When hundreds and possibly thousands of Khmer Republic officials, soldiers and civil servants loyal to Lon Nol were trucked en masse to a desolate site in Pursat province in the days following the April 1975 fall of Phnom Penh to the Khmer Rouge, they were blindfolded before they met their ends.
This, according to the Khmer Rouge tribunal’s deputy co-prosecutor, William Smith, was to spare the men’s killers from having to actually look their victims in the eye as they wielded clubs and aimed their guns, slaughtering their prisoners—tied together in groups of up to 20—one by one.