Scholars often describe Duch as an extremely conscientious worker, and according to the psychiatrists, "there is a strong presence of obsessive traits in (his) personality, both past and present. He is meticulous, conscientious, control oriented, attentive to detail and seeks recognition from his superiors."
Though he has a tendency to use denial as a coping mechanism, he has made progress in this area in recent years. And while his "ability to put himself in other people's shoes" is limited, Duch has repeatedly expressed regret about his role during the Khmer Rouge period.
From their evaluations, the psychiatrists have concluded that Duch could possibly be rehabilitated and reintegrated. Of course, they add, this would depend on the outcome of the trial, Duch's age and his personal security.
In all, Duch, like many infamous historical figures, appears decidedly ordinary from a psychological standpoint -- which makes his actions all the more disturbing.
Contact PhnomPenh Post for full articlePost Media Co Ltd
The Elements Condominium, Level 7
Hun Sen Boulevard
Phum Tuol Roka III
Sangkat Chak Angre Krom, Khan Meanchey
12353 Phnom Penh
Tel: +855(0) 23 888 161 / 162
Fax: +855(0) 23 214 318