Refugee Narratives: Ten Stories of Cambodian Refugees

Entry 6 (Edited Transcription)

[Flower Drawing] Dear sisters! [Flower Drawing]

*  *  *
First of all I would like to point out the fact that Khmer Rouge had organised to take over Cambodia.

What did the Communist regime in Cambodia mean? From April 1975 to January 1979, the Khmer people had received one new situation from Pol Pot that they had never experienced before in Khmer history.

We no longer had secondary school or university, just elementary school for children to teach the pupils to write and read the Khmer language well.

They found and killed all the official-workers, soldiers, students, intellectuals, and doctors etc…

They forced people to work hard in the fields from five in the morning until late evening and some hours at night without any holidays. They gave an insufficient amount of food to citizens and took two-thirds of the best quality and largest quantity of the food the people produced to feed their families and their party.

There were no specialists for medical services.

They separated the boys and the girls from their families and then forced them into hard work in the fields far from their village. And they gave them little food to eat so that the boys and girls became weaker and thinner.

After what I had told you happened, many millions of people died of hunger or were killed for stealing food and for not obeying or not following their Communist ruler.

[Page 27] On account of these cruelties done against people, those who were Khmer nationalists rebelled against the Communist regime and wanted their country to get freedom.

Pol Pot was one murderer with a bloody hand, both selfish and a leftist. He strongly held the power in his hand and had the intention to kill the whole Khmer nation.

Then three million people were killed, and the remainder of the people who were still alive were almost skin and bones with chalk white faces. Many thousands of the children were orphaned because of politics.

[Written in a drawn heart] Remember me sisters.

Here is my personal history.

I am [V. K.] (surname) called [V.] and was born on the 28th of February, the second son of my father [K. S.] and mother [S. T.].

There are eleven people in the family. They are seven brothers and four sisters.

My father was a director of the fisheries office in 1975. He was killed during the Communist regime (of Pol Pot) in 1976. My mother is a housewife. I was educated in a secondary school at Phnom Penh, where I studied three languages (English, French and Cambodian) for twelve years in class. Surely, I would like to continue my studies, and I hope to be a doctor.

Sisters, you rightly knew that as a baby, from its birth, needs care from its parents in feeding, then, when it grows up, the parents bring it to school to improve its education so that it should get a good job for life.

[Page 28] But for me, I’m a lonely boy right now, and no tutor stays with me. I’m a long way along life’s adventure, but I can only see the darkness. I shall become a dangerous person if I take a wrong path, which I might do unless somebody holds my hands and shows me the right way.

<< At this present time, I wish the people, world, and humanitarian organisations would save us, the Khmer nationality, and help us to manage our country to become an independent nation. >>

Then for my impression of Khao-I-Dang, I will remind you, Sisters, of our amiable cooperation since we began our work together on January 11th 1980. The Rehab & Recreational unit was our office in which we were busy with patients from morning till afternoon. Certainly, all the patients were very excited and thanked us very much for all our care and kindness in healing them. Now I sincerely wish you, Sisters, all the best wishes and personal regards. I feel confident that you will keep my text as a souvenir in the future, in order to remember me easily.

May you excuse me for my English mistakes.

Thanks a lot.

From Y.Y.
(Mr. [V. K.])

This page has paths: