"Escape From Camp 14"
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Liberty in North Korea

Liberty in North Korea | "Escape From Camp 14" | Scoop.it
The North Korean PEOPLE have massive potential to drive change in their country. We exist to empower the PEOPLE.
Joshua Zanoni's insight:

LiNK, or Liberty in North Korea is a activist group that, as it name suggests, wants to bring liberty to the North Korean people. Freedom for all is their goal, bring an end to the totalitarian regime that starves and murders its civilians. LiNK is based out of Torrance, California but also have a headquarters in Seoul, South Korea. LiNK helps refugees from North Korea escape by a modern day underground railroad that brings its constituents through Southeast Asia. Once brought to freedom the refugees are brought to the country of their liking, where they will be supported by LiNK until they can support themselves. The only thing they want in return is the refugees' story, so they can tell the world about North Korea. LiNK raises awareness through media, tours, campaigns, as well as a video they released in 2012 called "The Peoples Crisis." LiNK started off as a lobbyist group in high level politics to gain political backing for action in North Korea, but as of 2009 the shifted their scope from politics to the people of North Korea. LiNK is responsible for rescuing 221 people from North Korea as well as producing two documentaries.

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North Korean Political Camp

North Korean Political Camp | "Escape From Camp 14" | Scoop.it
Joshua Zanoni's insight:

These are the only known pictures taken of political camps in North Korea, and they are taken by satellites. These camps inhabit prisoners that will be there for three generations, no matter the severity of their crimes. These camps are the size of small cities and a estimated 150,000-200,000 live in the amps combined.

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Map of North Korea

Map of North Korea | "Escape From Camp 14" | Scoop.it
Joshua Zanoni's insight:

North Korea is not a place to consider for this years spring break vacation. North Korean's don't like the presence of outsiders in their country and their country is  ruled by a psychotic dictator. I would reconsider your travel arrangement if you are thinking about North Korea.  

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Escape from Camp 14: One Man's Remarkable Odyssey from North Korea to Freedom in the West: Blaine Harden: 9780143122913: Amazon.com: Books

Escape from Camp 14: One Man's Remarkable Odyssey from North Korea to Freedom in the West

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Escape from Camp 14: One Man's Remarkable Odyssey from North Korea to Freedom in the West [Blaine Harden] on Amazon.com. *FREE* shipping on qualifying offers. The heartwrenching New York Times bestseller about the only known person born inside a North Korean prison camp to have escaped North Korea’s political prison camps have existed twice as long as Stalin’s Soviet gulags and twelve times as long as the Nazi concentration camps. No one born and raised in these camps is known to have escaped. No one
Joshua Zanoni's insight:

Escape from Camp 14 by Blaine Hardin is a second account of how Shin In Guen escapes from the North Korean Political Camp 14. Shin was born and raised in the camp because of crimes his parents made. He was taught to be an informant before a son or a brother, the only thing he cared about was how he was going to get his next meal, even if that meant snitching on his family that ultimately led to their death. Shin didn't know what it meant to love, or to be loved he only experienced the basic physiological thoughts, the things that required him to survive. Shin's revelation on how he saw the world and how he cared for other people didn't come until he met a prisoner that knew the outside world. This prisoner, named Parker, told Shin about geography, politics, his old life outside the camp, but what interested Shin most was the food Parker talked about. Shin's role as an informant changed into a friend as he got to know Parker, which ultimately led to Shin's idea of escape. After months of planing Parker and Shin finally got the opportunity to escape on New Years Day. Parker is killed by the electric fence that boarders the camp which allows Shin to climb over to escape. Shin describes his experience in the outside world "as if he was an alien that landed on earth." He didn't know of modern technology or how the world worked, all he knew was Camp 14. Shin made his way to China and then to South Korea. Shin's story first came out here in South Korea but he didn't receive immediate attention because one, he wasn't the first escapee from a North Korean political camp, and two, "only .001 of South Koreans have any really interest in North Korea." Shin eventually made his way to the United States where he became a member of LiNK, a human activist group that denounces North Korean political camps, he also met his girlfriend at LiNK. Shin eventually quit LiNK and moved to Washington State before moving back to South Korea in 2011. Shin spends his day speaking out against North Korea and its camps. He says he will never stop talking about waht happened to him inside Camp 14 until the North Korean gulag was shut down and all its prisoners were set free.

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Joshua Zanoni's insight:

"North Korea's labor camps exposed" by Robert Marquand tells about the current status of North Korea and its political prison camps. Although North Korea has denied the existence of these camps there is clear evidence of their existence. Whether it would be the defectors that come from these camps or the satellite images, it is without a doubt that these camps exist. These camps arose with the creation of the country in the 1950's and becoming a member of these gulags is as easy as crossing the boarder into China. The prisoners are given no trial, they just disappear one day.Camps range from 500 to 50,000 inhabitants and crimes can be range from political crimes to actual felons. Within the last year the UN has set up a formal investigation of North Korea and its gulags, accusing the country of crimes against humanity. Even with the overwhelming amount of evidence the solitary nation declines all accusations. Although there is no comparison to North Korea in our modern world it has been considered our generations Nazi Germany. The UN has created a inquiry to investigate the country but, as it has been for years, outsiders are not aloud to enter the country. Within the past year there has been a huge push for North Korea to embrace change, something it hasn't done in over 60 years, and close down the gulags.

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Kim Jung Il's funeral

Kim Jung Il's funeral | "Escape From Camp 14" | Scoop.it
Joshua Zanoni's insight:

This is an image of Kim Jung Il's, the Dear Leader, funeral. When videos of it were released to the world it depicted ecstatic civilians crying over their leader. Of course we know that the images were staged.

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North Korean Child

North Korean Child | "Escape From Camp 14" | Scoop.it
Joshua Zanoni's insight:

In the 1990's North Korea suffered the worst famine of the twentieth century, killing 3 million people. One in ten people died during the 1990's. North Korean's aren't dying because North Korea is poor, they are dying because they spend their money on things like Nuclear weapons.

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Inside North Korea - YouTube

Go undercover with National Geographic correspondent Lisa Ling as she journeys into mysterious and reclusive North Korea.
Joshua Zanoni's insight:

"Inside North Korea" is a documentary produced by National Geographic showing from the inside of the hermit nation of North Korea. The team is said to be there on a medical mission that is restoring eyesight to a thousand North Koreans, but in reality the film crew is trying to document a nation that the world knows little about. The patients of Dr. Ruit are going a simple, yet affective, surgery to remove cataracts. Usually cataracts affect people of higher age but because the lack of a right diet it affects small children alike. Before flying to North Korea the crew is met by North Korean minders, who will be watching them until they leave the country. Their bags are searched and cell phones are seized. When they reach the hospital where Dr. Ruit will operate, they are met by a insufficient amount of medical supplies and doctors who don't know how to use the modern equipment. Another doctor who spent 13 years in North Korea he was used to seeing bloody operating tables and the use of beer bottles for IV's, but because this event was filmed, the North Korean government showed the very best the nation could offer. The same doctor arrive at hospitals and watched as he saw children dying of malnutrition. North Korean's are shorter than their brothers to the south do to this epidemic. The National Geographic team was allowed to walk in a park by the permission of their minders. They come across a bench that was sealed off by glass and when the camera crew asked the minder told them they wanted to preserve it because their dear leader Kim Il Sung sat on it once. The same camera man laid on the ground to get a picture of a statue of Kim Il Sung, this was disrespectful and the minder threatened to kick them out of the country, the minder did not make good on his promise. The camera crew wanted to film a patients house and at the first the minders disagreed, but eventually changed their minds. When they arrived to the patients house they were met by more minders and party members along with the family of the elderly patient. When the reporter asked the patient what she would do once she can see again she said she would look upon the Great Leader for the first time. She began to cry at this point and so did every one else in the room. The reporter asked the minder who was also the translator if their leader could do anything wrong and he was legitimately confused by her question, he said he did not understand what she was trying to say. When they got back to the hospital they witnessed the patients receiving their eyesight for the first time, and when they did the first person they thanked was the Great Leader. Everything they saw inside North Korea was idealized.  

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Joshua Zanoni's insight:

Human Rights issues have always been an issue with North Korea and has gained much attention in the past years. But incriminating the the members in charge is not easy what so ever. North Korean's live in a hermit nation, there are no smart phones that can record atrocities or phones that can make international calls. There are computers but only for the most privileged civilians and yet the internet is  regulated by the state. So incriminating the nation for crimes against humanity rely of first hand accounts and even then it takes years before the story of defectors to surface. By 2011 the number of defectors has exceed 23,000 North Korean including hundreds who had been imprisoned, tortured and enslaved in violation of international norms and standards. Testimony from hundreds of former victims and witnesses about persecution, extra-judicial executions, slave labor, torture and other inhumane acts. A former state official from North Korea reported that 150,000-200,000 North Korean's live in labor camps where they live a life of forced labor. Members of the labor camps include people who oppose the North Korean government, people who don't care proper care of their picture of "The Great Leader,"  people that defect from the North, or even practicing Christianity. Of course the North Korean Government claims that these camps do not exist, as well as their failing economic  system. Countries around the world have tried to make a difference on the the status of human rights inside the country but with the rising threat of nuclear weapons from North Korea, it isn't the priority of most nations.

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Joshua Zanoni's insight:

"Hit North Korea with Financial Sanctions" by Joshua Stanton and Sung-Yoon Lee denounces the North Korean nation for the crimes against Humanity. As North Korean's die by the thousands every year from malnourishment, Kim Jong Un dropped $300 million on a water park, fitness center and dolphin aquarium. North Korean's aren't dying because their country is poor, they are dying because their leader has other intentions with the nations money. Sanctions have always existed on North Korea, ever since its creation in the 60's, but sanctions aren't strict like they are on Cuba or Iran. These sanctions don't do enough because they don't limit Kim's pockets; he is still able to buy a $300 million entertainment park. Political sanctions do nothing because China props the North Korean government but financial sanction have worked, and perhaps stricter ones will cause the Kim dynasty to fall. In 2005 the US sanctioned Chinese banks that funded North Korea. These banks lost their ties to their counterparts in the US that linked them to the world market and, as result of, nearly destroyed. This worked, causing Kim Jong Il to begin selling his gold reserves. A financial sanction would be much more difficult for China to undermine, in 2005 Chinese banks shunned North Korean deposits that were targeted by the US. China doesn't hold the same humanitarian beliefs as Washington or Seoul but China will not save North Korea if it means losing its spot on the world market. Financial sanctions would force North Korea to be responsible with its money and president Obama holds the key that can lead to this change in North Korea.

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