Yeonmi Park said she was told as a child, to not even whisper because a mouse migh thear her. That is how careful she had to be while growing up in North Korea, as the government controlled every aspect of life, and punished those who disobeyed. She said she saw a woman executed in public for a minor infraction.
Park is a lovely Korean young woman who is an outspoken advocate for human rights, and is telling the world about the repressive regime. Yeonmi Park has a book out on Amzon as well, called “In Order To Live.”
In 2007, at 13, she and her mother crossed a frozen river at night to escape the country and get into China. The followed the stars and moon as they walked across the Gobi Desert. Eventually they made their way to Mongolia, and over a few years, made their way to South Korea and on to the west.
Of course the North Korean government objects to her story and has released a video on Youtube to discrediting her and her parents. Some details of her story according to reason.com, have been questioned as well. She attributes that to changing details to protect those still in North Korea, and to language difficulties.
Her mother prevented Yeonmi from being raped by substitution herself instead, but later she was raped anyway. She an her mother were sold. She agreed to be the mistress of a man who promised to reunite her with her family. She agreed and he kept his promise.
Her father joined them in China but later died.
While in Korea, most people are starving. Yeonmi Park said on an NY Times interview that just getting some food for survival is a struggle. She said most North Koreans wold love to have the food Americans throw away. She said it was a shock to see how much food there is in the world.