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Is This A Great Country Or What?

Posted by Mark Thompson
The Navy’s Pacific Fleet reports:

Vannak Khem, left, Cambodian refugee…U.S. Navy Commander Michael Vannak Khem Misiewicz, right / Navy photo


U.S.
Navy Commander Michael Vannak Khem Misiewicz has visited dozens of
ports over the course of his career, but none has ever evoked the
emotions that will come when his ship USS Mustin visits Cambodia in
December, marking the first time in 37 years that he has returned to
the land of his birth.

As a young Cambodian boy born and living in the rice fields outside
of the capital Phnom Penh in the late 1960’s / early 1970’s, Misiewicz
– whose birth name was Vannak Khem — wasn’t aware of the political
tension building up around him. When his country plunged into turmoil,
his family reluctantly gave him up for adoption to a young American
woman who worked at the U.S. Embassy, allowing him to escape before the
Khmer Rouge regime took over the country, eventually causing millions
of deaths in what is known as the “Killing Fields.”

“I know it’s going to be very emotional,” said Misiewicz. “I was the lucky one in the family.”

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