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Genocide High School

Autor:   •  June 28, 2018  •  919 Words (4 Pages)  •  246 Views

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inmates were brutally tortured and interrogated to confess to their crimes. Different means of torture were used, ranging from waterboarding, use of whips, electric shock, rape, and medical experimentation. Many individuals died through these techniques, but those who lived often gave a confession. Interrogators of the prison demanded they state what role in the CIA or KGB they were involved in. Confessions would vary from a thousand words to a short paragraph, although those espionage activities were imaginary. Family such as the mother, father, grandmother, grandfather, uncle, aunt, cousin, and, even second-cousin, were all captured and later killed along with the confessor to prevent a retaliation.

In the earlier years of S-21, the bodies were buried near the prison, but burial grounds within the complex became crowded. Almost 25 miles from S-21, people were casted away to Choeung Ek, an orchard just outside Phnom Penh, to die. This site is one of the well known “Killing Fields” throughout Cambodia, where people were sent for execution. Approximately 10,000 people were buried on those grounds.

During the final years of the Democratic Kampuchea, Pol Pot and other leaders began attacking villages near the Vietnam and Thailand border. An aim to expand their territory and revive the ancient Khmer Empire that once ruled those lands. Those skirmishes failed and led to the Vietnamese invasion of Cambodia, resulting in Phnom Penh being seized by Vietnam and eventually the Khmer Rouge were defeated and lost control of Cambodia. The prison was discovered in 1979 by a Vietnamese combat photographer.

Former commander of S-21, Kaing Geuk Eav, was found guilty in 2010 on crimes against humanity at an international tribunal in Phnom Penh. Today, Tuol Sleng stands as a memorial museum and is open to the public, as well as Choeung Ek.

Seventy-five percent of Cambodia is too young to recall the actions of the Khmer Rouge during those years, although many of their families were affected psychologically.

The scale of this genocide went almost unnoticed for four years, and still today, many are uninformed on what happened in post-Vietnam-War Cambodia thirty years ago.


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