A Haunting Experience

Trip Start Sep 24, 2009
Trip End Ongoing

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Flag of Cambodia  ,
Wednesday, September 30, 2009

So today is the day of the Killing Fields and Tuol Sleng Genocide Museum (also known as S21). first was the Museum, this is where Pol Pot managed to kill thousands of Cambodian people due to their beliefs in the current government that ruled over Cambodia at the time.

It was a horrid experience, but also very worth while as you don't realize that they went through a similar experience that the Jews did in the 2nd world war. Once you enter the museum it hits you that only 30 years ago this happened. Some of the scenes that you saw were unreal and some thing that you would see in a Saw movie. Cells no bigger than 6ft by 3ft, all of the pictures of the innocent people that were killed were in huge rooms. The big horror was that if the person was already dead then they would still take a picture to show that they were a victim here.

While I was walking around being shown the torture machines that they used during the 4 years of its use, I was introduced to one of 4 survivors of the camp Chum Mey, he was merely sitting on a bench. It was amazing to here his story and account of what happened in the camp. He looked as if he enjoys informing people of the real truth behind the camp. It was so amazing and words can not describe the immense respect that I have for him, as we was saying that he lost all of his friends due to the camp. most of the first people in the facility were powerful people such as Doctors, Teachers, etc. But then Pol Pot started taking people that were named by other captives.

Now a days in Cambodia, 50% of the population is under the age of 18, this is mainly due to the fact of the Khmer Rouge.

The second part of my trip was to visit the killing fields. These were not as bad as S21 due to the fact that it was more tourist related. Still they had a thin tower with thousands of human skulls, I think the guide said somewhere in the region of 17 floors high. The killing fields were mass graves where the Khmer Rouge executed hundreds of thousands of Cambodians, women and children as well.

As you went round you could see the remains of the clothes that had been dug up. They had pictures showing how they would execute the victims (if you are easily offended then please finish reading here).

Most of the victims, to save money by buying bullets and ammunition, they would be killed using axes, hammers, knives (made from local tree branches), but also there was a tree that they use to swing babies against (known as the killing tree) smashing there heads, and then throwing them into the mass graves. It was so hard to look at the actual site where it all happened, but also at the same time, it is worth seeing just to understand their history.

this was all before lunch as well, after lunch we went over to the Grand Palace that opened at 2pm, amazing place and the views are amazing, lots of it were closed off to the public though. got some good photos. Trying to upload.

All in all it was a very hard day, and sorry everyone, i didn't take any pictures the whole day.

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rozberry on

Dictatorship- the horror
your graphic description of the torture and slaughter of innocent people and babies makes us read in disbelief what was sworn never to happen again after the Holocaust. History hasn't changed - power corrupts in evil hands.

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