The Angkorian Civilization

Cambodian History Writ Large At Angkor Wat

January 25, 2008

SIEM REAP, Cambodia -- This country's most famous temple may be 900 years old, but the message it sets out to convey is timeless: Angkor Wat is all about glory. The temple is one of hundreds built by kings of the Khmer Empire to commemorate themselves and their empire, as well as to worship their gods. But Angkor Wat stands out from the rest -- in artistry, in scale and in popular imagery.

One of the largest religious structures in the world, and the only religious monument to appear on a national flag, Angkor Wat has become synonymous with Cambodia at its most powerful -- when it was the seat of the Khmer Empire, stretching from the South China Sea to the Bay of Bengal. The monumental scale of the temple has the same effect on visitors today as when it was first built. Angkor Wat has but a single approach: a wide stone causeway more than a third of a mile long (that's as long as six football fields end-to-end). The entry walkway crosses a moat 600 feet wide (my guide assures me it used to be filled with crocodiles) and ends at a wall and gates leading into the center of the compound. The central compound covers about 400 acres and once supported a town of about 100,000 people.

With one central tower more than 130 feet high surrounded by four shorter towers, the center of the temple imitates the five peaks of Mount Mehru, the mythical mountain at the center of the Hindu universe. The temple walls (three concentric rectangles that demarcate the progressively higher levels of the temple), garden grounds and moat represent the soil and seas of the earth.

Reaching Mount Mehru is no easy chore: The temple's stone steps are dizzyingly steep -- more like a stone ladder than a staircase -- as a reminder of the effort it takes for humans to get closer to heaven. And, as if to drive home the point, the inner sanctuaries of the central tower were accessible only to the king and a select handful of priests.

When Angkor Wat was built, Cambodia was primarily Hindu and Khmer culture drew much of its inspiration from India. Most of the inscriptions at Angkor are in Sanskrit, and the nymph-like apsaras, or celestial dancers, that grace the walls derive from Hindu mythology. Later, however, the Khmer kings became interested in Buddhism, and Angkor Wat was converted into a Buddhist monastery between the 12th and 15th centuries. The central statue of the innermost sanctuary -- likely a statue of Vishnu -- was removed and a Buddhist image erected in its place. For several centuries, the Khmer empire practiced a syncretic faith that combined Buddhism and Hinduism.

In many ways Angkor Wat is so much larger than life that the details of the temple get overlooked amid the legends that surround it. It's easy to forget that it contains nearly 2,000 feet of the finest Khmer bas reliefs in the world. Its nearly 2,000 celestial apsaras represent the apogee of Cambodia's apsara-carving tradition and provide a detailed account of court dress and female fashions during the period of its creation, the elaborate headdresses, heavy jewelry worn on the arms and neck, and flowing skirts. Traditional Cambodian dance to this day imitates the apsaras' poses and costumes.

One of the most intricate reliefs decorating the walls of the temple's first gallery depicts the Churning of the Sea of Milk, a key event in Hindu cosmology in which the world was created by an epic tug-of-war between gods and demons. Each side pulled on a giant five-headed snake wrapped around Mount Mehru, and the subsequent twisting of the mountain and churning of the seas gave birth to the apsaras that grace the walls of Angkor Wat, as well as an elixir of immortality over which the gods and demons subsequently dueled. In this story, Mount Mehru is not only the center of the universe, but also the birthplace of the known world.

The Khmer empire included modern-day Burma, Thailand and Vietnam -- the largest area ever covered by Cambodia -- and laid the foundations for Cambodian culture and art for centuries to come. In a sign of the temple's importance, the king's palace was most likely on the temple grounds, although nothing of it remains today. About one million men, women and children populated the Angkor area, according to an estimate by French archaeologist Bernard-Philippe Groslier, making it the largest settlement in the preindustrial world.

All this manpower was necessary to build the temples, which were painstakingly erected from giant sandstone monoliths hewed out of a quarry more than 37 miles away. Rather than having foundations that sink into the ground, most Angkorean temples are built on huge mounds of earth that give them their pyramid shape, the soil excavated from a moat or from one of the lakes. Some historians theorize that the blitz of building during the Khmer Empire could have been accomplished only through a mandatory labor requirement levied on all citizens, or perhaps even through slavery.

The grandeur that marked the Khmer Empire was not to last, however. The royal city of Angkor was repeatedly sacked by the Thai army during the 14th century, and in 1431 the capital was relocated farther away from Thailand. Angkor Wat itself -- by that time converted to a Buddhist temple -- continued to function, and for centuries it was home to a flourishing monastery that attracted pilgrims from as far away as Japan, even while the former capital city nearby was gradually overtaken by the jungle. Although the Buddhists occupying the temple removed most of the original Hindu art, Angkor Wat's habitation and its continuous maintenance helped the temple remain relatively intact while many other Angkorean temples now lie in ruins.

Even after surviving the removal of its Hindu art, Angkor Wat did not entirely escape the turbulence of Cambodia's recent history. The Western part of Cambodia in which Angkor Wat is located was a Khmer Rouge stronghold through the 1990s (the Khmer Rouge were ousted from the capital city, Phnom Penh, in 1979). Restoration work on the temples took a forced, decades-long hiatus during the wars that wracked Cambodia through the later half of the 20th century. The area was unsafe for tourists until about 10 years ago, when the Khmer Rouge signed a peace treaty that formally ended Cambodia's civil war. There was relatively little physical damage to the temple as a result of the wars, but they did irreparable damage by destroying almost all of the remaining written records pertaining to the Angkorean period. Khmer archaeology scholar Christophe Pottier of the French Research School of the Far East estimates that 95% of the relevant documents have been destroyed in the past three decades, an irreplaceable loss.

In the years since peace has come to Cambodia the opportunities for looting have also increased, and many of the finest sculptures have been spirited out of the country and sold to buyers abroad. Tourism also poses its own set of dangers, with some temples suffering from overexposure to footsteps or curious hands. But despite this -- even as the physical structures of the temples inevitably decay -- Angkor will continue to symbolize something greater than itself. The memory of the Khmer Empire, and with it Cambodia's full potential, is unlikely to fade anytime soon.

Ms. Hook is an editorial page writer for The Wall Street Journal Asia.

Vietnam’s Third Way Poses Party Teaser

January 30,2008
By Long S Le

As Vietnam’s rapid economic expansion gathers pace, the country’s communist party leaders are having an increasingly difficult time maintaining their so-called "Third Way" model of economic development, where centrally planned strictures and market dynamics uncomfortably co-exist.

The question merging over the transitional economy is whether, more than 20 years after the launch of market-oriented doi moi reforms, a new generation of political leaders has the political will to bury the country’s communist past and fully embrace market economics.

How the party strikes the balance could in the coming years make or break Vietnam’s the reform experiment, claim some academics. Mancur Olson’s Power and Prosperity: Outgrowing Communist and Capitalist Dictatorships makes the theoretical point that in transitional economies there are certain reforms that governments may pursue to better promote economic growth and that certain styles of government are better able to create and enforce those reforms more consistently.

Reforms that respect and secure individual rights, according to Olson, will provide strong incentives for individuals to produce, invest and engage in mutually advantageous trade, of which society will broadly gain more from so-called rights-intensive production, the theory argues. And as one might expect, rights-respecting and strong governments are most able to successfully implement such reforms.

In today’s Vietnam, Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung and his economic lieutenants must weigh whether such reforms are appropriate at this arguably still early point in the country’s economic development and, if yes, will his more market-minded administration allow the country to fully outgrow communism?

For economic development scholars who study Vietnam, the general answer is yes and an eventual yes. Several economists now argue that in today’s Vietnam, many of the reform pieces are in place, including evidence that the slow but steady government grant of more land rights has led to greater productivity and investment compared with areas that have not implemented the same reforms.

On the one hand, the current group of reform-minded Vietnamese leaders is committed to market liberalization because to date it has led to fast economic growth and helped to shore up the communist party’s overall popularity. Yet they continue to do so with an unequivocal determinism that their reforms do not challenge the party’s monopoly over state and society.

Indeed, any activities by groups that are not sanctioned by the state are subject to criminal prosecution, as activists who last year called for more democracy and are now languishing in prison can attest to. "When leaders here say they want a socialist market economy, they really mean it … no one with any influence is arguing that the state should surrender the economy's commanding heights," said Jonathan Pincus, a UN economist based in Vietnam.

Yet at the same time, the party remains strongly committed to socialism, or more accurately to Ho Chi Minh thought, still the underlying basis of its overarching authority and political legitimacy. That means Dung’s administration probably won’t anytime soon abandon communism or implement reforms that would pave the way for Vietnam’s full-blown conversion to a rights-based capitalism.

Instead, capitalism and its externalities will continue to be co-opted in order to "revolutionize" the prevailing socialist order, with the country gradually becoming more modernized, technocratic, wealthier, powerful, and, perhaps finally, democratic. Intellectually, the party has started to map out what this new socialist order may look like in practice.

According to party-affiliated scholar Phan Dinh Dieu, the one party state is not in contradiction with market reforms:

if we look upon the whole society as a unified system, then generally speaking the State does not only ‘dominate’ society, but also increasingly fulfills many service functions for society, as if to create a structure and a favorable environment for the activities of society’s members … In this sense, antagonistic relations between State and civil society will be replaced by relations of collaboration; the democratic State will be the State 'of the people, by the people, and for the people'.

Party leaders are well aware of the challenges in pursuing its third way between capitalism and communism. Although this middle path is not fully bulletproof against internal and external challenges, party leaders seem to think that in time it can be. A recent example of the party’s new thinking was also presented in a recent op-ed by former prime minister Vo Van Kiet, who oversaw the implementation of many important economic reforms during his tenure.

In responding to a recent scandal over the widespread distribution of tainted soy sauce, Kiet reiterated the party’s belief in the importance of a functioning press to check and balance their reforms, so long as reporters remain aware of their constitutional function and responsibility to the party:

Our socialist-oriented market economy has not commercialized the press, which worries many people. But the market itself is bringing the press and readers closer. Our nation is led by the Communist Party alone, which requires the press to be an effective source of information … Newspaperpersons who consider themselves above the law are prone to corruption. Thus, the press’ activities and penalties for corrupt journalists [either in state-run or private newspapers] should conform to the law.

By co-opting and integrating elements of market liberalization and democratization, socialist institutions may eventually become, and in many ways already are, more efficient with greater responsiveness in which the party-state practices "a soft, diffused and highly qualified form of domination," according to academic Chris Dixon of London Metropolitan University.

Reform blind spots

To be sure, Vietnam’s current economic growth has yet to be accompanied by an appreciable increase in economic freedom (ie government intervention in the economy, property rights, and rampant black market activities), political freedom (ie freedom of expression, freedom of association, and the right to organize political parties), or good governance (ie frequency of corruption in public and political sectors).

So far, the poor and disadvantaged have been willing to live with the economic, political and administrative deficiencies of the one-party state so long as the government delivers the basic economic conditions which allow for the creation of higher paying jobs, better public services, and a gradually improved standard of living.

The average Vietnamese household is in absolute terms now better off than before market liberalization measures were first introduced in the mid-1980s. The question going forward is not merely whether the party can deliver prosperity, but whether prosperity is equitable and perceived to be based on merit and not on communist party connectedness or government corruption. Simply put, the average Vietnamese citizen still evaluates the communist party based on its self-proclaimed constitutional credo that the communist party-state will function 'of the people, by the people, and for the people'.

On the one hand, the economic marriage between communism and capitalism can probably be sustained over the medium term. Scheduled privatization of former state-owned enterprises (SOEs) should help to boost economic efficiency and growth. SOE managers and workers should have no immediate reason to oppose privatization, since the process as currently defined will allow them to continue to receive some form of government subsidies and a larger share of their productive surplus.

Party leaders will still hold on to strategic industries, such as telecommunications, banking and financial services, and education and training, for third-way sociopolitical reasons. Sustained state-control of crucial industries also serves as a sort of economic shock absorber. In case of a significant economic slowdown or financial crisis, party leaders can further privatize non-strategic enterprises, such as in the tourism industry, which are already driven by firms led by party loyalists.

On the other hand, the downside of sustained state-vested interests in the economy is that the country, while very capable of becoming a low- to middle-income country, will consistently lag the region’s more developed economies in terms of economic efficiency. The preferential treatment of SOEs by most accounts has led to an inefficient allocation of capital resources and drags on Vietnam’s still vastly untapped growth potential.

For example, the World Bank estimates that the amount of capital needed to create one job in a SOE is more than eight times higher compared with domestic private firms; the potential cost savings in transport and technical services could easily be more than 30% if the various privileges bestowed upon SOEs competing in the sector were eliminated, according to the same World Bank statistics.

To realize Vietnam’s true growth potential in job creation and economic productivity the communist party needs to level the competitive playing field between the state and private sectors. Unfortunately there is no official policy or the financial infrastructure in place to expand small private firms into larger, more globally minded companies.

The importance of this transformation is that, given the still relatively weak purchasing power of the average Vietnamese domestic consumer, higher incomes at this early phase of development will in the main come from export-oriented activities. Until these reforms take place, Vietnam will continue to be marked by inequality, expressed in recent political protests and labor strikes, which slowly but surely are from below eating away at the country’s socialist fabric.

Vietnam’s communist party leaders will find it increasingly difficult to reconcile their current marriage between communism and capitalism. As the population becomes more economically empowered, party cadres assertions that the party-state is equivalent to a democratic state of the people, by the people, and for the people will ring increasingly hollow. And any move back towards the socialist redistribution system to address emerging issues of inequality will just as likely be rejected by the very masses they would be designed to help but who are unwilling to revert to the party’s inefficient centrally planned old ways.

For Vietnam’s communist party leadership, this is the limitation and contradiction of their hoped for third way which if not resolved could in the end be its eventual undoing.

source: Asia Times Online

Hanoi Regime Continues to Hang on to Power

by KKM Writer

In particular the US and as well as the free world have so far been buying into the communists that the only policy toward the communist countries is 'engagement'.

This policy is clearly not working with the communist Vietnam. Vietnam is more powerful than ever before their economic liberalization. Since its acceptance to ASEAN, APEC, and most importantly the WTO membership, Vietnam is economically somewhat self-dependent. Of recent events that Vietnam was offered a UN Security Council seat, Vietnam is on a roller-coaster ride on its repressive and corrupt regime.

Khmer-Krom people in the Mekong delta is clearly a victim of Vietnam's newly-gained clout over world affairs and its influence.

While Vietnam authorities are boasting their bogus successes and rhetorics at the United Nations, the Khmer-Krom people continue to face dire poverty, landlessness, religious oppression, political disappearance, eco-soc decay, and intimidations and harassments.

Khmer-Krom children are dropping out of school and the few Khmer-Krom graduates are facing high rate of unemployment. Khmer-Krom young and old are leaving their traditional towns and villages in search of employment in the Vietnamese-concentrated towns and cities.

Khmer-Krom's future is looking very bleak, while Vietnam is celebrating its success to continue its oppression against its ordinary citizens, including the indigenous Khmer-Krom in the Mekong Delta.

Cambodia: Khmer Krom monks fearful after abbot disappears

Last Updated 04/07/2007, 20:25:31
ABC Radio Australia

The disappearance of a high-profile abbot in Cambodia, Venerable Tim Sakhorn, has evoked grave concern among ethnic Khmer Krom communities around the world.

The Cambodian Ministry of the Interior says the abbot has voluntarily left Cambodia for southern Vietnam, but his family denies it, saying he has no reason to return as he has been head of his pagoda in Cambodia for years and fears persecution in his Vietnamese homeland.

The abbot of Phnom Den pagoda in Takeo province was defrocked last week by the supreme patriarch of Buddhist monks in Cambodia, Venerable Tep Vong, for an alleged attempt to undermine the relationship between Vietnam and Cambodia.

The Khmer Krom are an ethnic minority group living in the Mekong Delta regions of southern Vietnam and Cambodia which used to belong to Cambodia before Vietnam acquired it under French colonialism.

The head of the Khmer Krom Buddhist Association, Venerable Yin Sin, told Radio Australia's Khmer News that four monks have already fled Vietnam, through Cambodia and now on to Thailand, through fear of persecution, and another 11 have gone into hiding.

"The Khmer Krom have been living in fear, some have left Vietnam for safety reason, and now they are being followed," he said.
The head of the Khmer Krom community in Cambodia, Thach Setha, also expressed concern after the Cambodia Daily newspaper quoted a statement by the Cambodian supreme patriarch saying that defrocking another 11 Khmer Krom monks was possible.

Venerable Tep Vong said the monks could be drefrocked if found to have been involved in a violent brawl with local monks in April this year during a march protesting the Vietnam government's oppression of the ethnic Khmer who live in neighbouring Vietnam.

A spokesperson for the Cambodian Ministry of Interior said the ministry was not aware of the threat to defrock another 11 monks, but said once defrocked, the monks would lose their immunity from prosecution.

They could then be charged for any alleged crime or any activity deemed to be illegal or harming national security.

Cambodia's Khmer community leader Thach Setha told Radio Australia's Khmer News the community is seeking help from international human rights groups, as well diplomats, in citing Cambodia for political oppression.

Vietnam has recently been cited by human rights groups for political oppression of the Khmer Krom.

Vietnam's History of Encroachment on Its Neighbours: Kampuchea(Cambodia) and Lao

by KKM Freedom Writer
July 2, 2007

On June 30, 2007, the chief Buddhist monk--Nuon Nget of Takeo province, Cambodia, under the authorization by Cambodia's Supreme Patriarch Tep Vong and Hanoi's political influence, had illegally defrocked a Khmer-Krom's Bikkhu Tim Sakhorn, an Abbot of Phnom Den temple in Takeo.

The Hanoi's regime and the Phnom Penh's regime are allegedly accusing Bikkhu Tim Sakhorn as a figurehead of Khmer-Krom monks in Cambodia to cause political rip of the good relationship enjoying by Cambodia's communists and Vietnam's commists today.

The 1989 Withdrawal of Vietnamese troops from Cambodia is fruitful or not one must analyze in detail. To many Khmers' eyes and ears, the Hanoi-regime's influence on the Phnom Penh's communist never relinquish from the start. Ho Chi Minh, a Vietnamese communist leader, who has seeded in Khmer mainland (Cambodia) as well in Lao, the Vietnamese agents in all levels to carry ou the Vietnamization strategy of Indochina. Today Lao, the Vietnamese sons and daughters have silently occupied the key governments positions, and departments. With Laotian names but his/her blood is biologically Vietnamese. The only obstacle to Vietnamization of Lao is the Hmong's cause for independence from the Viet-Lao government. The Laotian current regime is determined to eradicate the Hmong's resistance at all costs.

In Cambodia today, the situation is no different from Lao. Chief of Cambodia's National Police - Hok Lundy is truely of Vietnamese origin who works closely with PM Hun Sen of Cambodia.

The few Khmer-Kroms in Cambodia who have fled their homeland--the Mekong delta (or Kampuchea Krom)under the Vietnamese' oppressions, are now being rounded-up by the Hanoi-backed Phnom Penh goverment as conducting illegal activities to free "Khmer-Krom".

The Khmer-Krom are truly stateless and nationless and the world still does not understand Khmer-Krom's plight? What is the price and how many more Khmer-Krom's life need to be sacrificed to the inhumane Vietcongs, before the world starts to realize our Khmer-Krom sufferings?

Vietnam and Communism's Victims

by Mike Benge
June 18, 2007 01:00 PM EST

Last Tuesday, June 12, President Bush spoke at the dedication of the Victims of Communism Memorial that honors the memories of those killed in communist regimes. He said their deaths should remind the American public "evil is real and must be confronted." Ironically, this Friday, June 22, President Bush will honor the president of a tyrannical communist regime that murdered over a million Vietnamese and ethnic minorities with a White House visit during which he has the opportunity to confront that evil.

Recently, dozens of democracy activists, journalists, cyber-dissidents and Christian and other religious leaders were arrested and imprisoned by the Vietnamese communists. Congressional leaders and human-rights groups have charged Hanoi with "unbridled human-rights abuses," the "worst wave of oppression in 20 years." Those recently arrested are but a few of the hundreds of political and religious prisoners in Vietnam; some have been tried, while those less visible simply "disappeared." This mounting crackdown is a deliberate diplomatic slap in the face of the United States.

Hanoi brazenly aired on TV the kangaroo court trial of Thaddeus Nguyen Van Father Ly, who was muzzled during the proceedings. In Vietnamese, the colloquial phrase for censorship is "bit mieng" -- to cover the mouth. The picture of Father Ly's muzzling seems a literal enactment of an old cliche. Denied representation, Father Ly was sentenced to eight years imprisonment.

Mr. Bush's endorsement for Hanoi's admission into the World Trade Organization at last year's Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation meeting in Hanoi, the removal of Vietnam from listed as a Country of Particular Concern (CPC), and the granting of Permanent Normal Trade Relations (PNTR) were all predicated on the Communist Party substantially improving its human-rights record.

It should come as no surprise that after the granting of these privileges, the Vietnamese communists continued and intensified their repression.

Though Vietnam professes great strides in religious freedom, one must look under the veneer to seek the truth. For example, in 2006, the Vietnamese government claimed that "25 denominations" had received certificates to carry on religious activities, when in fact they were only individual house churches.

The price of these certificates is the surrender of religious freedom. The church must submit to the central Bureau of Religious Affairs (CBA) a list of the names and addresses of members, and only those approved by the CBA can attend services. All sermons must be approved by the CBA, and all sermons, including those of minorities, must be given in Vietnamese. Pastors and priests can neither deviate from the approved sermon nor proselytize, and the CBA police monitor all services.

Montagnards, Hmong and other Christians, Khmer Krom Monks, members of the Cao Dai faith, and Hoa Hao are still relentlessly persecuted. This is what Hanoi calls religious freedom, and the U.S. administration was naive enough to believe them and removed them from the Countries of Particular Concern (CPC) list of countries that suppress religious freedom.

Recently, the Vietnamese communist regime demanded of the U.N. Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues the cancellation of scheduled films to be screened at the May 22 forum. One film, "Hunted Like Animals," sponsored by the Hmong-Lao Human Rights Council depicted the genocide against the Hmong, and the other film depicted human-rights abuses against the Khmer Krom by the Vietnamese communists. It should come as no surprise that the United Nations acquiesced to the demands of the repressive Hanoi regime.

Reminiscent of the days of slavery in the "Old South," Montagnards who flee from repression in the Central Highlands are hunted down like wild animals. Vietnam pays bounties to Cambodian police for every Montagnard they catch and turn over to them. Vietnam considers refugees seeking asylum in another country to have violation its national security, punishable by imprisonment for up to 15 years.

Recently, three Montagnards were arrested by Cambodian police and charged with "human trafficking" for the so-called crime of aiding other Montagnards to flee the repression in Vietnam via the Montagnards' "underground railroad." Although Cambodia does little to stop the trafficking of children for prostitution, the communist regime is prosecuting these Montagnards on Vietnam's request in hopes it will convince the U.S. it is serious about trafficking. Vietnam pulls the strings of the marionette Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen.

Reports continue from behind the curtain of silence drawn around the Central Highlands of the torture and deaths of Montagnard Christians. During a February trip to Hanoi, Ellen Sauerbrey, assistant secretary of state for population, refugees and migration, told a press conference that the Vietnamese officials assured her that Montagnards can freely travel to the Embassy in Hanoi or the Consulate in Ho Chi Minh City to voice any grievances.

She said Montagnards should stay in Vietnam and not seek asylum in Cambodia. Given the Vietnamese communists history of repression and broken promises, how can Mrs. Sauerbrey be naive enough to believe Montagnards suffering persecution would ever to be allowed through the phalanx of Vietnamese police surrounding the U.S. Embassy and Consulate?

As predicted, Hanoi has announced the release of a few token high-profile political prisoners in an attempt to smooth the way for the arrival of Vietnam's President Triet, and in hopes of placating President Bush, the State Department and Congress. Can this administration be gullible enough to fall for yet another charade by the Vietnamese communists?

President Bush, keeping faith in the spirit of the Victims of Communism Memorial that "evil is real and must be confronted," should demand of Vietnam's president the release of all of the hundreds of political prisoners including those recently arrested and the more than 350 Christian Montagnards that seem to have been forgotten by this administration.

Mike Benge is an advocate for human rights and religious freedom in South East Asia.

The Vietnamese communist leader Nguyen Minh Triet's visit to the US

June 21, 2007
by KKM Freedom Writer

The communist regime of Vietnam is trying to imitate the communist China's path: "building a powerful economy and then walk away from the West, in particular the US on human rights". Today China, based on its powerful economy, is trying make friends with nations that the free world considers rogue nations--namely Sudan, Burma, Iran, etc. It is a tragedy that the world continues to empower the communist China, while its regime continue to silence and oppress its own people in the name of human rights.

Vietnam is walking on the similar steps as today China. It is the greedy bosses of the West that see profits over long-term survival of the free world. What is really the role of these transnational corporations? These transnational corporations certainly do not possess the moral responsibility to better humanity but themselves.

And then what is the role of the free world political leaders such as the US, Japan, UK, France, Canada, Australia, etc? To grant these rogue states and/or the communist regimes into WTO is already a tragic cause for humanity--analogously "to feed a hungry tiger!" The Rises of China is the Rise of communism. The Rises of Vietnam is so too the Rise of communism. Do not forget that Vietnamese communists are making trips back and forth to Beijing and Havana, while trying to steal technological know-hows and economic well-being from the West--in particular from the US and Europe.

The free world is too preoccupied with fighting terrorism, while allowing communism slipping through the cracks. The revival of communism in China is evidenced, per its build-up of military capabilities from its economic growth. Not only that, China today is to overcast a cloud over entire Asia, if not the world yet.