My dear Kacvey,

Have you received an invite to the 29 December inauguration of that useless and horrendous monument?

What monument?

The VI..N..-VI..N.. Monument?

It’s the Win-Win Monument, as they call it!

They can call whatever they want, but it’s the VI..N..-VI..N.. Monument?

Please explain.

Easy: “Win-Win Monument” and “VI..N..-VI..N.. Monument”, same phonetics, right?!

Right. But why “VI..N..-VI..N.. Monument”?

Oh, fill up the dots with these letters: E, T and A, M, and you see how the weak strongman pays his debt to Vietnam for his return to Cambodia on 7 January 1979.

Get it! Even the top of the spike has the shape of the letter V.

Kacvey, please tell your students to focus their camera on the tip of the spire when photographing it.

Why then the weak strongman doesn’t dedicate the monument to himself?

Here could be a few possibilities:

  • He must have learned that many Lenin statues in the world were torn down when communism was over, or Saddam Hussein’s when his regime collapsed at beginning of Iraq war;
  • He wouldn’t dare glorify himself so much in the face of his Vietnamese backer, because without Vietnamese troops he would never be where he is now;
  • He would not dare affront the spirit and soul of Sihanouk and his statue near the Monument of Independence;
  • He has some complex vis-à-vis 2 guys with whom he was painted on billboards throughout the country; there were 3 guys then, but now only two after, the death of one them on 8 June 2015;
  • He wants the Khmer people to forget his genocidal Pol Pot-Khmer Rouge background and see him through a different prism;
  • Last but not least, he knows that not only his popularity has been dwindled downwards like the level of the Tonlé Buon Mouk in the dry season, but he also has started to feel uneasy of himself in the leadership role of his party and his clan of regroupees who left for Vietnam in 1977.

Therefore, before it’s too late, he seems to decide to concretize the end of his journey in block of concrete, as a symbol of his senseless vanity and egoism.

What and how that so-called monument will be or look like after the inauguration is over?

Dogs will roam around and lift their hind against the walls, homeless will use as shelter against rains, graffiti artists may love to express their natural talent, loiterers hanging out in illegal or illicit nocturnal trades, garbage uncollected etc…

The “VI..N.. – VI..N.. Monument”, a monument to his vanity, will also be for Vietnam like the Chinese casinos in Kg Som and the Chinese resort in Koh Kong will be for China, the masterpieces that the weak strongman has so far designed for and dedicated to his 2 lords.

Would the strongman come back on daily basis to meditate? Doubt it. How would that mute and inert concrete interact with the Khmer people whose life is like a “Lose-Loose Monolith” that they carry on their shoulder and back?

With this “VI..N.. – VI..N.. Monument”, the weak strongman seems definitely outgunning Chéy Chetha II, with not only a historical legacy of Cambodia eternally indebted to Vietnam but also a monument to the glory of his master.