It did not take Thaksin very long to get Cambodia’s Prime Minister Hun Sen to show he is nothing more than Thaksin’s puppet. Hun Sen has tried to save face by looking strong and making some noise, but Thaksin has caused every move he makes to look like a puppet, and that is sure not to sit well with the Cambodian people.
Dancing with the devil has significant fallout, and when the devil just happens to be from Thailand, it can look very bad when you consider the conflict between the countries caused by Thaksin. Both Cambodians and Thais are very patriotic people. But it becomes a hard act to embrace Thaksin with one arm and push Thais away with the other. At the very least it sends a mixed message on both sides of the Thailand Cambodian border. Simply put Hun Sen has been sucked into Thai politics and that simply complicated things for him politically at home.
Imagine if you would how Hun Sen is seen by the Cambodian people. At the least it appears to be like a ship without a rudder. At the other end of the spectrum it looks like he is a traitor of sorts to be in cahoots with the same people he is calling the enemy after using The Preah Vihear Temple as a political tool.
It will be a few days to a few weeks before the full political damage to Hun Sen is realized. Trying to explain his way out is a near impossibility as the complexity of the story is over the heads of most including the more educated Cambodians. The attempt at explaining will simply make him look like more of a puppet and not a leader. That will have the effect of being stuck in political quicksand, the more you try to get out, the deeper you sink.
From a spectators view this should prove to be one of the more interesting displays in Cambodian politics. Even in the best possible light, Hun Sen will be greatly diminished in the eyes of the Cambodian people, and for that he can simply thank Thaksin.