In 1975, the Communist Party of Kampuchea, led by Pol Pot, invaded Phnom Penh and overthrew Lon Nol’s U.S. supported military dictatorship. The Communist Party of Kampuchea, otherwise known as the Khmer Rouge, was a Cambodian political party that based its ideals on nationalism, communism, and agrarian socialism. The Khmer Rouge first gained attention during communist movement that emerged from the anti-colonial struggle against France. During French rule, Cambodia was under the influence of western ideas and culture. Because Cambodia had been a French Protectorate since 1863, many aspects of Cambodian culture and identity were lost within French colonial rule. After seizing power over Cambodia in 1975 and it was renamed as Democratic Kampuchea. The Cambodian genocide occurred because a radical idea of nationalism and ended up wiping out one-third of Cambodia’s population. A debate surrounding Cambodian nationalism has been argued while investigating the history of the Khmer Rouge. Michael Vickery, the author of the book Cambodia 1975-1982, argued that the Khmer Rouge was inspired by the peasants to create a nation in which everyone had the same living standards.Ben Kiernan, director of the Genocide Studies Program at Yale University, argued that by favoring the peasants, the Khmer Rouge destroyed the working class. Kiernan also argues that “Pol Potism” rose from the idea of Cambodian nationalism. In 1976, Pol Pot created the “Four Year Plan” to build socialism in
Until 1975, the Khmer Rouge were popular. Originally, they had promised to raise the living standards of the poor, thus assuring the support of the people. When they took over they collectivized everything: cattle, buffalo, plates, everything (Kiernan 185). Pol Pot wished to set up an agrarian utopia inspired by Mao Zedong. Like Mao Zedong, Pol Pot implemented a policy similar to the Great Leap Forward declaring "Year Zero" in an attempt to purify society of all Western influences including "capitalism, Western culture, city life, religion, and all foreign influences" and transform Cambodia into a peasant - Communistic state (Cook). "The CPK [Communist Party of Kampuchea] attempted to distract people's attention from their situation by informing the peasants that life in Cambodia was superior to that in Vietnam, where people were reduced to eating chaff, while Chairman Mao's socialism was bringing progress in China" ensuring that Cambodia would soon follow (Kiernan 185). Pol Pot insisted that Cambodia would not be independent until the economy and society grew collectively. "To achieve our independence, domestic peace, and unity, we must mobilize the people's forces to build an egalitarian society without rich or poor...if the economy grows, society grows too..." (Ponchaud 74). During Pol Pot's stay in power, Marxist books became widespread, including the Communist Manifesto. Libraries had reopened and shared these communist books with lycées (Ponchaud
In the years of 1975 to 1979, Pol Pot became the head of the most murderous revolution of our time. His communist regime with the Khmer Rouge created one of the largest, yet greatly under-looked atrocities of the time. The genocide in his Democratic Kampuchea has created a death toll that could be as high as 3,000,000 people, or 25% of the country's population. (Chandler, 1999; Cambodia Genocide) In an attempt to refashion his country, "people were simply sacrificed to our struggle, not killed," as Pol Pot himself stated. (Pol Pot: Life of a Tyrant, 2000)
Pol pot's had been taken over and many Cambodians suffered so much from the genocide during the Khmer Rouge in the late 1970. One out of Three of the population in Cambodia died during that time. It has been established that the Khmer Rouge targeted particular groups of people, among them were educated elites. The elites consisted of masters, Ph.D., professors, students, and international student. In addition, people who have survived from the Khmer Rouge (pol pot) lied about their education. If they knew that they lied, they would have died in the camp. The most sadness, memories ever which were, they had lost their friend, cousin and family. According to this two article "SCREAM BLOODY MURDER" by Jennifer Hyde, and "WHY THE ARTS ARE AS IMPORTANT
The Cambodia of the late 19th and 20th century was a far cry from the once great Khmer Empire famous for its engagement in ambitious state projects such as the building of Angkor Wat. In 1884, France integrated Cambodia into its Indochinese colony. France lost its grip on Cambodia in 1941 to Japanese invasion during World War II but attempted to gain it back at the war's end. At the conclusion 1954 Geneva Accords that concluded the eight-year-long First Indochina War, Cambodia gained its independence. During the conflict, Cambodian elites such as Saloth Sar (Pol Pot) were receiving western education in Paris, a hotbed for radical Communist ideology at the time. After returning to Cambodia, in 1962, Pol Pot assumed leadership of the Communist
The Cambodian Genocide refers to Khmer Rouge Party Leader, Pol Pot’s, attempt to nationalize and centralize the peasant farming society of Cambodia, in accordance with the principles of Maoism, Stalinism, and the Chinese Communist agricultural model. All those who refused to conform, along with any traditional aspects of Cambodian society, were eliminated. The genocide rampaged from 1975 to 1979, claiming the lives of 25% of the country’s population through torture, mass relocation, executions, forced labour, malnutrition and disease.
In April 1975, Cambodia history would be changed forever. This was the start of Cambodia genocide. Pol Pot, the leader of the Khmer Rouge, became the ruler of Cambodia. He did not like the idea of them influenced by other countries. Khmer Rouge persecuted all the educated citizens. They persecuted doctors, lawyers, police, and former military. They even prosecuted Buddhists, Christians and Muslims. Khmer Rouge then put all the citizens in living arrangements according to their trust. The “old citizens” were the most trust worthy. Then, the pro-west and city dwellers were called “new citizens”. The last groups were the “candidates” and “full right citizens”. Anybody that refused re-education were killed in the fields or at the prison camp Tuol Sleng Centre. Khmer Rouge killed over 1.7 million people. In January 1979, Khmer Rouge was removed from power by Vietnam communist. Ever since the genocide, Cambodia became one of the least developed countries in the world. According to United Nations Inter-Agency Project on Human Trafficking,” Poverty, lack of education, and employment opportunities have left many Cambodians, particularly women and children, in extremely vulnerable situations”. This would cause people to find many different ways to make money. Families would sell their daughters to brothels to pay off debts. Girls who are forced to work in brothels endure rape, abuse and torture.
Khmer Rouge’s interpretation of Leninist/Marxist/Maoist communist model made them believe that they could mold a classless society by eliminating all the social classes apart from peasants who are poor. The elimination led to annihilation of all careers marked by the intellectuals and religion. The many groups included teachers, lawyers,doctors and any religious figures. About more than 500,000 people died in the “killing fields” and more than a million died from starvation due to only eating 200 calories of rice each day. Those that complained about their labor or tasks were tortured in a detention center like the infamous S-21, and the would be killed. The bones of the people who died are filled up in mass graves all over the country. Pol Pot seized control of Cambodia and renaming the country Democratic Kampuchea. Pol Pot governed a huge part of the country behind the scenes. Pol Pot became prime minister in 1976 when Sihanouk resigned. At that time the borders between Vietnam and Cambodia were fighting and got very intense from 1977-1979, the Vietnamese had their 60,000 troops capture Phnom Penh and forced Pol Pot to flee back to the jungle where he would resume guerilla
The Communist Party of Kampuchea, also known as the Khmer Rouge, took control of Cambodia on April 17, 1975, which lasted until January 1979. For their three-year, eight-month, and twenty-one day rule of Cambodia, the Khmer Rouge committed some of the most heinous crimes in current history. The main leader who orchestrated these crimes was a man named Pol Pot. In 1962, Pol Pot had become the coordinator of the Cambodian Communist Party. The Prince of Cambodia, Norodom Sihanouk, did not approve of the Party and forced Pol Pot to flee to exile in the jungle. There, Pol formed a fortified resistance movement, which became known as the Khmer Rouge, and pursued a guerrilla war against Sihanouk’s government. As Pol Pot began to accumulate power,
During the Pol Pot Regime, 25 percent of Cambodia’s population was killed due to executions, starvation, and overwork. Pol Pot wanted to form a communist farming society which resulted in the death of 2,000,000 people during 1975-1979. This genocide started because of a man named Pol Pot and the Communist group (Khmer Rouge) in Cambodia.
Pol Pot with his plan in mind, renamed Cambodia to the Democratic Republic of Kampuchea. Pol Pot declared the year ‘zero’ and he then began to “purify” the Cambodian society (Amendola). Pol Pot supported the idea of the extreme form of peasant communism, so he banned all western civilization influences, such as city life and capitalism. Foreigners were expelled along with religion (Lavinia). National embassies were shut down and the use of foreign language was outlawed. There was no use of media, news, and communication allowed, including limited mail and phone. All businesses, education, and education disappeared, and parental authority was void. Cambodia became a sealed of location in the world
Introduction: the cambodian genocide happened in 1975 when a communist guerrilla group known as the Khmer rouge and their leader pol pot seized power in cambodia after the vietnam war. The vision pol pot had was to bring cambodia back down to year zero and nationalize and centralize the peasant farming society. the way pol pot did it was by killing anyone who had anysort of education or was of ethnic or religious minority (world without genocide)
Cambodian Communist Party leader, Pol Pot (1962), went into hiding from the then Cambodian leader Prince Norodom Sihanouk. While he was avoiding the Prince he created a movement called the Red Cambodians (Khmer Rouge) and tried to wage guerrilla warfare against Sihanouk. When a military coup staged by the U.S. took away Sihanouk’s power, he joined forced with Pol Pot’s Khmer Rouge. As the U.S. continuously bombed North Vietnam holding locations as far as Cambodia, their population of peasants began to feel the effects as hundreds of thousands were in the midst war games between 1969-1973; as a result the Cambodian peasants went to Phnom Penh, the capital city of Cambodia. The U.S. presence was seen as harmful eventually pulled away from supporting
Pol Pot who was born in Cambodia,led the Khmer Rouge from 1963 until 1997 and also served as the General Secretary of the Communist Party of Kampuchea.On April 1975,when his forces captured Phnom Penh,he became leader of Cambodia.During that time of his leadership, about 1.5 million Cambodians out of a total population of 7 to 8 million died of starvation, execution, disease or overwork, apparently the death toll was higher.At one point in his life,Pol Pot taught history, geography and French literature at a private school while simultaneously planning a revolution.Sadly, Pol Pot died unexpectedly in his sleep on April 15, 1998, due to heart failure.
Some say that Pol Pot was responsible for the power and control of Cambodia because “Pol Pot cut Cambodia off from the world. He banned foreign and minority languages and attacked the neighboring countries of Laos, Vietnam, and Thailand in an attempt to regain ancient ‘lost territory’” (The life of Pol Pot- Cambodia 4). This statement is true because the Khmer Rouge did gain part of their power by isolating the country, but Pol Pot is not fully responsible for that. There were other people involved, like Nuon Chea, Ieng Sary, Son Sen and Khieu Samphan all of these people were also leaders in the Khmer Rouge. Nuon Chea was the second leader in the Khmer Rouge he is known as “The evil genius of the movement” (Chandler 1), because he is the one who was in charge of the prison system. He was one of the one’s with a heartless mind, planning tortures and executing innocent people.