09 February 2011

Deepest condolences for our Khmer fallen heroes

Deepest condolences for our Khmer fallen heroes who scarified their lives for defending our sovereignty against the thievery of the Thais at Preah Vihear Temple.

04 February 2011

"Min You Min Chhabb" a Poem in Khmer by Sék Serei

I love this poem ! Well said and well read here in Phnom Penh. Thank you Lok Pu Sek Serey !

12 January 2011

Political cartoon I like

I found this cartoon from the net. It's is done by Sacrava. Thank you Lok Pou Sacrava your picture is worth thousand of words ! So true. Freedom of expression is at best. Vannak -- Phnom Penh

13 February 2009

Publications that enhance our Khmer democracy and leadership



Last year after I read "Khmer Leadership Part 1" I had to wait more than 6 months before the Part 2 was available. Now both parts are widely circulated on the internet. I now just finish reading it. These two books are so good. A lot of ideas and accountability of leaderships should be. Not the kind of leaders as Global Witness has recently published in Country For Sale: Welcome to Cambodia


These publications are among those kind our Khmer government would love to burn because the guilty conscience of our current leaders cannot stand the truth. And that's why they want to completely discredit the truth or destroy it.




ពីខ្ញុំ, វណ្ណះ
ភ្នំពេញ

01 February 2009

Cambodian numerals on Thai currency


"Khmer numerals have been written on every Thai bank note and on every Thai coin along with the picture of the Thai King to prove that Khmer are the Master of Thai always."

Above was the comment left on my blog.

Vanak-Phnom Penh

12 January 2009

My view on Lèse majesté law in Thailand

Website Sacrava by Khmer political cartoonist in Australia was blocked in Thailand for violating Lèse majesté law.

I thought about Lèse majesté law in Thailand. It is the law for individual not to do anything to insult Thai king Bhumibol Aduljadej. Don't critise him. Dont's say bad stuffs about him. Don't draw satire cartoon of him. Don't spray paint over his picture. The offender who violates Lèse majesté will be tossed in jail from 3 to 15 years. So remember one thing, when in Thailand do like the Thais do: "Don't ever insult Bhumibol Aduljadej."

I respect Bhumibol no more and no less than any fellow human being. To me, Bhumibol Aduljadej is no God. My reasons are just simply that Bhumibol eats, drinks, goes to the toilet and furthermore Bhumibol's excrement stinks just like mine and everyone else.

Regarding Lèse majesté, although I think it's archaic and outdated law in this day and age, but nevertheless, it's still Thai's law. If I ever set my foot on Thai soil I would respect their laws. The same if I'm to visit any other country, I would respect the local laws of that country.

Here I am in Cambodia I want to exercise my freedom of speech. Thailand has no right to apply their Lèse majesté upon me.

Thanks goodness. I'm in my beloved country!

Vanak,
Phnom Penh.

19 November 2008

Thai's Incursion Into Cambodia Soil

The current standoff between my Cambodia and the neigbour to the west, Thailand at our Khmer Preah Vihear temple is in no way at peace any time sooner. The Thais were mad because we erected 3 flags: UNESCO flag, World Heritage flag and Cambodian flag on top of our Preah Vihear temple. They said that we did things without consulted them first. I think this is totally absurd. The areas are clearly Cambodia soil. The Thais have to get over with it and adhere to rule of international laws and treaties that were made between our two countries.

With all the tensions between our troops and the Thai intruders, we must be vigilant as ever. Just yesterday in Khmer soil near Phnom Trob, which is about 3km from Preah Vihear Temple, a Thai soldier stepped on the landmine and was killed instantly. The Thais have no reason to come down from Phnom Dongrek into our Cambodia. The area Phnom Trob, that these Thai invaders patrolling are Cambodia soil because only in our Khmer soil that is littered with landmines when they were laid during the civil war from 1970 to the mid 1990's.



I read the news there will be a joint de-mining effort to de-mine the areas before the border is demarcated. This really bothers me a lot. I just want to shout: IT'S CAMBODIA SOIL !! CAMBODIA WILL DO THE DE-MINING ALONE. If we let the Thai de-mining with us on our land, they will lay claim to our land after the landmines are cleared. Let me repeat only Cambodia soil -- Cambodia side of the border has the landmines.

The border demarcation is TOTALLY SEPARATE from the de-mining task. It should go first before the de-mining take place. It's simple. After we know the border, if the landmines are on the Thai side, the Thai can de-mining on their side. They can do anything they please on their side. If the mines are on Cambodia side, Cambodia alone will de-mining on our side. But again, I guarantee only the side of Cambodia soil would have the landmines. To demarcate the border, Thailand and us must stick the the agreement of the maps in 1904-1907 treaties. I couldn't have said any better than our Khmer compatriot, Chan Veasna where wrote his editorial to Phnom Penh Post that "If the 1904, 1907 maps are not used, it would be a betrayal of the treaties and a tragedy, as it will set a precedent that triggers future violations of subsequent [border] treaties".

On the other hand, Thailand are continually to live in the state of denial in their confused generations. Each of their school children is teached from falsified history and indotrinated to hate Khmer (Cambodian)at early age. What gain has they profitted from this kind of mentality is yet I still don't know.

Western scholars widely published Thai culture and tradition were derived from Khmer. I think this is very true. Many Thais are continuing to deny the facts. When I come to think of it, all Thai achitectural structures were modeled after Khmer's Angkor Wat -- this include the Royal Palace in Bangkok. Thai writing are modified from Khmer. Thai "Ratcha Sap" "Rea-chea Sap" royal language is typically Khmer language. Furthermore, there's a history book written by a Thai historian implicating that the Thai royal(king) may have been a descendant of Khmer commoner from the present day province of Takeo, Cambodia. I have to read more to confirm this fact.



Taken this into account, Thai King Mongkut (reigned 1851-1868) have ordered our Angkor Wat to be disassembled stone by stone and moved to Bangkok. When the task was so massive and impossible to do it. He ordered the smaller temple Prasat Ta Prohm to be disasembled instead.

I can see here, the descendant of the Thai King was a renegade from Khmer that's why he was so obsessed of everything Khmer's that he wanted to reestablish his identity by wanted to move Angkor Wat to Bangkok. Wanted to move Angkor Wat to Bangkok ? This truly was insane. I know the Thais cannot accept their king is a descendant of Khmer commoner from Takeo province. So my advice to them is to be open minded. That's all I can say.


Please continue to read below research on how Thai and Khmer languages derived from. The materials were published by the University of California Los Angeles (UCLA) in America.

Vanak.
Phnom Penh


http://www.lmp.ucla.edu/Profile.aspx?LangID=80&menu=004
[Thai] HISTORY
The Thai, who originated in China, migrated into the Indochina peninsula before the current era. Initially dominated by the Mon and then later, beginning in the tenth century, by the Khmer,

the Thai gained their own independence in the mid-thirteenth century. Shortly thereafter, the first script--known as the Sukhotai and distinct from that used by the Khmer--was developed for Thai.

The script now in use is a more or less modified variant of this and other intervening scripts used during the reign of other monarchs.

ORTHOGRAPHY
Thai uses a script that is basically alphabetic in nature with some elements of a syllabic system. In origin it derives from an Indic script which was adapted first by the Khmer and then the Thai.

There is a fairly good approximation between the scriptand pronunciation.

LINGUISTIC SKETCH
Thai has borrowed heavily from Mon and Khmer.


http://www.lmp.ucla.edu/Profile.aspx?LangID=75&menu=004
[Khmer]HISTORY
The history of the language is distinguished into several periods: Old Khmer (the seventh to eighth century), Angkor period (the ninth to fifteenth century), Middle Khmer (the sixteenth to eighteenth century), and Modern Khmer. The language is attested from the earliest periods by numerous inscriptions, and then during the Middle Khmer period by extensive writings on palm leaf manuscripts, including the Khmer version of the Ramayana, a well-known Hindu epic about Rama.

During the Angkor period, Khmer influenced the surrounding languages, especially the unrelated languages of Lao and Thai, and they borrowed heavily from Khmer.

REFERENCES
Campbell, G. L. 1991. Compendium of the World's Languages, Vol. 1 -2. London and New York: Routledge.

Diffloth, G. 1992. "Khmer." In W. Bright, ed. International Encyclopedia of Linguistics, Vol. 2:271-275. New York and Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Grimes, B. F., ed. 1992. Ethnologue, Languages of the World. Dallas, TX: Summer Institute of Linguistics.

Linguistic Society of America. 1992. Directory of Programs in Linguistics in the United States and Canada. Washington, DC: Linguistic Society of America.

Ruhlen, M. 1987. A Guide to the World's Languages, Vol. 1: Classification. London: Edward Arnold.

Smyth, D. A. 1994. "Cambodia: Language Situation." In R. E. Asher, ed. The Encyclopedia of Language and Linguistics, Vol. 2:440. Oxford: Pergamon Press.

_____. 1994. "Cambodian." In R. E. Asher, ed. The Encyclopedia of Language and Linguistics, Vol. 2:440-441. Oxford: Pergamon Press

11 November 2008

Hok Lundy Is Dead

Hok Lundy , 51, the gold four stars general, head of our national police since he was 37 years old has met a tragic death in the helicopter crash on Sunday night of 9 Nov 2008.

There's a saying "Don't speak ill of the dead". I agree with the saying so I won't go there. Though I have nothing good to speak about the guy either. I am no God to pass on the judgment so I don't care whether Hok Lundy's soul is resting in peace or forever tormented in constant agony .

But, for our generation I do care when another police chief is replaced. I hope and pray the new chief will uphold the law, selflessly protect our citizen and serve the public interests not of Vietnam but wholeheartedly for my beloved Cambodia.

Vanak
Phnom Penh


16 October 2008

My Heart Goes Out For Our Slained Soldiers


I am very sad at the moment for two of our soldiers heroically fought and lost their lives for defending our homeland against the Thai invaders.



A Cambodian soldier guards a pagoda near Preah Vihear temple. Thailand and Cambodia exchanged fire in a clash over disputed land which left two soldiers dead and several wounded. (AFP/Tang Chhin Sothy)

05 October 2008

Discovering the Literary Genious

I normally blog how I feel what's going on in my country. I blog everything I'm most curious about. Topics I blog are ranging from the corruption of my current prime minister Hun Sen government, the influx of illegal Vietnamese immigrants to the encroachment of the belligerent Thais upon my Cambodia. But, here's a break from my usual topics of all things politics.

I have a friend. Her name is ND who's studying in Japan. She knows I like to read so she sent me two fictional novels written by Haruki Murakami. I don't read Japanese, but Murakami's books are widely translated into 34 languages. The two books I received from ND were English translated version.


I'm still very surprised to received the gift from from Japan so the least I could do was to start reading them right away. Now, I'm hooked on Murakami's writings. I can't wondered enough of all my literate years, I wish I discovered his works sooner. It's not late yet-- thanks, ND, for the two books you gave me. I tremendously enjoy so much of his writing styles. They are full of imageries and wits that make me want to turn page after page and after page.

I just finished reading Murakami's "The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle" and now I am on page 31 of his next book "Kafka On The Shore".

Let me share one of the passages I enjoyed. It's taken at the end of chapter 9 from "The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle". I laughed to myself so hard reading this passage. The protagonist (1st person narrator) is talking with a sixteen years old girl on the outlook of life:
I coloured coded to distinguish the male and female conversations.
==>
"But finally, Mr. Wind-Up Bird, isn't that just what life is ? Aren't we all trapped in the dark somewhere, and they've taken away our food and water, and we're slowly dying, little by little...?"
I laughed. "You're too young to be so...pessimistic," I said, using the English word.
"Pessi-what?"
"Pessimistic. It means looking only at the dark side of things."
"Pessimistic...pessimistic..."She repeated the English to herself over and over, and then she looked up at me with a fierce glare. "I'm only sixteen," she said, "and I don't know much about the world, but I do know one thing for sure. If I'm pessimistic, then the adults in this world who are not pessimistic are a bunch of idiots."
<==

Now here's a little bit of Japanese expression from chapter 3 "Kafka On the Shore". A 15 year old boy, Kafka (1st person narrator) while traveling on a bus, where he meets a girl.

==>
"Could you do me a favour?" she says.
"A favor?"
"Can I sit next to you until we get to Takamatsu? I just can't relax when I sit by myself. ... you seem like a nice guy. Do you mind?"
"No problem."
"Thanks," she says. "In traveling, a companion,' as the saying goes."
I nod. nod, nod, nod-- that's all I seem capable of. But what should I say?
How does that end?" she asks.
"How does what end?"
"After a companion, how does it go? I can't remember. I never was very good at Japanese."
" 'In life, compassion,' " I say.
" 'In traveling, a companion, in life compassion,' " she repeats, making sure of it. If she had paper and pencil, it wouldn't surprise me if she wrote it down. "So what does that really mean ? In simple terms."
I think it over. It takes me a while to gather my thoughts, but she waits patiently.
"I think means," I say, "that chance encounters are what keep us going. In simple terms."
<==

By far I think Haruki Murakami is one of the bests in modern literature. I will try to find more of his books here at our Phnom Penh booksellers. Thanks again, ND, for your introducing to me of this literary genius !

Vanak.
Phnom Penh Cambodia

08 August 2008

Blogger or Wordpress ?


Our clogger (Cambodian Blogger) Vutha posted his entry asking fellow bloggers: "Which one (wordpress or blogger) do you like to use for your blog? I got used to start with blogsport or blogger platform for a short time and then I stopped using it. I have started using wordpress software. I now got accustomed to wordpress. Therefore, I like using wordpress rather than blogger. How about you? " End-quote.

Here's the response I left at Vutha's site :

Soosdey Vutha!

I am one of your regular visitors to this great site of yours! I read a lot ! This is the very topic I wanted to do the story about. I'm glad since you brought this up. Now I can abandon my thought of the doing the story. But instead leaving my comment here! :)

When I started my blog I thought the same: Wordpress or Blogger(Blogspot)? They both are good. However, from what I read on the internet, Blogger has major advantage over Wordpress in term of search engine. For example, if you're to blog your entry on "Prasat Ta Moan Thom" or "Bun Rani Hun Sen" . Google search will show your post less than 4 hours after your entry posted. It's fast. This is because Google owns Blogger (Blogspot). Where as Wordpress has to carry their search engine through a different companies like Google or Yahoo. Perhaps Wordpress has to pay Google or Yahoo for this search engine service. So your entry on "Prasat Ta Moan Thom" or "Bun Rani Hun Sen" would take longer in the search if you're to compose on Wordpress.

Another thing I like Blogger because it's simple to use. I can easily put any code of HTML/XML linking to any servers. I don't have IT knowlege. But, I did it easily on Blogger. At my blog on the left side, I have link to poems and LibraryThing (books I read. They all are at different servers. Also, I always keep in mind Blogger is Google ! So it's big. It will never gone out of business.

I think it doesn't matter Wordpress or Blogger. They both are good. Most importantly we must keep on blogging. Write out our feeling and idea so openly. I am sure both Wordpress and Blogger are proponents of free speech. Just very recently on 5 August 2008 Google Spokesman, Adam Kovacevich assured "... it is very important to us that Blogger remain a tool for political debate and free expression."

Vanak
Blogbykhmer
Phnom Penh

Sources:
http://www.vuthasurf.com/
http://www.nysun.com/national/anti-obama-bloggers-say-they-were-silenced/83179/

07 August 2008

ឯកសារសំខាន់បំផុតដែលកូនខ្មែរយើងគ្រប់រូបត្រូវអាន


Last week I saw this​ Khmer documentary មេដឹកនាំ ជាតិខ្មែរ ភាគ​​ ១ ឯកសារសម្ងាត់​ "Leaders of Khmer Nation, Part 1- Secret Document" circulating on the internet. I tried to download from the site but I couldn't. It was so popular too many people downloaded that the site has the shut down. I now have a copy. I am putting on the internet. It is a
is a must read for all Khmer children who wants to know the truth about our leaders and leadership.

The documentary is written by former professor Sar Thommak Raingsy ស ធម្មរង្សី . When I first started to read អារម្ភកថា( Introduction​ ) I got hooked. My conscience shakes ព្រឺសាច់ for truth of leaders of our Cambodia. Every single point Professor Sar Thommak Raingsy mentioned is a wakeup call for all of us.

I would like to invite you to download the file and read the introduction អារម្ភកថា first. I am sure you will want to read more.

I 've put up the file to two different servers.

Download PDF file មេដឹកនាំ ជាតិខ្មែរ ភាគ​​ ១ ឯកសារសម្ងាត់

Download PDF file មេដឹកនាំ ជាតិខ្មែរ ភាគ​​ ១ ឯកសារសម្ងាត់ (Alternate Site)


​​ Vanak
ក្រុងភ្នំពេញ

26 July 2008

CAMBODIA on PREAH VIHEAR : ENOUGH IS ENOUGH!!!


CAMBODIA: ENOUGH IS ENOUGH!!!

Friday, 25 July 2008
Op-Ed by Chanda Chhay

There are many ways to deal with a thug. But, there is only one proper way to deal with a misbehaving, neighboring nation. That is to stand firm and be fair with it, and, if necessary, deprive it of what it wanted most.

It is as clear as daylight that the 4.6 square kilometer of so-called disputed land around the Khmer Temple of Preah Vihear was not what Thailand wanted. What it really wanted is a guaranteed access to Prasat Preah Vihear—the main attraction and an economic lifeline for the arid Si Saket province of Thailand. Without Preah Vihear, the surrounding areas would be just like any other part of the Dangrek Mountain ranges—rocks and trees.

The flagrant incursion of Thai armed forces onto the sacred ground of Preah Vihear has been going on long enough. The Thai government should know better by now that it could only defy words of condemnation or warning, but it could not defy international norms and laws. By the same token, the Cambodian government should know that the muddled head Thai leaders wanted to turn every legal and internationally-recognized document pertaining to the sovereignty of Cambodia upside down and subject Cambodia to the whim of their myopic thoughts.

So, what is Cambodia to do in order to deal with the situation? One very simple and effective solution to this problem is to publicly announce to the international community and to Thailand, in particular, that the access to Preah Vihear from Thailand is no longer open due to the difficulty in preventing illegal trespassing and thefts to the temple’s artifacts, which is now a World Heritage site. As proprietor of the temple, Cambodia has an obligation and a right to safeguard it. If Thailand, as a good neighbor, wanted to offer assistance and collaboration in protecting this World Heritage site, it MUST recognize and respect the treaties of 1904 and 1907 regarding the common border of Cambodia and Thailand. Period!

Preah Vihear is not a political football to be kicked around and see who will win or lose. It has suffered neglect and abuses by humans long enough. It is now time for us to restore and preserve it for posterity. This current crisis is perhaps the best opportunity for us to look beyond the tourist dollars and to give Preah Vihear what it deserves most: Restoration and research on the site, so that humankind could have a better understanding of its history and functionality.

Chanda Chhay
Washington, DC (USA)

25 July 2008

Letter to King Bhumibol Adulyadej of Thailand

There are so many good writings lately on the internet about our Khmer built Temple Preah Vihear. I am collecting these writings. We all should keep writing ! I know the Thai newspapers, The Nation and The Bangkok Post kept printing so much bias news and editorials. Us Khmer should write more not only to counter the bias, but also to expose truths that the Thais hate to hear.

Here's the letter to Bhumibol Adulyadej, King of Thailand a.k.a "The King That Never Smile" . The letter was forwarded to my mailbox this morning. Although it's not my kind of language in writing, but I agree the content is very good coming from our irate compatriot.

Thai King Bhubmibol wearing old fashion English hat. He is trying to copy the English royal. In my opionion, the hat is too big for his royal head.

-Vanak.
Phnom Penh

23 July 2008

Preah Vihear of Cambodia

Nationalism is Good; Blind Nationalism is Bad

Opinion-Editorial by Chanda Chhay

This is a very good article I found from KI-Media. Click on the picture will link to the source. Thank you Chanda Chhay. I hope reading more of your writing.

Ignorance of history is a sad fact. But, twisting history to satisfy a political goal is a foolish act. With utmost due respect to Thai people in general, it is unbelievable and outright disgusting to see and hear Thai politicians and political activists barking all kind of nonsense concerning the Khmer Temple of Preah Vihear.

Without listing every detail of who is accusing whom of violating whose national sovereignty, the entire conflict over a parcel of land near Preah Vihear Temple could be summed up as a case of a grown man trying to steal a candy from a kid and accusing the kid of stealing the candy from him. What is so repulsive about this affair is that the whole world knew that the candy is rightfully belonged to the innocent kid.

It is unfortunate and truly sad to see some Thai politicians and leaders behaving like thugs. The whole country should seriously re-examine itself whether it is worth it to lose its honor and integrity within the international community over a desperately hopeless campaign to grab a piece of land which should belong to the sacred ground of Preah Vihear. In this information age, people are much better informed than anyone could have guessed. Along with information, the factual truth will always come out regardless of the efforts to twist or hide it.

Based on the often neglected historical facts, the majority of Thai and Cambodian people have many things in common, culturally. For example, the Thai language, as we know it, is a derivative of the Khmer, the Mon, and the Sanskrit languages. The royal court etiquettes, which are the grace of the Thai nation, are a replica of the Cambodian tradition. These are some of the factual realities. Whether we like them or not, they are here to stay with us for as long as we care to learn the truth. As for those Thais, who continue to fabricate facts with fictions, this myopic action will lead to nothing but humiliation. The fiasco of Thai’s objection over the Preah Vihear’s registration as World Heritage site should serve as a good lesson for moving beyond irrational nationalism.

When King Rama Kamhaeng, and some of his successors, adapted and modified the Khmer language and customs to bestow upon his subjects, the idea of seeing the descendants of his beloved subjects behaving like ingrates toward their cultural benefactor was probably beyond his wildest imagination. Unfortunately, animal behaviors in human beings always prevail when rational thinking is being replaced by blind ambition.

The images of a Thai woman lying in the middle of the road to block a convoy of Thai trouble-makers and a man whose face was cover in blood after an altercation with the trouble-makers spoke volumes of how the local people think: People on both sides of the borders want to live in peace and harmony with their neighbors. Any government or politician that fails to see this simple truth is a disgrace to the nation.

Prasat Preah Vihear and the Buddhist temple in its premise are, first and foremost, the sanctuary of the gods. Second, they are the cultural sanctuary of humankind. For armed soldiers to trample on these sacred sites is not only an affront to humankind but also a disgrace and a despicable act on the part of the instigator.

Chanda Chhay
Washington, DC (USA)