North Korea’s hostage release

I’m really glad for the families of the reporters that were kidnapped from China and falsely imprisoned in North Korea for trespassing (and the reporters too of course) and have now been released. Some would say that it’s a triumph of diplomacy, however I can’t help but feel that we’ve played a big card here when we should have been tougher. Washington says that we didn’t make any concessions to BK and their nuclear program was never discussed but we DID make a concession, a big one named Bill Clinton. It was more than a photo op for North Korea, and it was more than a short stay by a former president in a hostile nation, it’s us giving them what they want.. I feel we took the easy way out. I know that in any diplomatic exchange there is a give and take and I’m happy with that, but this wasn’t a give and take, they took and then they took again. We gain nothing except the freedom of two citizens that were essentially kidnapped to give NK bargaining power, and we lose a point for doing so. That’s no diplomacy, it’s a form of surrender and it sits bad in my stomach.

The worst part is now that it’s worked once they’re going to try it again and the administration is going to have to make the same choice again. Who are they going to send next time? I know if it was my daughter I’d feel differently but I hate to say it would have been better to gain their freedom in a way that didn’t play into NK’s hands and make the US look ….. weak. No wonder Mr. Clinton wasn’t smiling.

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