Nepal: September 24, 2003


Ancient feudal traditions are running up against modern media and economic realities. The Marxist rebels have a lot of support among the young in Nepal's poverty stricken countryside. But the older Nepalese support the old ways, even as many also support reforms. The Marxist rebels want to establish a communist dictatorship, which turns off many educated Nepalese (who are aware of what a failure that has been in the last century), and the communists have not been able to establish governments in remote areas that offer the poor farmers a better deal than the old crowd (the communists tax people heavily to support "the revolution.") So far, the rebels are routed every time they encounter the army, but there has been no shortage of young recruits, and plenty of cheap AK-47s to arm the kids with. 


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