Sihanouk, Prince Norodottv
July 1958
Foreign Affairs;Jul58, Vol. 36 Issue 4, p582
Academic Journal
This article provides information on the political life in Cambodia. Cambodia is a country of six million inhabitants, including 400,000 Vietnamese and 350,000 Chinese. The country's army numbers only 25,000 men. After Laos, which has a population of two million, it is the smallest state in the Indochinese Peninsula. But at least the people are united. With their long-standing tradition of monarchy, the citizens are drawn together by the Throne. As sincere democrats, people hate disorder, and as exponents of a purely national form of socialism, they can only be indifferent to foreign ideologies. They go their own national way, unswervingly. In its foreign relations Cambodia has favored neutrality, which in the United States is all too often confused with "neutralism," although it is fundamentally different. Cambodia is neutral in the same way Switzerland and Sweden are, not neutralist like Egypt or Indonesia. The neutrality has been imposed on Cambodia by necessity. A glance at a map of this part of the world will show that the people are wedged in between two medium-sized nations of the Western bloc and only thinly screened by Laos from the scrutiny of two countries of the Eastern bloc, North Viet Nam and the vast People's Republic of China.


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