A North Korean defector turned South Korean-activist announced on Wednesday that he is planning to launch approximately 100,000 balloons carrying copies of the controversial film The Interview into North Korea by air.
The controversial film unveils a covert plan to assassinate North Korea’s young, Communist leader Kim Jong-un and reveals the deceptive friendship between an American TV show host and Kim; it eventually gives way to the reality of the depraved nation’s true intentions towards the West.
Activist Park Sang-hak said he will launch his political attack in late January in an attempt to debunk a personality cult that has been built around dictator Kim Jong Un via his oppressive Communist regime. According to the Associated Press, the balloons will hold DVDs and USBs with the movie on them and will include Korean subtitles.
United States-based non-profit Human Rights Foundation is reportedly partnering with Sang-hak and financing the making of the DVDs and USBs. The proposed action is facing opposition from liberals and border town residents in South Korea who have been urging the activists to refrain from carrying out the action. However, the AP notes that Seoul has refused to interfere, citing freedom of speech; a luxury not afforded to North Korea’s residents.
Questions have mounted regarding how effective the plan to deliver the film would be. A proportionally small number of North Koreans are believed to own computers or DVD players. Owning a computer is both expensive (three month’s salary) and it requires authorization from the government. Many North Koreans might also refrain from watching “The Interview” for fear of being punished by the government if their perceived as “treasonous” act is discovered.
The United States Government blamed North Korea for crippling attacks on Sony Entertainment in which a security breach resulted in the leaking of thousands of employees’ personal information. Pyongyang has denied the allegations and threatened with retaliation.
Park told the AP via phone that the balloon campaign will be carried out covertly and will likely gain more traction in March when the wind direction is perceived as being more favorable.
Adelle Nazarian is on Twitter @AdelleNaz