June 15, 1973

Price: 75 ¢

Chief Editor:
Albert Raez

New York Times


Nixon Bombs Cambodia

The 1969 B-52 offensive in Cambodia was code-named Operation Menu. (U.S. Air
Force photo)
U.S. Secret Actions in Statistics of Cambodia
Cambodia (1973) Cambodia’s Lingering
GDP - $93.93 This current situation that
Infant Mortality Rate - Cambodia is in all started in
215 per 1000 births 1954 when Chinese-backed
Population - 7.483 communist rebel leaders first
Million Persons started to use the Ho Chi Minh
Trail, a trail along the
Growth Rate - 1.05%
Cambodian-Vietnamese border,
to supply the Viet Cong in
In 1973, Cambodia’s GDP per
South Vietnam. This trail was
Capita was $93.93. This is one
of the lowest GDP per capitas used for about fifteen years
in the world and this shows until President Richard Nixon
how the country is when under discovered this action by the
the Khmer Rouge. The infant communists, and this lead to
mortality rate as well shows Nixon ultimately deciding to
how the medical presence in use over one-hundred thousand
Map of the Ho Chi Minh Trail this country is not evolving as
21.5% of infants of per 1000 tons of explosives along the
births die. With a population of border to stop the supplies from
When President entering South Vietnam. The
over seven million people and a
Richard Nixon withdrew the growth rate of 1.05 %, deaths of over one-hundred
United States from the Vietnam Cambodia needs to evolve as a thousand Cambodians were a
War earlier this year, relief was country and as well get the aid direct result of the bombings in
finally given to the families of they need as the GDP and
Cambodia and slowly after the
those who served in this infant mortality rate do not
display a good future for the initial bombings in 1969, the
remorseless war. With the Khmer Rouge was slowly being
population obviously on constructed in the country. The
contrary to the war effort, it anger of the Cambodians with
was a matter of time until the their government during the
Paris Peace Accords came Secret CBS Coverage
bombings lead to these people
along to save those poor souls overthrowing their government,
from suffering in the war. which is what the Khmer
Nixon’s actions in the Vietnam Rouge needed to establish their
War were kept confidential government in Cambodia and
until leaked Pentagon Papers eventually ruling the country.
became available to the public The United States were helping
to expose Operation Menu. The the Cambodians during this
general public were in awe and time until they eventually
frustrated with Nixon’s decision pulled out of the Southeast Asia
to bomb Cambodia because he Walter Cronkite anchoring the
completely after the Paris Peace
news in 1969 (CBS)
only based his decision solely Accords. The withdrawal of the
on speculation of North When the Pentagon Papers
involvement in this part of the
Vietnam troops smuggling were leaked earlier this year, world is now affecting the
supplies into South Vietnam one document was found about country of Cambodia as it is
through the Ho Chi Minh trail. a secret interview by NBC now under the communist
This judgement not only killed News to a surviving Cambodia control of the Khmer Rouge.
over one-hundred thousand post-bombings in 1972. The
Cambodians in a four year man was named Sok Bourey
span, it lead to Cambodians and he discusses about his Bibliography
overthrowing their government, experiences about the bombings
which allowed the Khmer and how it affected his life. “A P“”A Physician’s Description of His
Rouge to rise in power. In Prison Camp.”
Stephen Kinzer’s Overthrow: CBS: First question, What is fordham.edu/halsall/mod/1978cam
America’s Century of Regime your first memory of the bodia.asp. Cold War World Lesson
#4: Hot Spots Research Project,
Change from Hawaii to Iraq, he bombings?
The Regents of the University of
states, “The United States
California, 2013, Page 14.
repeatedly used its military SB: Well… I remember first
power, and that of its seeing these airplanes, F-111s I B-52 offensive in
clandestine services to think, go over my village and Cambodia. 1969.
overthrow governments that dropping bombs in the dead http://blogs.reuters.com/g
refused to protect American center of the village. I was able reat-
interests…. In most cases to survive obviously, but many debate/2015/06/14/nixon-
however, [the United States] of member of the village died. in-cambodia-seeking-
acted mainly for economic Only around ten of us survived. elusive-enemies-with-
reasons…” (Historiography).
Kinzer is stating that he CBS: Did the villages around
“Document 112: Written
believes that the United States decide to retaliate after the Record of Witness
will withdraw from countries if damage was dealt? Statement of Prak Khan
its economic interest are not to the Extraordinary
met. This is proven when the SB: My village did not have a chamber Courts of
United States withdrew from single soldier; in fact, the Cambodia.” 25
Cambodia after years of twenty-seven villages around us September 2007,
economically supporting the did not have a soldier as well. cambodiatribunal.org/site
country. The United States That never crossed our mind. s/default/files/documents/
turned their back on Cambodia
Cold War World Lesson
when they need their help the CBS: Did the US ever aid these
#4: Hot Spots Research
most. During the Cold War, the villages after the bombings? Project, The Regents of
United States claimed that its the University of
goal was to contain SB: Never. California, 2013, Page 14.
communism. However, United
States actions in Cambodia NBC: Did you expect them to Ho Chi Minh Trail
demonstrate that the United do so? Network. oldpicz.com/ho-
States intervened only when its chi-minh-trail/
economic and ideological SB: At times I did, but as time
Kinzer, Stephen.
interests were supported. went on, I just knew that would
Overthrow: America’s
Consequently, American never happen. Century of Regime
actions during the Cold War Change from Hawaii to
created instability in Cambodia Iraq. 2007.
and determined the values that
“Mr. Kissinger/The
were stated in the Truman
President (tape).” 9
December 1970, 8:45
In 1970, President p.m,
Nixon and Henry Kissinger had gwu.edu/~nsarchiv/NSAE
a discussion about what they BB/NSAEBB123/Box
wanted to do next in Cambodia. %2029,%20File
Nixon starts the conversation %202,%20Kissinger
by stating, “[U.S. troops] have %20%96%20President
got to go in there and I mean %20Dec
really go in … There is no %209,%201970%208,45
limitation on mileage and there
Cold War World Lesson
is no limitation on budget”
#4: Hot Spots Research
(Source 1). Nixon was willing Project, The Regents of
to do anything and everything the University of
to stop the North Vietnamese California, 2013, Page 14.
soldiers to bring supplies to
South Vietnam. This lead to Walter Cronkite. 1969.
many Cambodian causalities thinglink.com/scene/5054
and it did not help Cambodia to 2000065635942
get away from communism,
instead accept it. Freedom was
not granted nor been able to be
seen by the Cambodians
because of the United States’
failure to help them discover it.
The Khmer Rouge took this
opportunity to stabilize their
government to the country and
fight until the the United States
eventually pulled out of the
country, which allowed this
party to take over Cambodia
‘till this day. Cambodia needed
the United States’ support and
they were not helped which
goes against the values stated in
the Truman Doctrine. Nixon’s
intention was to stop
communism to spread into
South Vietnam, but it lead to
Cambodia now being controlled
under a communist
While the Khmer
Rouge was under control of
Cambodia, the treatment of the
inhabitants resulted in immoral
actions towards them. From the
perspective of a physician in a
Cambodian prison camp, the
physician recalls an event
where “... one of my friends
revealed that he had been an
army doctor. A week later he
disappeared” (Source 2). The
physician is describing his
experience with the Khmer
Rouge, and displaying the
frustration of the Khmer Rouge
when their government is
questioned. Also, when Prak
Khan, member of the Khmer
Rouge, was questioned about
the torture used, he stated
“Whenever there was
permission from Dutch, then
during the interrogation there
was torture; whenever here was
permission from upper
echelon” (Source 3) Khan is
stating that he had the right to
torture inhabitants under the
Khmer Rouge. This treatment
was a direct result of the United
States’ bombing because it
allowed the Khmer Rouge to
take over Cambodia, and when
the Khmer Republic needed aid
to push off this government, the
United States pulled out of
Southeast Asia which allowed
the Khmer Rouge to eventually
take over this land today.
Freedom is a key value
that the United States prides
themselves on. The Truman
Doctrine was passed to allow
the U.S. to help third-world
countries discover their
freedom. So why did the U.S.
not follow the Truman Doctrine
when Cambodia obviously
needed the help? How can a
country that takes pride in its
values not continue to show
that they are consistent with
these values? Nixon’s obsession
with not being the first U.S.
President to “lose” a war lead
to these values being broken,
which not only lead to the U.S.
abandoning Cambodia, but not
containing the spread of
communism into the country.