27 September 2007

Don't call me a xenophobe .

My previous entry on អនិកជន Anikachun -- What do I think about foreigners/ Khmer returnees ? received some interesting responses. Most notably the lengthy comment posted from Battambangnative has awaken me to reread KC’s final response to my email. Thank you, Battambangnative for your comment!

Regarding free speech, KC wrote “…I also believe that it is good as long as these free expressions do not incite hatred and violence”. He also went on to mention the term " xenophobic" and "racist". This perked my interest to write this blog entry.

After I read Battambangnative comment, I started to think that KC’s response is ambiguous. KC truly did try to send me some message. So now I thought If I write something about the ruling CPP Prime Minister Hun Sen govenment corruption, I ‘m inciting instability and violence. If I write about Vietnamese (Yuon), I’m xenophobic and inciting racist and hatred. This is like when I say the truth, but the truth is not to your liking, then you are accusing me of xenophobic, racist, inciting hatred and violence. Now I’m confused. What can or can’t I say anymore? Enough. I am not xenophobic nor racist. On with the truth how I feel toward the Vietnamese.

As far as the Vietnamese goes, which we always called them ‘Yuon’ really does have the intention to take Cambodia as theirs. (If any foreigner tells you not to use the word ‘Yuon’ because it is racist and derogatory, don’t believe them. We have the word ‘Yuon’ in our Khmer dictionary and it defines that it is not a derogatory term at all).

Back In 1979 just before I was born, Vietnam invaded Cambodia and annexed the country as theirs. I read Cambodia was called “Rath Kampuchea ” or State Cambodia. This implied that Cambodia was not a country but a state, which belonged to Vietnam . This was and is a scary thought. Thanks to the UN world community pressured Yuons to get out of Cambodia in accordance to Paris Peace Accords signed in October 1991.

Vietnam always wants to swallow up Cambodia . They successfully took the lower Cambodia Kampuchea Krom already. Recently I saw Wanna, Khmer blogger posted the a picture billbord that he took in Vietnam. The picture has a fatherly- like Communist leader Ho Chi Minh lifts up a child for cuddling to his mustachio face. On the background there’s the contour of the Vietnamese map covering Cambodia – Laos and the whole southeast Asia. The dreadful Communist red star designates the Hanoi as the capital. Beneath the picture, the slogan read “Let's rebuild our country neater, bigger.

Bigger? Bigger to where ? I know for sure if Vietnam try expanding ‘bigger’ to north of its border into China, the host will surely give the Viets a warm response-- in kind, that is.

A click on the Picture will lead to source at http://blog.icambo.com.

These sorts of belligerent displays and slogan are proof that Vietnam is truly an expansionist nation. They wiped out the indigenous populations in kingdom of Champa and went on to eliminate Kampuchea Krom (Lower Cambodia). We Cambodians and the world should be very aware of Vietnamese.

Please respect our Cambodia sovereign nation. I want my country. I want my Khmer language. I want my culture & tradition. A big NO to Viets in Cambodia. Now please don’t call me a racist xenophobe.


Anonymous said...

I can see you are really involved in politic now. Just remember that Freedom of speech and expression, especially about political and other public issues, is the lifeblood of any democracy. Democratic governments do not have right to control the content of most written and verbal speech. Thus democracies are usually filled with many voices expressing different or even contrary ideas and opinions.For a free people to govern themselves, they must be free to express themselves -- openly, publicly, and repeatedly; in speech and in writing.


Wanna said...

From greater nationalism, come to bigger involvement in politics. I'm hunger for the rights to free speech too.
Being called "xenophobe" doesn't make sense when people are to face big threat of losing its root/nation/land. Go Vanak!

Kbkt26 said...

Sorry for not comment related to the topic. :D

I found Khmer music songs from the 60s.

CJ Conner said...


Your post reminded me at the sadness I feel over so many things in Cambodia related to the involvement of the Yuon. I have friends who are Yuon, but they are born here in the U.S., and they are wonderful freedom loving people. Then my wife, her boss is Yuon, and they look down on her because she is Khmer. Not only do they work her like a slave, but if she is making too much money because of how good her work is, they get very upset. Somebody gave her a 20$ tip for work that she completed, and her boss got angry. She is the hardest worker, and the customers love her, but the boss still says that Khmer are lazy and not good. There is one other Khmer girl that works there and is she is treated very badly too. Sometimes if they make just a little more money than the Viet family, they don't let them take anymore work for several hours. Do you know, that after our son was born in 2005, two days later, her boss demanded that she come back to work- and suggested that she would lose her job if she didn't. Also, my wife only gets one day off a week, which is not normal in the U.S., and she works 10 hours a day. In the last two years, she was able to take one vacation for 3 days. I keep telling her to find another job, but she loves her customers.

Anyhow, I think it is something about the nature of the nation of Viet Nam, the culture and consciousness there, since the Vietnamese people born here in the U.S. are not mean like this to Khmer people, i believe. It is frightening to speak up about it though, and i wonder do you ever worry about what they might do to you in Cambodia? Our friend, a singer, was shot by Yuon after receiving threats for singing at political events. (my wife's mom is a famous Khmer singer in Cambodia and was frightened for some time)

I think that the nature of the Communist culture looks at other countries and peoples as "less than"- not as good as them. There are too many human rights violations in communist countries, and this is why I am glad that Cambodia is a democracy, even though it is surrounded by communist countries.

About Hun Sen, I think we are too hard on him- being a leader is very difficult. i support him, but know that Cambodia needs to develop more also in equality- but that is a comment for another post.

Thank you, and keep your freedom of speech strong!

CJ Conner

Anonymous said...

A little of the topic from Vannak but in response to cjConner.

A very hard working Khmer friend of mine used to work with caucasian and some Vietnamese. A Vietnamese employee walked in her office to turn in some paper work while she was talking to another emmployee, the Vietnamese girl tossed the paper work under the desk hiding. My friend went crazy looking for the paper to complete so that she could turn in on time for the clients. Came to find out that viet girl was doing evil hiding. Giving my friend a hard time. This is a professional work place. Can they ever behave like a normal human?

Another incident,
my very own aunt! She has been working for phone company for over twenty years. A very hard working woman, she has great work ethic. Colleagues and customers love her. Everyday, she puts many hours and try to get many customers as she can for the company. IT is a ballpark, she doesn't know much about computer, just responding phones and do files. A Vietnamese computer technician knew that many aunt got so many customers, he came to her desk and told her that her computer is not working well and told her that he wanted to fix it. Sure enough, the next day she came back to her desk, some of the files and clients were deleted. What to do? She didn't copy the files before he went into her computer. Nothing to prove to the boss.

These are just a few incidents. My question is, Why are most Vietnamese like that? They can pretend so well, when they see Laos or Cambodian, most of them are the worst evils. When they are with other foreigners, nobody know that they are terrible people. Such behaviour is not acceptable in our culture, for us that's very ill-manner or ghetto way of thinking.

Anonymous said...

Those are the tricks of ah Ho Chheam Thmenh(Ho Chi Minh) that Youns are following.

Khmers must take care of the politic's line of Youns

Vannak has reason to post 'Don't call me a xenophobe' all khmers up

Anonymous said...

Discriminating against someone because of their race is, by definition, racism. Try and justify all you want. You seem to be blaming Vietnamese people for the actions (or perceived actions) of the Vietnamese government.

Anonymous said...

To anonymous above(a viet?),

Who is descriminating who and who justifying who?DO NOT BLAME CAMBODIAN for telling the truth of what your people did. If you(viet) don't want us to talk about the truth, then stop the barbaric action. Simple!

Vietnamese is a great concern and has been always a big threat, it's a serious issue. We have more Vietnamese than Khmer in our country. They are changing our society. How would you feel if Cambodian invade and rule Vietnam? Or how would you feel if Cambodian mistreat your Vietnamese people at work? That's very frustrating isn't it?

If you(vietnamese) think we justify or discrminate, I need your help by helping your vietnamese self not to pest Cambodian. Or pest yourselves first and see how it feels like.

Since you mentioned about your Hanoi government, they are worst bully people in Southeast asia.

Blog By Khmer said...

I would like to thank you all for visiting and your comments.

How I dislike it so much when people using the word 'racist'. Do they understand 'individual property' at all ? I would like to make my point by stating the below examples: How about let me use your moto or your car for awhile ? How about your laptop ? Your iPod ? Your mobilephone ? Your wrist watch? I'm Cambodian I'm so poor. I want to better myself. i want to make a living. Oh, you have a place to live. Allow me to come in live with you. You are so rich, you have money spend and travel. How about let me share your bank account too ?

-- What ? Because I'm a Cambodian you don't allow me to live with you and you don't let me share your bank account ? You're a racist !

Individual properties, homes, lands, waters, cultural heritage, tradition...etc. They have absolutely nothing do with racist or xenophobic.

Here I have my home, my land I want to protect. I do not want you to come in and build houses on my land, make floating boats living on my waters.

- Stay in your country.

Vietnam is not poor. Vietnam income per capita is much higher than in Cambodia. There's no reason for Viets to come to Cambodia.

Cambodian property. Respect it. Viets, go home.


RST said...

The sign under the poster reads "Let's openly build our land more spacious and beautiful". You seem to omit "..and beautiful" . I don't think it has any hints to expansion to Cambodia. The book about Ho Chi Minh that I recently read has only 2 or 3 mentioning of Cambodia ( in 800 or more pages ). Doesn't it seem strange ? Vietnam never had any strategic interest in Cambodia and doesn't seem that they preoccupied with it now.

Blog By Khmer said...

The translation maybe varied. Not exact. "Let's rebuild our country neater, bigger.” equivalents to your translation "Let's openly build our land more spacious and beautiful". Neater = beautiful. Unless my English is bad or otherwise I don't see any any omission as you said so.

You read a book of 800pages by Communist Ho and you claimed Vietnam never had any interest taking Cambodia. This is strange and amazing!

If you read Khmer books, I could recommend a few to you. I learned from the history. I will never forget Kampuchea Krom

If Viets has no interest on annexing Cambodia. Hanoi should take back all of Vietnamese who are currently living in Cambodia. Cambodia is for Cambodians, Laos is for Laotian, Vietnam is for Vietnamese.

rst said...

Ho Chi Minh
Duiker, William J.,

695 pages, sorry. Indeed long, and long time reading. I didn't see it in Cambodia neither in Vietnam. I didn't see in fact any of biographies of HCM.

I saw some books on Kampuchea Krom subject, but I have tons of books that I want to read. I've finished "War&Hope" of N.Sihanouk in two days, actually surprising, helps to understand KK. I want to finish Khieu Samphan first book, I have it for queit a while without reading it.

Anonymous said...

I am a Viet living in Viet Nam, when I was a schoolboy I asked my teacher if Ho Chi Minh's idea "country neater, bigger" reflexed expansionism. My teacher answered me NO, NOT BIGGER IN SURFACE AREA, BUT IN INFRASTRUCTURE CONSTRUCTION, IN DEVELOPMENT... In school we never educate our children to become future expansionists.

Blog By Khmer said...

7:03am, Thanks for your comment. Your teacher has the right response to your curiosity. But, Ho Chi Minh's poisonous ideology and your government propaganda do so much harm toward us Cambodia. Let's respect each other culture.

No Viets in Cambodia and let's respect each other's border.

Anonymous said...

I am a Vietnamese, in Northern VietNam. 10 centuries ago, Vietnam area = 1/3 now. By our ancestor's effort, we expanded our country as now we know. At the same time, Khmer lost part by part of land to Vietnam. hichic... Reality, if France do not interfere in Indochine in 19 century, i think a "Khmer" word could only appear on history books and Khmer would like the Champa.
I think Khmer should blame yourself. If Khmer don't try to become a vassal of Vietnam, perhaps in 20 -30 years, Vietnam flag can be hoisted in Phompenh or AngcoVat.
P/s: Sihanouk is bad guy. he is shifty. Everyone admit that.