Few doubt the threat to human liberty posed by the North Korean regime within the borders of North Korea. But what about the threat this regime poses to those outside its borders? This question often gets raised in the wake of the latest missile test or the most recent evidence North Korea is working on the bomb. And while the world focuses on these potential threats, the regime continues to carry out real threats to life and liberty beyond it’s borders and has done so for years.
Here are just a few examples of how the North Korean regime has not only threatened those outside it’s borders but actually committed crimes against human liberty:
1. Supplying Meth to the United States
The recent detainment and extradition last November of five foreign nationals for trial in the United States is further evidence of how the regime is directly attacking foreign borders by supporting and spreading the epidemic of methamphetamine use in other countries.
2. Providing Weapons to Syria
As the world works for a cease-fire solution to the atrocities on human life and liberty in the ongoing Syrian civil war, North Korea’s contribution to the effort is to provide those who repress human rights with weapons to sustain the repression.
3. Assisting Iran with their Proliferation
The North Korean regime has a history of partnering with like-minded nation-states who seek to deny the fundamental freedoms of their own citizens and who have a mandate to eradicate those who do not think or believe the way they do. North Korea’s collusion with Iran gravely increases the threat of both nations to the outside world.
4. Arms Smuggling
North Korea has a long track record of arms dealing and supplying parts for long-range missiles to other regimes that seek war with neighbors or themselves. Syria, Eritrea, Republic of Congo, Libya, Myanmar and more recently, Cuba, are among the countries of which the United Nations are aware arms dealing has taken place.
North Korea added kidnapping to it’s many crimes against humanity after the Korean conflict in the early 1950’s and continue to kidnap foreign nationals to this day. The ones the world knows about are likely the tip of a very large iceberg, the scope of which we do not, and may never, fully know.
As mass media and world leaders continue wrestle with how much of a threat the Kim Jong-un regime poses to the free world, the crimes already committed and the threats already realized need to be part of the equation – perhaps more so than failed missile tests.