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Teach the truth about the Killing Fields of Cambodia

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May 3, 2013 (May 4, Cambodian time)
The Cambodian tragedy of 1975 to 1979, known as the
Killing Fields (due to the work of Dr. Haing S. Ngor)
was brought about by the takeover of all of Cambodia
by the brutal Khmer Rouge Communist government
on April 17, 1975, when the Lon Nol regime fell in
Phnum Penh, the capital of Cambodia. The country
was renamed Democratic Kampuchea. The brutal
Communist dictator, Pol Pot, was a protege of
Mao Tse Tung (Mao Zedong), the dictator of
Communist China. Mao congratulated Pol Pot
on achieving "perfect Communism" in Cambodia.
What Pol Pot and his unleashed Khmer Rouge
sadists did to the Cambodian population of about
eight million, was to slaughter about 7.1 million of
the Cambodian people in cold blood. The genocide
of the Cambodian people was brought about by
shootings, mutilation by heavy machinery, starvation,
poisonings, torture, electrocution, forced execution
by child soldiers, caging people and leaving them
to die, brutal beatings, impalement by bayonets,
injection, hanging, feeding people to animals,
bludgeonings, ripping people apart alive, mutilation,
exposure to the elements outdoors, roasting
and baking people alive, gang rapes by soldiers,
gouging people's eyes out, amputations, and
throwing people off parapets and cliffs.
The Khmer Rouge were overthrown in 1979
when Vietnam invaded Cambodia. The Khmer
Rouge picked a fight with Vietnam, and the
Vietnamese government used the occasion as
a pretext to invade and occupy the entire country
with the motive of getting rid of the Khmer Rouge
and setting up a civilized government to replace
them in Phnum Penh and throughout 80% of the
country. The Khmer Rouge managed to hold on
to some parts of the country where they were able
to regroup and then later be captured by the forces
loyal to the replacement Government. In this fighting,
and in the land-mine deaths and maimings resulting from
the Khmer Rouge warfare going back to 1970, the final
tally of destruction was reached - and all of it can be laid
at the doorstep of Communism's most proportionately
awful and brutally destructive regime - the Khmer Rouge.
Those academics who disparage 'the Domino Effect"
theory, must realize by now that the triumph of evil
in Cambodia which followed the vacuum of American
influence in Southeast Asia precipitated by the fall of
the central highlands and most of South Vietnam in
March of 1975, was proven correct; and that in many
ways the fall of Cambodia, the fall of the Saigon remnant
of South Vietnam, and the fall of Laos vindicated the
American effort to assist South Vietnam from 1961 to
1973. That is not to say that the war was not a mistake
for America to have blundered into, but the war was not
entirely the war of "aggression" or "imperialism" depicted
by its detractors. The American war in Vietnam ranged
somewhere between a noble cause and a hypocritical
exercise in self-righteous rage, tainted by both ignorance
and witch-hunting. America should learn from the mistakes
of the war, but Americans should not be taught that the
entire war was a mistake - because it did ultimately
play a key role in bringing about the fall of Iron Curtain
Communism and an end to the Cold War. And Americans
should be mindful of their responsibility to honor those
who fought in that war, and to pay respects to those
of many nations, not only our own, who gave their
lives for the cause of freedom in this war. As American
soldiers, sailors and airmen gave their lives to defend
the cause of freedom in Southeast Asia, so did every
one of the Cambodians who died in the killing fields
defend freedom and defend their country as well.
This will be understood by future generations more
clearly than we can see this now.
The goal of the Khmer Rouge was to clear the countryside
of Cambodians so that the country could be taken over
by China with minimal resistance;
so that the rich rice-growing regions, rubber plantations
and the incredibly unique and rich Tonle Sap fishery environment
could become a resource at the command of China's
government, and used in a mercantile colonialist way
to feed China's people. The plot - which was much
like today's Plaasmoorde genocide which has slaughtered
over 100,000 White South Africans in the same way -
did not achieve its goals, but it caused sorrowful anguish
and unnecessary destruction. This Communist
Chinese complicity in the Khmer Rouge genocide
explains why Vietnam acted to oust the Khmer Rouge -
Vietnamese generals took one look at the map, and
immediately saw the danger of being outflanked
by China on the north, east and west. And China
had already taken the Paracel Islands (Hoang Sa)
from Vietnam by force in 1974, and by 1979 was
using the Pol Pot puppet regime to goad Vietnam
in order to test its resolve (much as China is using
North Korea today to test the resolve of the USA).
Well, Vietnam not only passed the test, but they
taught China a few things about testing the patience of
other countries, both in 1979 and in 1980. As a
result, the United States has no firmer friend
in the region today than Vietnam.
The role of Communist China in abetting and aiding
this takeover of Cambodia by a genocidal regime
must be the topic of further study and research and
verification. This must be an urgent priority, as the
witnesses to these events in the 1960s and 1970s
must be interviewed while time permits. They must
be encouraged to come forward and tell the truth
without fear of recrimination. And we must support
these truthful witnesses.
The figure of 7.1 million Cambodians killed as a result
of the Khmer Rouge genocide will seem inflated to some
people. They may ask, "How is it possible for this to have
taken place, when there were only eight million Cambodians
at the time?" Actually, there may have been fewer than
seven million Cambodians in 1970, when the Khmer Rouge
wars began. But during the four years from 1975 to 1979, and
in the aftermath of mine explosions and residual warfare and
associated casualties, millions of people died in a country
wherein there were not enough living left to bury the dead
in village after village, town after town, and city after
city. As a response to this high death rate, any Cambodian
couple of childbearing age had as many children as
possible - nine children per family was not an unusual figure
from 1979 to 1997. During the years from 1970 to 1997,
from the start to the finish of the Khmer Rouge warfare and
genocide, (and the Khmer Rouge goes back long before
1970), there were about 31 million Cambodians who at
some point during those years lived. 7.5 million did
not survive the Khmer Rouge, who would otherwise
have lived. At least half of all adult
Cambodians who were alive in 1975 were killed
by Khmer Rouge activity by 1997 - and one of the
last casualties on that list may well have been
Dr. Haing S. Ngor himself, who was slain in a
"robbery" in California in 1996, some years after
he became famous for telling the truth about the
Khmer Rouge in his documentary about
the life of good citizen Mr. Dith Pran, which
introduced the term "The Killing Fields" into the
English language.
The figure of "one million Cambodians" killed by the
Khmer an insulting propaganda exercise
meant to minimize the true scope, horror and proportion
of this awful genocide. Forensic researchers easily
found evidence of the killings of 1,386,734 people in
Cambodia during 1975-1979 alone - and the researchers
were able to tabulate this years afterward. Remember that
much of Cambodia is a subtropical environment covered
with rain forest, in which the evidence of such killing-fields
activity can be easily and quickly lost through exposure to
the air and elements.
The political motives behind the actions of those who
wish to insult our intelligence by publishing lowball
figures of "one million" Cambodians killed in this
brutal time and place of history...are obvious motives
of propaganda. My intention here is less to focus
on those motives of propagandists and disinformation
artists, than to focus on the truth.
The Cambodian people and their ardent supporters
in the international community have made great strides
in returning conditions for the Cambodian people
back to where Cambodian survivors of this holocaust
can live as normally as possible, and in some cases
are living under very blessed circumstances with
opportunities undreamed of only a few years ago.
These survivors, and all people who care about them
and about justice and freedom and peace, deserve
the truth. So do all future generations. Dr. Haing S. Ngor,
after he completed the production of the movie
"The Killing Fields", said, "I don't care if I die now or not,
I am satisfied that I have made a movie that will
last 100 years.
This movie will survive 100 years? 100 years is but
a modest fleck of sand on the great beach we call
No, the movie and the dream behind the movie -
the dream of telling the truth bravely and in full -
will survive forever, as will the brave spirit of
Dr. Haing S. Ngor and those who
still stand with him today.
American and world educators - research in more
detail, and teach the truth about the NIGHT of
Cambodia, as Dr. Elie Wiesel might describe it.
Teach the truth about The Killing Fields of Cambodia.
Scott Davis
PO Box 877
Edgmont, PA 19028-0877

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