bougainville for a five year term on June 8, garnering over 50 percent of the votes. He was first elected president of the region in 2010 and is the first candidate to defend his incumbency. His term will coincide with Bougainville’s mandated referendum on independence from PNG, which must occur before 2020… Read more >>

Mohamad Sabu, Leader of Malaysia’s New Hope Movement
Mat Sabu and other moderate Islamic leaders on July 13 broke away from Malaysia’s PAS to start a new movement called Gerakan Harapan Baru, or the New Hope Movement. The group of 18 progressive leaders were subsequently ousted from their party positions by the conservative ulama-led wing of PAS. They plan to register their movement as a political party… Read more >>

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CogitAsia Podcast

An engaging mix of news, analysis, and predictions from around the region

CogitAsia Podcast: July 30, 2015
This week we cover the challenges that Myanmar faces maintaining public health and fighting disease, specifically malaria. In this segment you’ll hear briefly from CSIS’s Stephen Morrison, Myanmar’s deputy minister of health Thein Thein Htay, Eh Kalu Shwe Oo, Director of Kayin State’s Department of Health and Welfare, and senior health adviser to Aung San Suu Kyi, Tin Myo Win… Listen >>

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The Dialog

Short, to the point interviews with the region’s policymakers

Peter Potman, Asia Director, Netherlands Foreign Ministry
Sumitro Chair associate director Kate Rustici sits down with Peter Potman, the Dutch foreign ministry’s director for Asia, to discuss the Netherlands’ perspective on the U.S. rebalance to Asia, the European Union’s relations with China and Southeast Asia, and the Dutch and European perspectives on the South China Sea disputes… Listen to Dialog >>

Satya Widya Yudha, Deputy Chairman, Indonesian Parliament’s Commission VII
Satya Widya Yudha, deputy chairman of Commission VII of the Indonesian parliament, which is responsible for energy, natural resources, and the environment, discusses the commission’s role and priorities, including sustainably exploiting Indonesia’s energy resources to promote economic growth, possible reforms to its oil and gas laws, and mining regulations… Listen to Dialog >>

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Recent Programs

CSIS programs are designed to expose you to policymakers through open and honest dialogue

CSIS Press Briefing on Eliminating Malaria in Myanmar, August 4
This briefing coincided with a conference organzied jointly by the CSIS Global Health Policy Center, the American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene, and the Institute for Global Health at the University of Maryland School of Medicine. The conference included senior officials from the Myanmar government, opposition, and minority communities… Read more >>

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For more the Sumitro Chair for Southeast Asia Studies, check out our website, follow us on Facebook and Twitter, visit our blog CogitAsia, and listen to our podcast at CogitAsia and iTunes. Thank you for your interest in U.S. policy in Southeast Asia and CSIS Southeast Asia. Join the conversation!




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