Earlier this year I blogged about the remarkable Sam Rainsy. I wrote that the head of Cambodia’s parliamentary opposition was enjoying relative political latitude in his motherland, and I described it as “tenuous.” It was tenuous, indeed, and now Rainsy has been forced into exile. By stripping him of immunity last month, Cambodia’s parliament has cleared the way for the filing of trumped-up charges. The allegations: uprooting six border posts along the demarcation line between Cambodia and Vietnam, according to AFP. It seems Cambodia’s ruling establishment still isn’t ready for the challenges and opportunities of a liberal democracy.
Asean, Asia-Pacific, Cambodia, Economy, Politics / Comments Off
The head of Cambodia’s parliamentary opposition was in Singapore last night and spoke eloquently and wryly – with a slight French accent – about his country’s severe poverty and political dictatorship (which he compared to Mussolini’s Italy.) This self-effacing man will soon travel to the U.S. where his daughter will graduate from an Ivy League university with an emphasis on political science. As a colleague put it, perhaps the Rainsy family has produced a second-generation reformist leader. Continue reading…