21st-century Cambodia: View and Vision
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This book has an overall good information about Cambodia. However, it fails in historical analysis and understanding of Cambodia. It is probably written based on secondary sources without deep attempts at understanding the Cambodian people and their culture. This problem can be reflected in the author's acceptance of the perceived negative meaning of the word "Youn/Yuan/Yun or Giuan". Many scholars readily accepts and propagates this explanation of the term Youn as having negative connotations, failing to understand historical and cultural context which these two groups first came into contact - under Chinese influence and language, rather than Anglo-Saxon or French power. The term Youn, is an ancient Khmer adaption of the Chinese word Yuan. This term was also adopted by many other Southeast Asian nations under the influence of Chinese as well including but not limited to the Thais, Laos, Chams, and Burmese. The original source from the Chinese could either be a derivative of the term Viet/Yiet and then Yuen and thus becomes Yuan in Khmer and Burmese. Another likely explanation maybe a reference to the Chinese Yuan dynasty which exerted constant control over the early Viet kingdom. Books attempting to give exposition of Cambodia should take into context that Cambodia was and still is under foreign subversion and attack of credibility by external political forces. The term Youn is politicized and painted to mislead westerners especially following the UNTAC election of Cambodia by Mr. Hun Sen's camp in order to silent his oppositions who were critical of the fact this faction was installed by the Youn, oops forgive - Anglo-Saxon, "Vietnamese" government. Effectively, Hun Sen silent much of the legitimate opposition concerns on the issue of Vietnamese occupation and control through his party by twisting and misleading western observers over the aged old national/ethnic term and making sure that no oppositions can mount campaigns based on concerns of political, territorial independence and anti-colonialism or anti-neocolonialism slogan against Vietnam.