Hot! Cambodia and Cronyism

Wall Street Journal | In September the body of Cambodian journalist Hang Serei Oudom was found stuffed into the trunk of his car with his head bashed in. At the time of his death, Oudom was writing about collusion between local businessmen and officials in the mountainous northwest. According to the WSJ there as elsewhere in the country politicians, officials and logging companies have conspired to clear-cut virgin forests that are supposedly protected by the government.

This murder is not the first of its kind in Cambodia. It is reported that at least 10 journalists have been in Cambodia since 1996. It has been just as bad for social activists. In one case a military policeman shot and killed environmentalist Chhut Vuthy as he investigated illegal logging in southwestern Koh Kong province. Dozens more have been summarily imprisoned for protesting illegal land seizures.

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