Tuesday, August 04, 2009

American Journalists Freed From N. Korea


American Journalists Laura Ling and Euna Lee board private plane with former President Bill Clinton in Pyonyang, North Korea (AP Photo/Xinhua, Zhang Binyang)

I was overjoyed when this news broke Tuesday afternoon. I"ve been following the story of the two journalists captured by N. Korea since the story first broke last spring. Laura Ling (younger sister to journalist Lisa Ling of CNN, Oprah & National Geographic) and Euna Lee were working for Al Gore's Current TV on the N. Korean border with China when they were arrested by North Korea last March.

I confess, I am something of a news and politics junkie and a lot of my recent posts accusing myself of laziness (because I didn't have anything of substance prepared like a book review or fresh fiction snippets) could have been avoided if I were willing to blog about the news and political commentary I'd been perusing those days like I did in the first year or so after starting Joystory.

But I'd veered away from those kinds of posts not least because I felt inadequate to add anything to the dialog besides my own angst or anger triggered by whichever article I was linking to in order to rant off the cuff for several hundred words. I did not like the mood I was creating in myself nor the mood I was setting on Joystory nor did I want to encourage the kind of vituperative comment threads I saw develop on other politically oriented blogs because I had no wish to moderate them.

But every once in a while there is a news story I just can't resist commenting on and this one is right up there with last November's election night coverage in eliciting joy and relief where I was expecting only despair. My heart had been breaking for the Lee and Ling families as well as the two women themselves ever since their sentence of 12 years hard labor came down last spring.

My interest in the story is enlarged by my interest in journalism itself and my admiration of these two courageous women doing something I might have wished my life path had led me to if I hadn't gravitated toward fiction.

I've really got nothing to add to the discussion except the weight of my own joy for the two women and for their families.

Welcome home Laura and Euna!!

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