On Cambodia 65th Anniversary of Independence

My dear Kacvey,

You must be wondering why there was no letter sent on 9 November 2018 which was the date of the 65th anniversary of the independence of Cambodia?

The answer is simple: for 3 years in a row, letters were written to you on the 62nd, the 63rd and the 64th independence of Cambodia. Sadly, on the 65th anniversary, nothing has changed; on the contrary, Cambodia is getting worst and worst:
– the weak strongman has murdered democracy,
– he organized a sham election transforming Cambodia into a corrupt one-party state,
– he vassalized Cambodia into a state dependent on China and Vietnam, and
– the free world subjects him and his sycophants to various degrees of sanctions.

Where is then your students’ feeling of celebration, their pride of being a free and independent Khmer when the weak strongman shackles the 3 branches of power to his greed for absolute power and endless self-enrichment?

The French left. The Vietnamese arrived. So do the Chinese.

The lesson that Khmer can learn from the 1953 independence is that if Sihanouk could wrestle Cambodia out of the yoke of French colonialism, other Cambodians also can do the same to free Cambodia from the yoke of autocracy of the ex-Khmer Rouge and his corrupt sycophants that are supported by contemporary foreign hegemons.

A 3,200,000 US Dollars Watch

My dear Kacvey,

Do you recall a 1974 to 1978 television series titled “The Six Million Dollar Man” starring Lee Majors?

Well, in the City of Tonlé Buon Mouk, there now is a man whose monthly salary is about US$1,100, but dons a US$3,200,000 watch. Oh, by the way, would there also be a handbag for the lady at, for example, 1/10 of that price?

For now, just have a quick recap to situate where Khmer citizens stand in the context of Cambodia economics:
– In 2017, the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) per capita in Cambodia was US$1,135.20, equivalent to 9 percent of the world’s average. GDP per capita in Cambodia averaged US$648.27 from 1993 until 2017, reaching an all time high of US$1,135.20 in 2017 and a record low of US$321.40 in 1994.
– Minimum wage in Cambodia averaged US$130.25 per month from 2014 to 2017, and the minimum monthly wage of workers in textiles and footwear industry is US$170.00.

Please ask your students to do the math to find out how many years it would take for the US$1,100 monthly salaried man to pay for that watch, and how many years for the average garment workers to do the same, and all this without eating and feeding their family!?

Should we dwell on the question how such a situation could happen in such a banana state? No, to repeat it again and again is a waste of time as it has already been extensively written about: Just go to “search” box and type: Corruption, Nepotism, autocracy, Hostile Takeover or Global Witness, and then you get the answer.

Then you might ask why raising the issue of US$3,200,000 watch? Who on earth would wear such treasure on his wrist: would Bill Gates, Warren Buffet, Steve Jobs, Jeff Bezos, Jack Ma, or even the founders of the brand Antoni Patek and Adrien Philippe do it? There gotta to be, among reasonable and sane mind, an awareness and conscientiousness about value that differentiates those who earn their fortune through pure hard work and entrepreneurship and those who come from the jungle at the border between Cambodia and Vietnam and becoming corrupt autocrat through communism, deceit and falsity.

The answer is simple: It’s about the political hypocrisy, repulsive and nauseating dishonesty, and the ex-genocidal-KR turned rogue selling the entire Cambodia out to Vietnam and China:
– the weak strongman pretends to care about the fate of garments workers against the serious threat from the EU about EBA withdrawal, whereas in fact he remains stubborn in his oppressive politics against the Khmer;
– he isolates himself more and more from the future interest of the country, focusing instead on his short-term scheme of protecting his power, family and wealth;
– he continues to shackle and vassalize the country to China through concessions after concessions on use of land, destruction of natural resources and multiplication of gambling and vices industry and businesses;
– his government shames Cambodia on its ineffectiveness and incompetence in the international arena;
– he is the pariah among the world leaders including ASEAN;
– his sycophants’ ill-earned fortune that is stashed in foreign lands is under scrutiny or investigation;
– his trips outside Cambodia have been met with huge demonstrations by overseas Khmer, and
– he uses the result of the sham election as a licence to further alienate the rights and freedom of Khmer citizen in their march towards democracy.

If only the US$3,200,000 watch could tell him the time when his rule is up for CHANGE!

“Georgia on My Mind”

My dear Kacvey,

The song “Georgia on My Mind” composed by Hoagy Carmichael and Stuart Gorrell, and rendered a worldwide hit by Ray Charles, does it ring a bell?

Sure do,
“Georgia, Georgia
The whole day through
Just an old sweet song
Keeps Georgia on my mind”

but why the question? and why Georgia?

Dude, where were you during the week of 15-19 October 2018?

Brussels and Geneva.

O.K., too busy over there, that’s why you miss a social media news: Overseas CNRP leaders/representatives are planning a world conference in Atlanta, Georgia, on 1-2 December 2018.

So what?

Well, how about triangulating Brussels/Geneva/Atlanta?

Please elaborate.

Situations

  1. The weak strongman failed miserably to convince the European Union that his sham election was free and fair.
  2. A sham election tainted with flagrant abuse and violations of basic human rights and organized under autocratic procedure and process has no place in a democratic Europe.
  3. In Brussels, the European Union is “launching the process for the withdrawal of their Everything But Arms preferences. Without clear and evident improvements on the ground, this will lead to the suspending of the trade preferences that they currently enjoy.
  4. Simultaneously, in Geneva, the Inter-Parliamentary Union, at its 139th assembly session, adopted a set of very strong decisions against the weak strongman’s regime.
  5. The weak strongman returned to the City of Tonlé Buon Mouk not only empty-handed and lonely, but also without any assurance that, if EBA becomes effective, no other countries would come to pick up the slack.
  6. Meanwhile, on 17 October 2018, the overseas “leaders/representatives of CNRP” were planning to organize a world conference on 1-2 December 2018 in Atlanta, Georgia.

EQUATION

How can the above situations be put into an equation for a possible or probable solution that could be beneficial to Srok Khmer and the Khmer people?

So, let create a speculative scenario: What if the Atlanta world conference would like to invite the CNRP president who is now placed under house arrest to be the key note speaker?

Kacvey, you can argue upfront that this is such a crazy, insane and far-fetched idea that the weak strongman will never ever accept or allow the leader of the opposition to leave the country, because so doing would completely destroy what he has built up so far to support and sustain his autocratic rule, and he might encounter unexpected and unhappy consequences to his rule, fortune and his sycophantic and corrupt clan.

Quite and highly possible and true: however, any idea that’s never tested on the field is crazy; please remember that many crazy ideas are mothers of great invention! Here, it’s the weak strongman that has to address the concerns and decisions by the EU and IPU, and not the other way around. The ball is in his court as it showed when he took the plane to Brussels and Geneva to face head-on the conditions set up by both European institutions.

On the one hand, IPU “urges once again all Cambodian authorities to immediately release Mr. Kem Sokha and drop the charges, to allow him to resume his duties as president of the opposition without further delay and restriction and to reinstate the CNRP.”

On the other, during the Europe-Asia Meeting (ASEM) Summit, the EU High Representative and Vice-President said “that there is a lot of concern in Europe, but not only in Europe, about the dissolution in November last year of the main opposition party and in general terms the narrowed democratic space for political opposition and civil society.” She further added: “We discussed this. I cannot say that we found solutions to any of these issues

ONE POSSIBLE SOLUTION

The Atlanta world conference could be a possible “solution” to the deadlocked situation between the weak strongman and the EU/IPU: if the weak strongman is serious about Srok Khmer, serious about the fate and welfare of the garments workers, he could let the leader of the opposition go to Atlanta. So doing, he would show to EU/IPU his goodwill, if any, to attempt to break the stalemate.

But, Kacvey, you could argue that the leader of the opposition would not return to Cambodia like a jailed bird will never return to its cage. Again, quite highly possible, and if/when he returns he would be put back in jail. So, what’s good about all of that?
But the leader of the opposition already knows what Thbong Khmoum is, doesn’t he? If he is a leader with predestined national augury, why afraid of returning to Cambodia? Why would he, without dual nationality, be acting like his once co-president? His battlefield is in Cambodia next to and with the more than 3 millions constituents. On the contrary, his political courage and image would be multiplied 10 folds.

Again, Kacvey, you could argue that it would be such a big gamble for the weak strongman to bet against the banker, especially with massive supporters at Pochentong. Ah, if he is afraid of that visionary scene like during Mr. Kem Ley’s funerals procession, it would mean that he knows in his heart and mind that his political life is not far away to be ended.

Nothing would stop you from asking your students what would they say, or speculating what would be EU/IPU reactions? … Or fretting about unnecessary detail arrangements.

As Ben Franklin, once, said: “Nothing ventured, nothing gained!”

Meanwhile, let close the triangulation Brussels/Geneva/Atlanta with the next 2 couplets of the song:
I said Georgia
Georgia
A song of you
Comes as sweet and clear
As moonlight through the pines.

Other arms reach out to me
Other eyes smile tenderly
Still in peaceful dreams I see
The road leads back to you.

M1 versus M2?

My dear Kacvey,

How about a small quiz for your students:

After reading and pondering on the 3 articles below (with special Thanks to the 4 authors: Aun Chhengpor and Malis Tum, អ៊ឹម រចនា and Jonathan Sutton):
1) VOA: Hun Sen Says Son Is ‘Possible Future Leader’ of Cambodia
2) RFI: លោក ហ៊ុន ម៉ានី គ្រោង​ដឹក​នាំ​យុវជន​៥០០​នាក់ត្រឡប់​ទៅ​កាន់​អតីតកាល
3) East Asia Forum: Is Hun Manet Cambodia’s next strongman?
What would be their opinion on:
a) the relationship between M1 and M2 in the post era of their father?
b) the relationship between M1 and/or M2 with the Northern Capital and the Inner River?
3) the relationship between M1 and/or M2 with the mandarins and young cadres of their party?
4) M1 and/or M2 as legatees of autocracy, corruption and nepotism left by their father, and
5) Optional: the relationship between M1 and/or M2 with M3.

Can’t wait to read their essays!

Les Trois Grands “U”

Mon cher Kacvey,

Vos étudiants devraient se gratter la tête pour comprendre qu’est ce qui se passe en ce moment dans la Cité de Tonlé Buon Mouk avec les déclarations de toute sorte des 3 trois grands “U”.

Les 3 grands “U”, c’est quoi donc?

Ouais! l’ONU, l’Union européenne, et les Etats-Unis. Tous les 3 ont un “U” dans leur nom. Simplifions l’orthographie, quoi!

Ah, sanctions économiques, EBA, critique internationale mitraillée de quatres coins du monde contre le faible homme-fort même au sein de l’Asean, lui même en désarroi au sein de son propre parti et ridiculement hué à Sydney, New York, Tokyo et bientôt Bruxelles et  Genève!

Vous saisissez tous, Kacvey! Alors, vous vous débrouillez pour expliquer à vos étudiants les raisons, causes et effets de tous ces machins-là. Mais voici, en supplément, un téléphone arabe tout récemment intercepté par la déesse de l’année du chien (Tévoda Chnam Chôr) quand, au hazard, elle se promenait dans son chariot dans le ciel au-dessus de nos têtes:

Phnuoy Mék: Allô, mon Seigneur. C’est Phnuoy Mék à l’appareil. Je me prosterne à vos pieds pour vous présenter mes respects.
On Ze: Allô oui. Je vous entends. J’ai seulement 3 minutes avec vous. Washington est sur mes talons. Je vous écoute.
Phnuoy Mék: Les 3 grands “U” sont aussi sur mes talons et je ne sais pas quoi faire. J’attends un geste ou un mot de vous pour réagir contre eux.
On Ze: Je sais, mais vous êtes assez grand pour vous débrouiller, non?! Je ne peux pas mélanger votre histoire avec la guerre commerciale qui me menace en ce moment de Washington. Chaque chose a ses priorités.
Phnuoy Mék: Je vous ai attendu à New York pour montrer à ces 3 “U” que vous êtes le Seigneur en qui j’ai le plus absolu dévouement et qu’ils cessent de m’enquiquiner. Mais vous m’avez posé un lapin.
On Ze: Je ne voulais pas me mettre les pieds au pays des Yankees, mais il y avait pas mal de mes sujets déguisés en supporteurs pour vous encourager.
Phnuoy Mék: Vos “supporteurs” étaient dans les rues et en inferiorité numérique, mais il n’y avait personne de taille dans le grand hall de l’ONU pour me soutenir.
On Ze: Allez, arrêtez de vous plaindre. Quoi d’autre?
Phnuoy Mék: Si EBA passait dans quelques mois, j’aurai une grande crise dans mes bras.
On Ze: Ne comptez-pas sur moi pour acheter ou importer chez moi vos vêtements et chaussures fabriqués chez vous. S’il y a crise sociale, utilisez les millions de dollars qui sont dans vos chaussettes et matelas. Je peux exporter d’autres dollars pour vous, mais je N’IMPORTE ni vos vêtements ni vos chaussures. J’en ai déjà trop de tout ce bazard chez moi.
Phnuoy Mék: Mais, Seigneur, j’ai plus d’un million de travailleuses et leurs familles qui dépendent de la production et de l’exportation de ces vêtements et chaussures.
On Ze: Moi, j’ai plus d’un milliard et demi de bouches à nourrir. Savez-vous faire le math? D’ailleurs, pourquoi depuis tout ce temps-là n’avez-vous jamais réfléchi ou compris que vos usines fonctionnent et vos travailleuses vivent au dépens des dépenses de consommation des gens des 2 grands “U”?
Phnuoy Mék: Mais, c’est les entrepreneurs de chez vous, de Hong Kong, de l’Asean qui décident toujours pour moi.
On Ze: Ces entrepreneurs n’étaient pas chez vous ni avant ni après que vous arriviez de chez Ngouy en 1979. N’oubliez pas que c’est vous qui les invitiez à venir s’installer chez vous depuis 1995, et vous et votre famille en tirez énormement de profits personnels depuis lors. Pourquoi vous n’investissez JAMAIS vos énormes ressources accumulées au fur du temps dans ces usines-là, au lieu de dépendre éternellement et à 100% des facteurs extérieurs?
Phnuoy Mék: Soit. Je vous entends, Seigneur. Que ferai-je de vos entrepreneurs qui dirigent les usines de vêtements et de chaussures?
On Ze: Ils n’ont absolument pas besoin de vous parce qu’ils savent que vous ne pouvez rien faire pour eux. S’ils ferment leurs usines et rentrent chez eux, ce n’est plus leur problèmes de gérer les travailleuses qui n’ont pas de travail. C’est VOUS. Quant à moi, je ne leur dirai rien parce qu’ils savent déjà quoi faire. Sachez que les portes d’investissement sont ouvertes au Bengladesh, en Turquie ou même chez Ngouy!
Phnuoy Mék: Qu’est ce que je devrais faire pour qu’ils ne délocalisent pas leurs usines de chez moi?
On Ze: Si vous êtes communiste comme moi, soyez de vrai communiste avec la dictature du prolétariat. Le communisme et la démocracie sont deux ennemis idéologiques et politiques. Si vous êtes communiste par le biais des élections, même truquées, vous êtes un faux communiste. Regardez moi; regardez Ngouy.
Phnuoy Mék: Au sujet de Ngouy, que diriez-vous de son nouveau président?
On Ze: Au moins, il y a du changement chez Ngouy, comme chez moi. Il n’y a que chez vous que les dirigeants ont des racines comme les banians de Ta Prohm. C’est en changeant qu’on améliore. Même le communisme change les communistes qui changent la face du communisme.
Phnuoy Mék: Alors, Seigneur, vous n’êtes pas d’accord avec le choix de mon fils aîné comme mon successeur?
On Ze: Je ne répète pas ce que je vous ai déjà dit la dernière fois sur ce sujet.
Phnuoy Mék: Etes-vous fâché contre moi, Seigneur?
On Ze: L’émotion et les sentiments n’ont pas de place dans ma politique et la gestion du monde n’est pas un roman d’amour. Dernier point?
Phnuoy Mék: Oui, Seigneur. Si EBA, les sanctions imposées par Washington sur mes “sales 17” (Dirty Seventeen) et les résolutions de UNHRC contre mon autorité domestique deviennent réalité, que deviendraient vos sujets qui s’établissent à Kg Som et ailleurs, et leurs casinos?
On Ze: Je compte sur vous non seulement pour les PROTEGER mais aussi pour tenir vos obligations envers moi car vous avez déjà perçu d’énormes redevances en contrepartie.
Phnuoy Mék: Mais, Seigneur, si, pour une raison ou une autre, la crise sociale déborde et si les amis de Ngouy dans les maisons flottantes et les gros sampans de Tonlé Sap se croisent les bras?
On Ze: Alors, personne n’est indispensable. Je pourrais vous trouver une résidence luxueuse dotée de meilleure médecine traditionelle – comme jadis reservée pour le prince – pour vous dans la province natale de vos ancêtres, le “Nan Min” ou le “Bei Min.” Comme ça, vous pourrez goûter la douceur de la vie dans le communisme étranger avec plus d’un milliard et demi de gens comme voisins. Et soyez rassuré que vous ne manqueriez pas de “tréy ngiét” pour vos repas du soir.

Il y eut un click, et le téléphone arabe coupé. La déesse de l’année du chien jeta un coup d’oeil vers la terre et vit Phnuoy Mék titubant tout seul vers le Tonlé Buon Mouk, une main sur sa poitrine comme pour supplier son coeur de ne pas le lâcher.

The XXIst Century’s Chéy Chétha

My dear Kacvey,

You and your students certainly have friends of Khmer Krom origin and whose historical memory is still vivid and painful about how Chéy Chétha II, in 1623, gave away about 34,300 square miles of Khmer land to Vietnam that later, in the 18th century, incorporated into its own territory.

The 21st century is witnessing and living through the same experience and reality that Cambodia is transforming itself into a vassal state or a colony territory, the chef d’oeuvre of the weak strongman. How ironic future history of Cambodia is revealing: the ex-Khmer Rouge who proclaimed to be the strongman who oppressed and repressed Cambodia and Cambodians is progressively handing over Cambodia to the power of money from the Northern Capital. When the weak strongman dies – no man lives forever – his soul wold be doubly judged: one by Hades for being part of the genocidal Khmer Rouge, and two by history for being the Chéy Chéetha XI for letting the people from the Middle Kingdom to come and take over the land of the Khmer Leu.

Somewhere, under a banyan tree on the sidewalk of the silk road, two men share their secrets:

Phnuoy Mék: May I greet you my lord, and long live your reign!
On Ze: Not too loud, banyan branches have ears.
Phnuoy Mék: My lord, I thank you for having made me who I am since 2012.
On Ze: You’ve been a good boy for us, and you’ve served us well.
Phnuoy Mék: For your desire, nothing cannot be impossible in srè khmok so long you let me know.
On Ze: Listen carefully. So far, it’s only the beginning. I have a big belly, so my belt is long, and the road I’m travelling is much longer than the historical silk road.
Phnuoy Mék: My lord, I’m all ears.
On Ze: I want to make your country and its sea a 1st outpost of my objective to control the whole region: the economy will serve the military.
Phnuoy Mék: Yes, my lord. Money first and army later.
On Ze: Not only that, but also millions of my subjects. I need my people to execute my plan. Your guys are not up to the level of my plan.
Phnuoy Mék: I close my eye for their arrival by air, sea or land.
On Ze: Yes, that’s why the casinos are an indispensable instrument: my subjects use entertainment to disguise their true identity.
Phnuoy Mék: My lord, the more the casinos, the fuller my coffer.
On Ze: We supply you with more than yo wish, even if you would wish to use it as a pyre.
Phnuoy Mék: Your desire is my obligation, my lord.
On Ze: Don’t do anything behind my back to upset Ngouy.
Phnuoy Mék: Please count on me, my lord. Ngouy is sulking and pouting, but I told him that I am very thankful to him for what he’d done to me since the time I left the khmèr krâhârm to join him in 1977, facilitated my return in early 1979 and until I started to embrace your feet.
On Ze: I deal with him on my own term and time, but just make sure that Ngouy’s people around you do not do foolish thing.
Phnuoy Mék: My lord, I hear your voice.
On Ze: You’ve done a great job in shutting up your people’s mouth against you. The same thing must apply towards me and my gamblers.
Phnuoy Mék: In my previous association with the khmèr krâhârm, I’ve learned how to make them “bak sbaat.” They are still under that spell, and my lord should not worry.
On Ze: I have to leave now; anything else you wish?
Phnuoy Mék: My lord, have you thought about “after me”?
On Ze: Oh yes, I have. You seem to forget that Ngouy had groomed you and you have neglected not to groom anybody for “after you.”
Phnuoy Mék: I do, my lord; any of my 3 sons can be my dauphin.
On Ze: But none of them has had training in my hometown like you had in Ngouy’s hometown. By the way, is there unity among your 3 sons?
Phnuoy Mék: The 2nd and 3rd are not measured up to their brother.
On Ze: Then, send them back to boot camp.
Phnuoy Mék: Please absolve my sin, my lord.
On Ze: You shouldn’t worry about your “after me.” Since the end of the cultural revolution, I am the secretary general number 5. So, change makes changes. You have done enough for me that, “after you”, the spot will not be empty.
Phnuoy Mék: My lord, are my days numbered?
On Ze: I don’t read cards, but my plan includes the ephemerality of the person; nobody lives forever nor is absolutely indispensable in the future. After you go, your land remains … for our use.
Phnuoy Mék: What will happen to my three sons?
On Ze: They can still enjoy the remnant of your wealth … elsewhere.
Phnuoy Mék: Oh no, are you making me the Chéy Chétha of the XXIst century?
On Ze: I don’t make you Chéy Chétha. You make yourself like Chéy Chétha … without knowing it.
Phnuoy Mék: Why didn’t I see it?
On Ze: Your Chéy Chétha was about woman. You are about power and money. All things you have done have consequences that your eye can’t see. Good Bye.

Zorobabelos

My dear Kacvey,

This is a story that you may wish to share with your students about the notion of truth and its value, as truth has lately been subject of assault from liars, conspirators theorists and adepts of alternative truth or alternative universe. The story went way back to the pre-christian era.

In Book XI of Jewish Antiquities, Josephus narrated the story of Darius who went to bed, but, after resting a brief part of the night, awoke and being unable to sleep any longer, fell to talking to his three bodyguards. Darius asked his first bodyguard whether wine was the strongest thing,  and the second whether kings were, and the third whether women were, or whether truth was the strongest of all. Darius also promised his three bodyguards that whoever should give the truest and most intelligent speech on the subject would be bestowed sumptuous and enormous gifts including the honorific title of “Kinsman.”

When Darius had set these questions for them to examine, he took his rest. Then in the morning he summoned the nobles, satraps and toparchs of Persia and Media, and, taking his seat in the place where he was wont to give judgement, he bode each of the bodyguards give his opinion on the matters in question in the hearing of all.

And the first bodyguard began to speak on the power of wine. When he ceased speaking, the second bodyguard began speaking about the power of the king. When he ceased speaking, the third bodyguard began to discourse on women, and then on truth, saying: “I have now shown how great is the strength of women, but none the less both they and the king are weaker than truth. For although the earth is very great and the heavens high and the sun swift, yet all these move in accordance with the will of God, and, since He is true and just, we must for the same reason believe truth also to be the strongest thing, against which no injustice can prevail. Furthermore, all other things that possess strength are by nature mortal and short-lived, but truth is a thing immortal and eternal. And it gives us, not beauty, that fades with time, nor wealth, of which fortune may rob us, but what is just and lawful, and from this it keeps away injustice and puts it to shame.”

The third bodyguard name is Zorobabelos. When Zorobabelos ended his speech on truth, whereupon the assembly acclaimed him as the best speaker, saying that it was truth alone which had unchanging and unaging strength. And the king directed him to ask for something beyond what he himself had promised, for, he said, he would give it to him for being wise and showing himself more intelligent than the others.  “You shall,” he added, “be seated next to me and be called my Kinsman.”

When the king had said this, Zorobabelos reminded him of what he had vowed to do if he obtained the throne: this was to rebuild Jerusalem and construct the temple of God there and restore the vessels which Nebuchadnezzar had taken as spoil to Babylon.

Is Thbong Khmoum Jail Door Now Open?

My dear Kacvey,

Please keep us posted on the rumor that the Thbong Khmoum jail door has been open, and the weak strongman is caught in his own spinning quagmire.

That’s fast, Kacvey! Thanks, Bro!

The weak strongman is losing direction on his compass and mixing up bishops, knights and rooks on his chess board. 34 years of absolute power are eroding the cells from the monkey mind.

While the released-on-bail of the opposition leader flashed in social media and newspapers throughout the world, the weak strongman secretly flew to his lord’s lair in the Northern Capital, and from there publicly announced the release. Why there, and not in the City of Tonlé Buon Mouk?  Possibly or probably because:
– the lord is not happy of the way the weak strongman handle the sham election;
– the lord has not received any credit from the entire world for helping the weak strongman winning the sham election;
– the lord might have a special message for the future;
or
– the weak strongman wants to avoid the Singapore hospital (A side question to you, Kacvey: do your students remember where did Sihanouk pass away?)
– the weak strongman executes the ritual pilgrimage to pay respect and re-pledge allegiance to the lord for the grace and fortune dispensed upon him and his tribesmen by the lord;
– the weak strongman wants to assure the lord that the territory is wide open to receive any number of the lord subjects to come and settle.

Updates:

The Complete Loss of Order

My dear Kacvey,

After the sham election, it looks like the weak strongman is changing the cards deck and sticking his finger out to feel which direction the wind is blowing in order for him to save his dictatorship from a possible and probable shipwreck.

This is how he has been shuffling the new deck of cards: releasing prisoners that his administration and its sycophantic henchmen in the police and judiciary system had arrested, condemned and incarcerated through trumped and bogus charges, and for purely political motives as to silence any critics against his corrupt and repressive policy.

The pregnant vixen named August has been so prolific in delivering cubs, all named Pardon, one after another:
– on 17 August 2018: Kim Sok, a political commentator was released after 18 months in jail;
– on 20 August 2018, Tep Vanny, along with 3 other land rights defenders were released after 2 years in jail;
– on 21 August 2018, Uon Chhin and Yeang Sothearin, two journalists were released on bail;
– on 23 August 2018, Sourn Serey Ratha, the former leader of Khmer Power Party was released after spending more than a year in jail; (N.B. Suorn Serey Ratha was first pardoned in July 2015)
– on 25 August 2018, Um Sam An, an opposition parliamentarian, was released after spending more than 2 years in jail.
– on 27 August 2018, past midnight, Meach Sovannara and 13 other prisoners belonging to the opposition party were released after spending more than 3 years in jail.
(The list will be updated as soon as news on new delivery is provided by the animals hospital.)

Kacvey, this set of successive news on releases and pardons must blow the brain of your students as well as yours as to what has been behind all of these? What is the weak strongman’s next move and what will be future consequences on the overall political landscape of Cambodia?

For now, from the bench of the campus auditorium, let formulate some conjectures or postulates and put them forward to your students for discussions:

Intra-Party pressure
The crooked victory has been the least celebrated in the history of the ruling party: no ovation, no fanfare, no firecrackers, no music, no parade, no joy, no nothing that resembled a pride and well-earned victory. It’s rather like a funerals or dismal and lugubrious mourning, without procession, upon the coffin of the dead body of democracy. They won all the 125 seats, and why are they not happy and elated?

It doesn’t need an Einstein to see through: they won through manipulation, deceit and intimidation, and they OVERDID it. They never feared of losing but they expected massive and public and explosive popular expression of discontentment and rejection. They overplayed their hand, and the people responded with a peaceful, internal, silent and zen-like discontentment and rejection.They felt the atmosphere of public resentment.

Within the close-knit circle of the weak strongman, that public resentment touched sensitive nerves of a few sycophants that still have brain and heart. The relatives of the Dirty Seventeen may ask a very simple question: with such a public resentment, how is the weak strongman going to govern? More repression on “what”, the opposition party being already out of the picture? Well, if the weak strongman has no more “official opposition” to kick around, he will kick those around him around.

Sometimes, sycophants can’t be that stupid all the times.

Kacvey, would you think that this new forum called “Supreme Council of Consultations“(SCC) would make the members of his party happy or be welcomed by them? Who are these 16 scums to check on the power of the ruling party that not only occupies all the 125 seats at the national assembly but also the executive and judiciary branches? The weak strongman by wanting so much to be praised for his  corrupt and unpraisable deeds has just ridiculed himself inexorably.

International Pressure
Kacvey, you have already read tons of literature on the reactions of the international community to the sham election, and what they had done and expect to do in the future. We continue to document and update ourselves ceaselessly from Washington, Brussels and Canberra, Northern Capital and Eastern Capital falling off the radar.

What makes the weak strongman so frustrated with the international pressure that dominates the news during the electoral campaign, the sham election and afterward? His entire government runs out of arguments and ideas to counter Washington or Brussels, and there is NOBODY to carry the torch to challenge both capitals; (Oh, there is one, the head of the bodyguard unit who is ready to make war against the US!) he himself, having no personal ability nor skill to sit at the table and articulate and negotiate in person and viva voce.

Moreover, there is one disconnect between the weak strongman and the Dirty Seventeen that surround him in supporting his autocratic power: The international pressure is more strongly felt by the Dirty Seventeen than by the weak strongman himself. The weak strongman keeps on quacking to whom who wants to listen to that he has no fortune stacked in overseas accounts, but things are not the same with the Dirty Seventeen with regards to Australia and the US. If these Dirty Seventeen truly believe in the perennity of the weak strongman, why don’t they leave their fortune in Cambodia along with the weak strongman’s wealth? Why do they stash their fortune in Australia or the US or anywhere else outside Cambodia?

The Dirty Seventeen may ask a simple question: if their name are black listed, what can the weak strongman do to make it “white”? Weak Strongman, you have the floor, like you routinely do in front of the garment workers, before or after the sham election! Dirty Seventeen are waiting!

Oh Kacvey, one more thing. The weak strongman is also planning to sell his crooked victory through sham election to some European governments and the United Nations in New York in September and October (and also Japan, but well, don’t waste our time with Tokyo!) But there seems to be no enthusiasm and heat in preparing these so-called official trips: the feedback from those capitals is that the weak strongman would not to be welcome as a national liberator like Gandhi or Mandela, but would rather be met with snubs and massive demonstrations. [Remember the burning of ទីងមោង​ in Australia in March 2018!]

World leaders – except those notorious one-party state dictators – know the difference between a democratically elected head of government and a banana state autocrat. What ever speech he will deliver would never be believed, the burden of the sham election being so heavy and already undeniable. Poor speech writer(s), you’ll have such an impossible task, especially when your heart is only 50% with what and whom you work with!

By the same token, would the Dirty Seventeen dare showing their face with the autocratic delegation to visit their relatives attending colleges or to check on their properties in those places?

The devil in a saint cloak
The Sichuan Opera 川剧 is also known as the faces changing art 变脸. In this genre of opera, generally male actors or performers change from one face or mask to another almost instantaneously with the swipe of a fan, a movement of the head, or wave of the hand. With such a frequent visit to China, the weak strongman must certainly have attended that opera.

Kacvey, you may ask what has to do with the weak strongman and his sham election aftermath? Well, it has to do with how he’s managing that aftermath. He’s trying to change the mask of an evil dictator to a saint with a halo! He’s promoting himself as a saint showing mercy,  compassion and clemency to the same prisoners that months or years earlier his bodyguards or judiciary goons, on his direct orders, arrested them and threw them in jail for no constitutional or legal rhyme or reason? Now that the sham election is over, and the democratic threat to his regime has already been crushed, he dons a saint cloak and mask to bless his autocratic sins.

A wicked man is capable of everything: one day he’s Satan, the next day a saint, and on and on. A wicked man can fool Tom, Dick or Harry some of the time but he cannot fool them all the time. It’s a fashion now for murderous ex-KR to hide behind religion conversion and to be reborn to cleanse their guilty conscience from the genocidal blood, but the weak strongman needs to attend theology classes if he wants his saint cloak to be believed.

“To keep you is no benefit. To destroy you is no loss.”
These two phrases were used by Pol Pot and his ideologues to inflict accusation on the New People that the Khmer Rouge were about to do away with.

As soon as Tep Vanny and three other human rights defenders were released from jail, the kangaroo court of the weak strongman found her and other five members of the community guilty of OTHER crime. It’s not a secret to anybody that the weak strongman has in his sleeves a plethora of accusations against anybody that criticizes him or his repressive and corrupt authority. Cases in point are those of the self-exiled and ex-leader of the opposition and the current opposition leader who has been put in jail since September 2017 without investigations, charges or evidence of any wrongdoing.

The weak strongman exercises his repressive authority like an octopus: one tentacle release one prisoner at a time, others catch others; and once a prisoner is caught, the octopus spews its black ink on him/her that can’t be erased; it tells the prisoner she/he is “marked” for ever. The message from the weak strongman is clear: once a prisoner of him, there is no escape. Any release, through pardon or otherwise, is just a temporary relief. For now, “to keep you [in jail] is no benefit.”

Kacvey, your students might also ask what do these releases and pardons have to do with the crimes that those recently-released have been wrongly and fictitiously accused of? Why have they been subject to double punishment? Beware, the devil in a saint cloak remains a devil till end of its time.

The weak strongman, having put Cambodia during the last 34 years in a state of complete loss of order, has not had a good night sleep since the end of the sham election.

=====
Update:
– on 4 September 2018, UCA News reported: Political analyst flees Cambodia after threats to daughter – Recently released Kim Sok warned by caller to stop criticizing Hun Sen’s government
– on 8 September 2018, The San Diego Union-Tribune reported: Long Beach resident held political prisoner for years in Cambodia safely returns to U.S.

A Poem about KhmerPAC

My dear Kacvey,

Wish to share with you this poem written by a visitor, and hope you would, sotto voce, THANK the author if, by any chance, you both meet each other somehow and somewhere.

ខ្មែរបក្ស” [KHMERPAC]

ខ្មែរបក្ស”កវីសំដីពីរោះ តើចិត្តពិតស្មោះដូចចិត្ត”សុទ្ធ”ស្មាន
សុទ្ធ”សឹងស្រែកយំ”សុទ្ធ”ទ្រំាំមិនបាន “សុទ្ធ”សូមរាប់អាន”កវី”យល់ព្រម?

ខ្មែរបក្ស”កវីថ្វីមិនទាន់ស្គាល់ “សុទ្ធ”សែនកង្វល់ឆ្ងល់មិនគ្រប់ល្មម
ចង់ដឹងចង់យល់”កវី”ខ្លឹមស្រោម? “ខ្មែរបក្ស”ចំណោមចំណែកណាខ្លះ?

ខ្មែរបក្ស”កវីនិយាយខ្មែរបានដូចខ្មែរគ្រប់ប្រាណឬ”សុទ្ធ”យល់ខុស?
កវីប្រាប់ “សុទ្ធ”ដោយចិត្តស្ម័គ្រស្មោះ កុំតែបង់បោះលះបាត់បំណង!

សុទ្ធ”អាចនិយាយពីរ(២)ភាសាទៀត សូម”កវី”ឆ្លៀតសំរួលសំរង់
ប្រាប់មក”សុទ្ធ”វិញប្រាប់ដោយត្រង់ៗ ព្រោះតែ “សុទ្ធ”ចង់យល់អ្វី”ខ្មែរបក្ស”?

Dans “Le discours de la méthode”, René Descartes disait: “La poésie est des dons de l’esprit plutôt que des fruits de l’étude.”