Hun Sen learns how to fake democracy

OPINION

Hun Sen learns how to fake democracy

Surasak Glahan

SURASAK GLAHANCOLUMNIST

PUBLISHED : 14 NOV 2019 AT 04:01

Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha, right, and his Cambodian counterpart Hun Sen address a press conference together in Bangkok in December 2015 .  (Photo by Thiti Wannamontha)

Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha, right, and his Cambodian counterpart Hun Sen address a press conference together in Bangkok in December 2015 .  (Photo by Thiti Wannamontha)

Cambodia may avoid trade sanctions from the EU and US if its government has learnt the art of faking a return to democracy and rule of law from Thailand, which has done its neighbour a huge favour by barring entry to its exiled opposition leaders.

In fact, Thailand is the only “democratic” country in the region that bowed to the request of Prime Minister Hun Sen’s government.

Indonesia and Malaysia ignored the demand not to let Cambodian dissidents land, even letting some enter and stay. But that does not seem to have made Thailand a bad guy in the eyes of the West.

“I also came to power through elections,” Prime Minister Gen Prayut Chan-o-cha, the 2014 coup-maker, boasted to locals during his recent trip to Ratchaburi province.

Without a doubt, his government must have delivered the same message to western nations, who have bought it — or perhaps faked their acceptance — out of relief that the political mess in Thailand seems back to tolerable levels.

That indicates Prime Minister Hun Sen could have softened his crackdown on the opposition Cambodia National Rescue Party (CNRP), which has been so ruthless and rigorous that the West has threatened penalties over the past few years.

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Kem Sokha has remained under arrest with new court conditions in a politically motivated charge

After Kem Sokha was silenced through jail, Sam Rainsy has spoken loud abroad, and the current in-flooded attention of the world is truly a sign to the survival of their party. Now, it is Kem Sokha’s turn to add more scores to what Sam Rainsy has achieved. Kem Sokha could be active and effective domestically and Sam Rainsy is internationally. At the moment, if either Kem Sokha or Sam Rainsy don’t speak out loud, the future of these dual shall be disappeared from Cambodia arena.

Furthering a note by Prof. Ear Sophal, I would like to through in some pieces of thought into this matter.

  • According to this editorial article by KT, it is evidently to score the shows the court’s decision is unprofessional and politically motivated. Court in Cambodia, under HS leadership and his colleagues, has already been well-known among Cambodians and abroad on its unprofessionalism, biases and directly supervised by the powerful. This institution is in need of genuine reform especially changing those incumbent top leadership as priority.
  • The divide and conquer tactics as well as violence-based politics through current patronage system has realized many young people to walk away and seek alternative options to staying away and anchoring base to change it. This tactic is not rule-based leadership but personal cult that has led to widespread corruption and abusing of power. The nation has become second as first is personal power manifesting its triumph which can be exchanged by anything including the sovereignty of this nation.
  • Kem Sokha is like Sam Rainsy, have realized that this time “silence is power” could not be applied. They both have realized that if they don’t speak loud, no body can hear their voice. Their silence during the court’s procedure to dissolve CNRP is an evidence showing that although you have manpower hundred millions under you elbow, you could not survive from a bullying by just keep silence while other side is continuing to bully you. After Kem Sokha was silenced through jail, Sam Rainsy has spoken loud abroad, and the current in-flooded attention of the world is truly a sign to the survival of their party. Now, it is Kem Sokha’s turn to add more scores to what Sam Rainsy has achieved. Kem Sokha could be active and effective domestically and Sam Rainsy is internationally. At the moment, if either Kem Sokha or Sam Rainsy don’t speak out loud, the future of these dual shall be disappeared from Cambodia arena.

Now, it is wrong time, wrong space, and wrong situation: SRP & SRP has already melt into CRNP. And Kem Sokha and Sam Rainsy have not been fighting to take one seat but to supplement each other of that one seat into reality. HS is facing backfire and deadlock in his cocking fighting or cheeseboard tactic. More he is playing such game more losing of his own popular support and legitimacy. From lesson learnt: Funcipec and so on, all democrats have learnt tremendously on how to bond, to strive and to celebrate their victory. Now, Rainsy is welcome and empowered by Answer’s Government, next, both CNRP and Pakatan Harapan shall celebrate together!

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Cambodian Opposition Chief Readies Return From Exile

“This may be the last time you see me alive or as a free man,” he said. “Because in a few days I may be dead, I may be put in jail, so while I am a free man I want to express my conviction that democracy will prevail.”

លោកសម-រង្ស៊ីមានប្រសាសន៍ថា”នេះអាចជាពេលចុងក្រោយដែលអ្នកនៅឃើញខ្ញុំនៅមានជីវិតឬជាមនុស្សមានសេរីភាព”។ ពីព្រោះនៅតែប៉ុន្មានថ្ងៃខាងមុខនេះ ខ្ញុំអាចនឹងស្លាប់ ខ្ញុំអាចនឹងគេចាប់ដាក់គុក ដូច្នេះក្នុងពេលដែលខ្ញុំនៅមានសេរីភាព ខ្ញុំចង់បញ្ជាក់ពីការប្តេជ្ញាចិត្តថាប្រជាធិបតេយ្យនឹងរីកស្គុសស្គាយ។

Cambodian Opposition Chief Readies Return From Exile

By The Associated Press

  • Nov. 5, 2019 Updated 7:30 am

BRUSSELS — Cambodia’s most prominent opposition politician says he’s ready to risk imprisonment or death by returning to his country from self-imposed exile to unseat the country’s longtime ruler.

Sam Rainsy, co-founder of the Cambodia National Rescue Party, told The Associated Press that he hopes his planned return on Saturday will trigger a nonviolent People’s Power-style mass movement to force Prime Minister Hun Sen from office.

“I expect to bring about a democratic change, meaning to put an end to the current regime, which is a brutal dictatorship,” he said in an interview Monday in Brussels, where he was seeking support from European Parliament lawmakers.

He said he plans to jet back to Asia from Brussels and prepare to cross into Cambodia from a neighboring country on Saturday, which is Cambodia’s Independence Day.

The plan is fraught with jeopardy. If he should succeed in entering his country, prison is a near certainty for him. According to the Justice Ministry, Sam Rainsy has convictions on six offenses — including the criminal libel charge that caused him to go into exile in 2015 to avoid serving a two-year prison sentence — and at least eight other cases are pending. He and several colleagues face charges of armed rebellion for their return plan, which could earn them prison terms of 15-30 years.

In 1997, Sam Rainsy survived an assassination attempt when grenades were tossed at a small rally he was leading in the center of Phnom Penh, Cambodia’s capital. At least 16 people were killed and scores were wounded.

“We have to take the risk. I have assessed those risks and they are worth taking, worth taking because the Cambodian people have been suffering for a long time, so we have to try to put an end to the sufferings,” he said.

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តើអ្វីគឺអំណាចប្រជាពលរដ្ឋឬPeople Power?

មតិខ្លះថាអំណាចប្រជាពលរដ្ឋគឹជាចលនាសង្គមតាមបែបលទ្ធិប្រជាធិបតេយ្យ ប៉ុន្តែអ្នកខ្លះទៀតថាជាការផ្តួលរំលំអំណាចមួយ តើមួយណាត្រឹមត្រូវក្នុងបរិបទខ្មែរបច្ចុប្បន្ន?

Some people views that people power is a movement according to democracy but some people accuses it as an attempt to topple a government, so which one is right within current circumstance of Cambodia?

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