Blaine Harden: 'The population of North Korea is captive'

Author Blaine Harden has extensively studied the history of U.S.-North Korea relations. In this episode of "Uncomfortable," he shares with Amna Nawaz why he's more concerned than ever before about the possibility of war.
42:05 | 11/28/17

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Transcript for Blaine Harden: 'The population of North Korea is captive'
Hey everyone joining us T day in this studio is Blaine Hardin. He's the author of this new book. King of spy case saucer. Former Washington Post bureau chief at East Asia bureau chief covered. The Korean Peninsula and parts of East Asia for years and years thing year joining us to talk about your new book and also. How we should be processing what's happening in North Korea right to thanks for being here is great because. So out of congratulations on the new book. I want to talk about that in a moment I wanted to start opposite we we always do which is to learn a little bit more about how you came to have such an interest. In this region and in this incredible character in the book so tell me a little bit about you weary from time to get into this line or. I'm from eastern Washington State. Bomb. That it almost all my life as a foreign correspondent the Washington house in Africa Eastern Europe. We're in New York City for awhile Seattle hand also. East Asia. 20072010. In East Asia covering mostly covering North Korea. And the reason I got interested in North Korea sold much with my boss David Hoffman. The foreign editor of the Washington Post exit I want you to cover North Korean if you don't want covered bring home. So I thought it chart I've focused on it and it was it was hard slogging it still is hard slogging. But time. North Korea's you know longest lasting totalitarian state in the history of the planet and seventy years on hand there's nothing like it. And shows no signs of going away and fact in recent. Months shown that it has a new weapon and new weapons system where the game that it's been playing quirk for fifty years. Dukes and long range missiles and what they do is allow them to expand the playing field. Of the extortion that they have been playing against South Korea hand against Japan the extortion was. Leave us alone or we'll hit you with fire artillery that was the what they have threatened Seoul with for decades. And in the past 55 to ten years they've been able to hit most of Japan with medium range. Mobile wants me missiles and time and in the past couple years they've been able to put nuclear warheads. On those medium range missile. Now it's clear that there either have or close to having long range missiles. With warheads that could conceivably it unites states. So the game they're playing as a change but the tools that they are using. Half and all of a sudden. Washington. Average Americans are genuinely interest in North Korea. You know mentioning game they're playing as in chafe at the world in which they're doing it. Certainly has been winning the active when the early intervention about how when he first started reporting on it. It was a hard slog and I'm sure it is now too well what if it actually like. From a journalist's perspective to try to get information what are your report. It's very difficult to go there and went there once in 2008. With the New York Philharmonic. In a 747. Full of musicians and journalist that was your way that was my one trip that I the Washington Post New York Times reporters rarely get him. It's an event and do I got him months. But the wave that the west has really learned a lot about the texture of life that North Korea in the past fifteen years it's from. Defectors. More than 30000 of them have found their way through China. Into South Korea and they live in and around Seoul mostly but across South Korea. And they are a paranoid bunch and they meet someone who looks like me. And that terrified because they've been time in North Korea's. Americans are dangerous. Killers. So giving information from these people. Takes tremendous amount of time and patience. And great translators. And so that's the slog part of it. What's to win the trust of these people and then understand how they lived. The first but that did about Mercury it was. It's KP from a concentration camp action don't know. And then the stories of sort of built on each other cents. This current book which is really an American book it's about an American spy who spied him in Korea for eleven years. I learned about this guy who was until this book is published lots to history basically. I learned about it from a North Korean fighter pilot. Who was the subject of my last book in his name was no Comstock whose name is now Kenny Rowe. And he lives in Daytona Beach, Florida were all pilots go to retired. That he stole made in 1953. From his great leader Kim else. And flew from Pyongyang to South Korea very short flight about seventeen minutes this is going to pass. And he landed the mig which the Americans are very interest again because make had been the the killing weapon the the Communist side in the Korean War he landed the native Americans are very happy to see the make. And he said take me cheerleader and a leader they took him to. Was a spy named Donald Nichols. So this is the man at the heart at this store and it's us into the bigger idea he just talked about which was. Why north Koreans see America the way they do which I found fascinating to start the start of the book tell me about. Don Nickles and what you found out about him. Well the Americans before the Korean War do nothing they had no real business interest in Korea missionaries have been. And in 1945. At the end of the net and World War II. The Russian army the Soviet army was poised to Manchuria to take all of the Korean Peninsula where so the American spot. So a couple of cardinals at night in August of 1945. Cut at a National Geographic map. Drew a line across the Korean Peninsula the 38. Completely unofficial had nothing to do with the politics. The geography. The reality of life in North Korea that was artificial line in the American said. In their imperial way you take the noise to stolid. We'll take it's now an arbitrary line. And that's how north and South Korea came to be created. Each of these states became puppets of the two emerging superpowers the puppet in the north. Was Kim Il sung the man came to great leader and the grandfather of Kim. Kim Jong-un who is now. Threatening us with with with with nuclear tipped missiles. So that was the north we had a puppet state in the south South Korea led by a seventy year old man named Sigmund race. Who has spent decades in the United States spoke superb English had a Ph.D. from Princeton. He was probably the most educated South Korean on the planet very Smart guy. But not a very minute it will pull puppet he in fact he was really. Total pain that the Americans that he was placed in power in this. So that's the context and as soon as that division happened. A civil war started and Americans didn't pay any attention to. It was a really bloody mess. Sigmund Marines government supported by the United States. Well is basically giving power to the landed people who would work with the Japanese who controlled all of the Korean Peninsula to complicated story. That in any case the Americans are on the side of the property classes. Though working people the poor people of South Korea they wanted to land reform they wanted lots of things that the American controlled government didn't give it to elements of the the people who want and it went to war a lot of them were allied with North Korea. Socialist Communist regime and the civil war killed hundreds of thousands of people. And in the war. Donald Nichols became a player. He was 23 years old when he got there he met Sigmund Rhee who was seventy that they found white in each other's eyes. Donald Nichols had. He could say that he was the American intelligence official who had complete access to the South Korean government and to all its buying capacity on the north. I think when he every girl. Get to that I was I was just the least popular exactly additional locked into an empty room basically like Writely learned writer and who's really aggressive really Smart who he had a seventh grade education but he. Understood power. And so he he became. Sigmund Reid's son they called each other father and son leave that are not. Com Sigmund marine to consolidate power. He wanted as much to control North Korea as North Korea won control now sure he was it was a pretty belligerent gun com. With Nichols worked with him trained as police. And over the next. Five to six years the South Korean police and military killed about a 100000. South Koreans. Who they suspected. Or sympathizers with the north. It was a bloody business. People were tortured. People's heads were cut off and delivered to Jerry cans to Donald Nichols office and Don Nickels is very much at the Helm of much he was. Intimately involved in extracting intelligence. For his reports from all of this what's going on. At the same time this invincible. His name never appeared many times the Washington post's. And he was really invisible to history until the end. Around 1988 it to specialist books started mention that they really never understood the scope and the depth of his involvement. But he was also incredibly hits that he was so prepared for war. I'm he would be sources it's buys all up and down the Korean Peninsula in the north and in this now. The Korean War broke out in the summer of 1950 to the shock and horror the Truman administration. Plan Stalin gave the OK Kim mills son. And the OK included. 200 tanks and a massive amount of weapons so they marched miss South Korea and totally kick the Americans but. We're about 45 months analysts in this desperate period of retreat. Massive loss of life for the Americans that Nichols was a warrior he one. Distinguished service cross which is circuit miles important medal for valor and won the silver star he won more than twenty other medals for valor. Because he had worked himself into such a crucial position he was spotted listen seemingly brave as well he simply didn't. Worry about dine. So he was incredibly still important that thing that he did that was the single most important. Achievement of the war which was. Reported new in this book is that he found a team. Of North Korean code breakers who had defected to the south before the war started. He had them organized working for the South Korean government that's code breakers. And then once the war started he. Huddled with them in the southern tip of the Korean Peninsula where the Americans were basically surrounded by the North Korean Army. And in danger of losing the entire peninsula. But they had the code books from the North Korean. Army's battle plants. And with those Koreans. And there are great work they got 4824. For 48 hour notices on any incursion into the Pusan perimeter and the southern end. And so they managed to hold off until the Americans who get enough reinforcements. In and around the Korean Peninsula. To destroy can no sums army so he was played an instrumental role in helping Americans not lose that war. Chaos as you mentioned up off of that bomb targets as well as targets to Bonnie plea such a crucial role and it's it it's an incredible story. That hasn't really been told before orbit that when he after this other idea you mentioned earlier which is how would this helps reveal. To some degree. Why this animosity exists between North Korea and the state so what was then messaging that went. Out to north Koreans about how Americans should be due at ten that you say it's. Why they feel we they do today. To win the war and it and wound was that the Americans were caught with their pants down. They didn't have hardly any military capacity in the country and it took several months for them to bring in. A viable war machine but it was you know this this was the country that had recently fought world war two and had lots of bombers. There are lots of trained pilots get unlimited amount of conventional bombs. And unlimited amounts Naipaul. So in response to this violent. And brutal invasion from the north the Americans ramp to. There airpower war machine. Hunted with an awful encourage mom almost daily. For three years and they destroyed virtually every city in town North Korea. General Curtis LeMay who has had its strategic air command at the time he estimated that the Americans killed 20%. Of the civilians in North Korea. And us two out of hand when people. You've sent thinking recently about how even though the war happens decades ago that in North Korea. It's as if it happened yesterday that that is where that emotion illness so that bombing was the fact. Is historically. Experience that. The grandparents of the current people in North Korea all experience shared freedom or whatever. So Quinn Kim Jung un or his father or his Father's Day those Americans what they knew they Killinger not having killed your mother. For they killed your brother they know that to be true. And the camera she has isolated North Korea. And fed them propaganda about the war it's almost as if that war ended last Thursday if it ended draw. And now. From that fact based narrative has found some real zip. Because of what Tom profits and a lot of talk about that in the second that you mentioned earlier something that I I fascinating which is something epic not a lot of people. They may know but doesn't really hit home became family. Has been. Running a dictatorship now for seventy years they are the most successful. If you want to caught that dictatorship. In the world so what is it about them or this. Series of circumstances there that makes them so good at how are they able to do think there's three things. One is geography. China on one side China does not want the US allied united peninsula on its border. Number one. Number two is that its Stalinist state. That is that more successful in using brutal tools of Stalinism against its own people in any government in world history. Kim Jung un is just as cruel or cool or to his people that his father or grandfather was. So those tools are political prison camp closed borders control of information. Militarized society. And massive numbers of secret police so that those tools are very much in place. And that's all help to keep the population are present and suppressed right is silent civil society is nonexistent. That's the second. And the third thing is the extortion game that we started talking about is that North Korea has figured out that it can. Each safe within its borders. If it's perceived as being wild ride in crazy and warlike. And it constantly makes threats to turn Seoul into a sea of flames source he would fire been doing that for decades. And it did that using and it made it back up those threats with hundreds thousands of artillery to spare eight. Within range of Seoul. The people sold four minutes away from being killed. But now the range the scope. The playing field of the game let's expand its further out to write most of most of northeast Asia yes all of Japan Tokyo the biggest city in the world. And now. Cities in the United States. The C this is what it's been because so often we talk about the North Korean regime. We use words like unpredictable. And you know it's containment is crazy and this is the conversation that goes on about how to view them. You seem to be framing it as something much more calculated. And and much more deliberate that this actually works to their benefit to be perceived that way it. They are really consistent. Hand their track record is there getting better at what they do. And have better weapons to do. Periodically. Americans. Can American political leaders plug in to this threat it wasn't much of the threat when. There was artillery. Peak of what might die but they wouldn't be Americans. And the threats and the blood curdling rhetoric that you could hear from North Korea it really hasn't changed for decades. What's new and what it's confusing to the north Koreans is their starting to hear echoes. Reverse echoes of that rhetoric from America's president. So let's talk about where we are now because it's a different parent to some degree right for the first time you have an American president use sort of matching. Word for word in a lot of ways if not ramping up the rhetoric has echoes along. Based on your your time dairy on the amount of time you spend studying the regime and North Korean society. How have you been processing that ACC things ramping up here. I think the north Koreans. Are really confused. They'd Dade they believe. I think as has a lot I know the South Koreans because I talked to them why didn't the South Koreans and in the north Koreans that the same people and I think they they they think of an American president in somewhat the same way. But someone who considers carefully. What he sets. And that what he says reflects. A deep. Amount of penetration into what the Americans plan to do in the future at that some intention he planned behind and for them to. Learn that the president is its tweeting this early in the morning in his golf course. It hate it and saying things that are complete reputation of what is secretary of state said. 24 hours earlier is incredibly confusing the Washington Post had a story last week saying that. Pyongyang has reached out to Republican consultants. In Washington is hoping to hire Som. And bring them. C Pyongyang to talk to the foreign policy analyst so they can figure out what. Donald Trump really is up. To better understand you know what they're seeing happening to him to do that confusion help. Or hurt America. Well I think what. Well enough. I don't know that it may not only got its it is it is good it's made everybody who who who follows this issue. Very very nervous. Are you nervous I'm nervous why I'm not a policy maker but policy makers who have spent their lives trying to news die. Or to prevent another Korean War they're very anxious because they think that that the words committed lead to violence. That there's that broad consensus about what to do. With North Korea it's that it there's you know there's. If you remember that the movie Argo. Where that was won very bad solution not very bad idea while the one very bad idea that everybody's agreed time is. Well below their war. That's apply to them yet talked to them you know high talk to them blow talk secretly talk them publicly. Spy on them. Prepare for war. Talk to China. Talk to talk to Russia. Don't go to war could try to do as much as you can to. Defused the situation because the amount. The number of people who could die in Seoul and Tokyo now is this in the millions if not tens of millions and it could happen very quickly in the day. Okay that you mentioned and I want to ask you about this because he part of the conversation in recent months has been. China should be doing more what more could China do you as the dominant power there now could they actually exert some kind of influence to help. Sort of take down tensions and not. Should you would think so that China needs lots of influence 90%. 90%. Of North Korea's trade. This would chime right all virtually all its oil. Most of its food. So you would think that they would jump. When China says Tom. And in fact that's not the case had there been instances in which China has tried to influence in some degree it hasn't work wherever. Increasingly. An angry at North Korea for exploding. Nuclear devices and shooting missiles over Japan and that they say don't do it Brent do it. But in fact. Kim Jung and seems to have time. Missile launches can. Bomb explosions to bear its resident she and the history of that the Kim family in China helps you to understand. This tension. Can also on the great leader the guy who created North Korea with the Russians in the forties. He grew up in China spoke really good things. Spot with the Chinese Communists. In the 1930s. Against Japanese occupiers. In northeast. Haitian in the Manchuria and and in. That early thirties the Chinese. For reasons that are quite clear. They turned on him else on hand is ethnic Korean guerrilla fighters that they've been fighting. And they murdered now some. And they arrested Kim Il son and he thought he was going to beamer. And never forgot. So. As the years in the decades have gone by in this family business which the camera team again. That. Inheritance that memory that the led memory. He is one. Dependence and distress. Cooperation. And now. And live it was it was further during the Korean War when cumulus on started this war lots that is are being with. Destroyed its country cease to exist and he was hiding in a bunker and the Chinese came in to rescue them and the general who was in charge of that rescue. And the house its name he told Kim Il sung to a space that you are childish man. And a rotten general. And go stand in the courtroom when this war but but does that give L sung had to do. And he never forgot the loss days after the war was over yet his entire country his life. His power had been saved by China but the history. The official history. North Korea credit communal sons William and option for beating him there. Serious personal history as their personal and not to be as bad blood but this also due to economic. Dependence. With just to survive so it is clearly you're related to survival regime right they have to survive in order to keep doing whatever it is that they want to do. So this brings me to economic sanction him. Would those war because I mean to the degree that the president's announced them an executive order do you think those are gonna have some kind of a different impact than. And has done lots of sanctions and more sanctions will hurt them. If if there force like China and and its increasingly right if wearing four stitches and that he prime horsing around. But also trade with China has exploded in the past ten years and sanctions and explode. So there are a lot of Chinese businessmen who made a lot of money on high markup. Business with North Korea. That if anything ever really change unless China wants to change. Well even if China wants to change not much changes. The what China is afraid and the reason China doesn't pull the plug on oil is an. They're 25 million north Koreans. And if there's a war. A lot of bargain dream into China and China already had several million ethnic Koreans in northeast Asia northeast China. Who and it would be a big mess for them. So they put up with a very. Varied sort of that did extremely unhappy. With the Kim family but they don't really know what to do yet and also China sacrificed. Hundreds of thousands of lives the numbers are quite clear in the Korean War and they're very unwilling to say that that's sacrificed what's been. It. Tough case to make for your population camp now I want to ask you about this because this is. Talking about what the potential outcome could be as a result of all these heightened tensions this. Sort of difficult situation we found ourselves in the people who want to do something that can't necessarily do something for various reasons. And there was a former US victory sec secretary of defense he said that his greatest concern is that we could blunder our way. Into war based on the way things seem to be progressing right now which is adding that's an alarming proposition. For a lot of people team think that that could happen. It's possible I don't know. I hope not but they did. The behavior. Trumpet demonstration. It's making it more complicated. To implement the least bad solution. Which is to talk. Because that date they don't know. Who to talk to whether to believe what they say because. The president can undermined it the next day with the tweet. This thing about the least bad solution if that has been standing policy the US. To some degree that's what got us where we are and as he spent had they hit can take it to progress went there what is winds that. Missiles moving from short range and medium range and developing long wait they know how to get the weapon on to the miserable now they haven't slowed down. So haven't we really just been kicking the can further down for somebody else to deal with. Well in a sense we have that as we kick the can down the road people aren't time. Even if you candidate available to all of this to some degree kitchen only kicked the can down the road so long well. Maybe maybe not. Totalitarian regimes are rare. These you don't last very. This one is the exception. The camps. The Kim family. Are disciplined. And skilled. At a very dirty business that. Quote and that they're not going away Kim Jung and his 33. It is it there are no good swift clear. Solutions. In it's not like it's it's just. Something that requires muddling through. If you don't want large numbers of people to die in the cities. South Korea and Japan which are our closest allies and change. What do you make. The way a president trump has been tweeting. About. North Korea about the way some of this policy in some of this conversation. Has progressed based on the fact that. We've got a 140 characters from coming from the highest office in the. But it it's confusing and upsetting to me I mean. But the expertise I don't have any more expertise and what trump does that you do or that everybody that's in the street who's watching this presidency unfold. That four. People went in in Asia who were right next Torre who really are threatened. They are. They that they're very choppy they're very upset they're very nervous. From. If they put real weight behind those words they don't see you all for show or just rhetoric. I talked to his South Korean diplomat instantly who was jets. Mortified. Terrified and confused. By the front stretch. Can. I think that that's pretty. Consistent feeling and prostate. You mentioned diplomatic channels that part of the strategies to talk to keep talking stay engaged talk I talk glow in those back channels we hear a lot about it. To those for the work we've been making progress there I mean those are still going on to some degree right. Well under Kim Jung whose father can come you know there were lots of conversations. There were lots of deals there are lots of deals that went sour. Tom but there were conversations. That we're summits between the leaders of north and South Korea. Com. None of that's happening now. Kim Jung un is more aggressive. He may be setting up. A aggressive. Offensive. Game and only to negotiate later but who knows. It it's it's it's just not clear. But it it seems that if you're going to negotiate you can't undermine. State Department the people who in the goats. As a matter of course. The the idea we. Talked about earlier about why north Koreans see Americans the way that they do through that prism. Do you think that it's fair if it all these years later all these many years after the war. To escrow a back to an entire population 25 million people. Good to check be very similar to a lot of conversations we had about other parts of the world we see why did they feel this way about us or about Madison. It isn't a little simplistic to say well that is why they hate us is because at this history back and then really. It's about the regime it's about this spam. I'm Bret well. That the population. North Korea its captain its lives in a prison state. And it's bad information. That's approved by that. Prison warden right who's now in third generation. And so what they'd known what they understand about the world is. What they're. Leaders want them to understand about cracking a little bit because that information technology. More radios coming in from from Japan from China. But still plan. Defectors come to South Korea find their way there. They. They go through sort of a re education you know welcome to planet earth in this so I'll work and there's a class that they teach on. The Korean War. And the teacher says while weekend with a history of war. The war began land can now some with Soviet help invaded South Korea and when the teacher says that. All the students all the defectors in the room stand up construction out. Because that's not the history they were. They perceive. The fundamental war the only award North Korea's ever spot. To be a different war one with the Americans in the South Koreans cynically attacked. And the Kim family brilliantly one. The very foundation of there own country is different is different ran. Seeing mention the technology making its way across another some people from North Korea are allowed to work outside of the country to be able to send to repatriate funds and that. Helps to support the North Korean economy to some degree to he's all of that kind of know younger generation starting to get more plugged into cross border. Economic dependence and technology bringing it back home after ended chipping away you get some of the prison states. The you know it it's totalitarian systems need total control. And two things happening that are on the American side on the side of freedom loving people if you will. Is it's. Information is coming into the country in an unprecedented amount because of US beef jobs. Dvds. Radio. Young teenage girls in Pyongyang. They speak. With an affected accent. Rich girls console. Because they've been watching its sole or South Korean missile. And watching him so much that they've affected the acts. That is why not a big deal right and that's for the first time that's ever happened whether that's been happening for about ten years and it's slowly undermines. Total control. The other thing that total undermines total control. He is money. Who'll controls money there. North Korea collapsed when the Soviet Union collapsed because the Soviet Union subsidizing North Korea so with the end of the Soviet Union. In in the early 1990s. North Korea went through a terrible ten years. And there was famine. Perhaps a million people starve to death in industrialized country. And a general breakdown of the power of the state to feed and provide services people. Can markets. Sort of a rose in that back him. Scruffy street markets that have now been more formalized. And people are making substantial amounts of money. My being captains of industry and markets that are supplying consumer goods and other things tonight it grants. They have feet to capitol right after talking with so there's money there that the Kim family does not control. Which is dissidents. And it's a completely new thing. And it's dangerous it's dangerous for the regime and as time goes along with more information and more money that they don't control there's there's the scenes. Four. A destabilizing. Of this solid rock so it then there. Is that the best of all possible worlds then in terms of US engagement at the rest of the world engaged in North Korea's keep kicking camp far enough down the line. That all those forces that seem to be organically and is taking place eventually reach a point. Equilibrium or bored or hit it yet to that they could. Or take and every US US policy the policy. Of the west would be to try to speed that process up how how to think you. Propaganda. Radio. And massive amounts of of information technology smuggled into the country. Person to person exchanges. Pay money to bring the North Korean opinion leaders to. Japan United States Western Europe. Get them thinking seen the world outside of this box. It's a slow solution is not satisfactory it's not John Wayne in the cow story. But nobody dies as the process unfolds here. Are you genuinely concerned about the possibility and that's going to war I'm more concerned than tablets before. But then you know. It's the Kim family that's pushing the nukes and the long range missiles that's not the fault of Tom count you know. They are. Standing out. What could be. In a global catastrophe. They are and it's a gangster stage. That's very much interest in preserving its its its its survival. And assert a measure of comfort for those people who are buying into the system who live in the count. For an administration that doesn't seem as if they want to wait. For things to happen and who knows where the policy will go or it's hard things will progress it is hard to do it he said. So far where we are is that deter and hasn't worked. Right continuing to engage in allowing time to pass and hoping things will change hats at work the trajectory there has remained the same. Found the weapons got the week to deliver them now. Where there. So what would work in the short is there anything else we could turn. And I think and in the work of short term. If you try to take out missiles try to take out the weapons. There's a chance. Hand it's hard to know. So high that chances that they will perceive an existential threat. And kill me hundreds of thousands of people. Ends in Seoul and Tokyo are. The chances of hitting United States now with there with their missiles are relatively low I mean. They have a few I don't know at frank moment. But as time goes by they'll have more. Daryn nuclear powered state they're never going to not be in the nuclear powered stay under this government. Because it's there it's their insurance policy it. Kim Il sung died when he was 84 died of heart attack of natural causes his father died and 69 and natural process. And I if Kim to alone has the same life span. He's 33. We're looking at would recommend its half a century of this. With the same guy. Census. Terribly comforting. Now it's not company. This is your third book. Should mention him on or related to North Korea. And I mean. Q how war in new weather and every tiny is that what you do in these books that leads you to another at least he's an idea of the night EA I'm getting it. I think about doing something else. Are you. I've been thinking about doing something else because. Now I'm. Like its open. But what's interesting I think of that Don Nickles and the book thinking of spy then the Americans used him. For seniors and he delivered the goods sometimes there pretty unsavory that he delivered. Finally the Americans decided. Donald Nichols. Had. Gone too far is probably too close to news segment Marines don't our. And making. In the middle of the night. Administrator Jack. Shipped in office IKEA. They said he was mentally ill the air force us. And then they hooked him up to electroshock. For several months and he later said that they tried to destroy its mind and and distress memory. And in fact they did destroy him as as a historical figure he does he disappeared American military history. And knew that we did that to him our government secretly. Disappeared and kill. You found them so I found it and told his story the book is king of spies the dark reign of America's spy master. In Korea author is Blaine Harden and thanks so much for being here. Thank you thank you for listening to uncomfortable each of our episode is now available on the tune in at. Cannon is a free mobile audio app available across IOS android and windows. Downloaded for free today and listen to the latest episode of uncomfortable five days before they're released. You can also find us on apple podcast Spotify that your aunt and EBC news.com. And if you like what we're doing take a minute lead to rating and a quick review helps others to find these conversations and we really just want to hear what you think. Plus we have made it easy just click on the link in the description at this past. And if you have an idea for a show topic or aghast pleaded and there are he has forced you can -- actually at Nevada. And AW easy. I FT and or use our hash tag him uncomfortable. I'm comfortable as a product of ABC news. New episodes coast every 2 weeks on Tuesday morning and don't forget. 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