A wire service report on Jimmy Carter’s recent, fruitless visit to the Hermit Kingdom was headlined “Jimmy Carter raises lonely voice on North Korea.” Sometimes loneliness is well deserved:
. . . Carter, who is deeply unpopular with many US conservatives, triggered outrage in parts of Washington when he accused the United States and South Korea of a “human rights violation” for, in his view, withholding food aid from the North for political reasons.
US Christian relief groups say that North Korea will run out of food within months.
But Washington and Seoul want further assessments, with some officials charging that the regime may be exaggerating the needs as it prepares national celebrations next year.
Bruce Klingner, a senior research fellow at the conservative Heritage Foundation, called Carter’s statement on food aid “amazingly bizarre, given the lack of comment from any of his delegation on North Korea’s atrocious human rights record.”
“If The Elders continue their high-profile involvement in North Korea and continue to serve as a mouthpiece for the regime, then it will help North Korea’s charm offensive,” he said.