Where I go for AGGREGATED news on Cambodia, plus...   . . .           On Dec 26-29, 1979 [by now, Cambodia under one full year of Vietnamese occupation], the musician Paul McCartney and Kurt Waldheim, the Secre [ ... ]


Has Science Discovered God?     Click to watch this FASCINATING, MIND-BLOGGING video with breathtaking images and you learn science in the process!   Read transcript             God in the Cosmos
Veritas Forum at Yale University  [ ... ]

Prominent Political Analyst Kem Ley Slain

The Cambodia Daily


Sam Rainsy: ការបាញ់សម្លាប់ លោក កែម ឡី ថ្ងៃនេះ ជាអំពើ ភេរវកម្ម មួយទៀត រៀបចំ ដោយរដ្ឋអំណាច | Assassination of Kem Ley: Another act of state terrorism

Cambodian Opposition Figure’s Killing Recalls Darker Times

International New York Times

Kem Ley: Government critic shot dead in Cambodia

Al Jazeera




Luncheon hosted by British Ambassador for civil society to meet with visiting ambassador Stephen Lille, Nov. 2015. (Kem Ley sitting to my left)


Grieving with Kem Ley's family and the nation.  My thoughts and prayers for his family and for us all.


The execution style killing by Chuop Samlab (name translated as "Meet to Kill" or "Meet, Kill") has the hallmark of a political assassination by a regime desperate to survive against the tide of a people rising to years of oppression, treason and treachery.


My last meeting with Kem Ley was a friendly passing exchange a few weeks ago at the British Embassy's celebration of its queen's 90th birthday at the Inter-Continental Hotel in Phnom Penh, of two kindred spirits who haven't seen each other for some months (since November 2015 at a luncheon hosted by the British Ambassador at Romdeng Restaurant).

Prior to taking this selfie with US ambassador Heidt and Stephanie, I had just exchanged greetings with Kem Ley.

The execution-style assassination occurred inside a gas station mini-mart I used to frequent for iced coffee before church when the services were held at the World Vision building a 2-minute walk away, very much central Phnom Penh.

- Theary, Kirirom, 11 July 2016






. . .











. . .




Famed Cambodian refugee camp

reopens as educational centre

UNHCR | 31 May 2016

Thailand’s Khao I Dang camp offers lessons in life-saving coordination during the Cambodian exodus and responsibility-sharing to help rebuild refugees’ lives.



Watch 15-minute collage on Vimeo

of images from the Thai-Cambodia border camps



We were one of the first families to open up the Khao-I-Dang refugee camp, then only an open field at the foot of a mountain range when we arrived in November 1979.  I remember shivering from the exposure to the currents of the mountain range during the region's "winter" season.  We lived in Khao-I-Dang for nearly one year. - Theary, 11 July 2016





. . .





Sydney H. Schanberg Is Dead at 82; Former Times Correspondent Chronicled Terror of 1970s Cambodia


International New York Times


I attended a book signing talk by Sydney Schanberg at a Manhattan bookstore, May 2010



. . .







Britain Stuns World


with Vote to Leave EU







Britain's Democratic Failure


Kenneth Rogoff / Project Syndicate | 24 June 2016


A timeless piece for its incisive articulation of a timeless democratic principle: majority rule, minority rights. I've encountered often confusion, muddle-headed understanding, crude interpretation without any nuances of this delicate balance.


The real lunacy of the United Kingdom’s vote to leave the European Union was not that British leaders dared to ask their populace...Rather, it was the absurdly low bar for exit, requiring only a simple majority. ...

This isn’t democracy; it is Russian roulette for republics. A decision of enormous consequence...has been made without any appropriate checks and balances. ...

But what, exactly, is a fair, democratic process for making irreversible, nation-defining decisions? ...

In terms of durability and conviction of preferences, most societies place greater is time to rethink the rules of the game.

The idea that somehow any decision reached anytime by majority rule is necessarily “democratic” is a perversion of the term. Modern democracies have evolved systems of checks and balances to protect the interests of minorities and to avoid making uninformed decisions with catastrophic consequences. The greater and more lasting the decision, the higher the hurdles. ...

A country should not be making fundamental, irreversible changes based on a razor-thin minority that might prevail only during a brief window of emotion. ...

Since ancient times, philosophers have tried to devise systems to try to balance the strengths of majority rule against the need to ensure that informed parties get a larger say in critical decisions, not to mention that minority voices are heard. ...

The UK vote has thrown Europe into turmoil. A lot will depend on how the world reacts and how the UK government manages to reconstitute itself. It is important to take stock not just of the outcome, though, but of the process. Any action to redefine a long-standing arrangement on a country’s borders ought to require a lot more than a simple majority in a one-time vote. The current international norm of simple majority rule is, as we have just seen, a formula for chaos.





* * *




Pregnant women instill fear in snakes,


so Cambodians believe


25 June 2016



I think dead, slowly wilting from the discarded dried "laughing oranges".

3rd snake I've seen within past 4 days, two babies, one the size of my staff.


[half an hour or so later]


Nope, not dead, but only coiled in a very, very still manner. (And I think a bit weakened by the dried-up discarded "laughing oranges", the citrus that repels snakes.)

So still even when my bare fingers were only an inch away from it pulling the clump of grass and leaves covering it. Even when I jumped up startled by the find. Even after I went away twice and stared and stared and stared at it and took a photo of it. Even when I yelled for my neighbors to come "see the dead baby snake".

Well, it was neither dead nor baby. And it's the venomous kind.

It's the 3rd time a live snake literally is frozen in front of or near me.

There's a Cambodian belief that a woman pregnant has the power to still or weaken a snake in this way.

I learned of the belief a year ago when I encountered a medium size snake a few meters from me frozen smack in the middle of the dirt road that I normally take to visit the neighbor's house in the orchard. It was in the act of crossing it. I stared and stared at it for a few minutes and scrambled for my iPhone to take a photo of it. I told the neighbors and showed them the photo. They told me "You're pregnant." I told them it's not the case. They're not convinced. I took the same dirt path back less than an hour later and the snake was gone; no one (or animal/dog) had been on that road in the intervening period.

A few months later, I encountered another snake on the same dirt road in a different location, again a few meters away from me and frozen; it was gone when I returned within the hour to the location. Again, I told the same neighbors. The few months of seeing no visible sign of pregnancy had shaken their belief and they're baffled. Did you have "laughing oranges" with you? Nope. And you're not pregnant? Nope. Aahh, then, you must possess high spiritual powers, "boramey".



[A strand of comments from Facebook]

Reanna H.: I wonder what happens when you visit the zoo? How do the snakes there react to you?

Theary S.: Don't be silly. They would bite me like anyone else who taunts or steps on them. We should end with the silly superstition. That said, as a follower of Jesus, I do believe in the LORD's protection. I've experienced it time and again -- be it the dangers posed by these repulsive reptiles, humans or otherwise. With re to snakes, many occasions of protection, not only just these three "frozen" examples, while living here at the orchard, but more prominently when walking through a venomous snake-infested swamp at night in Koh Kong one week BEFORE the environmentalist Chut Wuthy was murdered.




* * *





False Grand Narrative of Racism


The Vietnamization of Kampuchea:

A New Model of Colonialism

Indochina Report (October 1984)


Part II: Vietnamization of the Economic Framework (continued)

The Unequal Exchange

It is within this new institutional framework that the Vietnamese are asserting their hold over the economy and future of Kampuchea. Fisheries, rubber and rice are the three main sectors affected by what should be termed the Unequal Exchange between Vietnam and Kampuchea.



Re the ongoing Vietnamization of Cambodia, I am reminded of William Faulkner's quote:


“The past is never dead. It's not even past.”

It's stunning how we -- both Cambodians and non-Cambodians -- have allowed the fictitious grand narrative of racism, SOLELY based on the use of the word "Yuon".


To overshadow, to hijack, to shroud, to erase genocide and other mass crimes against humanity committed by Vietnam and its puppet (Hun Sen's CPP) on Cambodians and Cambodia.




- Theary, March 18





Previous BLOG | All Past BLOGs | All RANDOM Entries







Theary's BLOG

Caroline Kennedy Delegation to Palace; Love; I support CNRM; New Year Video Message; Challenges are Opportunities; Free James!; Proportionality; Wolves in Sheep's Clothing; Entrapment; Prince Sirivudh

Kennedy-Niinami Delegation to Khemarin Palace 11 February 2018   Click to watch TVK clip of royal audience with the King and Queen Mother     Prime Minister Son Sann, Jacqueline Kennedy, Prince Norodom Sihanouk, Princess Norodom Mo [ ... ]

January 7; Kramanation; 47; Kampot Vegetable Sellers; No more selfies; Facebook Profile Name Change

Theary C. Seng, 11 January 2012
Chaktomuk Theatre, Phnom Penh, January 2010

January 7 is indeed a significant day for survivors of the Khmer Rouge. It arrested the macabre convulsions that would have swallowed all of us into a hellish hole if the [ ... ]


English Afrikaans Albanian Arabic Armenian Azerbaijani Basque Belarusian Bulgarian Catalan Chinese (Simplified) Chinese (Traditional) Croatian Czech Danish Dutch Estonian Filipino Finnish French Galician Georgian German Greek Haitian Creole Hebrew Hindi Hungarian Icelandic Indonesian Irish Italian Japanese Korean Latvian Lithuanian Macedonian Malay Maltese Norwegian Persian Polish Portuguese Romanian Russian Serbian Slovak Slovenian Spanish Swahili Swedish Thai Turkish Ukrainian Urdu Vietnamese Welsh Yiddish