From 1964 to 1973 the US dropped millions of bombs in Laos and Cambodia, a ‘secret’ part of the war against Vietnam and Communism.
A country with very few resources, Laos has made use of the 2.5 million tons of munitions by repurposing the metal, although often at an horrific human cost, for in 2016 it was estimated that there were still 80 million unexploded bombs in the country.
A bridge anchored by recycled bombs in Laos.
Recycled bomb acts as a planter in a monastery in Luang Prabang.
2.7 tons of bombs also fell in the country next door, Cambodia, and current speculation insists that the destabilizing effect of this action lead to the Khmer Rouge and the genocide of millions of citizens.
When we were there in 2007 Cambodia was still a country in pain, but everywhere you could see attempts to heal the population. One of these was a metal sculpture exhibit in Siem Reap entitled ‘Turning Weapons into Art’. My biggest hope for the country were its children, who seemed exempt from the anger, and were protected from any future nightmares…
More of the Daily Post’s Weekly Photo Challenge: Repurpose
Great use of a weapon! Love it
If only there was such an art movement everywhere in the world!
Fantastic! But so very sad that those things are there in the first place.
It was tragic – there were many people maimed by these bombs that exploded on them – I note Obama increased the budget for finding and exploding them just last year in 2016.
No doubt Trump will remove that.
I have no doubt that Trump will remove everything that truly matters. But hopefully the world will still manage to continue!
Nothing lasts forever. 🙂
Schwerter zu Pflugscharen! https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Swords_to_ploughshares
It became the motto of the peace movement in ex-East Germany. All countries should follow Cambodia’s example.
Fascinating article – I’ve heard the phrase before but didn’t know it came from the Bible or associate it with the conversion of weapons materials into useful/peaceful items – it’s an idea we need more of the way the world is going.
Love this! Living in Cambodia, you get overwhelmed by the sheer trauma of their history. Lovely to see something positive coming out of all the pain.