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Flag of the Monatio

MONATIO, short for Mouvement National (French for "National Movement") was a short-lived, supposedly nationalist, political faction in Cambodia. The exact nature of the group is still obscure. On April 17, 1975, as the revolutionary forces came closer to the capital, this group took out a motor-cavalcade on the streets of Phnom Penh welcoming the arrival of the Khmer Rouge guerrillas. According to François Ponchaud's eye-witness report, the group consisted of a handful of soldiers, dressed in black uniforms, accompanied by a number of students. He claims MONATIO was led by Hem Keth Dara (the whole group in turn manipulated by Lon Non, brother of deposed Lon Nol).[1] The Khmer Rouge regime later claimed that MONATIO had been a CIA conspiracy against the revolutionary government.[2]

A movie on the events of 1975, called MONATIO, has been made by Norodom Sihanouk. According to the movie, the communist forces were hardly pleased to be welcomed by MONATIO, and the MONATIO militias were captured and executed.[3]


  1. ^ Ponchaud, François. Camboya a sangre y fuego. Año Cero, second edition. Buenos Aires: 1979. p. 17.
  2. ^ Isaacs, Arnold R.. Without Honor: Defeat in Vietnam and Cambodia. JHU Press, 1999. p. 283
  3. ^ New Page 5 Archived 2009-01-09 at the Wayback Machine.

External links[edit]

Media related to MONATIO at Wikimedia Commons