The Saffron Revolution in Cambodia


As reported in The Phnom Penh Post Buddhist monastics are involved in the current political struggle in Cambodia. They have been active at Freedom Park in central Phnom Pen in opposition to the government. The monks have been active in recent political movements. For example, in the garment and service sectors they have supported strikes by workers for more pay:

“We don’t want the regime to control the people. We want the people to control the regime,” said But Buntenh, founder of the Independent Monk Network for Social Justice, a group at the forefront of anti-government protests. “Whoever are the justice lovers, we will side with them.”

It is interesting to compare these sentiments to those expressed by the Buddhist Association of Thailand about the political monk Buddha Issara:

“Monks can have personal feelings but political expression is banned by sangha regulations,” said the association’s secretary Sathien Wipornmaha. He said Buddha Issara’s involvement in anti-government protests “destroys the image of Buddhism”.

Luang Pu Buddha Issara was involved in the recent anti-government protests in Thailand.