Woman Who Escaped North Korea Says ‘Even North Korea Was Not This Nuts’ After Attending U.S. University

As Americans make a stand against cult-like educational institutions, a woman who escaped the North Korean regime fears the U.S.’s future is “bleak” after she attended one of its most prestigious institutions.

Yeonmi Park, 27, has gone through unimaginable hardships, and she does not want to be seen as a victim, but as a fighter.

Yeonmi is one of a few hundred North Korean escapees currently living in the U.S. She made a transfer to Columbia University from a South Korean university a few years ago and was deeply troubled by what she saw.

“I expected that I was paying this fortune, all this time and energy, to learn how to think. But they are forcing you to think the way they want you to think,” she told Fox News. “I realized, wow, this is insane. I thought America was different but I saw so many similarities to what I saw in North Korea that I started worrying.”

Thе societal mirrors include hatred of Western civilization, collective guilt, and woke ideology.

During her first days at university, Yeonmi was criticized by a staff member for saying she enjoyed classic literature such as Jane Austen.

“I said ‘I love those books.’ I thought it was a good thing,” she recalled.

“Then she said, ‘Did you know those writers had a colonial mindset? They were racists and bigots and are subconsciously brainwashing you.’”

Yeonmi Park. Image: Wikipedia

It didn’t take Yeonmi long to realize her co-students had been brainwashed with what she saw as anti-American propaganda, similar to the sort she had experienced back home.

“’American Bastard’ was one word for North Koreans,” she was taught when she was a child.

“The math problems would say ‘there are four American bastards, you kill two of them, how many American bastards are left to kill?'”

Also, she was shocked and confused by the gender ideology that has slowly been creeping its way into society in the past few years, with every teacher asking students to announce their preferred pronouns.

“English is my third language. I learned it as an adult. I sometimes still say ‘he’ or ‘she’ by mistake and now they are going to ask me to call them ‘they’? How the heck do I incorporate that into my sentences?”

“It was chaos,” she said. “It felt like the regression in civilization.”

“Even North Korea is not this nuts,” she added. “North Korea was pretty crazy, but not this crazy.”

Yeonmi stood her ground and even ended up having arguments with her co-students and teachers, but had to learn “how to just shut up” if she wanted to graduate.

Back home, Yeonmi did not know the true meaning of freedom and love. 

By 13 years of age, she had seen people die of starvation right before her eyes.

“Because I have seen oppression, I know what it looks like.” 

“These kids keep saying how they’re oppressed, how much injustice they’ve experienced. They don’t know how hard it is to be free,” she said.

“I literally crossed through the middle of the Gobi Desert to be free. But what I did was nothing, so many people fought harder than me and didn’t make it.”

Yeonmi Park speaking at the 2014 One Young World Summit in Dublin.

Yeonmi and her mother escaped North Korea in 2007 when she was 13.

After entering China over the frozen Yalu River, they were captured by human traffickers who sold them into slavery. Yeonmi was sold for less than $300 and her mother for about $100.

But thankfully, Christian missionaries helped them escape to Mongolia. They had to cross the Gobi Desert to eventually find safe haven in South Korea.

In 2015 she released her life story “In Order to Live,” where she details the hardships she had to face growing up in a dictatorship.

“The people here are just dying to give their rights and power to the government. That is what scares me the most,” she said.

Yeonmi and her family in North Korea. Image courtesy of Yeonmi Park

She accused the American education system of trying to take away people’s ability to think in a critical way. 

“In North Korea I literally believed that my Dear Leader [Kim Jong-un] was starving,” she said. “He’s the fattest guy – how can anyone believe that? And then somebody showed me a photo and said ‘Look at him, he’s the fattest guy. Other people are all thin.’ And I was like, ‘Oh my God, why did I not notice that he was fat?’ Because I never learned how to think critically.”

“That is what is happening in America,” she went on to say. “People see things but they’ve just completely lost the ability to think critically.”

Mindblown by America’s ignorance, Yeonmi has come to question humanity.

“North Koreans, we don’t have Internet, we don’t have access to any of these great thinkers, we don’t know anything. But here, while having everything, people choose to be brainwashed. And they deny it.”

“You guys have lost common sense to degree that I as a North Korean cannot even comprehend,” she said.

“Where are we going from here?” she asked. “There’s no rule of law, no morality, nothing is good or bad anymore, it’s complete chaos.”

“I guess that’s what they want, to destroy every single thing and rebuild into a Communist paradise.”

For a more in-depth look at Yeonmi’s experience please see the video below.

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