Cambodia 1975-89: From Year Zero to Capitalism

Date: 2021-11-15T15:14:25+00:00

Location: cosmonautmag.com

Donald, Connor, Christian and Rudy sit down for a discussion on Cambodia throughout the Democratic Kampuchea period under Pol Pot (75-79) and the People’s Republic of Kampuchea period under Heng Samrin (79-89). We talk about the ideological and material origins of Pol Pot’s faction within the Communist Party of Kampuchea, and clarify its relationship to the other pro-Vietnamese factions in the CPK. We discuss what the material conditions were in ’75 when the CPK takes power, the events during the Pol Pot period including city evacuations, ethnic repression, party purges and the relationships of production in the countryside. We follow with talking about how the DK’s aggressive border policies led to the Vietnamese invasion in ’79 and the PRK period. We also discuss the PRK period, and how it ended up restoring capitalist relationships and paving the way for the return of Sihanouk and the current form of the Cambodian state.

Primary References:
Red Brotherhood at War: Vietnam, Cambodia and Laos since 1975 – Grant Evans & Kelvin Rowley
The Pol Pot Regime: Race, Power, and Genocide in Cambodia under the Khmer Rouge, 1975-79 – Ben Kiernan
The People’s Republic of Kampuchea, 1979-1989: The Revolution After Pol Pot – Margaret Slocomb
Cambodia, 1975-1982 – Michael Vickery

Secondary references:
Kampuchea: Politics, Economics and Society – Michael Vickery
What Went Wrong with the Pol Pot Regime – F.G.
Kampuchea: The Revolution Rescued – Irwin Silber

Liked it? Take a second to support Cosmonaut on Patreon! At Cosmonaut Magazine we strive to create a culture of open debate and discussion. Please write to us at CosmonautMagazine@gmail.com if you have any criticism or commentary you would like to have published in our letters section.