End of the Road
By April of 1978, thousands of Vietnamese troops were send to the Cambodian border. The Democratic Kampuchea had severed ties with Vietnam. Vietnamese troops that had been located in Cambodia took hostages with them to later use to create a new Cambodian state. This new state would be named the People’s Republic of Kampuchea which would later transition to the State of Cambodia.On 25 December 1978, the country was attacked by Vietnamese soldiers from all angles. By 7 January 1979, Phnom Penh had been abandoned, and the high ranking officials of the Khmer Rouge had fled. After the fall of the Khmer Rouge, Pol Pot was able to hide out on the Thai-Cambodian border. He was able to stay there protected until the late 1990s. Pol Pot was placed under house arrest until his death in 1998. The civilians who had endured the struggles under the Khmer Rouge were mostly happy to have been liberated by the Vietnamese as this signaled the possible end of their suffering.
The mass murder of almost two million people under the Khmer Rouge changed the course of Cambodia’s history. Those who had undergone the trauma of the regime would have to live with that forever. Those who had lost their homes and had been moved across the country were now refugees. Cambodians were also fleeing the country to escape the famine that was beginning due to the soldiers taking all of the rice and the drought that made the conditions worse.Although the living conditions took a while to get better, the Cambodians were now allowed more freedoms.