Approximately two million Cambodians were killed under the Khmer Rouge. The tyrannical leadership of Pol Pot and a decade of civil war took a severe toll on the nation’s population and wealth. In 1993, under the UN’s wing, Cambodia held successful democratic elections, with 90% of the electorate voting. Cambodia, it seemed, was ready to shed the past and move forward. Joel Brinkley won the Pulitzer Prize for his coverage of the 1979 fall of the Khmer Rouge regime at the New York Times. In 2008-2009, he returned to Cambodia to investigate the condition of this troubled nation. He found a political system crippled by corruption and dependence on aid, and a culture haunted by the genocide of the last generation. Mr. Brinkley will discuss his findings and what they mean for the future of Cambodia.
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