Friday, 20 June 2008

Two things you should know about Cambodia

We've just arrived in Cambodia by river boat and judging by people's questions about the place, it seems that a lot of us know surprisingly little about Cambodia. Apart from having a very cool and exotic name, people seem to realise that it's a poor place and that at some point something bad happened here. Here's a quick introduction to two things you should know about the place:

1) The famous Angkor Wat temples were the capital of a vast Khmer Empire that stretched from Burma to Vietnam and included most of Thailand and lasted from around 802 to 1432

2) During the mid-70s over 2 million Cambodian people were executed by the Khmer Rouge regime in one of history's most bloody and brutal attempts of social change. The elderly, academics, women, children and even people who wore glasses were systematically tortured and executed
in an ethnic cleansing programme that saw more people die than during Hitler's rule.

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