It is easy to overstate what a mission, even if undertaken for the noblest and most honest of reasons, can achieve.
Things are getting real. Entertainment, specifically. And by "real" I don't mean serious, or imminent, or even necessarily honest -- but real, as in pushed to the limit of what we perceive as real, and even further.
She traveled without money, slept outdoors and relied on the charity of others for food. When she was not on the road, Peace Pilgrim gave lectures and gathered signatures for several peace petitions, one of which was a plea for immediate peace in Korea.
It can't be a surprise either that the world's remaining totalitarian states pursue their own survival, mutually assisting each other politically, economically and militarily.
In 2013, the curious traveler who wants to experience one of the last Communist dynasties should book a ticket to Pyongyang, the capital of the Democratic People's Republic of North Korea (DPRK).
It has been 60 years since the end of a war that many Americans call "The Forgotten War." While the Korean War may be for many "a conflict fought...
If Cuban political leaders believed they could still hide planes and missiles on a ship, send it through the Panama Canal and successfully arrive at a North Korean port, it is proof of their great disconnect from the reality of the world they live in.
At a time when newspapers are offering lessons that governments can't get away with secrecy, the conformist role of the official Cuban press is, at the very least, painful.
Asian economies are the highest current and projected growth areas in the world. But simmering security issues pose a threat to the region's continued growth and its fueling the world economic system.
When you acknowledge the level of control that exists, you can begin to wonder about what you're not seeing and question the validity of what you are. Much of North Korea remains a mystery, but it feels less opaque and more penetrable than it was before. I know that I want to go back.
If not bombing Hawaii and talking about basketball are criteria for acceptance on the world stage, I'm nominating my Uncle Gilbert for Emperor.
Remember that Stalin, one of history's greatest mass murderers said: "One death is a tragedy, a million deaths, a statistic." Don't allow the suffering of the North Korean people to wallow in abject anonymity.
If one is a prisoner, are we not all in some way, a prisoner also? Hyeonseo Lee fought for her family and their lives. One may not know what they are capable of until tested.
Ms. Lee speaks the universal truths of the immigrant experience: a dream, of place not one's own; a journey, quite distinct from travel of any other kind; and what, V.S. Naipaul has so eloquently described as the "enigma of arrival."
I was nearly at the end of a presentation on the North Korean prison camp system, when the last person in the audience grasped the microphone to ask a question. His question was so unexpected that I was literally blindsided.
A total stranger helped Hyeonseo Lee pay her mother and brother's way out of jail as they fled from North Korea. Now, four years later, Lee has been reunited with that stranger, getting the chance to thank him in person.