Did you miss the “Cabinet Reshuffle” in Myanmar?

This weekend will be filled with Super Bowl and COVID-19 news. At least, if you follow CNN, that’s all that seems to be happening in the world.

But hey, what’s this link to “Myanmar?”

Oh, never mind, just that Myanmar is blocking some social media websites.

I wonder what Global Times thinks of Myanmar?

Oh, a cabinet reshuffle? Sounds like something pretty boring. Let’s head over to Al-Jazeera.

Whoa.

Myanmar just had a coup. After actually having elections in 2015, and seeming to be trending towards democracy, Myanmar took a huge step backwards. The military, led by General Min Aung Hlaing, was losing influence as more people voted for the National League for Democracy party, which is led by the current sitting president, Aung San Suu Kyi. Instead of continuing to pull the levers of power in the background, General Hlaing instead arrested Aung San Suu Kyi and is posed to take over completely. It’s likely because his current post in the military ends this summer, and he’s positioning himself to be “elected” President.

All of this is real news, and a real foreign policy challenge for the United States, as China is more than happy to let the Myanmar military remove a democratic government on its border. But as illustrated above, you would never know about it unless drilled down deep into non-traditional media sources. My list of media includes the BBC (https://www.bbc.com) and Al-Jazeera (https://www.aljazeera.com/). BBC has really good non-U.S. news, and Al-Jazeera is great for south Asia and African news. I don’t trust either on their U.S. or Israel reporting, but that’s OK, I have other sources for that.

The days of being able to just get all the headlines from CNN or Fox News are past. News, especially non-US news, is increasingly filtered out, despite its importance. Start adding BBC and Al-Jazeera to your list of daily news sources, recognizing where they fall short.

This post represents the views of the author and not those of the Department of Defense, Department of the Navy, or any other government agency.