In the Mind of a Mass Murderer

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HONG KONG: Pol Pot sleeps easily, not haunted by the legions of skulls littering his country’s killing fields. That's according to what purports to be his first interview in more than 20 years. Despite leading a bloody purge that is believed to have killed more than 1 million Cambodians, Pol Pot says "My conscience is clear." In the exclusive interview, to be published in full later this week by the Far Eastern Economic Review, Pol Pot defends his orders to execute political opponents, although he disputes the claim that millions had died. “I came to carry out the struggle, not to kill people,” he is quoted as saying. Pol Pot is currently in the custody of his former Khmer Rouge subordinates after being ousted from leadership of the guerrilla movement in June. The Khmer Rouge say they’ll hand him over to an international tribunal for trial only if current Cambodian leader Hun Sen is also tried. Which makes it unlikely that the frail, aging genocidal ideologue will ever face his accusers.