Politics playing a wicked game with South Korean hostages

Politics inappropriately mixing in with international crisis is at an all time high – just take a look at the South Korean hostage situation in Aghanistan.


While Taliban members began holding 23 Christian relief workers 15 days ago, two male hostages have been killed, various captor deadlines have passed, and the blame game has begun in earnest.

Associated Press reports today:

Frustration over the plight of South Koreans seized by the Taliban is starting to focus on the United States, a frequent target of resentment here.

Politicians and citizens of all persuasions are increasingly calling on Washington to help resolve the 15-day-old standoff, believing the United States to be the only country capable of pushing Afghanistan to meet the captors’ demands that Taliban prisoners be freed.

We’ll be hearing more soon…as in tomorrow, because a delegation of top South Korean lawmakers left today for Washington to press their case for an exception to the U.S. policy of refusing to make concessions to terrorists.

Meanwhile, among reports breaking at the exact same time that a military operation has begun and that one has not, it’s hard to get the real story. Equally as hard is to be able to put faces on the hostages and their purpose in Afghanistan as well. For the most part, you have to look to Christian news sites, as I did and am still doing.

Did you know, for example, anything about the second hostage killed Monday?

This from Compass Direct News:

For Shim Sung Min, 29, traveling to Afghanistan with an aid group of 23 members of his home congregation in South Korea reflected an active desire to live out his faith.

The former IT worker, a graduate of South Korea’s Gyeongsang National University, had volunteered his time to teach Sunday school classes to handicapped church-goers on a weekly basis at the Sammul Presbyterian church, a member of the church said.

Prompted by the needs of poor Korean farmers negatively affected by globalization, Shim had decided to quit his job and pursue a graduate degree in agriculture, the church member told Compass.

“He always wanted to help,” the church member said. “He was moved to go to Afghanistan in order to help people.”

Amazingly, the spin continues, even from fellow countrymen. More from Compass Direct:

The kidnapping has aroused a storm of anti-Christian sentiment among Koreans online, who not only labeled the group’s trip to Afghanistan as naïve but also condemned the Christians for supposedly carrying out evangelistic work.

Both the Korean government and church leadership, as well as a member of the congregation speaking to Compass, confirmed that the group was carrying out service work in orphanages and hospitals.

But several Korean Internet users posted a video clip on Youtube.com with pictures and writings from the homepages of the victims, suggesting that the Korean hostages were conducting evangelistic activities in mosques, Korean daily Chosun reported.

My suggestion to those wanting to get proper perspective on the South Korean hostage situation is to look for updates here and at the PersecutionBlog.

Also, to get commentary from someone right on top of the liberal slant from some on this crisis and the astounding silence brought on by apathy, check out Michelle Malkin.

One thought on “Politics playing a wicked game with South Korean hostages

  1. I am all for seeing these guys go free but don’t the South Koreans understand that making an exception to a ‘no excaptions’ policy will void it’s meaning entirely?

    If the U.S. hasn’t conceded to terrorist demands in order to save our own kidnapped citizens then we certainly are not going to give in now.

    God be with those brave souls in their time of need and may they find a safe way home.

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