And so an inhuman event comes to a tragic end, the result of an individual being harmed by a despotic regime. If there was any indication of the danger that totalitarian governments hold to the safety and security of people, it was showcased through the unfortunate circumstances that Otto Warmbier endured. Sadly, for the better part of the year that he was incarcerated by the Kim regime, if one was to focus on much of the media reports on the matter, one would have likely gotten a different impression of what had taken place. Various editorials and reports put much onus on the alleged idiocy of Mr. Warmbier in attempting to steal a piece of propaganda from North Korea, and using his imprisonment to either condemn such behavior as an example of “white privilege” or “American hubris”. Instead, what such reports show is a fundamental lack of understanding of what the North Korean regime is capable of. It is shameful how such a narrative was automatically accepted in media accounts without some measure of skepticism. After all, as a regime that prides itself on the total control of all measures of life, the Kim regime is steadfast in propaganda to legitimize their power. That includes those considered allied with countries it considers a threat, including the United States. Since he returned to our shores, it already has been demonstrated that the whole carnard put forth by the regime of Mr. Warmbier falling into a coma as a result of botulism was spurious, so why can’t this be as well? Indeed there is a purported video of the man doing this, but who isn’t to say that he was coerced into doing so? Videos can be faked after all. Mr. Warmbier’s roommate also disputes whether the accusation was valid.
The only issue I could perhaps raise about Mr. Warmbier at all is just him being in North Korea in the first place. I could never put myself at such risk, especially since the United States and North Korea are still technically at war. However, I’m not about to take the narratives from the Hermit Kingdom…one of the worst bastions on the planet regarding human rights and freedom…at face value. RIP to the man. Even if the narrative is indeed true, no one deserves this fate as a result of such things. Condolences to his friends and family.
Some have begun putting forth the idea that travel to North Korea should be banned, but I believe such a thing would be a bad step. Indeed I do think that going to the Hermit Kingdom is a very risky venture, but that is something that should be up to those contemplating such a thing…at least if we still value our liberties. Having as open an eye as possible to what is going on inside North Korea (which is difficult enough considering how closed off as a result of the Kim regime’s policies) isn’t such a bad thing as well considering how much it serves as a reminder of the inhumanity that such a system continues to represent not just to it’s own citizens, but also visitors. As a result, a ban wouldn’t be necessary.