Vietnamese Liberation

After Pol Pot’s military forces opened fire on the Vietnamese border in December 1978, Vietnam launched a full-scale invasion of Kampuchea which upended Pol Pot’s Angkar and his communist government. On January 7, 1979, the Vietnamese took over Phnom Penh, leaving former Khmer Rouge leaders to flee for their lives. The invasion effectively ended the Cambodian genocide and—in the words of survivors—”liberated” (រំដោះ in Khmer) them from the Pol Pot regime. In these list, interviewees share their recollections of the Vietnamese invasion, feelings of newfound freedom, and often share in-depth narratives of the day they were liberated.