Interesting page on Cambodia

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vicent
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Oct 26 2015 20:32
Interesting page on Cambodia

Strike statistics for the Cambodian textile bourgeoisie, very kind of them.
http://www.gmac-cambodia.org/strike/

Does anyone have any thoughts on struggle in Cambodia? Red Marriott?

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Steven.
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Oct 27 2015 14:11

A great resource, thanks for posting!

Saw a good short bit of news about this on Al Jazeera maybe a year ago. They have this recent article which is informative about the general situation: http://america.aljazeera.com/articles/2015/3/11/cambodian-garment-worker...

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Rhomboid
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Oct 28 2015 10:38

There is something very satisfying about looking at those stats.

bastarx
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Oct 28 2015 11:43

Gotta love those bourgeois tears.

Quote:
This kind of illegal strike and lack of law enforcement will minimize the attraction of Cambodia to investors.

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Red Marriott
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Oct 29 2015 00:00
Quote:
Does anyone have any thoughts on struggle in Cambodia? Red Marriott?

Know very little about it except it seems to have a young factory wokforce with some similarities to Bangladeshi garment workers.

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Steven.
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Oct 29 2015 19:06
Red Marriott wrote:
Quote:
Does anyone have any thoughts on struggle in Cambodia? Red Marriott?

Know very little about it except it seems to have a young factory wokforce with some similarities to Bangladeshi garment workers.

yeah, it would be interesting to see a quantitative comparison between those strikes and the ones in Bangladesh. Are there stats that good about Bangladesh anywhere?

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Red Marriott
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Oct 29 2015 19:35

Haven't seen them if they exist.

Curious Wednesday
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Nov 25 2015 14:10

Hi,
I regularly put some information about Cambodia on Dialectical Delinquents. A comrade sometimes comments what happens there, for example :

-18-10 Cambodia, Siem Reap: another episode of land grabbing operations supported by army – villagers seem to ask authorities for help, but also have used violent tactics
http://www.phnompenhpost.com/national/villagers-military-face-siem-reap-...

-27-08 Cambodia, Koh Kong: protesters demanding release of others struggling against illegal sand-dredging in brief clash with cops…whilst elsewhere NGOs evict “ethically” (http://www.phnompenhpost.com/national/mother-nature-backers-clash-author...)
Pi writes: This article is interesting in that it shows a good example of how foreign NGO’s (in this case a Czech one), who developed throughout Cambodia in the 90’s, and pretend since then to fill in the gaps of the government (in eradicating poverty, fighting injustice, etc.) by actively working with its institutions and negotiating its presence in the country, are really just agencies to which the Cambodian state delegates tasks, that include pretty much everything – in this case plain and simple eviction to pave the way for development projects. The NGO ideology is clearly unmasked here: evict, but in an ethical way.

-09-07 Cambodia, Prey Vihear: villagers camp on land to resist companies’ land clearance project (http://www.phnompenhpost.com/national/villagers-camping-resist-companies)
Pi writes: “This is a northern province of the country, bordering Thailand (the two countries dispute the Prey Vihear temple in Thai territory). Often companies (foreign or mixed capital) seize land from villagers in campaigns for different types of projects, the authorities often playing on ambiguities in the terms of land ownership. The Khmer Rouge regime, which had “communised” the land by force (2 million deaths) under the inspiration of Maoist China in 1979, left a devastated country, which has allowed the elite to monopolize natural resources (especially in areas with indigenous populations) and peasant land (because they have no documents proving ownership of the land; when they do, the authorities manage to declare them non-valid), and to lay hands on the economy and political power in a short period of time.
In the context of very violent state repression (regularly, wherever dissenting voices are heard people die), struggles often place themselves at a level of confrontation far weaker than that of the state (mostly, its army, its cops and other coercion is used: henchmen, etc.). Given that the Khmer Rouge wielded maximum Marxist-Leninist rhetoric, most revolutionary vocabulary is now immediately seen as an expression of the horror of this bloody regime. This may partly explain why an important place is given to NGOs in struggles, which often take it upon themselves to express the demands and to be the intermediary between power and the participants in these movements, in a very obviously reformist logic”.

-25-05 Cambodia, Poipet: cross-border porters attack Customs and Excise Department in protest against import taxes
http://www.phnompenhpost.com/national/violent-clash-erupts-poipet
“…cross-border porters began hurling bricks at the department, breaking down the gate and burning tires. Hean Trein, 26, a representative of the porters, said that protesters dispersed after the shots were fired, but a violent confrontation in which they used their carts to break down the gate of the customs office left at least three injured. Trein identified the most seriously injured as Mao Son, also known as Sras, 35, who had been badly beaten by military police in the face, kneed in the chest and kicked in the stomach. Police had handcuffed Son and were attempting to transfer him to a truck when protesters rushed the officers, seized Son back and attempted to send him to hospital.In the ensuing scuffle, Son sustained further injuries, and lost consciousness, though protesters were ultimately successful in bringing him to hospital”

Poipet is the main Cambodian border town with Thailand, its “rich” neighbour. It’s a miserable place for Cambodians, who come from various places in the country to get work in the cross-border trade (it mostly involves moving carts from one side of the border to the other for local merchants, small shops, and prostitution for women). The province (Banteay Meanchey) and the whole north-western region were heavily destroyed by the war, and remained Khmer Rouge strongholds long after the official defeat of the regime – up until the nineties in different parts. There’s not much besides rice fields, in a country where rice production activity suffers such abuses that farmers can’t live off it.
Cambodia is ruled by an extremely authoritarian, mafia-like regime, a small elite born out of the economic depredation following the terrible years of war and destruction.
There are lots of protests these days: especially in the garment production factories, where country girls work in terrible conditions for very low pay (around $100 a month); and over the protection of environmental resources (mostly NGO environmentalists), and land disputes (involving indigenous communities, especially from the north-eastern part of the country). They’re usually heavily repressed by the state, which hardly ever hesitates to send in the military, or its paid gunmen. [written by Pi]

As for strikes, he wrote the following : "garment is an important sector of this rapidly growing economy (10% growth in some of the past years) : the first industrial sector of the country, and about 80% of all its exportations. According to some stats, it is similar to the situation in Bangladesh.
Garment workers are usually women. They earn around $100 per month, which is much lower than Thailand...textile workers don't really form a rooted proletariat, as they usually work in the factories (mainly located in the capital's suburbs, with a few more in other cities and towns) a few years before going back to their countryside villages, where they work in the rice fields.
There are many strikes, which sometimes lead to violent clashes...but they're really controlled by the unions, which are completely reformist and institutional. The role of NGO's in general is fundamental for understanding how things go in Cambodia."

Spikymike
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Nov 25 2015 16:33

If people are just looking for somewhere to start there is some standard trade union style reporting of strikes in Cambodia and around the globe gleaned from a variety of news media at the labourstart site here: www.labourstart.org/news but don't expect any detailed critical analysis from a pro-revolutionary viewpoint.