Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Lon Nol’s plotting started back in 1959




Lon Nol’s plotting started back in 1959

Lon Nol’s plotting started back in 1959

Dear Editor,

The events of March 18, 1970, actually began in 1959 with an attempted coup by General Dap Chhuon Mchulpich, military commander of the Siem Riep area.

Supported by the US military and its puppets in South Vietnam and Thailand, this plot could have resulted in Cambodia ceasing to exist. The plan was to divide the nation between its neighbours, with the total area under de facto US control.

King Norodom Sihanouk’s film, Shadow Over Angkor, dramatises these events, which are detailed in his book My War With the CIA. A DVD of this film and a book are available in Phnom Penh.

Plots to remove King Sihanouk, due to his neutrality, began in the 50s. Neutrality was “unacceptable” to Cold War warriors like Allen and John Dulles, who constantly pressured Sihanouk to accept American aid and thus domination.

The 1959 coup was thwarted, and General Dap Chhoun arrested. King Sihanouk instructed Lon Nol to bring the general to Phnom Penh for questioning.

Lon Nol’s reaction was to have Dap Chhuon shot so as not to reveal Lon Nol’s involvement with the plot.

It took another 11 years before another coup was successful and Sihanouk was removed.

Perhaps if Lon Nol had been shot with Dap Chhuon, Cambodia may never have endured the horror inflicted on it by US aggression. In 1959 the Khmer Rouge were nothing, Cambodia was at peace, and its people lived in harmony.

In the 1971 Paris Peace Accords, Nixon agreed to pay Vietnam reparations of US$3.25 billion. Of course the US government never paid this money, which would be worth nearly $20 billion if paid today.

If Cambodia was to take action for damages, it could consider a figure of $10 billion to $15 billion as fair compensation for illegal US activities from the 1950s onwards.

The US has the gall to claim the Lon Nol era debt must be repaid.

Perhaps Cambodia can deduct this amount from its damages claim, which should be made soon while the US remains an existing nation.

John Conner
Phnom Penh

Send letters to: [email protected] or PO?Box 146, Phnom Penh, Cambodia. The Post reserves the right to edit letters to a shorter length. The views expressed above are solely the author’s and do not reflect any positions taken by The Phnom Penh Post.

MOST VIEWED

  • Hungarian exposes 90 to Covid in Siem Reap

    The Ministry of Health has discovered 90 people who have been exposed directly or indirectly to a Hungarian man infected with Covid-19. They all are required to quarantine at home and the hospital. The ministry is searching for other affected people. Among the 90, one is the

  • PM warns of ‘new Cold War’

    Prime Minister Hun Sen said the possibility of a so-called new Cold War has become a significant concern and that all countries have to reject outright, any attempt to allow history to tragically repeat itself. He made the remarks in a speech during 75th Session

  • PM: West unfair to Cambodia

    Prime Minister Hun Sen released a message celebrating the International Day of Peace on Monday, saying that some major powers and western countries had been systemically cooperating to put political pressure on Cambodia as they did in the 1970s and 1980s. Hun Sen said pressuring

  • ‘Bad news is an investor’s best friend’ – unlocking investment potential in Cambodia

    It is time to shop. Economic woes provide good pickings for investors if they know where to look The poem If, written by English Nobel laureate poet and novelist Rudyard Kipling for his son circa 1895, is widely perceived as fatherly advice for John who would

  • Cambodia, CRF win rice battle in EU Court

    The European General Court has rejected the European Commission’s (EC) request to reject a complaint submitted by Cambodia and the Cambodian Rice Federation (CRF) regarding the EU’s reintroduction of tariffs on Indica rice exports from Cambodia. A court order uploaded to the European

  • PM requests Russia’s Covid vaccine

    Prime Minister Hun Sen has requested that Russia provide Cambodia with its Covid-19 vaccine after the former announced it planned on mass vaccinating its population next month. The request came on Thursday through the prime minister’s Facebook page as he met with Anatoly Borovik,