Politics

Brother Number One by David Chandler

In the tragic recent history of Cambodia—a past scarred by a long occupation by Vietnamese forces and by the preceding three-year reign of terror by the brutal Khmer Rouge—no figure looms larger or more ominously than that of Pol Pot. As secretary of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of Kampuchea (CPK) since 1962 and as prime minister of Democratic Kampuchea (DK), he has been widely blamed for trying to destroy Cambodian society.

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Strongman: The Extraordinary Life of Hun Sen by Harish C. Mehta and Julie B. Mehta

Strongman: The Extraordinary Life of Hun Sen is the biography of the Cambodian leader whose private life has been a closely guarded secret. Fully updated and revised from the authors’ first edition (Hun Sen: Strongman of Cambodia, published 1999), this volume is based on recently declassified archival documents and hours of new interviews with Hun Sen, his wife Bun Rany, son Hun Manet, other family members and associates.

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  • Published in Politics

Dancing in Shadows by Benny Widyono

This fascinating book recounts the remarkable tale of a career U.N. official caught in the turmoil of international and domestic politics swirling around Cambodia after the fall of the Khmer Rouge. First as a member of the U.N. transitional authority and then as a personal envoy to the U.N. secretary-general, Benny Widyono re-creates the fierce battles for power centering on King Norodom Sihanouk, the Khmer Rouge, and Prime Minister Hun Sen.

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Cambodia Reborn? by Grant Curtis

When United Nations sponsored elections were held in 1993, there were high hopes that Cambodia would finally be able to escape the nightmare of war, the killing fields, famine, and economic turmoil that its people had endured since 1970. Large amounts of international development assistance, a rapidly expanding NGO sector, and a pragmatic power-sharing arrangement between former adversaries, seemed to bode well for the future. Yet, as the country was once again preparing for elections in 1998, serious tensions and conflicts continued to undermine the transition process.

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The Tragedy of Cambodian History by David P. Chandler

The political history of Cambodia between 1945 and 1979, which culminated in the devastating revolutionary excesses of the Pol Pot regime, is one of unrest and misery. This book by David P. Chandler is the first to give a full account of this tumultuous period. Drawing on his experience as a foreign service officer in Phnom Penh, on interviews, and on archival material. Chandler considers why the revolution happened and how it was related to Cambodia's earlier history and to other events in Southeast Asia.

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Behind the Facade by Lee Morgenbesser

Behind the Facade examines the question of why authoritarian regimes in Southeast Asia bother holding elections. Using comprehensive case studies of Cambodia, Myanmar, and Singapore, Lee Morgenbesser argues that elections allow authoritarian regimes to collect information, pursue legitimacy, manage political elites, and sustain neopatrimonial domination.

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  • Published in Politics

Landscape, Memory, and Post-Violence in Cambodia by James A. Tyner

Between 1975 and 1979 the Khmer Rouge regime in Cambodia enacted a program of organized mass violence that resulted in the deaths of approximately one quarter of the country’s population. Over two million people died from torture, execution, disease and famine. From the commodification of the ‘killing fields’ of Choeung Ek to the hundreds of unmarked mass graves scattered across the country, violence continues to shape the Cambodian landscape.

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