A man believed to be 28-year-old Christian missionary Robert Park was recently captured by North Korean police after having crossed the border into the country from neighboring South Korea. Park, from Arizona, was apparently hoping to call attention to the regime’s human-rights abuses. According to the communist Korean Central News Agency, he crossed the frozen Tumen River along the border — just as Current TV journalists Laura Ling and Euna Lee did before their own arrest in March of this year. He was apparently carrying letters calling for change in North Korea’s leadership and an end to political prison camps.
Every time one of these activists or journalists gets busted along the North Korean border, it seems like they’re trying to call attention to human-rights abuses in the nation. Which is a noble cause, to be sure. But in the end, when the United States has to bargain or kowtow to Pyongyang in order to secure their release, it doesn’t really feel like much of a victory for the good guys, does it?