February 21st, 2014

The human cost: Korea

These heartbreaking photos say it all.

Actually, I’m sure they don’t say it all, but they say an awful lot. What abysmal cruelty, for North Korea to reduce families to this situation:

Their backs stooped, dozens of elderly North and South Koreans separated for six decades reunited Thursday, weeping and embracing in a rush of words and emotion. The reunions come during a rare period of detente between the rival Koreas and are all the more poignant because the participants will part again in a few days, likely forever.

Six decades of separation.

Never again to see each other, but given this one last opportunity, with every moment a precious brew of joy and bitter sorrow:

Koreanbrothersister

Koreanmotherdaughter

Koreansisters

Koreanunclenieces

Fresh as the first beam glittering on a sail,
That brings our friends up from the underworld,
Sad as the last which reddens over one
That sinks with all we love below the verge;
So sad, so fresh, the days that are no more.

4 Responses to “The human cost: Korea”

  1. Charles Says:

    I saw some of these pictures earlier – they are just heartbreaking.

    Back in my college days in Taiwan, one of my professors was a refugee from mainland China. He was the only one of his family who “got out” back in ’49.

    He came to class one day with a huge grin and cheery step; for you see, he had just stopped by the Post Office on the way to class and in the huge stacked of mail was a letter from his father still in mainland China. The way it worked was that a “clearinghouse” in Hong Kong would forward their mail to each other as direct mail was not allowed.

    Needless to say, when he explained the situation we students didn’t mind if he started class late so that he could read the letter.

    I didn’t keep in touch with him; but, I’ve always hoped that his father lived long enough so that when travel was finally allowed between Taiwan and China he was able to go visit.

  2. Ymarsakar Says:

    Old Democrat Truman did the right thing, people might say.

    Just as Obama did in Iraq and Afghanistan.

    The right thing’s going to mean something else for america in a bit.

  3. Tonawanda Says:

    If you do not mind, neo:

    Tears, idle tears, I know not what they mean,
    Tears from the depth of some divine despair
    Rise in the heart, and gather in the eyes,
    In looking on the happy autumn-fields,
    And thinking of the days that are no more.

    Fresh as the first beam glittering on a sail,
    That brings our friends up from the underworld,
    Sad as the last which reddens over one
    That sinks with all we love below the verge;
    So sad, so fresh, the days that are no more.

    Ah, sad and strange as in dark summer dawns
    The earliest pipe of half-awakened birds
    To dying ears, when unto dying eyes
    The casement slowly grows a glimmering square;
    So sad, so strange, the days that are no more.

    Dear as remembered kisses after death,
    And sweet as those by hopeless fancy feigned
    On lips that are for others; deep as love,
    Deep as first love, and wild with all regret;
    O Death in Life, the days that are no more!

    And a link to vanderleun which had me in tears today:

    http://americandigest.org/mt-archives/grace_notes/something_wonderful_my_be.php

    Upon the suffering we all share it is astonishing how many wish to add more, deeming it a good for all, when it is only good for themselves.

  4. kit Says:

    I am so sorry.
    I wish they never had to part.
    They should never have to part.

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Previously a lifelong Democrat, born in New York and living in New England, surrounded by liberals on all sides, I've found myself slowly but surely leaving the fold and becoming that dread thing: a neocon.
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