The Khmer Armed ForcesMay 19, 2005
It is not really as if Cambodia needs much in the way of a standing army/navy/air force.
But their have been several different stories and happenings recently that does make me wonder about the state of readiness of the Khmer armed forces.
But more mind-boggling than that is the fact the French, those world famous cheese-eating surrender monkeys, are, here in Cambodia, training the Royal Cambodian Air Force in the first place? Do Khmer Jets have a reverse gear?
What else could the Frogs have to offer as potential training officers within the Armed Forces:
* cruelty to geese? ( Cambodia has no geese to force fed in the first place)
* urinating in public? ( I believe that your average motodop could teach even a Frog a thing or two about that)
Not too mention the RCAF soldiers who discovered a cache of Buddhist artefacts while farming in Strung Treng the other week. If on the off chance that an attack happened, it is nice to know that they would all be busy tending their crops, rather than risking their lives or doing anything dangerous.
Or how about the fact that the Royal Government of Cambodia is considering buying ships from China to boost its inadequate Navy. Of course, that plan is only in the negotiation stages at the minute, the Government is trying to find a donor willing to foot the bill for purchasing all this goodwill from China, I am sorry, did I say goodwill, I meant, all these boats from China. They claim that the main use for these vessels will be ‘in order to crackdown on pirates and smugglers,’ which are, of course, the right kind of noises you need to make to the lentil-polishing-foreign-government-lackeys and lickspittles if you want them to fund you buying more weapons.
As for the current state of the Army, well, they are usually to busy extorting ‘fines’ from foreigners and foreign businesses to keep up with their weapons training and square bashing.
That is when the top brass are not out of the Country having dinner with the Prime Minister of Vietnam, toasting the ‘traditional friendship between Viet Nam and Cambodia,’….err, yeah, right?
Why, only last weekend several Military Police Captains that I know had invited me out for a night of drinking, during which I suspect I heard the word ‘yuon,’ at least 100 times – mind you, the karaoke bar we were in was full of young ladies of the Vietnamese persuasion.
Mind you, it is a different story when they are up against unarmed Khmer civilians, depending on who is paying their wages that day. Halt, who goes there? Friend or foe, protestor or prisoner?
…mmm, Maybe I should not cancel my subscription to Soldier of Fortune just yet?
Who knows, if they ever do get the plans off the ground for the new American navel base down in Kompong Som, they could probably scrap the need for a Cambodian defence force all together, just leave the whoring, drinking, scrapping and friendly fire to the septic tanks.
It is a strange old world sometimes.
The views in this column are entirely those of Lord Playboy (of Phnom Penh, Sonteipheap and that muddy patch of ground next to the school;) they are in no way are representative of Khmer440, its editors or staff, of any Ministry of the Royal Government of Cambodia who employs Lord Playboy, nor women who are left handed, donkeys with piles, or blonde American guys called Cyril. Damn, things will be different when I am running the Country.