Five days after the dramatic evacuation of Americans, the U.S.-backed government fell to communist Khmer Rouge guerrillas. They drove Phnom Penh’s 2 million inhabitants into the countryside at gunpoint. Nearly 2 million Cambodians — one in every four — would die from executions, starvation and hideous torture.
What happened after the Cambodian genocide?
The Vietnamese invasion of Cambodia ended the genocide by defeating the Khmer Rouge in January 1979. On 2 January 2001, the Cambodian government established the Khmer Rouge Tribunal to try the members of the Khmer Rouge leadership responsible for the Cambodian genocide.
Why did US invade Cambodia?
Cambodian neutrality and military weakness made its territory a safe zone where PAVN/VC forces could establish bases for operations over the border. With the US shifting toward a policy of Vietnamization and withdrawal, it sought to shore up the South Vietnamese government by eliminating the cross-border threat.
Why did America return the Khmer Rouge?
According to Tom Fawthrop, U.S. support for the Khmer Rouge guerrillas in the 1980s was “pivotal” to keeping the organization alive, and was in part motivated by revenge over the U.S. defeat during the Vietnam War.
How did the Cambodian genocide affect the economy?
Increasing budgetary expenditures, skyrocketing inflation, shrinking export earnings, and a rising balance-of-payments deficit plagued the war-torn economy. The war’s most damaging effect was on rice production. In 1972 Cambodia needed to import rice (from Japan and from Thailand) for the first time since independence.
Who started the Cambodian genocide?
During their brutal four-year rule, the Khmer Rouge was responsible for the deaths of nearly a quarter of Cambodians. The Cambodian Genocide was the result of a social engineering project by the Khmer Rouge, attempting to create a classless agrarian society.
Does the Khmer Rouge still exist?
Following their victory, the Khmer Rouge, who were led by Pol Pot, Nuon Chea, Ieng Sary, Son Sen, and Khieu Samphan, immediately set about forcibly evacuating the country’s major cities. In 1976 they renamed the country Democratic Kampuchea.
What started the war in Cambodia?
The war was sparked by a disagreement between the neutral administration of King Sihanouk, the head of state, and the serving Prime Minister Lon Nol. Political tension and economic instability in the capital city Phnom Penh was piling pressure on rural communist communities.