Current TV Journos Face New Criticism - NBC Bay Area

Current TV Journos Face New Criticism



    Current TV Journos Face New Criticism
    American journalists Laura Ling and Euna Lee were freed after ex-President Bill Clinton made a surprise trip to Pyongyang and appealed their case to the rogue state's reclusive leader Kim Jong Il.

    The two Current TV journalists Euna Lee and Laura Ling have been hailed as near-heroes here in the United States, but the two are facing criticism in South Korea for being careless during their ill-fated journey.

    The New York Times interviewed a South Korean pastor who said police raided his home in China in the days following their capture.

    Laura Ling and Euna Lee had visited a secret site where Rev. Lee Chan-Woo cared for the children of North Korean refugee women. They were going to tell his story, but apparently when they were captured crossing the border into North Korea they had some key information with them. That information apparently landed in the hands of North Korean authorities.

    Rev. Lee said Ling and Lee had a noble cause, but criticized them for being careless. 

    Freed Journalists Leave North Korea

    [BAY] Freed Journalists Leave North Korea
    Two Current TV reporters left North Korea on Tuesday on a plane with former president Bill Clinton.
    (Published Tuesday, Aug. 4, 2009)

    "They should have known that if they were caught, they would suffer for sure, but also many others would be hurt because of them," Rev Lee Chan-woo told the paper.

    The pastor said he was deported in early April and that his homes for refugees were shut down. He said he had to send the children to family members in China, who could not afford to take care of them.

    He said the people who raided his home, said they had seen films taken by the Current TV journalists.

    Tough Adjustment Period Ahead for Ling, Lee

    [BAY] Tough Adjustment Period Ahead for Ling, Lee
    The release of Laura Ling and Euna Lee is just the beginning of the difficult emotional journey the journalists face as they adjust to life after their four months in North Korean custody.
    (Published Thursday, Aug. 6, 2009)

    For now, Lisa Ling and Euna Lee are not talking about their mission or what happened to them after they were captured.

    A spokesman for Current TV told the Times that Current is "concerned about the situation that has evolved with Lee Chan-Woo and the Durihana Mission."  But he added some of what the pastor is saying is not correct.

    After being held for five months and sentenced to 12 years' hard labor, Laura Ling and Euna Lee landed in Southern California earlier this month. They were arrested in March after they strayed into North Korea while working on a story.