OASIS OF THE ZOMBIES (1982) directed by Jesús Franco
Requiem for a Vampire, 1971, Jean Rollin
This is my everything right now.
The “Bomb Ponds” of the Vietnam War
Between 1964 and 1975, 2,756,941 tons of explosives were dropped by the U.S. military across Cambodia. As historian Thomas J. Campanella notes in Design Observer, “in Quang Binh and Vinh Linh provinces (just north and south of the former demilitarized zone) the landscape resembles the face of the moon, with craters 30 to 50 feet in diameter and several yards deep.” The massive pock marks, today called “bomb ponds” in Cambodian, testify to the ambiguous heritage of these war scars. On the one hand, they have become a naturalized part of the landscape: villagers have transformed the bomb craters into ponds for growing fish, a staple of the Vietnamese diet, and in the south, bomb craters are favored sites for houses with a replenishable source of protein at the doorstep. Yet the water in these “ponds” are often still toxic, a reminder of their violent origins. In fact, a culture of silence has left this history largely unspoken. In America, there is little recognition of the bombing and in Cambodia, a reluctance to educate its youth about the history surrounding the Khmer Rouge regime. In order to bring attention back to this era and its looming effects, self-taught photographer Vandy Rattana documented these sites in 2009 as physical evidence of a history kept silent. The resulting series, “Bomb Ponds,” was exhibited at Documenta13.