Mekong Review Issue 4

MR4-cover

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A sneak preview

Kem Lay: Meet kill

Meet kill

This is no country for decent and outspoken men. On 10 July, at just after half-past eight in the morning, Dr Kem Ley, a prominent Cambodian political commentator and grassroots organiser, was shot and killed while drinking coffee at a Caltex service station in downtown Phnom Penh. The bullets were fired from close range by an unemployed former soldier who was picked up in the street by police shortly afterwards, blood streaming from his head after being pummelled by an angry mob. When asked for his name, the sinewy forty-three-year-old offered a chilling sobriquet: “Chuob Samlap” — literally, “Meet Kill.”
Sebastian Strangio

Out of the box

Out of the box

Like others who came before them to America, the Vietnamese have sought to claim their voice in the land they have adopted or found themselves born into.
Viet Thanh Nguyen

ambodian vérité

Cambodian vérité

Arriving on the packed red carpet at the Cannes Film Festival, the actors could hear their names announced over the speakers: distinctively Khmer names uttered with a French accent; cameras flashing and photographers jostling all around. Director Davy Chou recalls, “It was an out of body experience. What was magical for me was ‘Let’s go, our turn, let’s go’ and then after just thirty seconds of taking photographs, the actors felt comfortable, like real stars. Aza, the actress, she was very natural posing for the photos, smiling very quickly.”
Daniel Mattes

The Viet bride

The Viet bride

I remember, it was graduation day. Students of the department’s first graduating class gathered in the university yard to take a souvenir picture. I would lose that picture, later, in Puli while escaping a violent rapist.
Trang Ha

Sok Sa Bai

Sok Sa Bai

Where are the monks? I came here to see the monks. I thought there were monks everywhere. Where are they?”
Nguyen Qui Duc

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