Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - The Gecko: 17 June, 1994

The Gecko: 17 June, 1994

The Gecko: 17 June, 1994

 

T HE Gecko hears that Hun Sen's bodyguard, who is renowned for being perhaps

the largest Cambodian on the face of the earth, had a bit of a run in of late

with some of the Palace's North Korean guards that he used to spar with to brush

up on his Taekwando skills. Apparently, after one such friendly bout he injured

his back and was on the shelf for several months recovering from a few too many

crunched muscles. Now back on his feet, he has taken a novel approach to tune up

for additional chop-ups with the world famous boys from Pyongyang by hiring a

martial arts tutor from Seoul.

For anyone who thought that the nation

was having difficulty integrating into the international free market economy it

may be time to think again. A resident bartender who had his house burgled last

year was more than a bit dismayed to discover three months later that one of the

blank checks stolen from his checkbook during the break-in surfaced in

Manchester, UK when somone tried to cash it for 7,200 pounds. If it weren't for

an insufficient balance, it's likely that the check made out to some

fly-by-night British company would have sailed through the till like a

dream.

Another check story comes from a travel agent in town who was

informed with a smile that any payments for flights to Siem Reap had to be paid

by writing two. With more than a bit of a puzzled look the agent queried "Two

checks? For one ticket?" "Oh yes," came the reply. "One check for the Antonov

and one for the ATR-72. They both have very deep pockets."

The Gecko

hears that a senior Khmer Rouge general was in town recently. Nothing official

of course. He came in to visit his brother. How did he manage to cross the front

lines? Simple. He booked a flight from Bangkok and came through Pochentong with

a Thai passport.

If you think buying a generator will solve your power

problems, you may need to think again. One entrepreneur fed up with bills that

were "not quite consistent" with actual usage bought a 100KVA unit and then

started selling surplus juice to his neighbors. The local cabine operator showed

up in a flash and complained about unfair competition. After a bit of haggling a

deal was struck so that the businessman now subcontracts his power to the cabine

man who then re-sells it to the surrounding neighborhood. Is everyone happy?

You'll know the deal has gone awry if the lights go out around the Olympic

market.

Word from Battambang is that the Khmer Rouge have come up with a

new taxation system. Traders who cross the front lines have been told that they

must now pay the price to do so in ammunition. They in turn go the provincial

militia and offer to sell a chicken or two for some bullets. The troops who

haven't seen a paymaster in too long readily agree, the deal is done, and then

the guys report to their bosses that they fired their ammo at the KR but missed,

with a request - please - for more.

 

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