"N.Korean executed for calling S.Korea: report - Thu, Mar 04, 2010 AFP
SEOUL, SOUTH KOREA - A North Korean has been publicly executed for using a mobile phone to tell a defector friend in South Korea about living conditions in the communist state, a rights group said Thursday.
The man identified only as Jung was executed in late January after security officials discovered a Chinese mobile phone in his home, said the Seoul-based Open Radio for North Korea.
It said Jung, a munitions worker in the northeastern port of Hamhung, confessed under torture that he had mentioned rice prices and living conditions."
If this story is true, it is a very very sad situation. North Korea is one of the most mystifying countries in the world for me. The cult of personality where the national leader is sculptured as 'God'! A nation where its people 'seems' to tolerate the going on though reports of regular famine and deaths and tortures for anyone who opposed or questioned the way things are are mercilessly dealt with. It just blows my mind away!
Lessons for me are:
1. human beings are creature of habits. When one is suppressed for too long, when one was brought up in an environment that you do not questioned authority, it is very hard to breakout of that habit;
2. humans spirits are indomitable though. If things that are unjust and unfair went on for too long, they tend to push the tolerant people to the brink of the cliff and they will jump. Or push them to the wall and they will fight back. I guessed things have not come to that stage yet in North Korea for quite a number of the people. Maybe the authority takes care of those who are unquestioning and carry out orders to suppress others well;
3. anyway, whatever that I think is 'unjust' and 'perplexing' or 'irrational' about what had just been reported is my interpretation. North Koreans own North Korea. The authority is just proxy to take care of the country and the people. The people themselves have to decide if this should continue or otherwise.
Getting shot to using a mobile phone to tell a friend who had defected to South Korea what a lot of people had already speculated on - poor living condition and rice prices - is just NOT ON! Not in this day and age. It is just crazy!!