Taliban 2 and Khmer Rouge: “Invitations” from two regimes – 1975 and 2021
Last of 2 parts
Due to the lack of direct contact with the Soviets, it cannot be said that the Khmer Rouge hated the Soviets as much as they hated the Americans and the Vietnamese. In the early 1970s, the North Vietnamese were their old allies. (From the mid to late 1970s, when the Khmer Rouge was in power, Vietnam was an ally – in the region – of the Soviet Union). The Khmer Rouge also hated at least some of their own Khmer “brothers” (to use the word incorrectly) as well as other ethnic groups to such an extent that about one in seven or one in eight Cambodians died in mid-to-late. late 1970s (some of them being killed) due to the policies and practices of the Khmer Rouge.
In a crude sense, the Khmer Rouge can also be seen as extreme Khmer nationalists or ethno-nationalists. The Taliban were also (in a sense) Afghan nationalists although their radical “Islamic” ideology was the dominant theme, which could trump non-Islamic nationalism.
The Khmer Rouge started organizing the movement mainly in the rural areas, therefore in a certain sense the Khmer Rouge can be considered an agrarian revolution.
Afghanistan is predominantly mountainous; technically one cannot say that the Taliban movement is agrarian but perhaps generally its main base can be considered rural.
Unlike the return of the Taliban, it is hoped that a full return of the Khmer Rouge as in the years 1975 to 1978 will not take place in Cambodia.
Political scientists, specialists in the field, psychologists of mass movements, specialists in international relations and interested persons could examine and present their views on these questions.
UN involvement in Cambodia, Afghanistan
The United Nations Provisional Authority in Cambodia helped run the country from 1991 to 1993. In retrospect, compared to the situation in Afghanistan in mid-2021, it can be said that the United Nations has reached at least a few of their goals and to some extent and – if one is to be more positive or optimistic – to a large extent generally able to implement the âno return to the universally condemned policies and practices of the pastâ.
In Afghanistan, although the United Nations was involved in the affairs of the country after 2001, it was mainly the United States under four administrations that was involved in Afghan affairs. While the UN has had limited or partial success in preventing – let’s be more precise – a “full return” of the Khmer Rouge 2 to Cambodia, the United States and, to a lesser extent, the UN, have been “powerless. To prevent, less pre-emptively, the return of the Taliban.
To return to a more distant past (in context): from March 1970 to April 1975 until its fall, the United States under the administrations of former presidents Richard Nixon and Gerald Ford attempted to support Lon’s right-wing Cambodian regime. Christmas
Perhaps far more human and monetary resources have been spent for over 19 years in Afghanistan from (late 2001 to mid-2021) than in Cambodia (March 1970 to April 1975) by US administrations. Billions of dollars were spent to train the now moribund and defeated Afghan army. They were spent to (shall we say, in context and comparison) bolster the moderate regimes of Hamid Karzai and Ashraf Ghani. Thousands of American soldiers were stationed in Afghanistan and approximately 2,500 American soldiers have died since 2001.
Representation at the UN: Khmer Rouge and Taliban 1
After the Vietnamese intervention in Cambodia, parallel or âcompetingâ Cambodian representatives were sent to meetings of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) in the years 1979, 1980 and probably 1981. The Vietnamese government installed in Cambodia during of those years controlled up to about 85 percent of Cambodian territory. Yet his credentials were rejected by the member states of the UNGA by a significant majority.
Instead, the Khmer Rouge regime, which controlled no more than 15 percent of Cambodian territory, was recognized as âthe legitimate governmentâ of Cambodia. In the same year (1979) that UNGA members rewarded the Khmer Rouge with a seat in its august hall, a United Nations report declared that what had happened in Cambodia was “one of the worst human rights violations.” of humans since the end of World War II. “
Fast forward to 1997. The UNGA refused to admit the representative of the Taliban regime as the âlegitimateâ government of Afghanistan, presumably because of the Taliban’s human rights violations. And this despite the fact that the Taliban controlled up to about 85 percent of Afghan territory. The Taliban 1’s human rights record was atrocious (and no compliments or thanks to the Taliban) but the Taliban regime of the day did not kill at least an eighth of the Afghan population in the country. during his five-year rule from 1996 to 2001. In contrast, many scholars have stated (quite conservatively) that about a million – perhaps a few hundred thousand more – Cambodians (out of a population of around 7 million at the time) died during the period of Khmer rule, from April 1975 to December 1978..
Perhaps geopolitics played a major and predominant role in the differing attitudes of UN members towards both (in the pejorative sense of the term) “tweedledum and tweedledee” or more threatening the Scylla and Charybdis regimes.
Back to the future
Would he ask himself the question of which Afghan government is really the representative of the Afghan state at the United Nations General Assembly, which is due to meet at the end of September 2021? It depends on whether the ousted officials of the (perhaps) now former (former) regime of Ashraf Ghani or others were able to form a rival parallel government or not and whether or not they will be able to send their own representatives to the meeting of the UN. .
They say that a week is a long time in politics. (The very rapid takeover of Kabul by the Taliban indicates on the contrary that a week could pass very quickly). And history may not repeat itself insofar as the UN could (well) agree this time to have the representatives of the Taliban 2 sit in the General Assembly. The writer’s âprojectionâ is based on the fact that internally at least the Taliban’s initial rhetoric is not so militant. It may be a bit of a stretch to say that it is “conciliatory”. The statement by the current Taliban authorities that the new administration it will form (to use their own expression) is “comprehensive” is, if not suspect, then not entirely credible. Nonetheless, there appears to be good news for the Taliban. A report dated August 18, 2021 said former President Harmid Karzai was in talks with the Taliban to cooperate with them. Outside, another contemporary news item indicates that the European Union has expressed its hope of being able to work with the new Taliban administration.
By returning so quickly to take the reins of Afghanistan, the Taliban may well believe that the “power that is” (for being deliberately nonspecific) favored them. When it comes to the representation and recognition of the United Nations, it may well be that the United Nations will make things happier for the Taliban this (second) time around.
Dr. Myint Zan is a retired law professor who taught international law, human rights law and jurisprudence (legal philosophy) at Multimedia University in Malaysia from 20006 to 2016.