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Thursday, August 6

The Return of Big Bill

Four and a half months ago, two journalists sneaked/strayed/ended up across the border separating the People's Republic of China and the Democratic People's Republic of Korea. The two women, affiliated with Current-TV, were arrested by North Korean authorities, charged with conducting a smear campaign and sentenced to 12 years at hard labor.

Twelve years at hard labor.

In North Korea, folks.

Club Med this wouldn't be.

Now, our relations with North Korea are not really the best possible (we're still at war with them, 56 years on), so while we officially made noises about demanding the return of the women, a call was sent out.

Enter Big Bill, also known as former President Bill Clinton.

Apparently using his mighty Rolodex, he made some contacts. This ended up with Clinton being invited to Pyongyang for dinner and a chat with the DPRK's Dear Leader Kim Jong Il.

The outcome?

The journalists were pardoned, and are now home in California.

So, everyone happy, right?

Wrong.

The atonal, brassy braying of the Right Wing Bombs-n-Jesus Machine started venting instantly, displaying once again the deranged hatred and fear they still harbor for all things Clinton. Several of the pundits, notably former UN Ambassador and Walrus Porno Mustache Bearer John Bolton, continued their usual tactic of looking at the glass as half-empty by alleging that we gave something away to Little Kim.

While I dislike even reading Fox, here's a link to the article. They're all hot and bothered about Kim scoring a propaganda victory - as well as (of course) screeching about what the DPRK's news agency called an apology.

For the record, here's the bit from the Korean Central News Agency:

"Clinton expressed words of sincere apology to Kim Jong Il for the hostile acts committed by the two American journalists against the DPRK after illegally intruding into it. Clinton courteously conveyed to Kim Jong Il an earnest request of the U.S. government to leniently pardon them and send them back home from a humanitarian point of view."

Now, an apology is just words. Our reputation is big enough compared to North Korea's that we can afford the minor loss of face in apologizing. And, to their credit the Obama Administration rather strenuously denies that there was an apology or any other quid pro quo.

Both countries can claim a victory here - the US for getting our people back, and the DPRK for the photo op (they may have also stuck us with the check for the dinner). And we got our people back.

So why isn't the Right happy?

Because it brought back Big Bill, whose magic penis is still able to strike a Lord Voldemort level of terror into the heart of conservatives.

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