The fact that Cambodia’s Prime Minister Hun Sen is friends with convicted fugitive Thaksin Shinawatra is bad enough, but when it is flaunted by Thaksin in the news the risk of open war with Thailand becomes a significant possibility. With the flash point of the Preah Vihear Temple already sparking, this is a recipe that falls right into Thaksin’s trouble cooking pot.
Whether Prime Minister Hun Sen will admit it or not, but he has already become one of Thaksin’s pawns. His position as Prime Minister of Cambodia has already given Thaksin some clout while at the same time it has given him some tarnish, and that hardly seems a fair trade.
If Thaksin can provoke open war between Cambodia and Thailand it will serve his needs. The military engagement will do damage to Thailand while giving Thaksin more tools to secure his goals. It would not take much as many still believe Thaksin’s crony Nopadon Patama who was Foreign Minister at the time gave the Preah Vihear Temple to Cambodia as some sort of offering or bribe.
If Cambodia and Thailand enter into war it certainly would be the end of Thailand’s tourist trade. International business ventures would simply halt in both Cambodia and Thailand. Then after both countries have sufficiently beaten each other up, Thaksin will simply swoop in and pick up the pieces.
There is already significant history on how tolerant Thailand is with other countries when it comes to Thaksin. To say Thailand would not go to war because of one man is a wrong assumption, the fact is Thailand is already in an internal war because of that one man. If there is restraint, then you can expect Thaksin to stir the pot more.
Thaksin has already forsaken his friendship with Hun Sen for personal gain, and it is clear Hun Sen now sees this and a delicate face saving dance must be performed. Changes of statements have come out within 24 hours saying the one size fits all answer that the media was at fault and was in error in what it heard. For Thaksin this is nothing new, as Hun Sen sees Thaksin as a friend, Thaksin sees Hun Sen as a pawn to be used and sacrificed if needed. Thaksin sees himself above everyone and every law and this simply adds additional proof to that.
Based on the level of friendship displayed by Hun Sen, it is entirely possible Thaksin may also be holding a Cambodian passport as well that has not been used yet. To suggest Thaksin would be some sort of advisor rings the same tone as the other countries that have issued a passport to Thaksin. This also fits Thaksin as he always seems to have more Aces up his sleeve than there are in the deck.
The bottom line is the more Cambodia dances with Thaksin, the greater the chance of war, and this plays into Thaksin’s game. He is the innocent bystander as per his usual selected appearance, and will be there to pick up the pieces as the rescuer of Thailand.