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Tuesday, October 11, 2005

The Loss of Cambodia's Territorial Integrity-Part 3 (Additional Convention to the 1985 treaty)

The Loss of Cambodia's Territorial Integrity-Part 3 (Additional Convention to the 1985 treaty)

Cambodia's territorial integrity is a subject of national importance to every single Khmer, dead or alive. Each Cambodian has a legitimate concern and indignation over his/her country's loss of territorial integrity as Cambodia has been losing continuously Her territory to Her insatiable and unscrupulous neighbors. It is inconceivable and incomprehensible that in this modern age of better communications, advanced technological knowledge, more civilized relationship between states, recognition of various state boundaries through maps being maintained at the United Nations and peaceful disputes of various borders handled by the International Court, we still see wicked and cunning attempts on the part of a country and a people like Vietnam to nibble away Cambodian territory with the complicity of the selfish and power-hungry Khmer leaders.

Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen's official visit to Viet Nam on October 10-12, 2005 marks a sad period in the Cambodian history as He will be signing an additional convention to the 1985 Treaty with Vietnam, thereby giving away more Khmer territory to Vietnam. This is a fait accompli as there has been no strong and challenging protest from inside the country, to say the least not even from a political party such as FUNCINPEC and the National Assembly. What FUNCINPEC has failed to understand is that as a junior partner in this so-called coalition government, it has the same responsibility, if not more than, as the opposition to make sure that the superior interests of the Khmer nation and not their lucrative positions be protected at all cost. It is also a sad moment in history that a small number of politicians could decide to give away the precious territory without taking much heat or consequences from the majority of the Khmers wherever they happen to be. This signing will set a bad precedence when times come to negotiate the border demarcations with Thailand and Laos. The sad reality facing the children of Angkor, which allows such a thing to happen, is a painful, but not enough mentioned fact of their never-ending disunity at the expense of their beloved motherland, the motherland that their friends, parents and ancestors have, throughout centuries, laid down their lives to defend!

The Vietnamese ambition to control, dominate and subjugate Cambodia goes back a long time. We have all heard and read about the Indochinese Federation, the dream child of Ho Chi Minh! We have also learnt about the planned westward demographic movement of Vietnam. To accomplish this goal, Vietnam continues to look for the Khmer accomplices to fulfill this mission. Division of the children of Angkor is not a difficult task as they are prone to such a thing. Unfortunately, among the children of Angkor there have always been those who are, for their personal rewards at the expense of their own Khmer Nation, eager to help the foreigners accomplish this goal.

In November 1953 Cambodia under the leadership of the then HM the King Norodom Sihanouk obtained a complete independence from France without having Her territory being partitioned as in the cases of Vietnam and Laos. This is quite an admirable accomplishment considering that various external and internal forces existed then to partition Cambodia territorially and ideologically. Instead of rallying to HM the King Norodom Sihanouk and helping Him defend and rebuild the newly independent country against aggressions and sabotages by the neighbours, Some Khmers chose to remain Vietnamese servants as Khmer Vietminhs, others chose to become American mercenaries and some others chose to abolish the monarchy. Why they have chosen not to rally to HM the King Norodom Sihanouk to help Him build and defend the country is beyond me. Jealousy, personal ambition and revenge etc, should have been set aside for the sake of national unity to safeguard Cambodia, the land every Khmer professes to love.

By continuing to be divided, the Khmers fall without knowing into the trap of Vietnam and other foreign countries who may want to use them for their interests. This division allows people like Hun Sen and his group to serve foreigners' interests with impunity. The division among the Khmers exist everywhere inside and outside the country alike! The division is seen among ordinary citizens, workers, students, teachers, intellectuals, politicians and the Buddhist monks who are supposedly full of compassion, tolerance and understanding. The strategy of dividing in order to conquer works very well in Cambodian case.

Do not forget that HM, the King-Father Norodom Sihanouk obtained Independence from France in 1953 and reclaimed successfully the temple of Preah Vihear from Thailand in 1962. Under SRN Cambodia, then proud and prosperous, obtained a 1967 joint declaration from the Revolutionary Provisional Government of South Vietnam and North Vietnam to respect Her borders and recognize Her territorial integrity in its entirety of 181, 035 square kilometres. This declaration has the same value and force as the treaty; therefore, there will be no need for any additional treaties as far as Cambodia's territorial integrity is concerned. Hun Sen must have been daydreaming when he illogically declared that Cambodia would gain more territory with the signing of this additional convention to the 1985 treaty. Please note that the Cambodian Prime Minister has a history of illogical and absurd argument some time in the past when he said that the deforestation in Cambodia resulted from the poor Khmer peasants cutting down the forest to provide themselves with wood for cooking fire! One may wonder why Vietnam is suddenly not clever enough to just accept to keep their promises by honouring the 1967 declaration, thereby satisfying fully the Cambodian neighbours with their demands, feeling good that for once they are honest, earning respect from Cambodians and the international community and at the same time and most importantly not losing her coveted territory.

The division of the Khmers coupled with the tight iron grips imposed by the Phnom Penh government and the indifference on the part of government civil servants and the security forces is so severe that there is no enlightened awakening to the dangers awaiting the Khmer nation. Imagine what would have happened if everyone inside Cambodia who works for the state institutions decided to stop working for 1 month in order to protest vigorously this signing of the additional convention!

The loss of some territory as a result of Hun Sen signing the additional convention is one problem, but the more paramount danger is the silent Vietnamization of Cambodia through insidious illegal Vietnamese settlers into the land of Angkor. The CPP and Hun Sen will not stop this influx, as the illegal influx would guarantee that there would always be votes for them. Perhaps one day in the future the CPP officials and Hun Sen will roam the land, after being allowed to leave the underworld during Pchum Ben, looking for food supposedly offered to them by their children and realize that such a thing does not exist anymore as there is nothing left that can be considered Khmer in the land of the former children of Angkor. With time the Khmers will definitely become the minority in their own land!

The patriotic Khmers must have been sad, frustrated and enraged that their ancestral land entrusted with them by their ancestors is taken away from them with the accomplices of their traitorous brethrens. Their frustration and anger are rightly logical and reasonable. However, the Khmers must learn to work together putting the superior interests of the land of Angkor above all else with no exception in order to ensure the survival of this nation they all profess to love. Refrain from attacking each other lest you become the servant of your enemy without your knowledge. Look at the good qualities in each individual rather than seeking for less relevant and minor shortfalls. Unity is most critically needed at this time and the survival of the land of Angkor depends solely on this unity.

By Anet Khmer

SUBMITTED BY: Anet Khmer, Email: anet....@yahoo.com Mon, 10 Oct 2005

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