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Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Letter: Obsession with the past

Letter: Obsession with the past

Dear Editor,

The article of K T So is typical of the Cambodian feeling of

belonging to an innocent and unique nation which has been a victim of

history.

The vigorous Chenla state annexed Funan, invaded and partly

colonised the Kingdom of Dvaravat in the Chao Praya basin, and practically

destroyed the Champa [people].

Later dynastic disputes, not disunity

among the people, made the Khmer empire shrink to its actual size - Mons and

Chams were less lucky.

Khmer language belongs to a linguistic family

which includes others such as Mon, Wa, Palaung, Munda and Khassi in Burma and

India.

These facts suggest some migrations a long time ago. Historians

are not sure in which directions.

The ancient Khmer Viharus have

similarity with old Indian temples, which is not surprising.

Obsession

with the past exists in many countries, but not to the point at showing in the

national flag. Imagine the Iranian flag with Persepolis or the Egyptian one with

Abu Simbel!

Dreaming of a supposed golden age (maybe for a few years) is

a very common attitude all over the world. It is a comfortable alternative to

facing the present reality.

It is more difficult to do something about

the future, working more and talking less.

But as Voltaire wrote: "This

was good talking, let's go and cultivate our garden.

C Rabour, Phnom Penh

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