No one knows the value of freedom better than Yeonmi Park. As a refugee who managed to escape from one of the most impoverished parts of North Korea, she has faced hardship on a level that most westerners could not even comprehend.
Now living in Chicago and working as one of the world’s most renowned human rights campaigners on the issue of North Korea, Yeonmi Park spoke with El American to discuss everything from how to remove the regime from power all the way through to the assault on freedom taking place across the United States, particularly on college campuses.
“Sanctions is one of [the ways of removing the regime], but the number one thing is a public awareness and to convince China to stop supporting Kim Jong-un,” she explained. “One thing China can do to stop Kim Jong-un is stop sending him oil. How does [his regime] test missiles without a single gallon of oil?”
“North Korea is not like other rich countries like Venezuela, they do not produce any oil,” she continued. “If you really want to stop Kim Jong-un from testing these missiles and developing weapons of mass destruction, the easiest thing is for Xi Jinping to stop giving him any oil.”
On the issue of the U.S. culture wars, Yeonmi Park concurred with the growing fears among both conservatives and classical liberals about the threat of Marxist ideology into the mainstream.
“The problem is guilt by association. One person does something wrong and later generations of that family are going to be punished. In America there is almost no way out. What are you supposed to do with your skin color? Maybe my ancestors owned slaves if they were white people, but then how is it my fault that I am supposed to be guilty?”
“This is what makes me really sad to see in America,” she continued. “Of course everybody did something wrong and that was part of being a human. Koreans owned slaves. I was a slave in China during the 21st century… In America it’s almost like they demand people to be perfect when they were alive like 300 years ago?”
Other topics discussed include the left-wing government of South Korea, the benefit of sanctions, and the problems with the mainstream liberal consensus on how to tackle these rogue states.
Yeonmi’s remarkable story of triumph through adversity is told in her book In Order to Live. Copies of the book can be purchased on Amazon and from most good book stores.