The writing here is on the walls, in a masonry schoolhouse abandoned when the Communist Khmer Rouge guerrillas fled a government attack two weeks ago.
Large blackboards list the rules of behavior that were enforced in this village during the years when it was the core of a stark, self-contained Communist society - along with the penalty for disobedience: death.No stealing. No drunkenness. No prostitution. No marriage outside the commune. No commerce without permission. No contact with outsiders. No listening to any radio station other than that of the Khmer Rouge.
"Anyone who disobeys the Angkar will be killed," reads the blackboard. The Angkar - meaning "the organization" - was the anonymous leadership that ruled Cambodia from 1975 to 1979 and caused the deaths of more than 1 million people.
For years the Khmer Rouge leadership held out here - apart from a short-lived government occupation in 1994 - even as the bulk of their forces, in other strongholds, gave up the fight.
But Cambodian government soldiers and Khmer Rouge defectors now control Anlong Veng, which stands empty and silent in the hot sun, and they, too, have made their mark on the schoolhouse walls.
One of them has written, in careful but flawed English: "This is a place of Khmer Red, now the solyers got. They run untill to stay at Thailand. Signature: Solyers of Gavamente."
The bang of a tank cannon echoed off the cement walls Monday, and a young soldier jumped. The war is not yet over. The last several hundred guerrillas have retreated to the Dangrek Mountains on the border with Thailand, a hazy blue ridge nine miles away.
Seven artillery rounds fired by the Khmer Rouge landed Monday morning near the abandoned home of the guerrillas' leader, Ta Mok.
On a visit here Monday, Gen. Meas Sophea, the deputy chief of staff of the Cambodian army, asserted that the guerrillas' mountain stronghold, known as Hill 200, could fall within a few days.
But the Khmer Rouge has already retaken Anlong Veng once since it fell two weeks ago, and the progress of the battle is unclear. Several thousand villagers who fled two weeks ago have not been allowed to return.
Meas Sophea also asserted that Ta Mok had crossed the border into Thailand, presumably taking with him the founder of the Khmer Rouge, Pol Pot, who is now ailing and demoted from his leadership post.
"Ta Mok is in Thai territory," the general said. "As far as we know, Pol Pot is with him. Ta Mok is in Ban Sa-Ngam, three kilometers inside Thai territory."
He said he based this statement on "information from people who have come from that area."
Thailand has vigorously denied that the Khmer Rouge have taken sanctuary on its territory, although for years the guerrillas have moved easily back and forth across the border at Ban Sa-Ngam.