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A Chubby North Korean Dictator Brings Free Speech to a Halt

The opinions expressed by columnists are their own and do not necessarily represent the views of Townhall.com.

When did Sony get bought out by the French? Sony has decided cancel the theatrical release of their newest comedy after an apparent North Korean threat. “The Interview”, a Seth Rogen comedy about two inept journalists who are recruited to kill North Korea’s leader, found itself at the center of an international cyber-attack on Sony Entertainment earlier this month. Mountains of data from Sony’s secure records have been leaked by assumed North Korean sources, along with a rather chilling warning:


“The world will be full of fear,” the message reads. “Remember the 11th of September 2001. We recommend you to keep yourself distant from [theaters playing “The Interview”]. If your house is nearby, you’d better leave.”

Responding to the terroristic threats, Sony aggressively waived a white flag. According to Variety:

“We are deeply saddened at this brazen effort to suppress the distribution of a movie, and in the process do damage to our company, our employees, and the American public,” Sony said in a statement. “We stand by our filmmakers and their right to free expression…”

First of all, I would like to make it clear that I don’t read Variety. Someone sent me that quote. Second of all: No, Sony… You don’t stand by your filmmakers and their right to free expression. Heck, the entertainment industry is routinely shy about venturing into uncomfortable confrontations over free speech. I can’t help but notice that there aren’t too many Hollywood comedies making fun of Mohammed. (And when the radical Islamists get away with using threats of violence to censor their enemies, why should a little Stalinist-wannabe dictator in Asia be left out of all the fun?) I really hate to go here, but: If you don’t watch Seth Rogen in “The Interview” this Christmas, the terrorists win.

After all, what good is “the right to free speech” if it is only exercised when it is convenient or safe to do so? Freedom of Speech doesn’t really mean much when you are ordering a Grande Vanilla Latte…


One group of freedom-loving advocates are preparing to smuggle copies of the movie into North Korea. The least that Sony could do would be to make sure censorship is not incidentally achieved through threats of violence. Heck, make the film available for free on the internet. Put it on Hulu, Vudu, Netflix, Amazon, and even YouTube. Make it more accessible than it would be in a theater. Demonstrate to the ideologically repressive, self-aggrandizing, egomaniacs who run Asia’s pathetically incompetent Soviet era relic, that the world does not really care what meaningless demands they make.

After all… They aren’t the only ones with nukes. I mean, it’s not as if we’re dealing with Soviet Russia here. We’re talking about a wannabe Soviet Russia which doesn’t even have the necessary resources to produce decent vodka. Their major contribution to the Marxist/ Leninist experiment was proof that large groups of people can generally fake exuberance if properly motivated.

Of course, you almost have to wonder why North Korea feels emboldened enough to rattle their sabre in the first place… Well, in the era of Obama we are supposed to “normalize” relations with oppressive (and murderous) Caribbean dictators, relax sanctions on nuclear ambitious anti-Semites, and gift wrap northern Iraq for a band of terrorists who thought Al Qaeda was too warm and cuddly.


Wow… No wonder a little third world country, with the economic prowess of a rusted out VW bug, feels like they can push around a multi-national purveyor of free speech.

But let not your heart be troubled! President Obama is already considering taking action. Given Sony’s surrender to state-sponsored terrorism, the White House is seriously considering unleashing the most feared politically-correct weapon in the Liberal world: The strongly worded letter.

Then again, they better be careful how they word it. There’s a chance they might upset a chubby North Korean dictator.

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