The Khmer Rouge (Khmer: ខ្មែរក្រហម) was the totalitarian communist ruling party in Cambodia from 1975 to 1979, notoriously led by dictator Pol Pot. This organization is remembered primarily for its policy of social engineering and genocide, pursued with terrible savagery and giving rise to the term "killing fields".
After taking power the Khmer Rouge leadership renamed the country Democratic Kampuchea. The Khmer Rouge subjected Cambodia to a radical social reform process that was aimed at creating a purely agrarian-based Communist society. The city-dwellers were deported to the countryside, where they were combined with the local population and subjected to forced labor. About 1.5 million Cambodians died in waves of murder, torture, and starvation, aimed particularly at the educated and intellectual elite.
Losing power following a Vietnamese military intervention in December 1978, the Khmer Rouge maintained control in some regions and continued to fight on as guerillas. In 1998 their final stronghold, in Anlong Veng District, fell to the government.