Harvard University has a bizarre idea of how to advance the education of its grads: Instruct them to bow down to North Ko rea’s paranoid dictators and show proper “respect” for the Axis of Evil.
It’s the ultimate in radical Stalinist chic – the Harvard Alumni Association’s $636-a-night totalitarian luxury tour of a rogue nation where thousands are deliberately starved to death.
“Demonstrations of respect for the country’s late leader, Kim Il Sung, and for the current leader, Kim Jong Il, are important,” instructs the Harvard Alumni Association’s tour memo.
“You will be expected to bow as a gesture of respect at the statue of Kim Il Sung and at his mausoleum.”
Harvard even tries to pretend that bowing down to thugs is perfectly normal – explaining that it’s because “North Korea, like every country, has its own unique protocols.”
Well, yes, that certainly is a charming use of euphemism to cover up an ugly and unique reality – since North Korea is not “like every country.”
North Korea’s “protocols” feature massive human-rights abuses, deliberate famine, concentration camps, religious persecution, gas chambers, likely genocide and trafficking in women and children.
Plus sending body snatchers to Japan and South Korea to kidnap children and force them to train North Korean spies.
Satie Yokota, the mother of a Japanese girl kidnapped in 1977 at age 13 while clutching her racket on the way home from school badminton practice, calls North Korea “enemies of humanity.” Now 70, she fears she’ll die before she ever sees her daughter again.
Then there’s the Stalinist personality cult – when the Harvard alums bow down, they’ll be joining the national worship that requires every North Korean to wear a Kim Il Sung lapel pin or else.
Not surprisingly, the Harvard alums are also instructed to carefully censor their reading matter because “certain types of literature may not be allowed into North Korea.”
No word yet on whether or not the L.A. Times sufficiently kowtowed last year to gain admission.
In other news concerning the academy, John Leo is handing out his annual Sheldon Award, “given annually to the university president who does the most to look the other way when free speech is under assault on campus”.