Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Mayumi Kim Hyŏnhŭi to tackle abductee issue in Japan

From the BBC:
A former North Korean spy who blew up a South Korean airliner two decades ago killing 115 people has been allowed into Japan.

Kim Hyon-hui will meet the families of Japanese people abducted by North Korea to train its agents.

For the visit to take place Japan has waived immigration rules and police are not expected to question her past use of a fake Japanese passport.

There has been criticism in Japan of the decision to allow Ms Kim's visit.
Criticism? Do ya think? This woman — if her story is true — used the kidnapped Japanese to learn Japanese so that she could pose as a Japanese traveler and kill over a hundred people. This latest twist in the saga of this killer who should be behind bars for mass murder just makes things stranger and stranger.

Would the parents of the abductees, particularly Yokota Megumi, even want to meet her? What does she even offer, something that doesn't smell like a publicity stunt of some kind (and yes, this person has written a book)? It seems some in Japan share my skepticism:
The police are also expected not to question her about her use of a fake Japanese passport during the bombing

However, critics say any information she may have is likely to be decades out of date, and the trip has been branded a stunt to gloss over the government's lack of progress on the abduction issue.
Blech. Her case underscores one of the failings of the South Korean judicial system, whereby the flimsiest of mitigating circumstances is used as a pretext for letting someone off easy or off the hook altogether. In this case, instead of the all-too-familiar "I was drunk" excuse, hers was "I was beautiful."

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  1. Did/Does anyone believe that NK kidnapped native Japanese speakers or were they after native Japanese readers? What is really behind these stories that could explain this weird visit?

  2. I'm not sure I'm following you correctly. It sounds like you're suggesting the abductee issue was fabricated. If that is the case, please elaborate.

  3. While waiting for INCOMING!!!! to expand on his post, I thought I'd mention this.

    I seem to recall Ms. Kim did not financially benefit from her book. Also, I know she has already meat with Japanese abductee family members and given info on the abductees.

    I'm not going to belabor the punishment of Ms. Kim much. Yeah, the Korean justice system can be weak. But I keep thinking Ms. Kim would have not been punished much more by an American Court with the whole brainwashing issue.

  4. Not so much fabricated, just misdirected. Why kidnap so blatantly if the gangsters could supply without anyone knowing.

    I refer of course to the unbroken criminal links throughout the archipelago, the peninsula and greater China directed from London.

  5. INCOMING wrote:
    Not so much fabricated, just misdirected.

    Okay, I see. But I thought you might have meant fabricated because, well, it's not entirely inconceivable that a series of right-wing governments in Japan might have engineered such a story to justify a steady series of incremental increases in the defense budget.

    And I was already thinking along the lines of a conspiracy theory since, well, the Mayumi case lends itself to conspiracy theories at least as well as the Ch'ŏnan sinking does.

    There are enough oddities to write a book. From what I've read, there were no nationalities besides ROK citizens who lost their lives (making it easy for a right-wing ROK government to fabricate a passenger list). No wreckage was found except a lifeboat-type thing from the wing or something, whereas KAL 007 splattered all kinds of stuff across the East Sea/Sea of Japan a few years earlier. Though all the people on board the plane were ROK nationals, the two (ostensibly) Japanese passengers didn't somehow stand out. It exploded just weeks before the first direct presidential election in decades, which was a forced concession by the former general who was running the country and his hand-picked successor (who eventually won). The beautiful instigator was sentenced to death, but due to public opinion being swayed at a time when the press was more tightly under government control, her sentence was not just commuted to life imprisonment, she was actually released!

    One could go on.


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