The Saturday 28 April online edition of the ‘New York Times’ carries a story by Choe Sang hun on the Korean Buddhist Venerable Pomnyun, who is ‘trying to ease North Korea’s pain’.
The Venerable can do little to ease food shortages in the North, owing to the unmerciful vagaries of Mother Nature these last few years.
Using the media, he appeals less to the South Korean government of Lee Myung bak than on jabbering on the web with messages targeted to North Koreans.
We do not doubt the Venerable’s heartfelt sincerity and compassion but his campaign is misdirected. His target should be against the Lee regime, ably seconded by the Obama administration, that use food aid as a weapon for its political agenda, whilst at the same time shedding mock turtle tears of concern of the fate of the very people they are denying sustenance to.
In a way, the Venerable monk is Lee’s and Obama’s cat’s paw, as a propaganda tool. Pity!
Were the ‘democratically minded’ and ‘philanthropic’ South Korean regime and US administration truly observant of the words they mouth, they would open the flood gates of food aid to North Korea, as they often publicise they are going to do, and thus aid NGOs like the Venerable’s Buddhist outfits among others.