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A crack in the dam

Previous posts here have looked at the worldwide trend toward democratic rule, the lengths to which people will go to participate in the democratic process, and how North Korea's state-controlled media permit none of the freedom of expression necessary for such a system to exist in that benighted country.

Yet time waits for no man, not even the Dear Leader, and it now appears that not even Kim Jong-il can keep his people from demanding their freedom:

The first known visual evidence of dissent within the world's most secretive state emerged yesterday when video footage taken in a North Korean factory showed a portrait of the dictator, Kim Jong-il, defaced with graffiti demanding freedom and democracy.

The 35-minute video clip, said to have been taken in November, was posted on the website of an opposition group based in South Korea. It shows a poster of Kim scrawled over with the words: "Down with Kim Jong-il. Let's all rise to drive out the dictatorial regime." ...

The Citizens' Coalition for Human Rights of Abductees and North Korean Refugees, based in Seoul, said the act of dissent against the paranoid leadership of the totalitarian state and its broadcast abroad suggested the first signs of an attempt to forge a domestic movement against Kim.

Such an act would be considered a grave crime in the North and would mean a death sentence without trial for the perpetrator, said Do Hee-youn, who heads the group. "It's no ordinary group of people who took this video," he told Reuters news agency.
I can't begin to grasp the courage it took to do what those protesters did. And when the time finally comes for them to take a stand, I'm proud to know that, as President Bush made clear in his inaguration address, they'll have our support:
We are led, by events and common sense, to one conclusion: The survival of liberty in our land increasingly depends on the success of liberty in other lands. The best hope for peace in our world is the expansion of freedom in all the world.

So it is the policy of the United States to seek and support the growth of democratic movements and institutions in every nation and culture, with the ultimate goal of ending tyranny in our world.




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