Selected Comments Samdech Moha Bovor Thipadei Hun Manet, at the inauguration of the multi-purpose study building, residence building and canteen building at the National Defense University, the graduation of the 2023 training course and the new welcoming the intake for 2024 [Unofficial and translations]



(1) Insecurity from New Year celebrations decreased by 30% compared to last year

[…] We organized this (inauguration) event after we celebrated the New Year all over the country […] (that has been noted that) negative phenomena such as quarrels and fights had not been many, and other insecurity problems decreased by 30% this year compared to last year. People were out observing the Khmer New Year in a respectful manner. This is the spirit of celebrating the New Year […] in general, together, we have celebrated this year a good event […]


(2) National defense is a constant task; three levels of soldiers; officers have 2 roles

I have said times and again, as long as we have a country that is called “Cambodia”, national defense is a constant task and an important duty of all of us, especially the armed forces. At the heart of national defense is the quality of human resources. In the field of defense, we have three levels of soldiers – officers, deputies and soldiers. The officers play a key role in the defense sector. They carry out the two roles as manager and leader. As the manager, their main tasks are planning, job division and assignment of duties to subordinates, and responsibility on related matters to ensure the success of the unit’s mission and the mission of subordinates […]

(3) The National Defense University ensures the training quality senior officers

The role of the National Defense University is to train senior officers who will ensure the quality of army training […] in every military training schools for the army in general, and for the training of all three-level officers in particular. We currently have the Thmath Pong Active Officers’ School, the Thlok Ta Sek Infantry Institute, which provides basic officer training. We have a National Defense University that provides training for two levels of officers – medium and senior – for the general staff and national defense […] for the near future, we can offer such strategic training not only to the soldiers of the Royal Cambodian Armed Forces, but also to civilian senior officials and other types of armed forces on defense strategy, national and social security strategy […]

(4) National security and defense are the core strategies

We have the faculties of foreign languages, logistics, and other others, but national security and defense are still at the core of the strategic level, and more importantly, when our country does not operate only at a domestic level as every hustle is now relating to the region and the world. Fighting eruption elsewhere may also affect us, sometimes economically and sometimes security […] in this context, why are we strengthening the military training facilities? It is to strengthen the army. Strengthening the army is to strengthen the officers who will lead the defense forces for decades to come […] In many countries, the National Defense University acts as a training ground for military strategy, national security strategy (and even) civil servants are go to learn […] to understand national security, whereas it is even more important that senior officers of the country need to understand this work. We cannot just look at tactical issues. Senior officers need to know about politics, geography, and understand activities that are relating to social security, economy, society […]

(5) Weapons can make war, but can also keep the peace

Officers need to understand and sharpen (understand regarding) this task. At a time when the world is evolving into a multi-regional mechanism, particularly, the Asia-Pacific region, where the military situation is evolving rapidly […] affecting the socio-economic situation […] along with striving and rapid competition of great powers in the region […] the military relation has two faces – it is a weapon that can make war, but it is also a force that can keep the peace. In this context, understanding and doing military diplomacy is important. Military diplomacy is not limited to the level of the Minister of Defense, but at all levels. Overseas cooperation, either within the framework of the UN or bilateral and multilateral exercises that our troops are more involved, plays a role in maintaining friendship between countries and in the region […]

(6) Conduct regular research to sustain and modernize military training documents and update military/army trainers

[…] The National Defense University can strengthen the qualifications of the military instructors/trainers and increase involvement of military officers in training at the National Defense University […] so that we can ensure the quality and in-keeping of military instructors/trainers. The biggest risk in the military schools is the sustainability of the military instructors/trainers. Actions must be taken in consideration of military instructors, capacity building, qualifications of the military in the research, especially military officers with many years of knowledge and experience […]

We need to conduct regular research to sustain and modernize military documents and trainers […] today, I am talking about the framework of the National Defense University, but it is also the consideration of all universities. In training, if there are no trainers and no documents/teaching materials, we certainly have a hard time. The military instructors/trainers can serve as a base, and the teaching materials are in their brains. Documents need to be updated, and regular research need to be carried out to make them up to date […] in advanced training, we need to expand the scope of training and research […] professional officers in the units […] upon their retiring ages could be brought in to continue their service in some way at the center. We need brains, we need this teaching materials compilation […]


(7) Working out the proportion of military recruitment and training of officers

I have given the task, and we have been fulfilling it from the beginning of the year, about the proportion of recruits per year and the training of officers. We need to look into issue regarding the three levels of cadets, plus overseas training, how many soldiers we have to recruit per year? What percentage of the soldiers are in the army? […] why (Cambodia has) more officers? […] Cambodia’s current military officers are mostly those who participated in the circumstances in which we were at war. To end the war, we have to integrate, organize, build and maintain forces […] in the future (for efficiency) of command leadership […] we need to increase the number of fighters, increase the proportion of the deputies and soldiers, especially combat troops, the frontline combat units, making sure they have more soldiers than officers […] over the years, we have reduced the number of active and infantry officers recruited through taking exams […]

(8) Recruitment of conscripts largely through the port of duty, except for the necessary skills

The recruitment of conscripts has not yet taken into account all the legal standards. In the future, probably a large part will have to go through the gate of conscription for the soldiers, except for some exceptional skills […] which we can inspect and recruit in a special framework […] but also not too many. Do not pick 10% from the normal compulsion, and 90% through the special case […] for our youth, in this regard, it is a good thing, because judging from the present condition, if s/he goes into the military, it means a lifetime career […] with the 18 months military conscription or so, for instance, s/he has a choice (whether to leave or to stay) and the unit commanders also have the opportunity to evaluate at the end of the conscription […]

(9) To realize the pyramid reinforcement style within ten years

We open the door for the National Defense University to have the right to contract professors specializing in geopolitics, for example, rather than inviting the professors from time to time. They may have a contract for five years, but they may not be a soldier. They have a civil contract. They just come to teach skills […] we prepare this facility for the training of both military officers and civil servants, but not for the private sector […] because it is still a matter of national security, national defense […] in this regard, the rector may determine the necessary level of civil servants as to who need to understand the work of politics and security in relating to national security […] between 2024 and 2025, let us come up with a plan that provides us the knowledge that what would be the appropriate composition of soldiers and officers […] and set a goal that we will realize this pyramid style reinforcement, perhaps within ten years […]./.