SMITH: Media Fawns Over North Korean Cheerleaders — But Why?

The North Korean government has sent 22 athletes to the Olympic Games, which should not have been allowed in the first place. In addition to these 22 athletes, North Korea has sent a cheer squad of over 200 called the “Army of Beauties” chosen for their looks and loyalty to the government.

What is most surprising is the public’s reaction to this group.

These women are all over social media, performing choreographed routines at various sporting events with North Korean competitors. In one routine, they even held up masks with the face of Kim Jong Il, their former dictator.

You would think in a situation like this, all Americans would react with disdain and apprehension, this being a clear act of propaganda, but you would be wrong. While some have done so, there are certainly those celebrating these women as a sign of peace to come.

The media’s coverage of these antics has been lackluster at best. In perhaps one of the most egregious headlines, The Wall Street Journal wrote, “North Korean Cheerleaders: 100 Olympic Stars are Born.”

Along with a video of the squad posted on NBC’s twitter account they wrote, “This is so satisfying to watch.”

They later removed the tweet.

Watch out for the new craze in satisfying videos. Political pawns in a tyrannical, murderous regime performing highly-choreographed routines to Bruno Mars is about to be all the rage.

Twitter is overflowing with celebration of this distraction tactic. If you don’t believe me, just check out these tweets.

This is not to suggest that the media has been congratulating the North Korean government. However, anything less than condemnation of this ploy should be considered unacceptable. The headlines should have read, "North Korean Government Sends Cheer Squad to Olympics in Obvious Display of Propaganda." Unfortunately, most are simply not that direct.

Let’s put this in perspective, shall we?

While these women are cheering, in North Korea, the people are starving. One man reported he was once so hungry he was willing to eat rice out of dried vomit.

While these women are cheering, in North Korea, children as young as 12 are reportedly forced to witness public executions of those who deign to defy the government.

While these women are cheering, in North Korea, prison camps are reportedly just as bad, if not worse, than those found in Nazi Germany.

While these women are cheering, in North Korea, women are being forced into horrible conditions. One woman reported she was forced to have an abortion when she was three months pregnant, without anesthetic, after she attempted escape.

I understand why people are quick to see this display as a symbol of peace. At our core, most humans want peace. But we can’t concede ground to the enemy because we want peace so badly. Our distraction from the real problem is exactly what Kim Jong Un wants.

It was Patrick Henry who once said, “Is life so dear, or peace so sweet, as to be purchased at the price of chains and slavery? Forbid it, Almighty God! I know not what course others may take; but as for me, give me liberty or give me death!” I’m not saying that these people want chains and slavery, but when this type of attitude is taken to its full extent, that is where it leads.

If instead of celebrating this action, you would like to do something to stop the atrocities committed by the North Korean regime, Americans can donate to a group called Liberty in North Korea. To date, this group has successfully transported 733 North Korean refugees to locations where they will be safe. They provide the refugee with things like basic needs, security, transportation, and resettlement assistance.

We have to stand up to evil. Apologizing for it is wrong and should be universally condemned.

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