The Hua Laem Tsunami Relief Effort

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Koh Lanta, Thailand--Esteemed Buddhist monk, Buddha Isara, addresses the villagers of Hua Laem after many of them lost their homes and fishing boats to the Tsunami on December 26th, 2004.  "I know you are Muslims and I come to you not as a Monk but as a Thai," said Isara who pledged to supply the materials and experienced labor needed to repair the village's fishing boats.  In addition, Isara plans to live in the village for several weeks, primarily to send a message to the Thai government of peaceful resistance to the relocation plans. Within Thailand, Isara is seen as a modern-day Gandhi figure, thus giving the villagers a powerful voice. 01/31/05 © Julia Cumes / The Image Works