In 1975 the Khmer Rouge took control of Cambodia and began a four-year experiment in social reordering. To destroy traditional bonds of authority, they forcefully split families apart. Now, a Cambodian reality show is reconnecting estranged family members – and televising their dramatic reunions.
Harnessing the emotional trauma of one of the 20th century’s most tragic episodes — a nearly four-year ultracommunist revolution that left a quarter of Cambodia’s population dead — the reality TV show “It’s Not a Dream” is jarringly raw.
They are now aged and frail, but by historians' accounts, they once conducted themselves with fervor: presiding over this Southeast Asian country's holocaust as leading members of the ultra-communist Khmer Rouge and aggressively purging other regime officials to maintain their grip on power.
The Phnom Srok reservoir in northwest Cambodia spreads nearly as far as the eye can see, providing water year-round for agriculture, fishing and swimming. But the human bones that, according to locals, still lie on the floor of the reservoir tell a different story.
Vann Nath, a Cambodian who painted to stay alive, died on September 5th, aged 65.
The old and withered man, adorned in what looked like an oversize tea-cosy and sunglasses, seemed an unlikely mass-murderer when he appeared in court for the first time on June 27th. That is often the way with people brought to justice long after their alleged crimes were committed.
Four former Khmer Rouge leaders accused of genocide go on trial in Cambodia on Monday before a U.N.-backed tribunal amid charges of political meddling in the investigation of other cases.
The Dutch artist thinks some people recognized the iconic faces he had rendered: Those of prisoners tortured in the Khmer Rouge’s infamous S-21 prison. Memories of this death machine and its victims remain among the most indelible images of Cambodia’s nightmare revolution in the late 1970s, in which an estimated 1.7 million people perished.
Cambodia's new national curriculum requires students to learn about their country's brutal history. Former Khmer Rouge cadres who are now parents would rather not talk about it.
The term genocide has been used freely by Cambodians and foreign observers alike in reference to the atrocities committed during the Khmers Rouges’ ultra-Maoist revolution. But the tribunal, started in 2007, only introduced this monumental charge at the end of last year.
After three years of paying social visits, Cambodian journalist Thet Sambath finally gets what he wants from his secretive companion: a sign that the old man will discuss his past as second-in-command of the Khmer Rouge.
On July 26th the ex-teacher, Kaing Guek Eav, became the first Khmer Rouge official to pay for his part in the genocide of 1975-79, when some 2m people died: a UN-backed tribunal convicted him of war crimes and crimes against humanity, and jailed him for 35 years.
The tribunal has suffered from delays, weary donors, and claims of grave corruption and political meddling. But human-rights groups say Duch’s sentence represents a measure of hope: he is the first, but hopefully not the last, to be punished for the genocide.
The math teacher-turned-revolutionary betrayed little emotion as a judge read a statement saying that the coercive climate in which he followed orders, matched by his expression of remorse and cooperation with the tribunal, warranted a lesser sentence than life in prison. Victims and their families are dismayed.
Ta Mok was the ultra-Maoist regime's top military commander. In Anlong Veng, an isolated district of mostly wooden homes and crop fields north of Siem Reap, the name still conjures a mixture of worship and fear.
For years, efforts to recover the body of Hollywood swashbuckler icon Errol Flynn's son have come up empty-handed. Now, 40 years after Sean Flynn's abduction, two men say they uncovered a grave site in the Cambodian countryside that is likely his — generating a flurry of excitement, skepticism and resentment.
Journalists gather in Phnom Penh 35 years after the conflict to remember their wild nights and fallen comrades. The front lines in Cambodia’s war were even more vague than in Vietnam, the rules of engagement less defined, and there were no U.S. helicopters to extract distressed reporters from harm's way.
Almost 16 years after Australian backpacker David Wilson was kidnapped and killed in Cambodia by a Khmer Rouge militia, the Australian government is resisting fresh demands for full disclosure of the case file on his death.
The term genocide is often used reflexively to describe the Khmer Rouge's rule of terror that led to the deaths of at least 1.7 million Cambodians from overwork, starvation, and murder from 1975 to 1979. It was not, however, one of the charges former Khmer Rouge leaders had faced in the three-year-old U.N.-backed war crimes...
The trial of Khmer Rouge prison commander Comrade Duch underscores the difficulties of such an endeavor in a country with a reputation for corruption and a compromised judiciary.
A former Khmer Rouge prison chief who presided over the torture of about 15,000 prisoners who were later executed astonished observers of Cambodia's first genocide trial Friday by asking judges to release him because he had already served enough prison time and arguing that he shouldn't have been prosecuted in the first place.
While there is no substitute for Brother Number One, as Pol Pot was called, Cambodians may yet find some closure this week as the Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia hears closing arguments in the trial of the Khmer Rouge's top jailer — a blank-faced former math teacher who now wants to formally apologize...
A new TV show is rapidly extending the reach of the Khmer Rouge war crimes court to Cambodian households. Every Monday afternoon, along with fellow Cambodian journalist, Ung Chan Sophea, host Neth Pheaktra provides a sober summary and analysis of court testimony and the legal framework in which it is heard.