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Rebelling By Words And Deeds

July 16, 1989

Roger Warner, in his review of Laurence Pi's "Beyond the Horizon: Five Years With the Khmer Rouge" (Book Review, June 25) misses the obvious. To deny that Pi's memoir constitutes a condemnation of the Khmer Rouge is to fall victim to the very failing he attributes to her--namely, denial of an evident reality as described in painful personal detail. Her conclusion was affirmed not merely by words but by risking her life to escape.

The most persuasive arguments are those rooted in experience. Pi presents the realities of life in Phnom Penh under the Khmer Rouge. She not only enables readers to gain a better understanding of the Khmer Rouge, but in rejecting them ("With every beat, my heart repeated: get away, get away. . . ."), earns her the rightful role as a powerful witness against totalitarianism under any guise.

PATRICIA NORLAND

Translator of "Beyond the Horizon: Five Years With the Khmer Rouge"

WASHINGTON, D.C.

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