I normally enjoy the Rosendo's Travelscope show on PBS but his recent political comments about Cambodia were harmful nonsense. 

He stated: 

US bombing caused the Khmer Rouge genocide.

That is the equivalent of saying that: 

US bombing caused the Nazi genocide.

Both statements are ridiculous lies. Disgusting disinformation. The Khmer Rouge and the Nazi's are to blame for their genocide, not the United States.

The US supported the South Vietnam, Cambodia and Laotion  governments against Communist attacks. Our support included bombing of their strongholds and supply lines.

Our bombing campaign did not drive the Khmer Rouge insane and make them murder millions. And it did not cause the Vietnamese genocide.  And our bombing campaign did not make the Nazi's murder people. That is absurd. Rosendo blames our country for the actions of homicidal maniacs. And PBS happily puts it on the air.


You can watch this show at:

Here is what happened. And the Vietnamese Communists were nearly as bad as the Cambodians.

World War II, the Cold War, and Vietnam

Little Girl in Front of a Memorial to the People Killed by Communists
No doubt some of her grandparents, uncles, and aunts. The kids
played on  the memorial and would not get out of the photo.
27 million people were murdered by the Axis countries in World War II in addition to those killed in war. The United States, Great Britain, Canada, and Australia were joined by the USSR, China, and other allies against Nazi Germany, Japan, and Italy. Most people believe that World War II was necessary and justified.

150 million people were murdered by the Communist countries  in addition to those killed in war. The United States and Great Britain were joined by our old enemies and other allies against our former allies, the USSR, China, and other Communist countries. Most people believe the Cold War to opposed Communism was necessary and justified.

Communism was everywhere on the attack from 1945 to 1985. Communism expanded from Russia into Poland, Bulgaria, Romania, Hungary, Yugoslavia, Albania, China, Cuba, Czechslovakia, East Germany, Tibet, North Vietnam South Vietnam, Cambodia, Laos, North Korea, and a number of other countries. Their goal was to bring Communism to all nations.

Communists used terrorism, murder and subversion to destabilize countries. Political murder and terrorism was an integral part of the “Wars of Liberation.”

3.8 million people were murdered in South Vietnam, Cambodia, and Laos when the Cold War went hot. Millions more were imprisoned, enslaved, and ethnically cleansed. 
Young Boy in Front of a Memorial near Angkor Wat

The anti war movement changed American policy. Many of them believed that the War was immoral and that the U.S. was there for oil. They contended we were imperialist fascist war mongers. They believed that war is evil and to be avoided at all costs. Many of them considered Ho Chi Minh and Pol Pot to be Freedom Fighters. "Ho, Ho, Ho Chi Minh, NLF is sure to Win". They thought Communism was an excellent system. They believed that Communists were fighting for freedom and self determination. They contended that the war in southeast Asia was a civil war. 

The antiwar movement succeeded in their goals.  The Congress elected in 1974 withdrew support leading to the Communist takeover of South Vietnam, Cambodia, and Laos in 1975. This led directly to the massive genocide that took place in all three countries.

I believe an individual and a nation must oppose evil, especially when their avowed policy was to take over the world. And genocide must be opposed. We were both moral and right to oppose Hitler, Tojo, Stalin, Mao, Ho Chi Minh, and Pol Pot.

We have largely prevailed over Communism. It has been abandoned in Europe. It is liberalizing and improving in Asia. China, Laos, North Korea and Vietnam remain totalitarian police states.

I believe that most of the anti war folks were sincere in their beliefs. And they were successful in their efforts to halt financial and military support for Vietnam, Laos, and Cambodia. But millions of people are dead, tortured, ethnically cleansed and enslaved partly as a result of their success.

Never again. Until the next time.

Photos from the killing fields of Cambodia. Vietnam and Laos were just as bad but the people who committed the genocide and ethnic cleansing are still in charge and don't publicize what happened after the Communist takeover. 

References on Murder

Professor Rudy Rummel of the University of Hawaii has published extensive referenced and documented estimates on murder by government, which he terms democide. He has reviewd all academic studies of the various genocides in the world.  The estimates of the number killed varies widely. He generally through out the high and low estimates and chose a median for his estimate. The table below summarizes some of his work.

1.Laos, Pathet Lao regime (1975- )
o Rummel:
* Democide in Laos: 130,000 (33% blamed on Laos; 67% blamed on Vietnam)
* Laotian war dead: 54,000
* TOTAL: 184,000 (1975-87)
o SIPRI 1989, civil war, 1977-90:
* military: 10,000
* civilian: 30,000
* TOTAL: 40,000
o Polish Press Agency, 3 Dec. 1998: 300,000 killed for political reasons, acc2 dissident Laotian Council for Independence and Democracy.

China Mao 1923-483,468,000
North Korea1,663,000