Cambodia: Report From a Stricken Land

Cambodia: Report From a Stricken Land

by Henry Kamm
     
 

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Based on his observations over three decades, Henry Kamm, Pulitzer Prize-winning NEW YORK TIMES Southeast Asia correspondent, unravels the complexities of Cambodia. Kamm's invaluable document--a factual and personal account of its troubled history-- gives the Western reader the first clear understanding of this magic land's past and present.See more details below

Overview

Based on his observations over three decades, Henry Kamm, Pulitzer Prize-winning NEW YORK TIMES Southeast Asia correspondent, unravels the complexities of Cambodia. Kamm's invaluable document--a factual and personal account of its troubled history-- gives the Western reader the first clear understanding of this magic land's past and present.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
In this disturbing first-hand report, Pulitzer Prize-winning New York Times correspondent Kamm makes us care deeply about Southeast Asia's forgotten stepchild, Cambodia. Melding a history of the tormented nation of 10 million with reportage based on his numerous trips there between 1970 - 1997, he criticizes the Western powers, led by the U.S., for supporting dictator Pol Pot's genocidal regime (1975-79), which, he argues, the West considered a lesser evil than the Vietnamese communist invaders and their Cambodian backers who ruled for the subsequent decade.

Today, while Prince Norodom Sihanouk, Cambodia's absent king and former moderate leader, 'governs' by fax from Beijing, where he lies incurably ill with cancer, Cambodia is still ruled by the tyrannical, Vietnam-installed coalition government of Prime Minister Hun Sen. According to the author, Hun Sen has never attained legitimacy in the eyes of many of his compatriots, whose country -- strewn with countless land mines -- is beset by rampant lawlessness and corruption, endemic poverty and Asia's worst AIDS/HIV epidemic. Contending that the UN's much-touted 1992-93 peacekeeping mission to Cambodia was a failure that left the status quo intact, Kamm boldly proposes that Cambodia be placed under an international trusteeship to nurse this gravely incapacitated nation back to health.

Library Journal
The agony of the Cambodian people, manipulated by the outside world and brutalized by their own leaders, has few if any parallels in recent history. Kamm (Dragon Ascending, LJ 2/1/96), who for years has covered Southeast Asia for the New York Times, presents a bleak and disturbing portrait of a country whose decades-long travails he witnessed. In the best populist tradition, Kamm sympathizes with the Cambodian people, targets of Pol Pot's genocidal rule (1975-79) and the corrupt and venal authoritarianism of his successors. At the same time, he acidly condemns Cambodia's rulers, many of whom he knew up close, including the wily but self-indulgent Prince Sihanouk and the superstitious and incompetent Lon Nol. Kamm blames weak and indecisive international leadership for the failure of the UN-sponsored effort in the early 1990s to effect genuine peace and reconciliation in Cambodia. Sober yet passionate, Kamm's well-informed survey is an excellent introduction to a country that the world has all but abandoned. This belongs in both public and academic libraries.--Steven I. Levine, Univ. of Montana, Missoula

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781611459692
Publisher:
Arcade Publishing
Publication date:
01/12/2012
Sold by:
Barnes & Noble
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
999
Sales rank:
1,274,723
File size:
0 MB

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