Historians estimate the 1970s genocide nearly wiped out one fourth of the nation’s population.
Suely Saro of the Asian Pacific Islander American Professional Network of Long Beach said Cambodians are resilient.
“The lotus flower is very important in Cambodian culture,” Saro said. “It is a symbol of revival. It blooms beautifully from the deepest and thickest mud. And, like a lotus flower, Cambodians have and will continue to rise above our deep, dark history and blossom beautifully into our future.”
Historians estimate that the communist campaign to eliminate classes and return Cambodian to its agrarian roots was responsible for killing roughly one-fifth of the country’s population. Some were executed outright or tortured, while others starved to death, died of disease or were worked to death.
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