From A Reader: Korean-Hostage Links

A reader who calls himself William has left an extensive comment on our recent post about the Korean hostages, in which he left quite a list of relevant links, prefaced by the follwing remarks:

Hi, I’m also trying to learn what on earth these Koreans have got themselves into. Without passing any judgment on the articles nor their subjects, here are a bunch of links to articles on their (mis-)adventure which I have found so far (I’ve tried to fix any broken link – sorry for inconvenience caused).

I have pasted in the corrected links that William later added; the list is below.

Video of Koreans at work in Afghanistan[!]

For the one, the original English text is at the bottom

From International Herald Tribune of UK

From Time

Also from Time – 11 webpages long

From Der Spiegel of Germany

From Asia Times

From the Telegraph of UK

From The Daily Mail of UK

From Chosun Ilbo of South Korea

From the Turkish Press

From “The Ledger”

From “The Spec”

From “NPR”

From Christians Today, based on Reuters’ reportage

From Crosswalk


  1. William says

    Just found
    a person who has a collection of Korean Christians at “work”.

    Posted August 13, 2007 at 7:45 pm | Permalink
  2. William says

    Korean Christian kids’ mission to the Middle East

    Posted August 13, 2007 at 7:47 pm | Permalink
  3. William says

    From the comments, seems like these Korean Christians are praying for the Buddhist temples there to crumble and collapse

    Posted August 13, 2007 at 7:50 pm | Permalink
  4. William says

    Korean Christian sermon; however, I heard that some American ones also carry out theirs in similar fashion.

    Posted August 13, 2007 at 7:56 pm | Permalink
  5. Malcolm says

    Unfortunately, I cannot read or speak Korean, so I can make little of this. I have no doubt that there are plenty of groups from all over out there proselytizing (and it grieves me terribly to see little children being indoctrinated — abused, really — in this way), but the question on my mind has been the nature of the mission undertaken by the particular group now being held hostage. I expressed (and still hold) the opinion that it seemed extremely unlikely that they weren’t doing some proselytizing along with their “medical” activities, but was taken to task by some readers for making such an audacious assumption.

    Posted August 13, 2007 at 7:58 pm | Permalink
  6. William says

    In that case, Malcolm, may I suggest that we not assume but just keep our eyes and ears open. If and when these hostages are released and returned to South Korea, they will soon let their stories out; we will then know what they did.

    Posted August 13, 2007 at 8:14 pm | Permalink
  7. Malcolm says

    You may indeed; that was exactly what I’ve been doing since publishing those two posts.

    Thanks for reading, and for all the links.

    Posted August 13, 2007 at 8:18 pm | Permalink
  8. William says

    By the way, there is a second article from the Telegraph of UK.

    Posted August 13, 2007 at 8:18 pm | Permalink
  9. William says

    The first half of this clip is reportedly on the group of actual Korean hostages, recorded as they first arrived in Afghanistan. I also see these shots in our newscasts, and they were also attributed to the group of captives.

    Posted August 14, 2007 at 4:14 am | Permalink
  10. Tim says

    Hi Malcolm,

    again, i find it sad that you had the audacity to called these koreans imbeciles.
    Were you informed that other people, some missionaries, most not, were also kidnapped before and after them? If so, why did you not respond with the same audacity on your website? Either you are ignorant, or you found the korean hostages to be a jumping board for your agenda. Does that sound like something a self-righteous person like yourself would do, do use suffering people to further your cause? If not, why did you not respond with the same audacity with regards to other hostages?
    And yes, the remaining hostages are freed.

    Posted August 28, 2007 at 2:13 pm | Permalink
  11. Malcolm says

    Hi Tim,

    I’m sorry if my characterization of the hostages seemed unduly harsh. I do think it is an abandonment of common sense that rises to the level of imbecilic stupidity to gad about a fundamentalist Islamic nation, one that is clearly a place of savage, religiously motivated butchery, on a mission of Christian evangelism in an unguarded bus, on a remote highway, in the dark. It is comparable to climbing into the shark tank, or cleaning a loaded gun, or other such acts of extreme unwisdom. Have you never seen someone do something that was utterly, mind-bogglingly ill-advised, and said to yourself “what an idiot”? This website is, after all, a forum for expressing my own opinions, and my opinion of such a foolhardy excursion is that it was, simply put, a grotesquely stupid thing to do.

    Yes, there have been others who have been kidnapped by the Taliban. To the extent that these victims put themselves in such peril without making sensible precautions for their own safety, they were acting foolishly as well, of course. And yes, given my own low opinion of religion generally, I think that placing yourself at such risk with the underlying motive of converting fundamentalist Muslims into pious Christians simply compounds the folly. It’s all just so depressingly pointless and unneccessary, so futile and wasteful.

    Please note, though, that while I chide the missionaries for their exceptional foolishness, I reserve all of my moral condemnation for the brutal thugs who have kidnapped and slaughtered them.

    I do appreciate that you are, it seems to me, a good-hearted person, and that it pains you to see these poor people insulted for what must, to them, have seemed like a noble gesture. But what I see is young and deluded lives wasted on an pointless and misguided errand, and I’m old enough not to be unduly impressed by well-intentioned foolishness. Along with the Taliban themselves (who of course are the real criminals here), I blame, for their stupendous unwisdom and overweening religious zeal, the church leaders who indoctrinated these naive and malleable youngsters and led them into this mortal peril.

    Above all, remember that all of this is just my own opinion. You are welcome to form your own.

    Posted August 28, 2007 at 2:45 pm | Permalink

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