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Cambodia: Tuol Sleng Prison

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Tuol Sleng Prison | Cambodia | Asia

[Visited: January, March 1998]

To me, Cambodia has for a long time been linked to extreme violence, to unlimited suffering, to incredible human losses. When I finally made it to this country because a friend of university was so brave to work here for some time, I was determined also to see the other side of the country, its dark, and all too recent, history.

Picture of Tuol Sleng Prison (Cambodia): Torture cell - Phnom Penh

Among the many things a visitor can choose from, a visit to the Tuol Sleng prison is almost a must. It is here that some of the most atrocious crimes were committed, and it is here that it was decided that a reminder for the future generations should be maintained. It is also here that one walks around with constant chicken skin.

Picture of Tuol Sleng Prison (Cambodia): Tuol Sleng museum, Phnom Penh

It probably seems very obvious, but the main question which haunts anyone having been to this place, is: how is it ever possible that people do these kinds of things to each other? Why is it apparently so difficult to learn from history? What is the value of so many thousands of years of evolution? The most remarkable thing I heard when in the city, was that the government wondered whether the museum should be maintained. After all, it was more propaganda by the Vietnamese who attacked the country in the late seventies, than a realistic portrait of what happened in the years before. Again, one wonders if people ever learn...

Picture of Tuol Sleng Prison (Cambodia): Skull map in Tuol Sleng museum

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Personal travel impressions both in words and images from Tuol Sleng Prison (Cambodia). Clicking on the pictures enlarges them and enables you to send the picture as a free e-card or download it for personal use, for instance, on your weblog. Or click on the map above to visit more places close to Tuol Sleng Prison.
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