Friday, February 27, 2009

Cambodia as a Marxist-Leninist Utopia

The above article, written by Joel Brinkley, is entitled “Cambodia’s Curse, Struggling to Shed the Khmer Rouge’s Legacy.” It appears in the March/April 2009 issue of Foreign Affairs, which doesn’t offer the entire article on-line at their site. I spot-checked the above and it seems to be the same article.

I commented in other notes about how Marxist-Leninist ideology, or “altruism” as George Kenan once wrote, inspires a revolution, but the steps to be taken toward paradise are vague. A Nietzschean-type strong man (embodying Nietzsche’s ideal in the sense that they do whatever they like, immune from outside control) quickly takes over the revolution, and with immense self-confidence begins working toward this hypothetical “altruism.” In each case, this Marxist-Leninist ubermensch decides to purge the country of those who oppose him or his plans. This purging usually turns out to be extensive. The reason always given is that the goal, the Socialistic paradise, is more important than individual rights. It is especially more important that those who oppose or resist the progress toward the altruistic ideal. We have discussed the Stalinist purges, but let’s consider those of Cambodia.

American radical leftists were delighted that their efforts contributed to the withdrawal of American forces from South-east Asia. They were delighted that at last Vietnamese and Cambodians would have the chance to progress toward a Marxist-Leninist altruistic idea. But let us look at what happened. It is no secret and yet few bother to look. Surely no radical-leftist is going to look, for this would undermine his own personal faith in the altruism.

Brinkley wrote, “During its four-year reign, the Khmer Rouge killed as many as two million people.”

“The devastation Pol Pot wreaked on his country remains hard to comprehend, even three decades later. His goal, as he put it, was to return Cambodia to "year zero" and transform it into an agrarian utopia. To that end, he purged his nation of educated city dwellers, monks, and minorities, while imposing a draconian resettlement program that uprooted almost everyone else. These measures led to the deaths of one-quarter of the country's population.”

Here in the U.S., Radical Leftists have the freedom to write and say almost anything, but they wish to overthrow this nation which they refuse to call “Liberal Democratic,” preferring Marx’s term Capitalistic. They want to overthrow it and have their revolution, but what is their plan for afterward? I don’t believe they have a plan, or no more of one than Pol Pot did. He “winged it” as all the Marxist-Leninist revolutionaries do and his winging resulted in the deaths of those who opposed, resisted, or disagreed with him. And he was wrong! He didn’t have the answers. He didn’t know how to do it, and he wasn’t willing to listen to advice. Where is the Marxist-Leninist revolutionary who was?

I’ve hammered Stalin quite a lot and I know there are revisionist historians saying it wasn’t really Stalin but some other Communist officials who engaged in the purging, but that is beside my point. My argument doesn’t hinge on it being any particular person. It hinges on the fact that it always happens. Someone takes charge and does it.

Further down Brinkley writes, "People in America, all they know of Cambodia is the Khmer Rouge," Joseph Mussomeli, then U.S. ambassador to Cambodia, told me in August. "Cambodia is trying to make it in the twenty-first century, but Washington is still stuck in the 1970s." Its perception skewed by this outdated vision, most of the world barely seems to notice that the Hun Sen government is destroying the nation.”

Well, what does Joseph Mussomeli want us to do? The Radical Left and its Anti-War movement forced us precipitously out of South East Asia so Vietnam and Cambodia could build their altruistic Marxist-Leninist Utopia. Pol Pot lasted 4 years and now they have a graft-ridden and highly corrupt Constitutional Monarchy in Cambodia. How can the U.S. fix them now?

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