Whose Preah Vihear Temple is it, and what does it matter anyway?

 

Photo from Wikipedia

Who owns the Preah Vihear Temple and surroundings?

Cambodia does.  On June 15, 1962, the International Court of Justice (ICJ) ruled that, ‘the Court, by nine votes to three, finds that the temple of Preah Vihear is situated in territory under the sovereignty of Cambodia.’  The Cabinet of the time made a resolution and announced that Thailand, as a member of the United Nations, accepted the ICJ ruling.

Although Thailand protested and reserved the right to request a revision of the ruling as allowed by Article 61 of the Statute of the Court within 10 years after the date of the ruling, Thailand has never officially made any application for such a revision, nor made any request for the Court to clarify the meaning or scope of the judgment, as allowed indefinitely under Article 60.

So where have the People’s Alliance for Democracy (PAD), the Democrat Party and the nationalists been?  After a lapse of 46 years, they still insist on reserving this right.  Such a dogged stance can never make any difference, except by showing their own uncivilized minds.

The PAD and the Democrat Party say that Thailand has always insisted that the watershed line of Phanom Dongrak Mountain Range was the borderline between Thailand and Cambodia.  Accordingly, Preah Vihear is on Thai soil.  The ICJ, however, already addressed this issue in its judgment, saying that the watershed had nothing to do with the temple, as the Preah Vihear dispute had to be considered in accordance with the 1907 Franco-Siamese boundary treaty (see details below).  And Thailand has never raised the issue of the watershed line in the past 46 years.

The PAD and the Democrat Party say that Cambodia won the case, but owns only the temple, and not the territory on which the temple is situated.  What a distorted and craftily arbitrary reading of the ICJ’s judgment!  Please read and reread the judgment.  Anyone with an honest and righteous mind will never read it that way.

Who built and owned the Preah Vihear temple in the first place?

The Preah Vihear Temple was built at the beginning of the 9th century, and construction continued through the reign of King Suriya Woraman the first, 1002-1050, to be finished in the reign of King Suriya Woraman the Second, 1113-1150, when the prosperous and strong Khmer empire ruled the region 300 hundred years before the emergence of the Sukhothai Kingdom (see The Preah Vihear Temple: Politico-historical Case Study and Nationalism by Charnvit Kasetsiri, p.2)

In a nutshell, the ancestors of the Khmer people built and owned the Preah Vihear Temple in the first place.

Is it true that the Preah Vihear Temple used to belong to Thailand, and was lost to Cambodia by the ICJ judgment?

Originally, the Preah Vihear Temple belonged to the Khmer (see above).  In 1431, during the reign of the King Chao Sam Phraya, the Ayutthaya army defeated the Khmer empire and seized Angkor Wat, which was then the capital. The Khmer had to move the capital to Udong Meanchay and then Phnom Penh.  Since then, Battambang, Srisophon and Siem Reap, as well as the Preah Vihear Temple, were annexed to Siam.

On March 23, 1907, Bangkok’s King Rama V signed the Franco-Siamese boundary treaty with the President of France, agreeing to exchange Siam’s Battambang, Srisophon and Siem Reap, as well as the Preah Vihear Temple, for the French-occupied Chantaburi, Trat provinces and Dan Sai in Loei.  Once independent from France, Cambodia claimed the Preah Vihear Temple, based on the Treaty,.

In a nutshell, the Preah Vihear Temple once belonged to Siam from the reign of the Ayutthaya King Chao Sam Phraya onwards because of the Siamese victory over the Khmer Kingdom.  But Bangkok’s King Rama V returned it to France who colonized Lao and Cambodia.  If there ever was a loss of Siamese territory, the land was lost since 1907, as the ICJ made its ruling in line with the Franco-Siamese Treaty.

Does Cambodia’s registration of the Preah Vihear Temple as a World Heritage affect the Thailand-Cambodia boundary?  If so, how much?

The Cambodia’s registration has nothing to do with and has no effect on the boundary dispute or sovereignty between Thailand and Cambodia, as Article 11-3 of the UNESCO World Heritage Convention says that, ‘The inclusion of a property in the World Heritage List requires the consent of the State concerned. The inclusion of a property situated in a territory, sovereignty or jurisdiction over which is claimed by more than one State shall in no way prejudice the rights of the parties to the dispute.’

The legal demarcation of the boundary between Thailand and Cambodia is assigned to the Mixed Border Delimitation Commission which was set up by both countries and has nothing to do with the listing of the Preah Vihear Temple as a World Heritage site.

Why does Thailand not make a joint request with Cambodia to list the Preah Vihear Temple?

Thailand has proposed to Cambodia to make a joint request to UNESCO for the listing, but Cambodia has consistently refused, citing the ICJ judgment and claiming that it would not be able to account for such a joint request to the Cambodian people.

If the Preah Vihear Temple is listed as a World Heritage, what would be the pros and cons for Thailand?

UNESCO would provide personnel and budget for the restoration of the Preah Vihear Temple and its surroundings, as well as serve as a worldwide advertisement for the temple as a world-class tourist attraction on par with Angkor Wat.

However, due to the inaccessible sheer cliff and the present lack of proper infrastructure and facilities on the Cambodian side, access could only be made via Thailand.  The possible future development of a cable car to reach the temple from the Cambodian side along with investment in infrastructure and facilities including an airport, roads, electricity, water, hotels, etc., would still take years or even decades.

So the listing would benefit Thailand’s tourism industry as well as the friendship between the two countries.

The scare-mongering by the PAD and Democrat Party within Thai society, alleging that Thailand is poised to lose territory or sovereignty, is therefore just a cheap and dirty political trick which would not do any good to anybody.

The Central Administrative Court’s injunction to suspend the Cabinet resolution and any further action supporting Cambodia’s request, as prompted by the PAD complaint, will only exacerbate the problem and damage.  Hopefully, the Thai people will in the future remember this and hold accountable the PAD and the Democrat Party after the damage has already been done.      

Related news:

Preah Vihear as the last struggle, how history will remember you

Reductio ad Absurdum

 


Prea Vihear belongs to

Prea Vihear belongs to Thailand.

Because of the French, we got screwed hahahaha !

I don't want to talk about

I don't want to talk about France did cut or did not cut land from Thailand, but I want to talk about what some kind of half educational Thai put on you tube. They said that Thailand lost many lands to China, Burma, Vietnam, Laos, and Cambodia. If you study Chinese history or Burmese or Laos or Vietnamese or Cambodian history, there nothing that told you about these countries stole lands from Thailand. Thai learn a fake history. Have you heard of Khmer Empire? One of the most powerful empire of the 12 century! You knew Mongol Empire? This Empire was the most powerful Empire during the 12 century too. Khmer Empire and Mongol Empire used to be friend. Want to see something that you can believe that Khmer did not make up? Go to this website:((( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Asia_1200ad.jpg )))OR (((http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Premongol.png )))<-----Looking for Khmer empire, I think at the time in that map, Mongol Empire did not exist yet. Or search Mongol Empire Map in google, and you will see Khmer Empire and its land as in that pic. And it's totally did not created by Khmer.

Honesty I'm a Khmer, and I

Honesty I'm a Khmer, and I used like Thai people. I also know that they done many bad thing to Khmer. Most Khmer used to love Thai, until Thai actress said on TV that Angkor is belong to Thailand. Additional example :Like in the movie, bad guy hate good guy and give no sympathy to good guy, but good guy give sympathy and forgive bad guy; just like Khmer and Thai. But now we don't forgive Thai anymore, it's too much to forgive, it's again and again. We need to stand up. We want no war, we just we the trust and peace.
Thailand right now is also try to take some of Malaysian provinces too. Just liked its used to do to Cambodia.
Buddha? Why bad people did not punish? Why can't you see?Maybe time will reveal the trust.

Prea Vihear belong to

Prea Vihear belong to cambodia , King of cambodia built Prea vihear and border of cambodia was very large but thai has been stolen till now..

I think in Thailand

I think in Thailand have good people that agree with above text. The writer is realy a person with educations.

Thai was the one who started

Thai was the one who started to make everything went bad. They was the one who still can't just keep what they have. Khmer can give peace to Thai, but Thai is kind kind slow to answer yes because they want that temple so badly.

ไทย คุณ เป็น ประเทศ ร่ำรวย

ไทย คุณ เป็น ประเทศ ร่ำรวย และ มี ชื่อเสียง กว่า กัมพูชา. แต่ ทำไม คุณ ยัง ต้องการ สิ่ง เล็กน้อย จาก ประเทศ ยากจน เช่น กัมพูชา?
Thai, you are a wealthy and famous country than Cambodia. But why you still want little thing from a poor country like Cambodia?

Antithai, I'm thai but I'm

Antithai, I'm thai but I'm not anti-Cambodian or wanting to take anything that belongs to yr country. I also know nice Cambodian and other Asian friends.Having lived in an Asian community in a western country for a number of years, i feel we Asians can be friends. Nationality or nationalism should not prevent people from forming friendship. some of my closest friends now are not Thai.

Kong Island belongs to

Kong Island belongs to Thailand not Cambodia. Fcking Franch stole it from Thailand.

I wish I wish I wish to make

I wish I wish I wish to make terrorists attack Thailand. Soon, Bangkok will collapse(foreshadowing).

Siam should do more

Siam should do more research and study deepy about your own history. If Siam believe in Buddhishm and understand the law of buddha, you shouldn't never claim things that was never belong to you. IT A SIN! Siam historian should know and should educate your people on when, where, how, why you SIAM invaded us or took advantage of us when our country gone through wars. The writer is doing well of explaning. Thanks

Most of thai people

Most of thai people are still hungrying cambodia land since in the past untill present . Infact, this is a big confusing . All thai govenors should re- prepare all of documents which related to thai education to be sure that ( what's the first source of thai and where thai from). Thai should be known that, how bad behaviour you are? and how dirty behaving you are? anyway, thai should thanks to Cambodia who kindly shared land to thai for accommodation for long years and never threaten for refund!

so embarras while thai

so embarras while thai said Preah Vihear IS Blong2themselves,wow unbelievable til now thai stil hunger other property.Hey thai B wakeUP!!Preah Vihear now wellknown by UNESCO alr,not Blong2u.OK?B who u r?accept da real world now baby.dont let da world laugh at U.I thik U should read da article more clearly &do understand,pls dont act lik a baby&crazy wit yr nationalism mind.Check da history,where's siamCOMEfrom?Hmm..but if i no i think yr country good enought so dont B hunger anymor na Gluck(^-*)

Preah Vihear Temple belong

Preah Vihear Temple belong to Cambodia. If Thai people do not believe ask your Thai king. Thai king Please wake up! Face to the real situattion.
Don Pramudwinai, the Thai ambassador to the United Nations (UN) is trying to pospond the UN Security Council Meeting on Thusday. So Don Please don't be silly and crazy. Stop your crazy action!

I was not interested

I was not interested to understand the what, why and who of this situation, but had a look at Google earth. Clearly the (natural) border follows a mountain ridge, one side Thailand the other side Cambodia. Then for a reason unknown to me suddenly the borderline goes just behind this temple instead of following the "natural" border and then follows the ridge again. I don't know who made what deal then, but for me the temple is clearly Thai territory. Have a look yourselves and be honnest.

Andre, please go to this

Andre, please go to this -->http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Premongol.png or
---> http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Khmer_Empire. You will learn that Thai had took Cambodian land, after the fall of Khmer Empire. Or search mongol empire map in goolge, and you can see Khmer empire and the territory that Khmer used to own.

I wonder why Sesaket

I wonder why Sesaket and Surin are under Thai conrole, it should be under Khmer conrole because people there speak Khmer. I try to seek Thai civilization but I see only Khmer empire civilization instead. Maybe Thai was a tribe of Khmer and they made a revolution to be a country, if so Thai must be respect Khmer as Thai's parent. If anybody can explain please post it.

Thai people were the people

Thai people were the people who traveled from China and down south. China kicked out of its territories, I don know why. Thai came to live in Khmer land, Khmer King gave some lands for them to live and peace. But Thai gave harm to us.

Long Live The Royal

Long Live The Royal Government of Cambodia.
I read the newspaper this morning and saw that The Thai King wish Samaks Governemnt susscess in work for the Preah Vihear dispute . I think it means that Thai King support the governemnt to invade Cambodian teritory, so it means that Thai King stand behide Thai Troop invade Cambodia.
What he want? Preah Vhear Temple? No way!

Siameses is always making

Siameses is always making trouble to Cambodia. In the history and also Education system Siameses teach their generation to hate Khmer and also to abuse Khmer people almost all time. I am sure that Khmer alway forgive to what Siameses have done sometimes to Khmer. Now Khmer are more educated and be aware of things, so Khmer have to strongly protect our country. It is already enough for Siam to take advantage from Khmer. Please go back home & Keep Khmer land for Khmer.

Dear friends, I am very

Dear friends,

I am very sad to hear that Thai and their people is disagreeing with the National Court ruling in 1962 and now again with the UNESCO. We lost so much land to the Thai and Vietname (Khmer Krom) when the French decided what to give to the Thai and what to stay. We won the ruling by ICJ and we had permanently occupied that area over 50 years. So don't claim you didn't understand the map in 1962. You were part of the mixed commission and agreed to the map. No more negotiation.

Andre M, who said

Andre M, who said you have to follow natural border line. Whose map are you looking at?

The official one was the one ruled by ICJ and it was done by the mixed commission. The Thai was part of it.

History had gone.If we

History had gone.If we always dig up history,it will be never ending story for what the grudge we had faced in the past.We have to make a peace between our neigbours.Reconciliation shall be the best way for us.
War destroy everything.It is lost and lost both sides.Please look forward to the future.How can our descendant live peacefully if their ancestor has never stopped arguing for such kind of problem.God bless us.

it doesnt matter how

it doesnt matter how big or small the country.. all it got to have is peacefulness and love for it to prosper! good example.. japan and singapore perhaps.. if these country continue to have the qualities of a good country they shall prosper through generations.. I hope things between thais and cambodians will settle down peacefully ...>> that's just what both country really need after all at one point we've always been just from one family.. yah?? peace??

to all bloggers.. kind

to all bloggers.. kind words always heals

let's all talk like brothers who really cares

how would it feel to get a tap on your shoulder by a big or younger brother
and some brotherly love..

sometimes its just in our heads
sometimes there is not really no enemy if we just open our eyes..
brothers will always be brothers if we just treat them nicely
sometimes are best enemies is just in our heads
and yet are best friends have always been near.

If you read all

If you read all ancient temples listed in the World Heritage list for Thailand. They all begin with Khmer Temple built in ...... If you try to list it in your name, the UNESCO won't accept it any way. So let this one go. You are welcome to visit this one any time.

Looks like PAD create war than peace. Take Cambodia for instance, we went through hell once. No more fighting and urguing. Think smart and not work harder.

Thai King gave his

Thai King gave his good wishes to new Foreign Minister Tej Bunnag at an oath-swearing ceremony at Klai Kangwon Palace in Prachuap Khiri Khan’s Hua Hin district yesterday and also Thai King encouraged Mr Tej to fulfil his duty to the country to the best of his ability. It means that Thai king encourage his new FM to do the best on invade Cambodian territory.It also mean that the King himself want to invade Cambodia, king himself sent troops to invade Cambodia.

first of all i

first of all i would like to make a hand shake with my neighboring country cambodia.

i am but one thai citizen who would like to speak out my mind in this matter.
I know thai history well, i have learned the writings of historians

the temple is surely cambodians... if the cambodians have built it
but if thais won it through a war.. guess it simply means now it belongs to thailand
if thailand had surrender it back to the french then i guess its the french

and if the french

and if the french were colonizing cambodia at that moment then it would be cambodias... thais are also open minded and im sure cambodians are too.

the disputed land is a bit more complicated history than you and i too decide whose is it. i guess that the reason why we are having the bilateral meeting between two countries to come to some understanding and a compromise..

whatever is the outcome of the meeting, it might favor one country or the other...
judges makes the best decision but..

in that best decision

in that best decision at times does not match reality of things...
sometimes one just wish the truth fairy would appear.

im sure His Majesty the King would not be happy to invade any one's country...
he always wishes for national peace, happiness, he even taught his land about contentment.

I believe what His Majesty the King meant is for the foreign minister to be able to do his best of ability to bring forth peace to the country... because that is the duty of the foreign minister.

remember what His Majesty

remember what His Majesty the King said.. to fulfil his duty to the country to the best of his ability. In no way did the His Majesty wants to take advantage of another country. His Majesty believes in many things, one of them is contentment and the other would be justice.

So as a thai national, I would understand that harsh could slipped out of anger against another.. But I would say I love my King and I believe one should spend spare a bit of his time to get to know my King that I love

If Thailand represent my

If Thailand represent my whole body, His Majesty the King would lie in my heart. One can cut out my arm, my legs or any body body part but I would protect and always protect my heart. For I know my Heart well.

To Thai lover:

To Thai lover: This is twenty first century and we hope we all could live in peace. Cambodian clearly won Preah Viheah temple in 1962 and again July 2008. So we won and the world know about it. The Preah Vihear is Khmer whether you like it or not. The international laws help protect those that need protection. Sorry no more wars

I despite any monarchy system. They only divide people into class, prejudice and waste alot of tax payers money. Most of all, don't like crawl up to any one's ass

Animated TimeMap of the

Animated TimeMap of the Khmer Empire 100 CE - 1550 CE

http://ecaimaps.berkeley.edu/animations/2003_03_khmer_animation.swf

The problem is not

The problem is not only about the tepmle. Border issue shold be resolved in peacefully, I agree to that. In order to do that, Cambodian people should also understand the Thai side argument. In my eyes, Cambodian side is more emotional of this issue. If you would see the landscape where the temple is located, you would understand why Thai were resented by the ICJ's decision. I am a little bit worried about the response of the Cambodian people, who burned their Embassy by misterious reasons.

So far Thai side

So far Thai side responded with restraint desipite of PAD's extreme rethoric. They seem to prepare for a compromise on the temple itself but can't easily back off on general border issue including the overlapped territory. Thai might be forced to take brotherly role to quell the feeling of Khmer, whom are easily manupulated to use violence by Hun Sen. That is what Thais are most afraid of. Hun Sen knows it well. It seems reasonable people with higer education will have to give more.

One more thing to

One more thing to Thai lover. You can't always be reasonable to negotiate with your counterpart who is not necessarily reasonable. Your counterpart is ex-communist foreign minsiter who know how to blackmail and armtwist his enemy. So withdrowing the support for Cambodia's WH resgistration could be one of the options to get more from Cambodian side. It's not a braindchild of warmongers.The weaker you look, the more he demand. That is a ABC of diplomacy and more ture when you talk with Hun Sen.

yeah, as i know.

yeah, as i know. Siam people are from china and one big part of Siam people are from Cambodia. so Thai civilization are the tribe of Cambodia. Siam have never had country before. just like a traveler to steal land from others country like Cambodia, Lao, Malaysia and Burma......
in my point of view, Siam are land robber.

Tora, you may be

Tora, you may be a Khmer. You should educate yourself again and learn how to understand the other side. One of the weak point of your countrymen is too easy to believe in governmen propagandas and go to extreme. They always try to find an enemy in your neighbors to manupilate people to cause a disaster. Sad to say it is proved by your tragic histry. You should shake off Por Pot type megalomaniac idea of your race. Otherwise your coutry will continue to be a burden in the region.

somsak, we know that

somsak, we know that we did with the wrong way with thai embassy 2003 but we never regrete it.

after we got the experience from 2003 so we can find the best way in fighting or using 2tongues like thailand.

even we are ex-communist but never harmed other beside our own nation,and our lord buddha teaching us that if a bad man can turn to be good is most value that a good man with god mouth but devil mind.

Thai king produce another

Thai king produce another foreign minister to do their duty as the killer and invader the other country like the pass the temple is Khmer name phreah vihear the mountain is Khmer name the capital city of Thai is Khmer name too bang kok bang is lake kok is long grass Khmer got another bang kok in phnom penh too now Korea want to make new City so why not let the king learn more about their history why want some body else to be your one day Burma Malay Lao Cambodia will take Thai king

KR masacared the villagers

KR masacared the villagers in Vietnam border in 1977 and 1978, which became one of the reason Vietnam invaded your counrty and actually saved your life. You casued huge troubles to your neighboring coutries because the failed KR regime created a lot of refugees. So you should accept your country used to be the worst trouble maker in the region. About Bangkok, another stupid comment from a nostalgic citizens of the Great Khmer Emprire. Just forget that and learn from a near history of yours.

2day i 1 2

2day i 1 2 said that Khmer never afraid of thai.we can lookback at de history.thai had been de land robber till now and today khmer will not let thai rob land again.becarefull coz thai hv many trubles/other country around them.2d was 2 thai solider hurted.does thai see????

I think Cambodian side

I think Cambodian side should understand this is disputed area on which the demarcation negotiation is going on. Otherwise, this type of accident will take plaice again any time. This is not your area before the two sides agreees. Any attempt to create an accomplished fact is a dangerous act which could lead to a serious escalation. From this viewpoint, Cambodia is more ruthless than Thailand.

Thai TV side is

Thai TV side is post the unreal news.They are trying to ly at their peoples. i don't understand they said 3khmer and 2 thai soldier was hurt. but the real only one of kmher soldier was slightly hurt at his arm..(ch 3,7,9,and NBT)

This is just the

This is just the way they are rescuing the psychology of Thai army which are now on the white eyes and just to be ready to go returning home..

Cambodia seems to have

Cambodia seems to have planted mines in the disputed area. This is a violation in two sense. Cambodia violated the agreement to maintain the status quo in the area in the most explitic way. Second, since Cambodia is a state party of the anti-personal mine treaty as Thailand is, so this is the violation of the international comvention, too. I don't know how aggressively the Thai government will pursue the wrong doing of Cambodian side, given their usual soft aproach to this conflict.

Hello Prachatai, Can u

Hello Prachatai, Can u tell me why Thai TV always post the unreal news abt Khmer and Thai border conflict. because now i'm living in my country and always observe these news everyday since Previhear temple was register as world heritage, i was in thailand many years so i understood well thai language. i think the people should back to get the news from www.voanews.com or BBC and CNN is the real...thai army they try to hide their activities what they are doing with cambodia now.

Hun Sen instigated a

Hun Sen instigated a war, if the Thai army withdrow from the dispurete area around the temple,of which they are under negotiation for the demarcation. This is not a demand for simultaniour withdrowal from the territory on which the two countires are claiming the ownership. So, Hun Sen's stattement naturally are unacceptable for Thais. I wanrned many times that the escalation of Cambodian side demand could couse a dangerous situation. Unfortunately I might be right.

It&#39;s pitty to see

It's pitty to see that the Cambodian can't stand on their own. Whatever BBC, CNN said is right for them. They just quoate what the Cambodian official said. Anyway, which side shoot first is not the point. Hun Sen created this situation declaring the altimatum for the war without any clear resoning except their original claim that those disputed territory is Cambodian territory, possiblly for his own benefits. Cambodian people are blind enough to ran amok again. Thai should leave PP now.

But I still hope

But I still hope that this would be Hun Sen's blaff for his benefits in domestic politics or to shake off Thai's spirit to get an upperhand in the negotiation. Cambodian can not win the war anyway, but Thailand can't win neither, because the price of the human life are differnet in two countries. Hun Sen can stand huge casuality without domestic pressure,but Thailand would get critisism from the press and other social sectors if the damages are done. Prachatai will be first media to do so

So Prachatai now shold

So Prachatai now shold double your efforts to stop the war by proving that the disputed areas is not Thai territory but Cambodia's and convince your people to give up the lands. Usual staff like "we need better understanding" would not work. Prhachatai has to do it now, in order to call yourself consistant. If you would say "no we just give a space for the writter who have different opinions, so why don't you call the writers who thought those territory are Khmers and have him write something?

You have to do

You have to do it now. Don't have to wait for the dust to be settled until nobody pay mauh attention to this issue. Don't escape to the usual logic that your domestic political enemy are problems for everything. You have political, economic and the border problem now. And you have lameduck government,too. Just accusing "undemocratic" group will not solve anythihg, since the democratic system will not solve everything. You are symmetical to PAD in the sense that PAD think Thakisn ....

that PAD think Thakisn

that PAD think Thakisn is the source of all the problem while you think that anti-Thakisn group is the evil to cause every problem. Maybe I am talking more of the fans of Prachatai that the editorial of Prachatai. Maybe, the editorial staff are the special type of people who don't have own opinon and still can believe that they themselves are smarter than other with mysterious reasons that I can't understand. Maybe that is the nature of snobs.

I don’t care if

I don’t care if anyone is gonna accuse me of being a traitor or unpatriotic. All I care is that people living near that ancient temple, along the border, both Thai and Cambodian villagers lead a peaceful life without fear of bullets. It’s really disgusting to stir hatred among Thais and Cambodia merely for political gain. Please stop this racism, this condescending attitude towards our Asian neighbours… Local people (both Thai and Cambodian) know the best how to handle things and they seem happy enough with what was going on before this blind nationalism causes tension and hatred between the two countries… This is so sad how people are blindly misled by nationalist sentiment until they have little concern for all the devastating consequences suffered by the locals..

Now I just noticed

Now I just noticed that some of the comments above are from both Thai and Cambodian nationalists. Stop being nationalist for while, can u think more about local people who may have to suffer more destructive consequences if war actually takes place. I guess anyone who can argue in this forum, both Thai and Cambodian, are privileged enough. How abt the locals? It’s much harder than them to have their voice heard, let alone listened to. I think all the Cambodian and Thai villagers want is peace and freedom to earn an honest living. Some Thai and Cambodian villagers are even relatives and if more serious fighting occurs, it’s them who suffer the most, not you nationalist people on both the Thai and Cambodian sides, who will be probably safe and sound in yr comfortable middle class home. Please, Prachathai, can u write something that will encourage reconciliation and mutual respect rather than putting the blame on this and that one? I think what is most urgent now is to stop the war from spreading. The world is watching us and we should show them that we will not tolerate the kind of nationalism (from both Thais and Cambodians) that will cause war and suffering to local people, to villagers, both Thai and Cambodians, who live near the temple.

I think the author

I think the author of the above article is fair enough in presenting his/her information. Anyone, whether Thai or Cambodian, who stirs hatred between the two countries should be vehemently condemned. The best way is to let the locals, both Thai and Cambodians, have they say. I’m sure all they care is peace and reconciliation. I don’t think they will allow blind nationalism (both Thai and Cambodian styles) to destroy their peaceful way of life and relationship with those who live near them—that is-- if they have strength enough to counter mindless nationalism from both u Thai and Cambodian middle-class who are so intent on sparking the most disgusting form of racism.

I think I agree

I think I agree with Khun Somsak that Prachathai, as a Thai site, should make it clear that we do not advocate the blind and disgusting form of nationalism that encourages hatred for other nation, and that we care more about the well-being of Thai and Cambodian villagers than any piece of land. In short, we denounce any attempt to stir violent and racial conflicts for the sake of personal or political gain and that we respect the opinions and decision of Thai and Cambodian villagers who live near the temple above all forms of misguided nationalist sentiment.