The Killing Fields, Cambodia
Tuol Sleng Museum of Genocide in Phnom Penh
S-21 Prison Was the Stop Before the Killing Fields
Suzan Examining One of the Holding Cells Where
Torture Occurred and Prisoners Waited.

Approximately three million innocent Cambodians were killed when their leader, Pol Pat, decided to create an Agrarian Society. All of the intellectuals (teachers, lawyers, political figures, etc.) and anyone with any means would be eliminated. Camdodia still struggles today since an entire generation of its people were wiped out during Pol Pat's regime. They also destroyed all of the historical records of the society - and everyone is doing their best to piece this together now. We visited this school which was used as the holding cells and torture chambers. The tortures ranged from hanging people upside down and then flushing water (usually vile water) in mouths/noses to electric shocks and others. The prisoners were forced to give their 'confessions' and these were all documented. They also took photos of each of the prisoners before they were tortured and/or killed (everything carefully documented). Jim and I walked through the floors that housed thousands of these photos - we could almost feel the pain vibrating from the faces that stared back. It is difficult to imagine such horrors occurring in the late 1970's and that at the time the United States supported the regime responsible for this travesty (with the notion that no one really knew what was going on).

Choung Ek, Where the Mass Graves Are Located.
A Grim Reminder of What a Madman Pol Pot Was.
The Infamous Killing Tree Where Soldiers of Pol
Pot Would Smash Babies Against the Tree.

Following the S-21 Prison, the victims of this crazed war on Cambodians were taken here. They were either gunned down or in some cases, buried alive in mass sites (as shown). Sometimes people watched their family members be killed first knowing they would be next. This place had such an eery cast to it as if the screams were all muffled in the ground. The Killing Tree is the place where they did the most horrific of all - they would use the tree to smash the babies to expedite their process. I imagined this tree to be overburdened with guilt and shame for its part in the crimes. The skulls of many thousands of the victims were kept for display even though it is important in the Cambodian culture to be cremated (to escalate the process of moving onto another life). The Cambodian people felt it far more important to have the skulls be a reminder of what had occurred in hopes that an atrocity such as this would never occur again.

The Skulls and Other Remains of Those Killed at
Choung Ek Are Displayed in a Memorial Tower.
A Villager Quietly Tends to Her Crops Just Meters
From Where the Choung Ek Killing Fields Are.

Enter images and other content here

Boats Bobbing Peacefully on a Pond That
Adjoins the Orchard Where the Killing Fields Are.
A Village on the Outskirts of the Area Where
the Killing Fields Are.