Thursday, April 9, 2009

Erasing Cambodia's Memory

A poignant feature by Seth Mydans in the New York Times about how most young people in Cambodia don't know about the communist genocide that killed 1.7 million between 1975-79. Various possibilities are explored. Then, buried in the story:
[Prime Minister] Hun Sen was a mid-level Khmer Rouge commander, though there is apparently no evidence that he committed major crimes. Several ranking members of his ruling party and the military are also former members of Khmer Rouge.

Because of these cross-currents in recent Cambodian history, the Khmer Rouge period has not been taught in school...
Oh, we get it. The government lies about or covers up recent history. No wonder younger people are ignorant. But if Nazis had been in the German government in the 1970s and were covering up the Holocaust, is this the kind of story we'd be reading?

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