be careful where you clique
You’ve heard of Al Gore’s “Current TV” staffers Euna Lee and Laura Ling. They are currently bound up in North Korea where Juche justice has just meted out a sentence of 12 years in a labor camp: Re-education, friday beatings, and working in a coal mine that may serve as a new launch shaft for some ballistic missiles. No kimbap.
Crossing a border illegally is a touchy subject, just ask the Von Trapp family. Word on the street says Al Gore may be packing his handbags and preparing a low-footprint rescue mission. Careful Al, better pack the heat. Funny how their cameraman Mitch Koss, got away. If anyone is in the Bay area, you might look him up and ask what exactly happened and WHY the girls were carrying their ID?
Of course these women are not the first uninvited guests to venture too far into “No Man’s Rand”. There was James Joseph Dresnok, the US soldier who lost it one day in 1962 and kamikazily crossed a mine field to become North Korea’s prized white guy. He didn’t take his passport. Apart from developing his smoking and drinking skills over the years, Dresnok’s also dabbled in Communist re-education and acting; however Pyongyang’s burgeoning film scene has stunted his growth as a performer. Dresnok has definitely created a type cast for himself- the American bad guy.
The most bizarre entry to date, however, is the story of Evan C. Hunziker. This tale is worthy of another look, maybe a made-for-TV movie or at least a docudrama re-enactment with shadowy narration by people in the know. 26 year old Hunziker is an enigma inside a jelly roll. Here’s why….
It begins in Washington where Evan is born to a no-nonsense American veteran of the Korean War and a Korean mom. Growing up is tough. There’s authority issues. There’s relationship issues. There’s a move to Alaska. There’s restraining orders and pencil stabbings…. then a lot of finger-pointing about who’s pencil it was and who’s fault it is that this boy has grown up to be such a bad apple.
Sometime in jail, Evan gets evangemilized. The Alaskan kid is later released and takes flight to South Korea with his Bible and his thoughts. Why he went is a question we’d all like to know- was he passionate about his roots? New Beginnings? Was is about the work of the Lord?
Was it about the food?
Hunziker reported that he was on a mission from God. But God’s Half-Korean emissary arrives and starts drinking… heavily; so heavily that at one point, on holiday in China at the Yalu river, He accepts a dare, strips down to his birthday suit and traverses the watery border between China and North Korea. Dare or a desperate plea to God?
Naked and inebriated…. Hunziker washes up on the banks of the North Korean frontier. He’s collected by farmers who wrap him in swaddling clothes and transfer him to higher powers. Questioned about his travel plans and mode of entry, Hunziker again states he’s on a mission from God.
Obviously North Korea has a very strange diplomatic playbook, and as good relations and grain stores were dwindling around this time, it was decided that Hunziker would be used as a poker chip- a blue poker chip. There was a lot stirring in 1996 …. A murdered South Korean ambassador, a captured DPRK submarine full of brainwashed commandos….
Word gets out that an American is in custody- and of course it’s spun through news channels as if Hunziker is a prized catch. The U.S. scrambles to figure out who the hell Evan Hunziker is. Meanwhile Evan is soaking up foreign culture and the finest in Marxist-Korean cuisine while under hotel-room arrest in one of the capital’s finer establishments. He has plenty of time to think about Jesus and another drink.
Enter Bill Richardson. A pre-goatee Bill Richardson who aims to please. Bill is designated to fly to Pyongyang and make a jailbreak (hard to find weird photo below with EULOGY). Bill arrives and quickly realizes that he may not want to sit next to Hunziker the whole ride home. Before Evan is handed over, there’s the usual RISK reallocation requests- please move your missiles back 200 paces, please send more grain and coco puffs… oh yes and please pay 100,000 USD for the prisoner. Bill looks down at his wallet and then at Hunziker and says, “No way, man.”
The North Korean diplomats decide to cut their losses and just go for Hunziker’s room tab- 5000 USD. Room service, pay per view, standard handling fee? Can you imagine Bill or one of his interns counting out Benjamins on the marble countertop of an empty derelict Hotel Lobby…. Hunziker off by the window, thinking of how it’s going to be back home. It’ll be Thanksgiving day.
Hunziker arrives in time for turkey and pomp. Maybe he was lectured on the plane, threatened, consoled, maybe he just ordered beer. Whatever happened… in one month Evan would have a bullet in his head.
His body was found in the dining room of his mother’s Olympus Motel. All reports assume suicide via sleaze, sluts and gunshot, but there is room for HUH?! Was Evan Hunziker a running man, or is there more to this story? Maybe Bill Knows.
AND NOW FOR A EULOGY
You swam without a visa
you swam drunk without your clothes
oh deluded soldier of God
Alaska Alaska Alaska
There’s no restraining order anymore
WASHINGTON, Nov. 27 /U.S. Newswire/ — The following was released today by the White House: STATEMENT BY THE PRESS SECRETARY Release of American Citizen Evan Hunziker The president warmly welcomes the release of Evan Carl Hunziker, who had been held by North Korea since late August and arrived today back in the United States.