Choosing To Speak Out -- "Escape from Camp 14"
“Escape from Camp 14” is deeply inspiring. When I finished the book tonight, I felt like I wanted to show my gratitude for the blessings I have -- for my peaceful, prosperous life -- by giving attention to those innocents who are allowed to suffer at the hands of evil people. Indeed, if anyone doubts the existence of Satan, look no further than North Korea, and the life of Shin, born in a modern day death camp, for evidence. Evil is real, and is kept in check only by acting daily for good.
The reality of North Korea seems impossible. They started the Korean War, and then the ruling family has locked away the people of an entire country for more than half a century, not allowing them to know anything about the existence of the outside world. Shin was born in Camp 14 because his father’s uncle escaped to South Korea decades before. But in North Korea, when one member of your family escapes, the entire extended family is rounded up and put into a prison camp for three generations.
And I want to, one day, have a serious discussion about some of the questions raised in this book about North Korea and some of Shin’s questions about his own life, which I think are worthy and challenging questions without easy answers. But that is not for today, and that is not what this book does. In an indirect way, this story is about you and me -- choosing to speak out, to vote, to care, to do what is right. I found it fascinating -- though the book never draws the comparison -- that Shin was forced to memorize ten “commandments” that showed how his captors were willing to reign with blood and horror over every minute of his life.
For now, I’ll say this: This book deserves a huge audience of readers.
Here is the “official” blurb for the book from the publisher.
North Korea is isolated and hungry, bankrupt and belligerent. It is also armed with nuclear weapons. Between 150,000 and 200,000 people are being held in its political prison camps, which have existed twice as long as Stalin's Soviet gulags and twelve times as long as the Nazi concentration camps. Very few born and raised in these camps have escaped. But Shin Donghyuk did.
In Escape from Camp 14, acclaimed journalist Blaine Harden tells the story of Shin Dong-hyuk and through the lens of Shin's life unlocks the secrets of the world's most repressive totalitarian state. Shin knew nothing of civilized existence-he saw his mother as a competitor for food, guards raised him to be a snitch, and he witnessed the execution of his own family. Through Harden's harrowing narrative of Shin's life and remarkable escape, he offers an unequaled inside account of one of the world's darkest nations and a riveting tale of endurance, courage, and survival.
You can order your HARDCOVER copy here on Amazon or your EBOOK copy here.
Worth every penny. Worth every penny. -Caleb
Posted by Blog Staff at 10:11 PM