Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - The Gecko: 18 February, 2000

The Gecko: 18 February, 2000

The Gecko: 18 February, 2000

Not surprisingly, freedom is often a double-edged sword. When you pull the plug

on a tightly-wrapped society and let free market forces behave as they may, one of

the things you get - at least in the current Cambodian context-may be a Karaoke parlor

right in your face (and ears) all night long.

More than a few of these boom-box expressions of the peoples' will have been causing

staunch expatriate defenders of the democratic faith to have second thoughts - at

the very least they've been asking themselves "Why in front of my house, especially

at 2 am when I'm trying to get a good night's sleep?"

One sympathetic Northern diplomat in the capital has come up with an interim, "emerging

democracy" solution. He and his wife now hit the sack with tightly-tucked ear

plugs nightly. It's still unclear, however, whether the sonic vibrations rattling

their bedroom are considered REM-conducive.

** In a separate vein, one Phnom Penh-based German government-funded aid worker,

who wrestles daily with capacity building, was asked, just by chance, "Who is

the President of Germany?" The capacity builder thought for a minute and then

responded: "I don't know."

** Pity Brother Number Two. The word from Pailin is that Nuon Chea is biding

his time with very little to do at his hideaway in the bush. He's feeling very weak

and is said to have heart problems. He also has problems in his knees and elbows,

perhaps a severe form of arthritis, which is making it difficult to walk. In an effort

to remedy the problem, Chea is doing some walking exercises every morning in his

house. No word on what's on his mind as he paces back and forth in his tiny villa.

** A hearty welcome to Cambodia for former South Korean President Chun Doo

Hwan. Chun - who was sentenced to death in 1996 on charges of murder, then had his

sentence commuted to life in prison and was finally pardoned - swung through town

for a private-sector, promotional look-see. His agenda included a bit of golf, a

tour of Angkor Wat and a trip to the beach. It appears an obligatory visit to Tuol

Sleng was not on the schedule. Perhaps after the slaughter at Kwang-ju, Mr. Chun

has lost the stomach for re-living mass murder.

MOST VIEWED

  • Cambodia rejects UN rights claim

    Cambodia's Permanent Mission to the UN Office in Geneva on Friday hit back at David Kaye, the UN special rapporteur on the Promotion and Protection of the Right to Freedom of Opinion and Expression after he raised concerns over the repression of free speech and

  • Snaring may spawn diseases

    The World Wildlife Fund (WWF) has warned that snaring of animals has become a crisis that poses a serious risk to wildlife in Southeast Asia and could spawn the transmission of zoonotic diseases to humans. Its July 9 report entitled Silence of the Snares: Southeast Asia’

  • Ex-party leader, gov’t critic named as secretary of state

    A former political party leader known for being critical of the government has been appointed secretary of state at the Ministry of Rural Development, a royal decree dated July 9 said. Sourn Serey Ratha, the former president of the Khmer Power Party (KPP), told The Post

  • Residence cards set for over 80,000 immigrants

    The Ministry of Interior plans to grant residence cards to more than 80,000 immigrants to better keep track of them. The ministry announced the plan on July 10, following the results of an immigration census. “An inter-ministerial committee and many operational working groups have been set up

  • Kingdom produces PPE gear

    Medical supplies from Cambodia have been donated to member countries of the Asian Development Bank (ADB) to assist in the fight against Covid-19, said an ADB report published on July 9. The report stated that the supplies were donated as a response to global efforts to

  • Kingdom, US vow stronger ties

    At an academic forum on Saturday to celebrate 70 years of Cambodia-US diplomatic ties, Cambodian researchers and officials expressed hope of encouraging US investments and for that country to deepen and improve its bilateral relations. Held at the Royal Academy of Cambodia, it reviewed the past 70

  • Fifteen Cambodians from Saudi get Covid-19

    The Ministry of Health on Sunday confirmed 15 more imported cases of Covid. The 15 men ‒ all Cambodian aged 21 to 33 ‒ arrived from Saudi Arabia on Friday via a connecting flight in Malaysia. They were travelling with 79 other passengers, three of them women. The ministry said 80 of the

  • Ministry requests school opening

    The Ministry of Education, Youth and Sport on Thursday said it would request a decision from Prime Minister Hun Sen to allow a small number of schools to reopen next month. Ministry spokesman Ros Soveacha said if the request is granted, higher-standard schools will reopen

  • Kingdom eyes India FTA, China deal set for August

    Cambodia is studying the possibility of establishing a bilateral free trade agreement (FTA) with India to open a new market with the second-largest regional economy. This comes as an FTA with China is scheduled to be signed next month while similar negotiations with South Korea

  • Judge lands in court after crashing into alleged thief

    Sen Sok district police on Thursday sent a Koh Kong Provincial Court judge to the Phnom Penh Municipal Court on manslaughter charges after he crashed his car into a woman riding a motorbike on Wednesday, killing her. District police chief Hour Meng Vang told The