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What Were the Reasons That Pol Pot Communist Party of Kampuchea Separated From the “Iron Yoke” of Vietnamese Communist Party?

Posted by khmernews on July 9, 2007

Mut Sruoch

Pol Pot, secretary of the Communist Party of Kampuchea, decided to change the birth year of the party in order to end the influence of the Vietnamese Communist Party on him and Cambodia after he became the Prime Minister of the Democratic Kampuchea (DK) regime for over a year.

In 1976, Pol Pot ordered to celebrate the anniversary of the Communist Party of Kampuchea in which he determined that 1960 had been the year of establishment of the party. Keo Meas, member of the Central Committee and senior revolutionary Khmer Rouge soldier who had shared the happiness and pain with Pol Pot, was captured on November 20, 1976 since he dared to disagree with the change of establishment year of the party.

Documentation Center of Cambodia (DC-Cam) explains that when Keo Meas was being imprisoned in Tuol Sleng prison, Keo Meas always wrote letters to Pol Pot to show his honesty.  However, the letters were not sent to Pol Pot.

In a letter dated on November 29, 1976, Keo Meas wrote, “To me, I support the year of 1951, and if anyone wants to walk on another way, I wouldn’t go with him. I would oppose and stand on people’s side. ‘People’s Newspaper’, Max Lenin’s legal organization, was created in 1951.”

Researchers of the senior Khmer Rouge leader history found out that before Pol Pot died, he talked about the origin of the Indochinese Communist Party that, “The Indochinese Communist Party was later divided into three separate parties, Vietnamese Workers’ Party, Khmer People’s Revolutionary Party, Laotian People’s Revolutionary Party. However, the three parties were sticking to only one policy.”
The Khmer People’s Revolutionary Party which had been assisted the “birth” by the Vietnamese Party later became the present ruling Cambodian People’s Party. Chea Sim once recalled that, “The Cambodian People’s Party, originally named the Khmer People’s Revolutionary Party, was created on the 24 of June, 1952.”

A Khmer Rouge History researcher who is also the author of the book entitled “Pol Pot: Anatomy Of A nightmare “, has compared the characteristics of Chinese Communist Party Leader Mao Tse Tong and Soviet Communist Party Leader Stalin to Pol Pot that in the communist theory, all the decision has to be made together in group.

However, they didn’t practice it in the reality. For instance, in the Red Communist Party, when Leader Mao Tse Tong wrote something on a tree leave or discarded paper, it would be then taken to practice. They threw away all the previous principles in order to follow his order. No one dared to complain on what he did.  Stalin of Soviet was the same while in Cambodia from 1973 or 1974 till the [end] of the Khmer Rouge regime, Pol Pot was the decision maker on everything. Every Pol Pot’s decision was approved and ratified immediately by the Standing Committee of the Communist Party of Kampuchea in which there were senior revolutionary members.

Pol Pot often brought up what he thought of to discuss with his colleagues in order to integrate it into a vision. The vision would be scarcely checked and then made as a policy. When his vision was decided as the policy, Pol Pot would immediately call for a meeting of the Standing Committee. Eventually, no one dared to disagree with the decision made by Pol Pot.

The Khmer Rouge history researcher explains that after the policy was given ratification by the Standing Committee, Nuon Chea, deputy-secretary of the party, would take it into practice intensely.

When Ta Mok was alive, he told Nate Thayer that, “The DK regime of Pol Pot had the democracy which was already ‘decided’. The reason I said that Pol Pot didn’t have democracy is because of the killings. There were only two people involved, Pol Pot and a prison chief. The prison chief interrogated prisoners and then brought them to Pol Pot to decide.” 

Can other members besides Pol Pot escape the responsibility? No, they can’t. They were the ones who approved on and were on the side of those decisions. Moreover, the responsibility would be chained downward to the lower ranking people too.

Actually, what Pol Pot was trying to do during his control was not for the nation [or] the people, but he was trying to attach his party to the Chinese Communist Party in order to separate it from the Vietnamese Communist Party. Accordingly, Vietnam took chance to send their troops to defeat the DK regime on January 7, 1979.

Informal Translation
-Extracted from Moneaksekar Khmer, vol.14, #3200, Tuesday, July 3, 2007 .

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One Response to “What Were the Reasons That Pol Pot Communist Party of Kampuchea Separated From the “Iron Yoke” of Vietnamese Communist Party?”

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