Tuesday, September 28, 2010



This is Boeung Kak Lake. I've written about it before, both when I first visited it, and when communities living around the lake were denied their right to peaceful freedom of assembly. The lake continues to be filled with sand by the developer, and so continues the displacement of its communities, many of whom have had valid legal possession rights to the land around the lake, established over the course of decades after the fall of the Khmer Rouge regime, under the auspices of local government authorities. The forced evictions arising from this World Bank-funded development will result in the largest aggregate exodus in post-Khmer Rouge Cambodia.


If I didn't live in this dusty city, if I didn't work with these communities, if I didn't (haphazardly) witness firsthand the lax, if at all present, rule of law in this country, then all I would see is this lake, slowly filling with sand. But that isn't the case.

When I see these maps, all I see are faces.


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