After Pol Pot: A Modern Historical Novel

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William Cambodia was broken open by the Cold War, a passive victim of domino theories, the Vietnam conflict and the casual brutality of global strategies. In the wake of the devastation had moved Pol Pot. Calling his work genocide missed the point, it was suicide, the Khmer Rouge had killed their own. Nearly two million dead, a fifth of the population in less than four years, amidst a senseless spiral of utopian ideology, peasant savagery and mind-numbing incompetence. After Pol Pot had been driven away, Cambodia was consumed by a fifteen year civil war funded by American and Russian rivalry. The ending of the Cold War had found Cambodia a shattered brutalised victim of a country, awash with murderers, survivors and refugees; a victim surrounded by a guilt-ridden guilty world.The book is a political novel set in modern Cambodia drawing on its recent history, the legacies of its violent past, and the guilt that threatens to drown its future.

Emily is a shy, socially clumsy English lawyer with a resentful streak, a taste for alcohol and a driving need to find some kind of direction in her life. In Cambodia where an autocratic and brutal government creates a need for human rights lawyers, she hopes to find that direction. She sees a poisoned society awash with corruption, violence and development aid. Corrupt bureaucrats, ex-murderers, traumatised genocide survivors and westernised idealists mix with a stratified western community of aid workers, missionaries and sex-tourists.
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វិភាគលើទ្រឹស្តីផ្សំគំនិតរបស់វៀតណាមសំរាប់វាលពិឃាតនៅកម្ពុជា

បានស្តាប់ពត៌មានវិទ្យុអាស៊ីសេរីនៅថ្ងៃនេះ ខ្ញុំសូមចូលរួមយោបល់ដូចតទៅ៖

Vietnam invaded Cambodia
Courtesy of: http://cam111.com/photonews/2012/03/29/140313.html

ខ្ញុំជាក្មេងជំនាន់ក្រោយនៃរបបប្រល័យពូជសាសន៏ ខ្ញុំសូមចូលរួមយ៉ាងពេញទំហឹងនូវ ការទទួលរងទុក្ក្ខវេទនារបស់ឳពុកម្តាយបងប្អូនរបស់យើងទាំងអស់គ្នា។ ខ្ញុំក៏សូមចូលរួមរំលែកទុក្ក្ខជាមួយលោកប៊ូ ម៉េងផងដែរនៅពេលនេះ។

តែអ្វីដែលខ្ញុំសូមចូលរួមយោបល់និងយោងតាមឯកសារស្រាវជ្រាវនៅសកលវិទ្យាល័យដែលខ្ញុំបានសិក្សារៀនសូត្រ បានកត់សំគាល់ឃើញថាក្រុមខ្មែរក្រហមព្រមទាំងប្រជាជនខ្មែរទូទាំង ប្រទេសគឺគ្រាន់តែជាតួល្អ្ខោននៅក្នុងរឿងវាលពិឃាតមួយតែប៉ុណ្ណោះ។ ប្រវត្តិសាស្រ្តបញ្ជាក់ថា ពេលដែលអាមេរិកមានវត្តមាននៅវៀតណាមខាងត្បូង ចិន និង សហភាពសូវៀត បានចាប់ដៃគ្នាប្រឆាំងលោកខាងលិចយ៉ាងពេញទំហឹង។ ហូ ជីមិញ ជាមនុស្សតែម្នាក់គត់ដែល ត្រូវបានគេទុកចិត្តយ៉ាងខ្លាំង។ មេដឹកនាំប៉ុលពតគឺគ្រាន់តែជាកូនសិស្សហ្វឹកហាត់ពីកិច្ចការ ធ្វើបដិវត្តកុម្មុយនីសរបស់ហូជីមិញតែប៉ុណ្នោះ។ ត្រង់ចំណុចនេះ ទាំងលោកវ៉ាន់ឌីកាអុន ទាំងលោកស្ទីហ្វិនម៉ូរីសបញ្ជាក់ថា ប៉ុល ពត បានព្យាយាមគ្រប់មធ្យោបាយដើម្បី សុំជំនួយដោយត្រង់ពីប្រទេសចិន ប៉ុន្តែចិនបានប្រាប់អោយទៅទទូលជំនួយតាមរយះហូជីមិញ តែប៉ុណ្ណោះ។ ករណីនេះ ដោយសារប្រជាប្រីយភាពសមេ្តចសីហនុ ទើបខ្មែរក្រហមអាចវាយ ឈ្នះលន់ណុលនៅថ្ងៃ១៧ មេសា ១៩៧៥ មុនវៀតណាមខាងជើងវាយរំដោះបានទីក្រុងព្រៃ នគរនៅថ្ងៃទី៣០ មេសា ១៩៧៥។

យើងអាចនិយាយបានថា ដោយសារតែការខ្វះសមត្ថភាពរបស់ក្រុមអ្នកដឹកនាំខ្មែរក្រហម បានជារដ្ឋាភិបាលរបស់ពួកគេបរាជ័យ ទាំងការគ្រប់គ្រងសេដ្ឋកិច្ច សង្គម នយោបាយ និងការបែងបាក់ផ្ទៃក្នុងរហូតដល់មានការសំឡាប់សងសឹកគ្នាយ៉ាងអនាធិបតេយ្យ។

ករណីទីពីរ គឺប្រាកដជាមានការរួមផ្សំគំនិតនិងការបង្កប់ស៊ីរូងផ្ទៃក្នុងរបស់វៀតណាម។ កត្តាខាងក្រោម នេះគឺជាគំនិតស្រាវជ្រាវមួយចំនួនដែលគួរអោយពិចារណា៖

១. នៅពេលដែលវៀតណាមបានទទួលការគាំទ្រយ៉ាងពេញទំហឹងពីចិននិងសហភាពសូវៀត ហើយក្រុមខ្មែរក្រហមគ្រាន់តែជាតួអង្គតូចមួយដូចជាឡាវដែរនោះ មានន័យថាវៀតណាម អាចធ្វើកិច្ចការគ្រប់បែបយ៉ាងបំពេញមហិច្ឆតារបស់ខ្លួន។ វៀតណាមអាចបង្កប់ភ្នាក់ងារឬកង កំឡាំងប្រដាប់អាវុធរបស់ខ្លួនក្នុងជួរកម្មាភិបាលខ្មែរក្រហម។ វៀតណាមអាចដាក់សំពាធគ្រប់ បែបយ៉ាងមកលើក្រុមមេដឹកនាំខ្មែរក្រហមទាំងផ្នែកភស្តុភារ អាវុធគ្រប់ធុន គោលនយោបាយ ទាំងការគ្រប់គ្រងដោយត្រង់ និងដោយប្រយោល។

២. ប្រការដែលខ្មែរក្រហមអាចវាយរំដោះទីក្រុងភ្នំពេញមុនទីក្រុងព្រៃនគរចំនួន១៣ថ្ងៃ គឺជាការ តាំងចិត្តមុតមាំរបស់ប៉ុលពតក្រោមការជួយគាំទ្រផ្នែកប្រជាប្រីយនយោបាយរបស់សម្តេច សីហនុ។ ចំណុចនេះ មេដឹកនាំខ្មែរក្រហមភ័យស្លន់ស្លោថា បើមិនបានរំដោះមុនទេ វៀតណាមនឹងឈ្លានពានកម្ពុជាបន្តាប់ពីគេរំដោះបានព្រៃនគរហើយ។ តែតាមពិតទៅ កងទ័ពវៀតណាមបានចូល មករស់នៅប្រទេសកម្ពុជានិងប្រើប្រាស់ទឹកដីកម្ពុជាតាំង ពីពេលដែលផ្លូវលំហូជីមិញត្រូវបាន គេអនុញ្ញាត។

៣. យើងទទួលស្គាល់គ្រប់គ្នាដែរថា កងទ័ពវៀតណាមចូលឈ្លានពានកម្ពុជានិងវាយលុក បណ្តេញពួកខ្មែរក្រហមបានយ៉ាងស្រួលឬអាចនិយាយបានថាវៀតណាមបានសំរេចនូវ យុទ្ធសាស្រ្តគ្រប់យ៉ាងរបស់ខ្លួនរួចទៅហើយ។ ជាទ្រឹស្តីនយោបាយ វៀតណាមត្រូវតែរៀបចំ រចនាសម្ព័ន្ធនយោបាយ អោយមានរដ្ឋាភិបាលខ្មែរដឹកនាំខ្មែរ។

៤. អ្វីដែលប្រជាជនខ្ន្មែរកត់សំគាល់មុនពេលវៀតណាមវាយលុកចូល គឺម្នាក់ៗអស់សង្ឃឹម ក្នុងជីវិតរួចទៅហើយ ទាំងការស្លាប់ស្រស់ៗនៅចំពោះមុខ ទាំងការបំភ័យដោយមានអន្លង់ ជាត់ទឹកបាយត្រូវបានគេជីកនៅគ្រប់ភូមិជាដើម។ យុទ្ធជនខ្មែរក្រហមបានប្រមូលសម្បតិ ជាតិមានមាសពេជ្រកែវកងនិងរបស់មានតំលៃគ្រប់យ៉ាង គរទុកមួយដុំៗយ៉ាងល្អសំរាប់វៀត ណាមដឹកទៅប្រទេសគេយ៉ាងងាយស្រួល។ មានមតិខ្លះនិយាយថា ឯកសារនៅគុកទួលស្លែង ត្រូវបានគេកែច្នៃនិងផ្លាស់ប្តូរអស់ តែមជ្ឈមណ្ឌលកម្ពុជាអាចនឹងមានចំឡើយល្អជាងនេះ។

ជាការសោកស្តាយ ដែលមេដឹកនាំសំខាន់ៗដូចជានួន ជា ខៀវសំផន អៀងសារី ជាដើម ដែល តែងតែមិនហ៊ានទទួលខុសត្រូវនូវចំពោះមុខតុលាការខ្មែរក្រហម។ នេះអាចជាការ ដោះសារយក លេសរួចខ្លួនឬអាចជាការពិតដែលពួកគេមើលមិនឃើញនៅពេល ដែលមានអំណាចយ៉ាងធូររលុងនៅក្នុងដៃ។

ក្នុងនាមកូនខ្មែរ យើងអាចសន្និដ្ឋានបានថា ទាំងអាមេរិក ទាំងចិន ទាំងរុស៊្សី សុទ្ធតែជាប់ ពាក់ព័ន្ធ នឹងរឿងល្ខោនវាលពិឃាតនៅកម្ពុជាទាំងអស់ ប៉ុន្តែវៀតណាមបានលូកដៃចូល យ៉ាងជ្រៅជាងគេបង្អស់ ហើយវត្តមានកងទ័រវៀតណាមនៅកម្ពុជារាប់សែននាក់ អស់រយះពេលជិត១០ឆ្នាំ និងកេរតំណែលរបស់វៀតណាមនៅកម្ពុជាតាមរយះ គណបក្សប្រជាជនកម្ពុជាសព្វថ្ងៃ គឺជារឿងអាម៉ាស់មួយសំរាប់ទាំងកម្ពុជានិងវៀតណាម សំរាប់ការវិវត្តន៍នយោបាយពិភពលោកនាយុគបច្ចុប្បន្ន។

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Political Analysis on Khmer Youth, the Catalyst for Change

Dr. Surya SubediWatching a video clip reported by Radio Free Asia (RFA) stunt me a lot on the new phenomena of Khmer youth participation with the politics. While his lecture ended and opened floor for questions from the student audience, there are questions aiming to attack the lecturer in the meantime the questions were not focused on the topic as well as the persons who asked the questions and gave the comments were not on the platform of classroom setting but emotionally displayed on political involvement. Hence, a Buddhist monks stood up to clarify the skeptics that are attacking on the report of Prof. Dr. Surya Subedi. Dr.Subedi has been appointed as the Special Rapporteur by the United Nations for Cambodia.

Watch this below video clip by RFA

My concerns are following:

1. Reading the report of Prof. Dr. Surya Subedi in both English and Khmer version, the report is really balancing and constructive. The report summarized that Economics Land Concession (ELCs) and other land developments are impacted by poor management and non-transparency of the government. As the result, there are numerous displacements, evictions, community deprivation and devastation of the forests. Those forests are the key sources for community livelihood, environment and national revenue; but those foreign investments have focused on selling timbers more than rubber and plundered the trees without obstruction.

Watch below video clip on the interviewing of Prof. Dr. Surya Subedi about his visit to Cambodia and the recommendation he made for Cambodian government.

According to the comment accused the report of Dr. Surya Subedi as bias and discouraged foreign investment in Cambodia. Of course, this belief is absolutely wrong. Whenever, the human rights situation is improved, the trust will be built for those honest and effective investors or foreign direct investors (FDIs) to Cambodia. Whenever, our rule of laws and regulations are strong, it surely builds trust for all dedicated and good-willed FDIs. Cambodia at the moment, I can say, has been worse as her government has continually dismissed and ignored the recommendation of the UN’s envoy. If the government has learnt to admit the fault and adjust its policy accordingly, the leaders will be admired and the FDIs will be flooded into this land. The land, trees and natural mineral will be properly managed. The people will experience justice. The whole society will be getting genuine progress.

That why I have criticized those students as unprofessional, immature and lacking proper research into the topic. However, I appreciate them all. Negative or positive, they have become a flame igniting inside the Cambodian soil. All Cambodian youths will pay more attention into those causes and effects.

2. By this small cohort of rallying against the report, more Khmer youths have stood up to exercise their power and prowess. As I read the comments and watching video clips on facebook, google groups and youtube; I am really optimistic on Khmer Youth movement to lead change for Cambodia. Cambodian Youth have been labeled as very young, having little knowledge, immature, having little power and incompetent. But the upcoming election on July 28, 2013 and while we are waiting another two months arrival; more and more youths are standing up from their bed, from their game board as well as from their silent space to voice out concern, worries and sensitivity. Youths are the agent of change. Youths are the catalyst for change. Youths are the unstoppable force for change in this country.

Below are the responding back to a group of students who protested against Prof. Dr. Surya Subedi and his report on the human rights situation in Cambodia.

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Below is the responding of Chea Chheng, a youth who involved in the protest.


Let applaud for Cambodian youths!!

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Modern definition of the state and failed state in political leadership

Buddha preached that “Dhamma is the supremacy, Dhamma is the ultimate law; those who practice Dhamma shall prevail wisdom, peace and happiness”. Dhamma means truth, natural laws, or the rule of law. Aristotle pointed out that the law is very important to build a kingdom. Modern political scientist defined a country managed by the rule of law as the nation-state or the state.

According to Aristotle, the development of political leadership has evolved into three distinctive phases: one, few and many. One refers to the ancient empire which was managed by one powerful leader and the leader is called Kingship ក្សត្រាធិរាជ; the leadership style is tyranny or absolute. Few refers to the nation which has been managed by few outstanding leaders and those leaders are within the effect of aristocracy វណ្ណះអភិជន; the leadership style is oligarchy អប្បជនាធិបតេយ្យ. Many refers to modern era of enlightenment which is governed by the people and Aristotle called it “the polity” ទំរង់រដ្ឋាភិបាល; the leadership style is democracy or mobocracy ប្រជាធិបតេយ្យ.

Political observer on the change of political leadership describe the “pragmatic” has produced political result of democracy or it is vaguely called “first world country”; the “ideological” has produced political result of communist or it is vaguely called “second world country”; the “revolutionary” has produced political result of “independence” from colony or foreign occupation or it is vaguely called “third world country”.

However, the evolution to become the state and the definition of the state itself have been broadly debated by the political scientists. They concur that the term “state” itself has been vague, very subjective, unrealistic, unpractical and academically disagreeable. State cannot be useful if it has no neighborhood community, family network and individual participation. Society is the crucial factor of the state or we can argue that without society, state will not be existed. Modern political scientists such as Mitchell Timothy, Evan Peter and Migdal Joel have argued that state and society is inseparable. Hence, between state and society, which come first? What is the concrete bridge to bond these two actors? Again, individual is the state and the law is the link to enable state and society coexist within modern context.

Continue reading “Modern definition of the state and failed state in political leadership”

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