This is my home, the Kingdom
of Cambodia. Also known as the Pearl
of Asia, and for me and many others, a small paradise on earth. Unfortunately, 39 years ago,
one the biggest tragedies of the 20th century took place there when the
communist Khmer Rouges took over the country, slaughtering over 2 million people
in only four small years. What was left was an unstable, civil war torn country
all throughout the 90’s until very recently. Between 1985 and 1993, Hun Sen regularly tried to grab the power to keep
it to himself. In 1998 he succeeded and became the one and only Prime
Minister of Cambodia. He hasn’t left ever since and only owes his status
to corruption, violence, threats and murder. Oh, did I mention he was aformer Khmer Rouge himself ? Well, there’s that. So,congratulations, you knew about Kadhafi, you knew about Al Assad, Regina Georgeand Voldemort, now you know about our very own dictator, Hun Sen. Sam Rainsy,is the strongest and biggest opponent to Hun Sen’s CPP. For
as long as Hun Sen has been in office, Sam Rainsy was there to fight back for
democracy, for the basic human rights that we wish we could all take for
granted. Needless to say, Hun Sen was never too pleased with Sam Rainsy. Having
his life permanently threatened by the regime, Sam Rainsy went into self-exile
and sought refuge in Paris.
2013 was a historical year for Cambodia. Indeed, in july, the elections took
place in the country but this time, defying the threats of imprisonment and
murder, Sam Rainsy decided to return to face Hun Sen.
On July 28th, the people of Cambodia went to their polling stations and voted
as if their lives depended on it, because it was the case. But Hun Sen was
not ready to give up power so easily. All through election day, reports from
all around the country arrived en masse. People who had registered to vote were
being kept away from polling stations. Non-cambodian citizens had been
granted the right to vote by the regime, and they did, not only once, but
several times, countless times. People who hadn’t voted yet would show up
to the polling stations only to hear that someone had voted for them.
This sparked a revolt among the people who turned against anything representing
Hun Sen’s authority and his taking away their fundamental right to vote. This
went on until August 9th.
The real elections results were later on proven to be a landslide victory for
Sam Rainsy. Which Hun Sen ignored. Sam Rainsy has ever since kept
throwing peaceful protests, gathering hundreds of thousands of people every
time. And ever since, the people of Cambodia have hoped to receive any
kind of help from the United Nations, or from the supporters of human rights in
the International Community, or really, from anyone.
But yesterday, on January the 3rd, Hun Sen once again crossed the line when his
army opened fire on the garment workers protesters, with real ammunitions,
shooting to kill with AK-47s.
So here. You know a bit of our story, and as you can see, our beautiful
home and people are in danger and the world doesn’t know.
How can you help protecting those people you’re gonna ask ? It is easy,
spread the word. Share it on you Facebook wall or whatever, tweet about it,
sing about it if you want.
I’m not going to give a speech about what’s right and what’s wrong. I’m
actually being quite selfish here, my nation is not the only suffering, not the
only one needing attention. But this is my home and I care and love it so
If you think that spreading the word is not doing much, let me stop you right
there. Bringing attention to a dictator can only weaken him and the world needs
to know about that one.
And then there’s us cambodians, we need to know that somewhere, someone
cares. In advance, thank you, have a beautiful year 2014.
(Eu não conheço o Cambodja, nunca lá estive e até há muito pouco tempo atrás eu sabia muito pouco sobre este país, além do continente a que pertence, dos templos de Angkor, de ser o país dos Khmer Rouge e de Maddox o primeiro filho de Angelina Jolie. Mas depois o Cambodja passou a acolher uma das minhas pessoas e, quando algo passa a fazer parte da vida das nossas pessoas, passa, por inerência, a fazer parte das nossas vidas. O Cambodja agora faz parte do meu dia a dia. Conheço pessoas de lá que nunca vi, com quem nunca falei mas que já simpatizo. Vibro com os relatos que me chegam através da minha amiga e já adoro este país, tão distante geográfica e culturalmente de nós. O Cambodja é um país de gente pacífica, marcada por tragédias humanitárias cujos ecos não recebemos. No Cambojda não há petróleo, não há extremismos religiosos, não há terrorismo sensacionalista. Por isso, o Cambodja não interessa editorialmente aos média, nem estrategicamente aos senhores que governam o mundo. Por isso o mundo ignora as atrocidades que lá se passam. No Cambodja há um povo oprimido, que se deixa oprimir, que acredita na resolução pacífica. Um povo que apesar de aparentemente resignado e conformado com a indiferença do resto do mundo, anseia um dia gozar dos seus direitos.Gostava de fazer muito mais para ajudar Keo e o seu povo, spreading the word é tudo o que ela nos pede, e é o que faço, por agora...)