Road Bike, Cycling Forums banner
1 - 20 of 24 Posts

·
User is infamous around
Joined
·
2,738 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
North Korea sentences U.S. student to hard labor - CNN.com

Here in the U.S., if convicted of theft of federal gov't property ($1K and up), the penalty is up to 10 years. So 15 years in N. Korea doesn't strike me as way out of bounds considering that it is N. Korea. Bonehead is 21 years old (not a child), went there of his own free will (not kidnapped or wandered in accidentally), and has to know that theft* is a crime EVERYWHERE. So why all the hand wringing? Usually cases like this, I assume N.K. trumped up charges and would be holding him to get concessions from our gov't, but that only works if the snatched person is 'somebody' or 'somebody's kid'. Far as we know this guy is nobody special. What am I missing here?:confused:





*Theft being defined as unlawfully taking possession something that doesn't belong to you.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,110 Posts
Yeah, you probably lack sympathy. But how much sympathy does a person deserve or expect, having gone to N. Korea in the first place, knowing in advance that committing even the slightest sleight will result in severe penalties? Couldn't pay me to visit NK.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
9,658 Posts
That "up to" 10 years and 15 years of hard labor are not similar at all, a banner on a hotel can't really be compared to Federal Govt property (despite maybe being just that in NK)......for starters.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
15,615 Posts
Granted, a person is technically an adult at 21, but that still seems like a reckless young age. But then, that's how old I was when my boyfriend was stealing street signs for me just b/c I liked them :blush2: (he did draw the line at stop signs.)

Guess some of us mature more slowly than others, which isn't really a good defense.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
20,737 Posts
Not a whole lot of sympathy if it's true what happened. Just going into North Korea is like playing Russian Roulette. Then to do something so dumb.

But I'm not sure I'm buying that he did it. According to the article:

In an emotional press conference last month, the 21-year-old student admitted to attempting to steal a banner with a political slogan from his hotel in the North Korean capital. It is not known whether Warmbier made the admission under duress.

Appearing to read from a statement, he said: "I committed the crime of taking down a political slogan from the staff holding area of the Yanggakdo International Hotel."

"I never, never should have allowed myself to be lured by the United States administration to commit a crime in this country," he said tearfully as he begged for forgiveness.

"I wish that the United States administration never manipulate people like myself in the future to commit crimes against foreign countries. I entirely beg you, the people and government of the DPRK, for your forgiveness. Please! I made the worst mistake of my life!"

The North Korean government alleges Warmbier was encouraged to commit the "hostile act" by a purported member of an Ohio church, a secretive university organization and even the CIA.
Sure... the U.S. Government, CIA, and an Ohio Church conspired to get this kid to steal a political banner from a hotel. :rolleyes:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
463 Posts
What I'm not clear on is, did he actually steal the banner from the hotel or is that part of the story also being fabricated? (The claimed promise of a $10K car in return for the banner is apparently a fabrication by the NK gov't.)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
14,713 Posts
What I'm not clear on is, did he actually steal the banner from the hotel or is that part of the story also being fabricated? (The claimed promise of a $10K car in return for the banner is apparently a fabrication by the NK gov't.)
Even according to the North Koreans, he only "attempted" to steal it. He pulled it off the wall, found it was too big to carry, and so left it on the floor. They arrested him later as he was boarding the plane. It all smells weird, especially with his prepared statement about being directed to do this by the US government. It all may be fabricated.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,231 Posts
A. Mess with the bull, get the horns.

B. I feel anyone who goes to North Korea is an idiot figuring we all fully understand what a corrupt, insane country it is.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
982 Posts
It might also have something to do with the most recent round of sanctions the US imposed on North Korea yesterday. With that being said it is absolutely playing with fire to visit North Korea, let alone to do anything as stupid as this young man did. North Korea doesn't have a real big sense of humor, just ask the Sony Corporation.
 

·
Master debator.
Joined
·
8,777 Posts
Sympathy is usually reserved for that deserve it imho. This young man will get none of mine. I assume like most youngsters he assumed if he got caught he'd get a slap on the wrist, which may be true here, but if you think that there you're a special kind of stupid. The penalty does seem pretty harsh, but at least they won't chop his hands off at gun point which could happen in other countries that don't take kindly to theft.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
3,297 Posts
Yeah, but the Saudis are our friends.

 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,752 Posts
Sympathy. Absolutely. Going to NK was stupid as hell. Regardless, that is not a reason to have no sympathy.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,488 Posts
Sympathy. Absolutely. Going to NK was stupid as hell. Regardless, that is not a reason to have no sympathy.
If it's true, while I agree with those that say it's a bit harsh, I don't know that I have all that much sympathy. If there's a country where they shove a pineapple up your rear end if you eat chocolate ice cream, while that may be a bit harsh, if you go there and walk down the street with a big ol' chocolate ice cream cone, don't act all offended when you see the pineapple headed your way.
 

·
User is infamous around
Joined
·
2,738 Posts
Discussion Starter · #15 ·
I guess it's that I have no faith in either party. N.K. are always screwing around about something, but I know the kind of stupidity 21 year olds do. Either way, sympathetic feelings are hard to come by this time.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
40,812 Posts
"The White House announcement [of sanctions against North Korea for nuclear missile testing] came the same day that the country's highest court sentenced American tourist Otto Warmbier — the latest U.S. citizen to be detained by North Korea — to 15 years in prison with hard labor for subversion. The sentence came weeks after the 21-year-old University of Virginia undergraduate was presented to the news media and tearfully confessed to trying to steal a propaganda banner."

Obama sanctions North Korea for nuclear, missile tests | Fox News
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
20,737 Posts
So apparently there was video of him taking down the banner. (0:53 in video)

<div style="position:relative; padding-bottom:63%; padding-bottom:-webkit-calc(56.25% + 50px); padding-bottom:calc(56.25% + 50px); height: 0;">
</div>
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
9,658 Posts
Sympathy is usually reserved for that deserve it imho. This young man will get none of mine. I assume like most youngsters he assumed if he got caught he'd get a slap on the wrist, which may be true here, but if you think that there you're a special kind of stupid. The penalty does seem pretty harsh, but at least they won't chop his hands off at gun point which could happen in other countries that don't take kindly to theft.
Great. Let's just skip the part about if he actually did anything or not. Of course we can trust NK and it's a well known tactic of the CIA to conspire with Ohio churches to take down banners on hotels. It all adds up.

Must have been a frat boy stunt huh? Because we all know going to NK and all the money it would have cost to go there is typical of crazy partying 21 year olds.

Give me a fcking break.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
9,658 Posts
Some of you lack a lot more than sympathy if you concluded that a disrespectful 21 year old choose to conspire with a church, the CIA and a secret organization and head to NK to take a banner down for Spring Break.
 
1 - 20 of 24 Posts
Top