If you’re going to behave questionably in a foreign land, make sure that foreign land isn’t run by a drunken, sensitive, girlfriend and uncle-murdering egomaniac looking for any excuse to exercise his power over you.
American Matthew Miller didn’t exactly play it low key when he arrived in Pyongyang, tearing up his visa at the airport and demanding asylum, saying he’d chosen North Korea as ‘shelter’.
Well they’re going to give him shelter alright – the 24 year old was arrested and will now serve a ‘labour re-education’ sentence. A statement from North Korean officials said:
He committed acts hostile to the DPRK while entering the territory of the DPRK under the guise of a tourist last April.
He joins fellow American Kenneth Bae who is serving a 15-year labour camp sentence for trying to evangelising the Asian state, and Jeffrey Fowle who is awaiting sentence for leaving a Bible under a bin in the toilet of a sailors’ club (!?).
Jail/labour camp seems an extreme punishment for all three ‘crimes’, but it’s believed the Americans are being used as pawns to force Barack Obama to send high-profile members of his administration on a diplomatic visit to North Korea.
The tour company who arranged Matthew’s trip to North Korea said there was nothing to suggest that Matthew would behave idiotically once he landed in Pyongyang. To be fair it sounds almost like he wanted to be arrested – maybe he should have read the UN reports on North Korea before making the trip over.