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I wish I could have attended TEDGlobal 2013. There, a brave man named Joseph Kim described his journey out of North Korea.

In his quietly powerful first-person account, Joseph tells us about a family — a father, mother and older sister — constantly struggling against poverty. In the Great Famine of 1994, the 4-year-old Joseph and his sister would look for firewood from 5am until midnight. More than 1 million North Koreans died of starvation during that time. No one thought about politics and freedom, he says. “Hunger is humiliation. Hunger is hopelessness.”

A Political Map of North Korea

A Political Map of North Korea (Photo credit: Wikipedia)