Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Managing trust



Managing trust

Managing trust

The man with guesthouse troubles ("Sound and fury in Sihanoukville" Post

September 24) seems to accept his own large part in them. Good to see! But the story

might give new-to-Cambodia visitors a dim view of both local people and resident

foreigners.

My biggest fear is that mistrust of Khmers may be bolstered. In my eleven visits

here they have been overwhelmingly respectful and trustworthy. What it takes is for

us barangs to be respectful and trustworthy, managing a huge 'trust' we hold - as

a sector with such power, money, world knowledge, and more - to care for and respect

Khmer people, culture, traditions and initiative. Many barangs do show that respect

and forge deep, lasting ties with Khmer friends. I hope those stories make the news,

too.

This leads to the "fundamental threat" letter, which made telling points.

In this shattered country, a strong element (evangelical religious conversion) that

may further disrupt families and communities might do more harm than good.

Raised in a Christian culture and home, I share with millions - of Christian as well

as other faiths - a belief in many paths to enlightenment. Five recent days visiting

Chhung Leap Temple, near Ta Khmau, taught me much about the glory of Buddhism. I

felt the thrilling power of ancient ceremonies, strong community, and people enriched

by their faith. If 600 years of Christian-to-Christian (Catholic-Protestant) war

in Northern Ireland did not show us, the agonies of today's Muslims - often blamed

as a group for world woes despite Islam's pure core - should teach us now! It is

not which faith we follow that matters, but whether we use that faith to unite or

divide, to build or destroy.

Khmer religious tradition, in a climate of global awareness and welcomed diversity,

needs to be strengthened following its terrible abuse at Khmer Rouge hands. In this

and other ways, Khmers and barangs can and should join together to rebuild this great

country and culture.

Arne Sahlen (a Canadian) - Phnom Penh

MOST VIEWED

  • ‘Kingdom one of safest to visit in Covid-19 era’

    The Ministry of Tourism on January 12 proclaimed Cambodia as one of the safest countries to visit in light of the Kingdom having been ranked number one in the world by the Senegalese Economic Prospective Bureau for its success in handling the Covid-19 pandemic. In rankings

  • Ministry mulls ASEAN+3 travel bubble

    The Ministry of Tourism plans to launch a travel bubble allowing transit between Cambodia and 12 other regional countries in a bid to resuscitate the tourism sector amid crushing impact of the ongoing spread of Covid-19, Ministry of Tourism spokesman Top Sopheak told The Post on

  • Kingdom accepts Chinese vaccine, PM first to get jab

    Prime Minister Hun Sen said China would offer Cambodia an immediate donation of one million doses of the Covid-19 vaccine produced by the Sinopharm company. In an audio message addressing the public on the night of January 15, he said Cambodia has accepted the offer and

  • Reeling in Cambodia’s real estate sector

    A new norm sets the scene but risks continue to play out in the background A cold wind sweeps through the streets of Boeung Trabek on an early January morning as buyers and traders engage in commerce under bright blue skies. From a distance, the

  • PM asks India for vaccine help

    Prime Minister Hun Sen is seeking assistance from India for the provision of Covid-19 vaccines as the country has produced its own vaccine which is scheduled to be rolled out to more than 300 million Indians this year. The request was made during his meeting with

  • One million Chinese Covid-19 jabs to start rolling in from February

    The government has confirmed that Covid-19 vaccines from China are set to begin arriving in Cambodia by February. This came as the Ministry of Health recorded two imported cases of Covid-19 on January 18. While calling on people to remain vigilant against the pandemic, ministry spokeswoman