The Tuol Sleng Genocide Museum is not for the faint of hearts. This is the site of a former high school in the heart of Phnom Penh that was later converted into Security Prison 21 (S-21) by the Khumer Rouge regime from its rise in power in 1975 to its fall in 1979. The Khumer Rouge orchestrated the genocide of the Cambodian people through its social engineering policies that advocated self-sufficiency at all cost. The regime did not tolerate any subversive thoughts or actions and as a result arbitrarily tortured and killed many people.
S-21 was one of the main prisons for such torture and killings. The museum leaves intact the prison cells and weaves the incomprehensible stories that occurred through photos and artifacts. As museums go, this is a bit austere as it still sits as it did as a prison in the late 1970’s. However, the story of human atrocities must always be seen and heard so that we never forget what blind alliance to an ideology can lead.