Monday, October 10, 2005

Intentions of Khmer Rouge Fund Misunderstood

THE CAMBODIA DAILY

Thursday, August 4, 2005

Bandol Lim, Assistant director,

Institute of Research and Advanced Studies

University of Cambodia

This letter is to notify you about the problem I have with the article “Japanese Businessman Announces KR Fund” (Tuesday, page 16).

Your narrow-minded article has led other people, such as Youk Chhang, Chey Sopheara, Lim Srey Phalla, and readers who did not attend the news conference, which we organized, down a wrong path that focuses too much on money. How capitalistic of you!

I feel that you missed the whole point as to why “Dr Handa Compensation and Memorial Fund for Victims of the Khmer Rouge Genocide” was established and the benefit of having a Center for Genocidal Studies.

The objective of the fund is “to pay tribute to the millions of victims and survivors of the Khmer Rouge Regime.” The aim is “to console the victim families, particularly those who have lost the heads of the family or those who have been facing psychological, physical and economical difficulties caused by the Khmer Rouge regime.”

Dr Kao Kim Hourn, president of the University of Cambodia, stated that the “aim is to help those families, mainly headed by widows, and particularly those who have a lot of kids.”

There is a mutual understanding that the fund cannot possibly be enough to compensate for the lives lost, and the emotional distress and economic deprivation.

Dr Haruhisa Handa emphatically reiterated this point “that there is no way in what ever terms that we can fully compensate anyone for the tremendous loss of many lives, as well as those who have survived the Khmer Rouge regime.”

Where were these above statements in your article? All just to get a reaction from the public to sell your story, how low can you sink? Why don’t you look at the news article by Kyodo News?

You miss the whole point of why the fund was established and the benefit of having a Center for Genocidal Studies, the first of its kind in Cambodia, if I might add.

The center will be designed to conduct research, teach courses on genocide and democide studies, and educate the younger Cambodian generation on genocide and democide worldwide.

I ask that you write the complete story to fully educate those who did not take the initiative to attend the news conference. Ignorance is bliss and for a journal magazine to spread ignorance to sell a story: How pathetic!


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