Saturday, April 05, 2008

Dith Pran passes away

The man whose life was immortalized in the movie "The Killing Fields" by yet another Khmer Rouge escapee Haing S Ngor is no more.

Ever since I saw "The Killing Fields" my all time number one war related movie I have been overwhelmed and appalled at the atrocities of the genocidal Khmer Rouge regime. Although more people were killed during the second World War genocide and other genocides the nature of the deaths and killing in Cambodia shook me more than anything I have seen or read about. I have spent countless hours reading and watching documentaries of the same. A well known documentary on the atrocity was made called S12 The Khmer Rouge Killing Machine by a Cambodian. I reviewed both the movie and the documentary on Amazon.

Dith Pran moved to America and worked as a photographer. He dedicated his life to spreading the information of the genocide in his country and was involved in several related activities such as publishing a book on the children of the genocide and the Dith Pran Holocaust Awareness Project.

Here is a rare photograph of Dith Pran and Haing shortly after the latter won the academy award for Best Supporting Actor.

Haing's oscar award acceptance speech was one of the more heart touching speeches I have ever heard where he dedicated the award to his country, Cambodia. Haing was killed in L.A during a robbery. I very much wanted to write to Dith Pran but now it is too late.

I must also mention that in the recent past there have been quite a number of important people who passed away and whom I thought deserve mention because I admired them in some way or the other. Tamil movie actors Raghuvaran, Srividhya and Padmini (last year) and Malayalam movie actor Gopi.

May their souls rest in peace.


Anonymous said...

Hi there
Few years ago I had the opportunity to visit that'human reamains museum'.Later I saw the funeral of Pol Pot( it is either khiew Simpan or Pol Pot),just one man burning the body with tyres and and some unknown forest wood.Years before,he was at the threshold of all that he dreamt off,the country for himself,now skipped a beat and an uncertain scar on his face, call it his day.
Cambodians jubilated on that day and his passing away was not an enviable abruptness.



Subash S L said...

Hi Priyadarshini,

I wish to go there as well someday. I am sure it is certainly going to be one incredible experience. I am told that these days in Cambodia they aren't including the Khmer Rouge years in the history books of school children. Like Krishnamurti said why poison yound minds but then can it be forgotten altogether?