Future generations will wonder why the U.S. and South Korea did nothing about human rights abuses in North Korea, the Washington Post said in an editorial comparing North Korean prison camps to concentration camps in Nazi Germany. American children "may ask, a generation from now, why the West stared at far clearer satellite images of Kim Jong-il's camps, and did nothing."
Titled "Three Kernels of Corn," the editorial recounts the torture and human rights abuse of Shin Dong-hyuk, a 26-year-old refugee and former inmate of a concentration camp. The title alludes to Shin's experience at the camp, where he found three kernels of corn in a pile of cow dung, washed them off and ate them. Shin was the first North Korean refugee who escaped from a concentration camp.
"It's horrifying, on another level, that only 500 people in South Korea, where Shin lives, have bought his book. Many Koreans don't want to hear about human rights abuses in the north; they're worried that the Communist regime might collapse and leave the more prosperous South with a costly burden of rehabilitation."
The U.S., meanwhile, is more concerned with containing North Korea's nuclear ambitions. "High school students in America debate why President Franklin D. Roosevelt didn't bomb the rail lines to Hitler's camps. Their children may ask, a generation from now, why the West stared at far clearer satellite images of Kim Jong Il's camps, and did nothing."