12.19.2014 11:50 PM

Dear Kim Jong-Un


  1. Kevin T. says:

    P.S. Sony says sorry and sends flowers.

  2. davie says:

    Dear North Korea:

    I have problems understanding your country and its people.
    I like to watch international soccer on tv, and I find your teams, especially your women’s teams, very skilled, hustling, and well coached. I also notice that when the cameras show your fans, they look as relaxed and as enthused about the game as an other fans from anywhere else on the planet. I see your athletes looking down when they make an error, when the other team outdoes them,…and I see their genuine joy and comradeship when they achieve (as they often do) in their games.
    I think that just as no Shakespeare without a rich culture of theatre in Elizabethan England, no Stradivarius or Guaneri without a rich tradition of string instrument production in 17th and 18th Century Cremona, and no Orr or Gretzky without a rich tradition of hockey in my country – with lots of people playing the game lots of times at lots of levels – that your soccer teams cannot be that good without lots of people, form 7 year old up, at all levels, taking part in this game.

    I know this is just one little example, perhaps trivial to non jocks who have no idea how many people and what participation it takes as a foundation for giving us high quality athletes and teams.
    But it is an example which, to me, belies the constant waves of propaganda we are swamped in about your country.
    In my lifetime 3 of your leaders have been depicted as cartoonish buffoons, insane and cruel, always closer to aliens than to human beings. I see tv stories of defectors from your country, very affecting, as if everyone wants out. All the info we get is suggestive of the info we get when we are about to bomb anyone else around the world.

    So, I hope you see why I am puzzled: how can you have such joyous success in the most popular game on the planet…yet be the cartoon that our media informs us that you are?

    • sezme says:

      Interesting question. Of course the people of North Korea are just people, who just want to do what people want to do anywhere else.

      I’m unsure about this whole episode. In a way, I agree with EB (below) who thinks it might have been prudent not to risk people’s lives by showing the film in theatres. But I also somehow doubt that North Korea was that involved in this whole caper with Sony. It just doesn’t make that much sense to me that they’d be able to mount such a sophisticated hack.

      Also, I’m of two minds about the movie itself (haven’t seen it of course but I’ve read about it). In a way, I think making fictional movies where the real leader of a real country is fictionally killed in a comedy is in incredibly bad taste even when it’s North Korea getting mocked. On the other hand, getting this film distributed within North Korea clandestinely might be a good idea in undermining the dictatorship. On the other hand, it might just piss people off.

      Conclusion: there are plenty of valid reasons for despising Kim Jong Un and his gang of thugs. Suppressing a dumb American comedy (even if they really were responsible), isn’t one of them.

      • davie says:

        I noticed a report today (I think on CBC news site) that North Korea has offered to join USA in probing the source of the hack. Seems to me a clever move!

        I was a kid when a neighbor across the hall (with 4 kids) was posted to Korea when that conflict erupted. I have always found Korea interesting. I cannot figure out what keep getting in the way of closer ties between North and South. I sometimes wonder if powers operating in that area, Japan, China, Russia, USA, would rather not have a united Korea. I agree that there are enough stories of cruelty to the people that there must be fire behind that smoke.
        It was not that long ago I read stories about the harsh lives of North Koreans working in Russian Siberia, in the forests. As well, I have read stories about similar harsh treatment of North Koreans working in China. I would figure that North Koreans going to those foreign work camps are going because of terrible living at home.
        But I understand that the Korean war has not officially ended, and paranoia about outside threats has kept a lot of cruel regimes in power.

    • Elisabeth Lindsay says:

      I don`t think the cartoons and making fun has anything to do with the N Korean people. There is none sweeter in the world. It is about the dictators that run North Korea that is so abhorrent.

  3. EB says:

    I do understand the don’t give in to terrorists part of the discussion, but what would the reaction have been if Sony released the movie, and a theatre or two got attacked? Would Sony have been criticized or held responsible for killing a few hundred people?

    I think they lose no matter what they do.

    • socks clinton says:

      I’m surprised not one news outlet bought up the 2012 shooting at the movie theatre in Aurora, Colorado that killed 12 theatre goers. Those who survived the attack were stuck with hospital bills in the tens of thousands of dollars but couldn’t sue the moviemakers because the gunman was just plain nuts.

      And the 2007 movie Postal was supposed to have a wide distributon in theatres but got pulled the week before the release date with little explanation. This movie made fun out of suicide bombers and Osama Bin Laden just like The Interview does with the North Korean dictator.

  4. jim kramer says:

    oops. wrong link
    sony hack. inside job. we’ve been played.


  5. Iris Mclean says:

    I smell a “Dick” Cheney lurking in the closet.

  6. Blake says:

    Great tweet Warren.

    Kim is nasty and needs to go, whether NK is behind this Sony hack or not.

    North Korea needs their own Deng Xiao Ping. The problem is Mao only let the mobs beat Deng and his son during the Cultural Revolution while the Kims end lives.

  7. Simon Says says:

    You realize this is Sony taking advantage of a hack to hype a so-so movie.

  8. Ronald O'Dowd says:


    Clinton did not keep his promise and now North Korea has nuclear weapons. It’s never a good idea to put close relatives and mistresses in front of machine guns. It seems Kim doesn’t get that…

  9. Tiger says:

    Sony seems to have regrown its spine, and will release the film…

    • davie says:

      They can get it out soon so as to qualify it for the Oscars.

      (…and the Oscar for the best public relations campaign promoting a comedy goes to…)

  10. WestGuy says:

    Hey Warren, you’re a lawyering guy, tell me why I’m wrong.
    I don’t think it’s so much the threats of retaliation from North Korea that Sony or the movie chains are worried about, I think they’re more worried about being sued. Suppose they agree to show the movie and at one of those theatres, some lone wolf idiot shoots the place up and kills people. Despite having no direct connection to North Korea, the person either doesn’t say anything or says something like “you were warned!”. I mean it’s not like there’s no precedence for lone wolf attacks or shootings at movies in the States.

    I think the chances are high that Sony or that movie chain will be sued because of it. Isn’t there already a lawsuit progressing as a result of the James Holmes shooting and there was no warning on that one? I don’t think either Sony or the chains are really worried about North Korea, I think they’ve figured out that they’d probably lose the lawsuit if if ever came to that.

    • sezme says:

      Well, that theory would fit with what people generally feel about large corporations like Sony: that they care more about money than human lives. Could even be true.

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