February 1, 2018

Positivity: Who Was the Daring Defector Who Raised His Crutches High, Defying the Kim Regime During the State of the Union?

Filed under: Positivity,Taxes & Government — Tom @ 8:00 pm

From the Daily Signal:

February 01, 2018

One of the highlights of President Donald Trump’s first State of the Union address was a North Korean defector brutalized by the regime who raised his crutches in defiance.

Describing him as a “witness to the ominous nature of this regime,” the president explained that Ji Seong-ho’s “great sacrifice is an inspiration to us all.”

Trump briefly covered some of the details of Ji’s life, highlighting some of the horrible tragedies that befell him and his family in North Korea, his arduous escape, and his efforts to help others now that he has found a new life outside the cruel world that is North Korea—a country the president previously described as “a hell no one deserves.”

“Seong-ho’s story is a testament to the yearning of every human soul to live in freedom,” Trump said Tuesday night as Ji, who was noticeably moved by the president’s words, stood before a cheering audience.

Indeed, Ji’s story is a fascinating one characterized by both tragedy and triumph.

The Great Famine struck hard in the mid-1990s, killing nearly a million North Koreans. People across the country struggled to find food, and Ji’s family was no exception. His grandmother starved to death.

When he was 13, an age when children ought to be in school, Ji would steal coal to exchange for scraps of food at the local markets around once a week, which was how often he was eating. On one trip, this malnourished young man passed out while riding the train, and he collapsed onto the tracks below. The unforgiving train tore large parts of his left hand and foot from his body.

“It hurt so much. I was screaming,” he wrote in a 2014 op-ed in The Guardian, adding, “My mother still remembers the screams—it was hard for her to process it.”

He was taken to a medical facility, where the doctors considered letting him die. “My mom was pleading and crying, so they decided to operate,” he revealed to The Hollywood Reporter in 2015. Ji underwent a four and a half hour surgery without anesthetic because there simply was not any available.

“On the operating table I could feel everything that was being done to my body. I was screaming at the top of my lungs,” Ji recalled. “I felt the saw cutting into the bone of my leg, and the scalpel through my flesh. Every time I passed out from the pain the surgeon would slap my face to keep me awake. The whole hospital heard my screams.”

Both of the tattered limbs were amputated.

To help him recover, his brother and sister ate dirt and offered their food to Ji. It took him 10 months to recover, as there were no proper rehabilitation programs. He learned to move around again on a pair of wooden crutches his father made, and in time, he was back to foraging for scraps. …

Go here for the rest of the story.


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