August 4th, 2009
05:00 PM ET

Release of U.S. journalists affect N. Korea's relations with rest of world?

FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:

Before we nominate Kim Jong Il for the Nobel Peace Prize for releasing those two journalists, it's worth remembering who we're dealing with. The fact that former President Clinton was able to gain the women's release shouldn't change anything.

North Korea is still a very dangerous regime armed with nuclear weapons and in the midst of a lot of questions about who will succeed the little mad man who runs the place.

In all likelihood, North Korea would like to sit down with the United States alone and negotiate another of the phony deals they've been party to in the past. They don't like the six party talks aimed at trying to get them to disarm. They would rather get the United States to agree to feed their people without having to do much of anything in return.

There should be no letting up on the part of the group of six nations just because of today's humanitarian gesture on the part of North Korea. These are the same folks who have threatened to fire a missile toward Hawaii and have made repeated threats against South Korea and other of their neighbors.

There is absolutely no reason to believe that today's developments change anything when it comes to North Korea. But North Korea undoubtedly will think it does.

Here’s my question to you: How will the release of the two American journalists affect North Korea’s relations with the rest of the world?

Interested to know which ones made it on air?

Dave writes:
Hopefully none at all. You don't get brownie points for fixing a problem you started in the first place.

Mike from Washington writes:
This move by Kim is a smoke screen. He has had a lot of pressure over the nuclear discussion and controversy – and he has used this act of good intentions to take focus off of the dangerous issue. Now more than ever, we need to watch N. Korea closely.

Jamal from St. Petersburg, Florida writes:
It's positive. I was done with them all together, with their saber rattling and imprisoning of two lovely journalists. I like Laura Ling's reporting personally, reminds me of an Amanpour. Now, I feel better about them, like they could actually be an active member in the world community. That would be great.

David writes:
I agree with you, Jack. North Korea's leader is a maniac and can not be trusted. On the other hand, this pardon and release of the two U.S. reporters shows just a flicker of humanity. I think our government should formally offer a modest thank you to North Korea, just to keep the ball rolling. If we handle this in the right way, it might not only lead to further talks with NK but even influence that other despot in Iran to release his captive Americans. You never know.

Doug from Columbus, Ohio writes:
Jack, Evidence suggests that Il is ill and N. Korea’s leadership is looking to the West as he fades. Today's great news for the two U.S. journalists and their families, who seem poised to re-join their families, may signify something new. Hopefully it does. But, we should insist on the 6-party talks and not simply give in to the emotions of the day. Cautious optimism, Jack.

Geoff from Keansburg, New Jersey writes:
North Korea is a country shut off from the rest of the world. Releasing the girls and hanging out with Bill Clinton was their 10 minutes in the spotlight. This changes nothing. North Korea needs to disarm and help feed their people. Amen.

Filed under: Global Image • Global matters • North Korea
soundoff (81 Responses)
  1. Adam Simi Valley, CA

    I doubt it will change much. I am sure N. Korea will try to use it as an example of good faith, but that will not fogive the initial act of imprisoning them and railroading them through the "Judicial" process. To me nothing has changed. To me, North Korea is still wackier than a room full of bi-polar patients. The only difference is, one has their finger on the trigger of a nuclear bomb. They are still a country run by a guy who would rather starve his own people than give up their nuclear weapons.

    August 4, 2009 at 4:38 pm |
  2. Shannan Eid

    Anytime diplomacy can be used instead of stubborn politics, the world is a better place. Too many Republicans, like George W's administration and the new nastiness of Republicans in Congress, don't understand that. Bill Clinton has performed a huge positive service for the two ladies, for our country, and the world, and it would show wisdom and grace if the nay sayers will just acknowledge this.

    August 4, 2009 at 4:39 pm |
  3. Caryn Carter

    I don't think that it's going to make N. Korea more recognized than they already are. They have negative recognition already, and this does ease some of that negativity as long as there were no strings attached with the release of thos journalists. The world will view them not just on this action, but all of the interactions and actions that N. Korea has with the world.

    August 4, 2009 at 4:43 pm |
  4. Terry in Virginia

    The problem is N. Korea's Chairm Kim Jung il is erratic. How much of that is due to his illness or how much is just the way he is, I'm not sure anyone knows. But I'm glad Chairman Jung il and Mr. Clinton were able to reach an agreement and the journalists were freed. It shows, at least for the moment, the Chairman is willing to listen. Perhaps, we should take advantage of this moment and discuss other issues with him

    August 4, 2009 at 4:43 pm |
  5. Lois, St. Louis, Mo

    It shows that they, North Korean, knows that the rest of the world views them as bullies.

    August 4, 2009 at 4:45 pm |
  6. Jim

    Kim Jong II is hoping / praying that the rest of the world will see him as a "good guy" for doing this. If he can stir-up some controversy within the U.S. government at the same time - he has done a great job in his eyes.
    I hope / pray that the rest of the world sees him for what he trully is - a maniac and a terrorist!

    August 4, 2009 at 4:53 pm |
  7. Tyler D. Lacey, WA

    Jack, with the lournalists freed there is nothing left to deal with other than a huge NUCLEAR stockpile of weapons and that now the UN an the USA will try to get NK back to STALTS or Stratigic Arms Limitation Talks. This will make or break NK and there threat with nuclear weapons.

    August 4, 2009 at 4:55 pm |
  8. D.R. Texas

    Better I hope,maybe they are getting some sense in their heads.

    August 4, 2009 at 5:00 pm |
  9. Bill

    This is good for everyone. It is potentially a long needed thaw in relations between the two countries. If we can work with North Korea and we each gain mutually trust, based on actions, maybe we can work toward ending the Nuclear problem!

    August 4, 2009 at 5:02 pm |
  10. Kevin in Dallas, TX

    It will have an impact because our world leaders are like women in an abusive relationship. Sure, North Korea's developing nuclear weapons, testing long range missiles, and threatening to destroy the world. But they just released two innocent jouralists from 12 years hard labor after a visit from a former president, so they can't be all bad, right? I think they deserve another chance, but if they don't have their act together by 2050, we're leaving them for sure! Unless they buy the Canadian Prime Minister a puppy.

    August 4, 2009 at 5:05 pm |
  11. Dave

    Hopefully none at all. You don't get brownie points for fixing a problem you started in the first place.

    August 4, 2009 at 5:05 pm |
  12. John, Fort Collins,CO

    When it comes to North Korea's international relations, the release of the U.S. journalists will have about the same impact as the current phase of the moon.

    August 4, 2009 at 5:06 pm |
  13. hiroki

    Obviously the US lose ground that's why Bill Clinton went to visit Kim. There always some kind of payback like money to release the two juournalists. Just like Nixon did in the 70s when the US lost the Vietnam war. And God knows how many times North koreans slept with those two poor girls. North korea's going to have far more leverages after this negotiation.

    August 4, 2009 at 5:07 pm |
  14. Larry

    Probably very positively.

    Up to now Kim Jong has looked lke a no diplomacy lunatic.

    This will help his image with the world.

    Cincinnati, OH

    August 4, 2009 at 5:08 pm |
  15. Gary H. Boyd

    The White Knight, Bill Clinton, has, on the chess board of world politics, accomplished what a direct attempt by the Obama Administration could not. Namely, the release of the two journalists and a measure of respectability for the North Korean leadership. Clearly, the next move is North Korea's.

    Gary H. Boyd, Scottsdale, Arizona

    August 4, 2009 at 5:10 pm |
  16. Linda in Arizona

    Not at all.

    August 4, 2009 at 5:11 pm |
  17. george

    at this point in time not much but they will get the global pat on the back for doing the rite thing for a change.

    August 4, 2009 at 5:12 pm |
  18. Tom

    Santa Monica, CA

    Jack, I agree with your opinion about the leader and government of N. Korea, but shouldn't we be careful what we say until these two journalists actually are free? I mean, are they actually on a plane home yet? Maybe Kim Jong Il will change his mind.

    August 4, 2009 at 5:13 pm |
  19. Mike from DC

    This move by Kim is a smoke screen. He has had a lot of pressure over the nuclear discussion and controversy that he has used this act of good intentions to take focus off of the dangerous issue. Now more than ever, we need to watch N. Korea closely.

    August 4, 2009 at 5:13 pm |
  20. dave severance (woodland hills CA)

    In no way at all, at least it shouldn't.

    August 4, 2009 at 5:13 pm |
  21. Lucy

    North Korea's actions just seem so erratic to me that I cannot even attempt to predict how this will affect relations. All I can say is that at the very least, it looks like a baby step in the right direction.
    Lucy, SF CA

    August 4, 2009 at 5:13 pm |
  22. Jamal, St. Petersburg, FL

    It's postive. I was done with them all together, with their saber rattling and imprisoning of two lovely journalists. I like Laura Ling's reporting personally, reminds me of an Amanpour. Now, I feel better about them altogether. That they could actually be an active member in the world community. That would be great.

    August 4, 2009 at 5:14 pm |
  23. Terry, Chandler AZ

    There will be little short term effect. However, if Kim Jong II continues to act in this manner, perhaps the rest of the palnet will have a more positive opinion of the N. Korean leader.

    August 4, 2009 at 5:14 pm |
  24. Charlotte Wilkerson

    Everybody appreciates a gesture of goodwill, don't they?

    August 4, 2009 at 5:15 pm |

    It is an absolute step in the right direction. We need to move foward, not cry about spilt milk!

    August 4, 2009 at 5:15 pm |
  26. Annie, Atlanta

    I'm looking at them a little more kindly today because of the release. However, sadly, the world would be a better place without a No. Korea in it. Maybe once Kim Jong Il is gone, they'll see it that way, too.

    August 4, 2009 at 5:15 pm |
  27. Sharon Wright

    Kim Yong Il would have to be reincarnated as a normal person to affect world opinion. And that's not happening anytime soon.

    August 4, 2009 at 5:16 pm |
  28. Susan from Twin Falls Idaho

    It may mean that North Korea is looking at Iran. The masses do make a difference and inhumane treatment is not well received.

    August 4, 2009 at 5:16 pm |
  29. Scott Stodden

    Well God Jack maybe things will change such as there relationship towards the United States with the release of these hostages who were held captive in North Korea. I knew if there's was anybody out there in this crazy world of politics it was former President Bill Clinton. Bill Clinton is my idol and Im so proud of the work he did in North Korea, to bad Jack that there's a law in the Constiution that states a President can serve only two terms isnt it? We all that are alive today can say that the best President since John F Kennedy was Bill Clinton. Remove the Law that a President can only serve two terms.

    Scott Stodden (Freeport,IL)

    August 4, 2009 at 5:16 pm |
  30. Bill2

    NOT AT ALL! I think. It's like dealing with your kids and you know how well they act.

    August 4, 2009 at 5:16 pm |
  31. Chris Virginia Beach

    No sane person or government will ever trust them until Kim Jong Ill is dead. Hopefully, his children like technology and basic lighting. Currently Sweden has the only embassy in Pyongyang. They earned that privilege by feeding them. That should tell you how the world feels and this minor act vanity isn't changing squat.

    August 4, 2009 at 5:16 pm |
  32. Ken in NC

    Positive Jack. Positive. I am Positive it will have no affect on the position of North Korea in world standing. It is already at the bottom.

    August 4, 2009 at 5:16 pm |
  33. Michael

    Please, NK didn't do anything special. They were well within their rights to punish people entering their country illegally...a lesson we can learn. NK is country led by a psychotic narcissistic midget. Sadly their people will continue to suffer regardless of the world's reaction. We should ignore them. Granted they will get more blatant with their actions but I implore the world to simply ignore them until they become so unstable China will squash them.

    August 4, 2009 at 5:17 pm |
  34. Madison

    I have a great respect for both Koreas, for their history, and their people. That being said, I do not think this improves North Korea's standing with the international community. Had they initially showed compassion for the Journalists and their families, it would be different. However, judging from how they were treated, and what prompted their release, it seems North Korea was throwing something of a temper tantrum in order to get the international attention they craved. In the end it is no different than demanding international attention by shooting missles.

    August 4, 2009 at 5:17 pm |
  35. Luke Bishop

    Normally, it would give a platform for future relations, and hopefully 6-Party Talks to build off of. But so long as people like you continue to say, "North Korea is still a very dangerous regime" or "There is absolutely no reason to believe that today’s developments change anything" the people will believe that. So while the action would normally increase and better relations, the, dare i say, nationalistic sayings from listened to and respected reporters such as yourself will stop any change form happening. Americans listen to you, and they continue to listen.

    August 4, 2009 at 5:17 pm |
  36. Mick Davies

    I can't urge your viewers enough to start reading the "Journal of Foreign Affairs" and other similarly informed and influential periodicals from "both side of the aisle" on a regular basis in order to better understand the need for such diplomacy and its influence on U.S. political cache internationally. President Obama and, in this particular instance, President Clinton are doing much to improve this country's image abroad and the American people should attempt to educate themselves to a level that further improves the U.S. image. Our current domestic problems are our most critical of the day and should be, however, we must educate ourselves on all fronts in order to understand and rise to the domestic and international challenges yet to come not only to avoid the appearance of ignorance, and worse, the actuality of it but to position ourselves as educated and enlightened participants whose commentary is worthy of serious consideration.

    August 4, 2009 at 5:17 pm |
  37. robert e billings

    As a veteran of the Korean war, or police action, The only reason that Korea is not unified is because the United Startes wanted to keep a foot print on mainline Asia. We have called the North an Axis of Evil" and you expect them to not feel threatened. The pity of it all, it has cost the United States big bucks, and a poor nation is kept even poorer by keeping a military that does its people no good.

    August 4, 2009 at 5:17 pm |
  38. Tomasz

    First and foremost, the propaganda that North Korea is trying to blow up the world must end. It is classic fearmongering. The North Koreans are under such sanctions that a loaf of bread must be costing the entire GDP of the nation. They are hungry and need the sanctions stopped.

    North Korea must be helped economically, without becoming a liberal and hedonist country, which seems to be what America wants it to be.

    August 4, 2009 at 5:18 pm |
  39. Lil'obama

    Obviously the release of the journalists will show that North Korea is not completely close-minded to the rest of the world.I agree with Jack that today's events should not change the way we feel about thier previous actions of this year but it is a stepping stone to those bi-latteral talks they've been wanting for so long.

    August 4, 2009 at 5:18 pm |
  40. Collin

    I don't believe things will change much, really you have to look at how North Korea "sees" the rest of the world to make a judgment. I think talks will be had, but once again we will enter a stalemate of powers. Acts of good faith per se, are heralded as good deeds, but not if provided but an untrustworthy regime such as North Korea.

    August 4, 2009 at 5:18 pm |
  41. Darren

    Looks like North Korea got what they wanted, a visit from a high-level US official, which may help efforts to getting them back to the Six Party talks which they abandonded years ago and get back onto track with downsizing their nuclear threat to the region.

    August 4, 2009 at 5:18 pm |
  42. Tricia, Florida

    Finally he man's up and does the right thing. Pat, pat........I am hoping he feels that because that is all he deserves. His behavior for the past few months have been inexcusable.

    August 4, 2009 at 5:19 pm |
  43. John in Santa Barbara

    FACE, FACE, FACE, FACE, FACE. That's what the North Koreans are all about. By sending a big FACE like President Bill Clinton, the North Koreans were able to save face and also show the world that is alien to them what it takes to make them proud. I will never pull my brain out of my head in an attempt to understand the Asian mind. But I know what works and what doesn't.

    August 4, 2009 at 5:19 pm |
  44. Chirs-Phoneix

    Mr. Cafferty it's simple, for the Nations that are weak willed towards North Korea they will says that "big bad America" needs to be kind to the North and forgive them for their unruly behavior and that America should do a few favors for North Korea. Those of our Allies that do have some sense should realize that if we as world powers work together on these types of issues then we as the world powers can combat our biggest threat, the Taliban.. One test of good leadership shown by our administration another several dozen to go.

    August 4, 2009 at 5:19 pm |
  45. Douglas Kniss

    Evidence suggests that Il is ill and N. Korean leadership is looking to the West as he fades. Today's great news for the two US journalists and their families, who seem poised to re-join their families, may signify something new. Hopefully it does. But, we should insist on the 6-party talks and not simply give in to the emotions of the day. Cautious optimism Jack.

    Columbus, Ohio

    August 4, 2009 at 5:19 pm |
  46. chis84

    I doubt that North korea's " act " of humanitarianism will change its image from the rest of the world. Kim Jong Il is simply a grumpy old bully, who will do whatever to keep power. I believe that in the near future he will use this " act " as a favor and expect to be returned the favor. By the way, they're still playin with nuclear weapons, aren't they?

    August 4, 2009 at 5:20 pm |
  47. Thom Richer

    Nothing really has changed unless Kim Jong Il has had an epiphany and is truly a new man. Which of course is not the case. So, express our thanks and continue as before their release. Give Clinton, Hillary and Obama the congrats and kudos for their obvious diplomatic prowess and higher level thinking skills than the past administration, they deserve and move on.

    Thom Richer
    Negaunee, MI

    August 4, 2009 at 5:20 pm |
  48. Brian/ Folsom, CA

    North Korea is at it's tipping point due to the inevitable transition of power that is about to take place. Perhaps this act of goodwill will be the platform upon which North Korea will abandon it's old policies of threatening rhetoric and finally join the international community.....perhaps not.

    August 4, 2009 at 5:20 pm |
  49. Jad

    Oh. How nice! North korea realeases american journalists instead of torturing them for 12 years! No matter what happens 90% of the population wont ever trust mr kim jong Kill. And this is exactly what they wanted, the US step off their well earned high horse to beg for the release of 2 journalists who noone ever heard of!

    August 4, 2009 at 5:20 pm |
  50. Robin Lockwood

    While the majority of Americans most likely agree with your assessment of North Korea, why on earth would you spew negativity about that government in such a public forum at such a vulnerable time? You couldn't have waited until those young ladies were safely released to tell us what we already know? If the North Korean government thinks a visit from former President Clinton is a show of good faith and opens up an honorable way for them to return that good faith, please don't interfere with that until the mission of releasing these journalists has been accomplished.

    August 4, 2009 at 5:21 pm |
  51. John M.

    It won't. Kim Jong-il has cut N. Korea off from the rest world for his own personal reason, and lets face it Jack i really don't think the world is interested in knowing what that reason is. are you?

    August 4, 2009 at 5:21 pm |
  52. David Clark

    I agree with you Jack, North Korea's leader is a maniac and can not be trusted. On the other hand, this pardon and release of the two US reporters shows just a flicker of humanity. I think our government should formally offer a modest thank you to North Korea, just to keep the ball rolling. If we handle this in the right way, it might not only lead to further talks with NK but even influence that other despot in Iran to release his captive Americans. You never know. BTW, muchas kudos to President Bill Clinton for a job well done!

    August 4, 2009 at 5:21 pm |

    Very positive. I don't know if it changes my opinion of Kim Jong Il, but I am so proud that Bill Clinton was good enough to help our very busy President Obama. We have heard so many anti Democrat by the other party, now wonder what they will whine about?

    August 4, 2009 at 5:22 pm |
  54. Joe

    I can only imagine what the US offered N.korea in return for their release. Those details will never make the news, maybe a book 10-15 years from now.
    I believe US positions weakens when we have to burn diplomatic and political capital dealing with such matters. As americans, we probably serve our nation best if we stay out of those regions. Let's start respecting other countries borders. Don't expect that Papa goverment will come to rescue you when you illegally cross them. Get a GPS!

    August 4, 2009 at 5:22 pm |
  55. Cecilia Walker

    Well Former President Clinton just succeeded in North Korea and those Lady's will be coming home where they belong. Thank you Mr.Pres.Clintonand alsoMr.Pres.Obama for thier sucess today. That's what you call right person to make smart decession's.and send the right person.To bad Bush could't go because instead of shoe's,they would have sent him out runing with his shoe's off. Thank you Mr.Pres. Obama for your leadership and HAPPY BIRTHDAY!

    August 4, 2009 at 5:23 pm |
  56. roger

    Just typical bully tactics, playing to a bunch of idiot politicians. It is kind of like a cop arresting somebody for trespassing on their own property thenreleasing them after booking, and wondering why people don't nominate him for cop of the year!

    August 4, 2009 at 5:23 pm |
  57. Gigi

    Maybe it will wake up the beast in the rest of the world that if America can put forward a respectful dialog they also might find it helpful in dealing with North Korea and other difficult countries. It is worth exploring. The American redneck policy was getting old in my thinking. I'm one that wanted change in America, and the rest of the world. Let's leave our grandchildren a better, happier and safer world beginning with a new attitude.
    With the new attitude of American diplomacy gaining the release of the two journalist. How will it affect North Korea relations with the rest of the world. Would be a more interesting question.


    August 4, 2009 at 5:23 pm |
  58. Gregory Miami Beach, FL.

    The rest of the world got front row seat to the Kim Jong Il show and got to see a new low in the sordid diplomacy tactics of the North Korean leaders. If they weren't waving around nulear weapons, I don't think anyone would want any relations with that goverment.

    August 4, 2009 at 5:23 pm |
  59. Daniel

    It’s a start…You really have to give the Obama’s administration big credit for handling North Korea with respect. The Cowboy diplomacy is no more…Great job by Obama/Bill Clinton!


    Dallas, Texas

    August 4, 2009 at 5:23 pm |
  60. Derek in Missouri

    We can only hope it can start a new, better relationship with North Korea. Maybe I'm the only one that thinks that??
    Things were looking pretty gloomy there for quite a while.

    August 4, 2009 at 5:23 pm |
  61. Melissa

    I don't think it will affect them at all. They are still bratty children that need to be spanked so they stop acting so badly. They're just bratty children with really big guns.

    August 4, 2009 at 5:25 pm |
  62. Gary In Lexington

    It should not have any impact on the relations between the World and North Korea whatsoever. The World is dealing with a rogue regime, that is more apt to "pull the trigger" than anybody else in the World. I trust the UN and other World organizations will not back down in any manner. After all, this is a cartoon watching nut case that starves and brutalizes his own people. If the World trusts him, they are as crazy as he is.

    August 4, 2009 at 5:26 pm |
  63. Jason, Burke VA

    More of the same to come, Jack. As wacky as he may seem, Kim Jong-Il is more clever than we assume. He's been very successful at playing the Six-Parties off one another. He knows using his crude nuclear weapon(s) with his dubious ballistic missile capability against us will be national suicide. He knows we won't go to war just to free the North Korean people. He knows China and South Korea can't allow a collapsed North Korean state.

    On our part, we're too obtuse and arrogant to think a Bond villain-like dictator could out maneuvering us, but it keeps happening. He doesn't have to win in diplomacy, just make us lose. Call it guerrilla diplomacy.

    August 4, 2009 at 5:27 pm |
  64. Ed - California

    This release of these women certainly won't hurt his image any less. Little Kim needs to realize, "That no man is an island". I don't think that he wants to start any hostilities with any nation, especially ours. He has a poor country and is just posturing for help, without loosing face. His country is in desperate need of food and medical supplies. We should open up diplomatic talks with him and start some humanitarian aid with N. Korea. See if we can get his country into the fold.

    August 4, 2009 at 5:28 pm |
  65. Fred in PA

    This development shows North Korea's willingness to engage in an improved relationship with the United States, as long as it is done properly and sincerely in an even-handed manner. The six party talks fail because it's more of a gang-up against the North Koreans, who do not wish to be pushed around. At its most basic, it is undeniably an effort of goodwill toward a better relationship with the West. Incidentally, this experience is a reminder to everyone to respect sovereign and well established international boundaries. I'm celebrating Kim Jong Il's decision to free these two women, whom I have kept in my prayers since the situation developed.

    August 4, 2009 at 5:30 pm |
  66. C. Farrell, Houston, Tx

    Unlike North Korea our relations around the world was greatly diminished without using missles or nuclear devices to threatened the world and there is still much work to do. I don't think the rest of the world is ready to accept North Korea's threats in exchange for two journalist.

    August 4, 2009 at 5:30 pm |
  67. Shawn Akins

    I am very happy and pleased to hear of the release of our 2 journalists, thank God and obiviously kudos to Bill Clinton, the man still has it..But Jack as you pointed out Kim jong is not to be trusted , the man is insane. He is like a child who will do anything for attention even if it is a good deed, but the truth is we all know his true intentions.So i hope this doesNOT give the rest of the united nations to let their foot off the gas,keep the pressure on please, this LITTLE MAD MAN needs to be stopped before it is too late......

    August 4, 2009 at 5:30 pm |
  68. Wendy Sime

    Clinton should have traded Bernie Madoff to North Korea for the two Journalists. Madoff deserves hard labor! Wendy , Lakewood, CO

    August 4, 2009 at 5:31 pm |
  69. Linda in Phoenix

    It's definitely a breaking of the ice in a big way. Respectful face to face meetings can be successful, contrary to what the pessimists might say!!! Love and peace rule today and way to go Bill!!!!! This could be the beginning of a whole new era not only between our two countries, but why not think big?? Let this be the beginning of new relations all over the planet. PEACE, back by popular demand!!!!!!!!!

    August 4, 2009 at 5:32 pm |
  70. Lynn, Columbia, Mo..

    Jack, Jack, lighten up. Kim's getting older and sicker and maybe he's mellowing out. You can catch more with honey, remember? Let's see what happens.

    August 4, 2009 at 5:32 pm |
  71. Cal

    NO effect at all!
    Just 2 big-shot guys ruffling their feathers getting their
    mugs in the paper!

    August 4, 2009 at 5:33 pm |

    It's all a ploy. President One Hong Lowe has a mean streak and it is his nature to bully everyone around him.
    Anyone who believes he is turning a new leaf should think again.
    If you fall for his false trust and turn your back he will attack like the mad dog he is.
    Seems too good to be true. Has anyone checked for bugs on the returning ladies? Were they released with some kind of deadly contagient? Were they implanted with some kind of ticking time bomb?
    Don't trust them.

    August 4, 2009 at 5:34 pm |
  73. paul mississippi

    North Korea should not be allowed to hold them captive anyway. The fact that they have done this shows their thirst for power and furthermore at the expense of American lives. We should not praise or respond to their flagrant displays of emotion that threatens world peace everytime they pull one of these stunts. It is a communistic dictatorship and is against everything that the usa was founded upon, we are not dependent on them for trade so why bother reponding to their threats. They should see the light that communism is only making them poorer and poorer by the minute! This type of control and anti democratic thinking is horrible and should be over by now. Haven't we learned enough from all the problems with germany and vietnam. Obviously communism and fear tacticts and hate do not work. You only end up with war torn countries and millions of lost lives that had nothing to do with the minute neurological pathological impulse of some dictator that has little mans syndrome and thinks he has to rule the whole world!

    August 4, 2009 at 5:36 pm |
  74. D. Pirie

    I don't think the release of the two Korean journalists will have any effect, but as much as I admire Bill Clinton, do you think there is anything to the idea that the U.S. sent a tarnished public figure to visit KJI. Kind of an under-the-radar slap in the face?

    August 4, 2009 at 5:37 pm |
  75. j/NJ

    How will the release of the two American journalists affect North Korea’s relations with the rest of the world?

    A favourable effect cannot be ruled out although not likely to be immediate... the event itself was obviously preplanned and not humaitarian in scope, thus the Obama administration is well advised to take full advantage of the DPRK's current overtures should any go forward, without animosity or politically oriented preconditions...

    August 4, 2009 at 5:38 pm |
  76. Leon Dailey

    Newark, Delaware
    I believe it will help.
    It for sure cannot worsen relations which are as bad as it get short of war itself. I have nothing nice to say about N Korea but you apparently have few S Korean friends, Some 20 million people live in Greater Seoul some 30 miles from the border and well within mortar range of the North Korean army. They don't need missiles to generate mass casualties. South Koreans HAVE to live with that.
    There are no good choices in dealing with a regime that insists the purpose of the nation is to support the military not the opposite as in most countries.
    Name calling and threats we can't carry out because of the millions of lives at risk are useless on such a complex peninsula. Americans should know South Koreans still fear and distrust Japan because of the brutal and inhuman occupation during the first half of the 20th century even more than North Korea. We can say that is illogical but it is a fact when we try to rally S Korea to partner with Japan against their wayward cousins to the north.
    To berate and insult the country makes cute language but it also supports the many in S Korea who see the North as victim of rudeness and ignorance.
    We have to take this out of the schoolyard and into a place where at least we can act as grown-ups.

    August 4, 2009 at 5:39 pm |
  77. Dr. Rafael Alverio

    Countries like North Korea are not to be trusted. It may be that N. Korea used those two journalists with a purpose. It gave them a non deserving stiff sentence for a reason. They were released on our request. Now they'll expect something in return. Just like Iran accusing three civilians as spies. They'll probably give them a stiff sentence as well and then wait for the U. S. to come to their rescue expecting something in return at a later date. I repeat they're not to be trusted.

    Katy, Texas

    August 4, 2009 at 5:40 pm |
  78. Alice NEWYORK

    how are we ever going to have peace when we don't talk. The line from the godfather "keep your friends close and your enemies closer.

    August 4, 2009 at 5:43 pm |
  79. Roy - Chicago

    It has been reported that Kim Jong Il has pancreatic cancer....
    perhaps in his waning moments he might realize what he is, and start acting differently towards us and the rest of the world.
    It is said the journey of a thousand miles begins with one step.

    Kudos to Bill Clinton for this accomplishment, perhaps him going there was the icebreaking gesture that will stop this impasse.
    Hopefully the GOP won't foul THIS up too!

    August 4, 2009 at 5:43 pm |
  80. Ted Azriel

    President Clinton did a great Job. But North Korea is not interested in change. I feel badly for the people of North Korea who are suffering under this tyranny. One things for sure Kim Jong-il ain't starving like his countrymen.

    August 4, 2009 at 5:45 pm |
  81. Jeff in Houston

    I hope it does. Clinton succeeded where blunt force arrogance failed. Even a whack job like the leader of North Korea can recognize an uneducated lout when he sees one. I hope Bill Clinton never retires. It will take more than meaningless Cheney-esque strutting to get through to that guy.

    August 4, 2009 at 5:48 pm |