Thursday, October 05, 2006

First They Killed My Father

With the chicken pox and the "house arrest" I had time to finish up the book I bought from Cambodia during my trip there.

This book is a personal account of one little girl, Loung Ung, who survived the tyranny of Pol Pot's Khmer Rouge army. It is a very heart-breaking story of what she and her family had to go through during that painful 4 years. The death of family members, starvation, cruelty of the Khmer Rouge army... it is really a wonder how a 5-yr-old girl was strong enough to endure such a painful childhood. From the clear details in her account of what happened, you know that this is a painful memory that haunts her for life.

She is indeed a very strong person but cruelty had also thought her to be bitter, hard hearted and vengeful. Imagine a kid enjoying a cruel, gruesome execution of one Khmer Rouge soldier. To survive, she even stole food from her own siblings. But she did feel a deep sense of gulit after that.

Imagine while at her age we were just busy throwing tantrums for the toys we want, playing catch, there are millions like Loung suffering through their childhood... fighting for survival.

It is really a very gripping tale of survival. If you have the chance, do read it... then you'll realize you have soooooo much to be thankful for in your life. And you can stop complaining about not having enough money, lousy job, takde balak, balak tak cukup hansem, can't lose enough weight, or having chicken pox!! Be thankful for what you do have in life... we're pretty blessed here in Malaysia.

Oh, btw, she is now a spokesperson for the Campaign for a Landmine-Free World. Who better to support this cause than a victim herself?

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