Editor’s note: WorldNetDaily international correspondent Anthony C
LoBaido has traveled extensively in Cambodia during the past nine
months. His reports on Cambodia’s notorious Killing Fields
have included examinations of Pol Pot’s Nazi-style experiments,
the U.N. harboring the would-be assassin of Cambodia Prime Minister
and the alleged British SAS involvement in training the Khmer
In this update, LoBaido shows how U.S. anticommunist forces
unwillingly were tricked into arming and training the Khmer Rouge.
By Anthony C. LoBaido
© 2000, WorldNetDaily.com
THE GOLDEN TRIANGLE, Burma — In a dark sideshow to the ongoing
United Nations Conference on Trade and Development in Bangkok, Thailand,
U.N. chief Kofi Annan has met twice with Communist Cambodian Prime
Minister Hun Sen to hammer out the final details of the upcoming trials
of the Khmer Rouge genocidal killers.
Pol Pot and his cadres were responsible for the murder of 1.7 million
Cambodians in the Killing Fields genocide perpetrated between 1975 and
Yet, in the ensuing quarter century, not a single Khmer Rouge soldier
or leader has been brought to trial or justice. Pol Pot died in 1998.
Pol Pot in 1994, four years before his April 15, 1998 death.
Now, Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen — a former Khmer Rouge leader
who defected to the Vietnamese side — is negotiating with the U.N. in
an effort to get the world body to approve of Cambodia’s handling of the
upcoming trials of two Khmer Rouge leaders.
The U.N. wants to place its own lawyers and other legal experts on
the panel that will try the 74-year-old, one-legged ex-Khmer Rouge Gen.
Ta Mok — known as “The Butcher” — as well as “Duch,” a professed
born-again Christian who ran the infamous S-21 prison in Phnom Penh.
Hun Sen, whose son recently graduated from the U.S. Military Academy
at West Point, is reluctant to give operational control of the trials
to the U.N. He points out that the U.N. gave Pol Pot a seat in exile
during the 1980s, after Hun Sen’s Vietnamese Communist government
invaded Cambodia and overthrew the Khmer Rouge. Hun Sen wants a trial,
“run by Cambodians to judge Cambodian subjects.”
While Hun Sen and Annan spar over legal minutiae at the United
Nations meetings in Bangkok, WorldNetDaily continues to piece together
the involvement of the British Special Air Service and the U.S. Special
Forces in supplying and training the Khmer Rouge.
Between 1985 and 1989, the British SAS trained anti-Vietnamese
Cambodians in sabotage and other soldiering skills — yet never trained
any Khmer Rouge killers. Indeed, the British soldiers trained only those
Cambodians loyal to the former deposed Cambodian King.
However, recent interviews and research in regard to alleged American
involvement with the Khmer Rouge have brought new developments to this
twisted tale of genocidal insanity.
American soldiers speak out
“I served with the 374th Tactical Airlift Wing following the 1973
cease-fire in Vietnam,” said Tom Berta in a recent interview with
“I went to Utapao RTAFB Thailand in June of that year. We had seven
C-130 aircraft, and by mid-July we had 20 and were doing the bulk of the
374th’s airlifts. We ran guns into Cambodia, lots of guns, 50 flights a
day in July and August.
“I was there in Thailand and watched the C-130’s get loaded every day
from June through Sept 1973. I personally flew with our aircraft on
many occasions, at least 20. The CIA exercised what it called the
‘Third Option’ and sold arms to the Khmer Rouge,” said Berta.
Nina Morrison, a former pilot with the CIA front company Air America,
refused to undertake any flights to arm and supply the Khmer Rouge.
“The SAS were there doing training in Cambodia all right,” Morrison
told WorldNetDaily. “Just like they were involved recently in East
Mr. Nol at the Memorial Stupa at The Killing Fields. His brother was
“The world in general has become a lot more complicated. As such,
journalism must also adapt and become more thorough and complex to put
all of the missing pieces together. In regard to the Khmer Rouge, this
is dangerous work indeed,” said Morrison. “True history has a way of
disappearing into the night.”
In regard to the alleged American involvement with the Khmer Rouge,
Morrison added, “I do not have words to express my disappointment in our
government’s position in world affairs, for it does not reflect the
foundation upon which this great Republic was created.”
Other Americans, like Bert Bueno, a 40-year-old civil engineer from
California, tell another story — the story that many American soldiers
had absolutely no idea what was happening in Cambodia.
“In 1979, I was sailing in waters off of Cambodia during a Western
Pacific cruise. One of the countries we had liberty at was Thailand,” he
“I had no idea that Cambodia was killing millions of people. When I
saw the movie “The Killing Fields” in later years, I was in shock.
“I have always wanted to go back and do something. One day, this evil
is going to reach our borders of America, and the people are going to
say, ‘Why didn’t anyone tell us this was coming?'”
Retired U.S. Special Forces Maj. Carl Bernard, the point man in the
Pentagon’s attempt to train the anti-communist Hmong hill tribes of Laos
to fight against the Stalinist Pathet Laos government is knowledgeable
in the field of special forces training in Southeast Asia.
“Not many American G.I.s even knew the Hmong were fighting in Laos on
their behalf, taking out Soviet supplies on the Ho Chi Min trail heading
for Vietnam,” Bernard told WorldNetDaily. “As for the Khmer Rouge, it is
a shadowy world that is only beginning to come out into the light.”
U.S. ‘gave assistance to Pol Pot’
According to Bernard, there is no single source that is more
knowledgeable regarding U.S. involvement in the training of the Khmer
Rouge than Special Forces point man U.K. Pappy.
“Yes, the U.S. and others were giving assistance to Pol Pot. When I
complained, the State Department came out with their reason — they had
to be fair to both sides of the conflict,” Pappy told WorldNetDaily.
“Like most of the reasoning at the State Department most of the time,
it has nothing to do with honor, only expedience. Now it may come out
to the rest of the world that we were supporting Pol Pot. I hope this
bites someone in the ass.”
Pappy said that in the fall of 1987 he made a trip to Thailand with
Gen. Vang Pao to visit Hmong/Lao fighting camps along the Thai-Lao
border. There were still groups fighting inside Laos that were using
Thailand as a launch site.
“When U.S. Congressman Bill McCollum learned I was going to Thailand,
I was asked if I would check on something for him. Three C-141
planeloads of equipment was sent from Okinawa to Thailand. There was
both military and humanitarian equipment on these planes. The military
equipment was to be used by the Cambodian forces fighting Vietnam, and
the humanitarian supplies would go to the refugees camps in Thailand,”
WorldNetDaily’s Anthony LoBaido in Cambodia.
However, according to Pappy, the supplies from these three loads were
lost. No accounting could be giving for them — something that is not
unusual in Thailand.
“I learned for sure at this time that all supplies sent to the
Cambodian forces were to be split between the pro-West forces [of the
deposed King Sihanouk] and Pol Pot. The State Department didn’t want to
be unfair, just in case Pol Pot took the country back.”
According to Bernard, “Few in the West realized that Pol Pot was
flying around Thailand in state-of-the-art helicopters in the 1980s and
1990s waiting to retake power in Cambodia when the time was ripe.”
For his part, Pappy went on to say that Rep. McCollum’s office gave
him a contact. When he called the U.S. Embassy and asked a top official
what had happened to the equipment, he “could visualize him bouncing off
the walls in his office.”
“I asked the official if any of this [supplies] was going to
communist forces, or Pol Pot, and just why had they disappeared? He got
huffy, wanted to know my name and serial number, and other details. Of
course, I told him where he could go. I got no info from him.”
Pappy then turned to a Thai colonel who was in command of the Thai
guards on the eastern border at the time. Pappy had developed a working
relationship with the colonel, he said.
“I learned that some of the equipment that was given to the pro-West
forces had among them flack jackets. During the delivery, an American,
who thought words didn’t mean anything, told Cambodian anticommunists
that the flak jackets were armored vests. The little Cambodians took
these flack jackets and charged the Vietnamese forces. Many of their
men were killed in a frontal assault from bullets passing through the
Pappy said that neither “Pol Pot or his cadres got any of those
“Of course, when I got back to the states, I sent a report to my
contact in the White House on the slaughter of the pro-West,
anti-communist Cambodian forces. I’m not on good speaking terms with
some of those guys in the State Department who were involved. They had
to do some real lying to get out of that one,” said Pappy.
“I was also given the same info from some American contacts. But, I
know personally that the U.S. was giving material aid to Pol Pot, right
along with his enemies, the pro-West Cambodians. Things sure tend to
get messy when you leave the ranks, don’t they?
A little bit of justice
While Pappy, Bernard, Morrison, Berta and many others interviewed by
WorldNetDaily lament the Western involvement with the Khmer Rouge, there
is one silver lining that can now be told.
SAS elite Special Forces soldier Ray Billingsley recently told
WorldNetDaily that he and another SAS officer, who were in Cambodia
between 1985 and 1989 to train pro-West, anti-Vietnamese forces along
the Thailand-Cambodia border, used the flak jacket misappropriation to
“After the fall of Phnom Penh, the Khmer Rouge took hundreds of
thousands of survivors of the Killing Fields and made them walk in a
death march to the Thai border,” Billingsley said.
“Once they arrived at the border, the survivors were put in work
collectives. We in the SAS were able to find out who some of the Khmer
Rouge killers were — you know, the men who ran the Killing Fields and
did actual killing of men, women and children.”
“We gave them the flak jackets and told them they were armored vests.
When they charged the Vietnamese, they were shot dead. It was only a
small gesture, but it did bring a sense of closure and justice in our
little corner of that ugly war.”
The work of Billingsley and other concerned Western anti-communists
will have to be magnified manifold if justice is to be done in
connection with Pol Pot’s henchmen scheduled to go on trial in March.
“It’s going to be a show trial. Two men tried and convicted — one of
them a born again Christian to boot,” said Morrison.
“They’ll sweep it under that rug. The Western corporations will move
in and it will be business as usual in Cambodia. It should make every
decent American and Brit sick to their stomach. The Khmer Rouge killed
almost two million people, and Hun Sen’s idea of justice is a trial for
only two men? I’ll say this, they really are one in a million.”