Here is a typical Cambodian story. Or is it? Everybody knows Cambodia has a huge number of generals compared to the size of the armed forces. There are reputedly something like 5,000 generals for armed forces of roughly 125,000. Now it is not quite clear whether this would include the police generals who would be called commissioners in other countries and ministerial ranks.

Anyway, one such 2-star general, there are up to 5-star generals, had been carrying on an affair with another woman for some time. The wife of 10 years with whom he had 3 children became suspicious after he went out at odd hours for military meetings and decided to followed him to his trysts. One day she caught him literally with his pants down, and shrieking, promptly went to the police to report him for adultery, which is a crime in Cambodia although seldom enforced. The police would have their hands full as Cambodian husbands are most likely some of the most unfaithful men in the world. The police promptly arrested him and he is now awaiting his trial in jail.

The background of this story is equally interesting as this general used to work as a moped taxi driver (motodup). His wife, as she reported it on Facebook, owned a little land at that time, which she parlayed into quite a fortune with the exploding real estate prices in Cambodia back in 2010 or so. She used the time-honored principle of buying and flipping land. According to her she was worth well over one million dollars. She even once gave him $800,000 for another investment in real estate. As it turns out this money was used to build a nice villa for his lover in an upscale area of Phnom Penh.

Now as is often the case with people who came into some money they want some stature and higher station in life to go with their wealth. Of course, a simple moped taxi driver, no matter how much his wife was worth, isn’t really something you like to brag about. So the wife used her money and some connections to buy her husband the military rank. Now he was somebody. Well, since he now was somebody he also needed the usual Cambodian accoutrements for such a high-ranking person. His money also made him quite attractive in the eyes of women who want to better their living standards. Unless the wife forgives him and takes him back he will have ample time to ponder his missteps. 

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Any inaccuracies are unintentional – this based on Facebook posts and newspaper reports. The pictures were published in major Cambodian newspapers so are in the public domain.

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