North Korea's odd interest in 25-year-old Texan
The dictatorship follows only three Twitter accounts, and one is a young American investor and world traveler.
It's not easy being North Korea's sole American friend on Twitter.
That's been the experience of 25-year-old Jimmy Dushku, described by Mother Jones as "the last and only American whom North Korea still follows" on the social-media network.
North Korea's handle, @uriminzok -- which means "our nation" -- ever only followed a few dozen people, until it started downsizing, leaving just three followers. Only one of them is an American, and it isn't Google (GOOG) executive Eric Schmidt, who this week visited the country.
Dushku, who's no relation to "Dollhouse" actress Eliza Dushku, is described as an independently wealthy investor from Austin, Texas, who started a website development business when he was 14. He's also a huge Coldplay fan -- having attended 60 concerts across the country -- and travels the world on private jets, according to the story.
Yet his social-media link to North Korea might be providing more notoriety than his lifestyle: He's been accused of being a sympathizer and even a secret agent.
"One person wrote in detail about how he was going to come to my house and hurt me; others tell me they hope I die, or that they will be the one to do it," Dushku said.
So how did Dushku get on North Korea's radar?
"I honestly can't remember," he said. "It started sometime back in 2010. I was initially surprised, but I always try to make friends with people from all different locations and backgrounds."
Dushku said he started communicating with @uriminzok with a friendly message reading in part, "I hope all is well."
Because of the threats, Dushku said he avoids Western media but will sometimes talk with Korean, Chinese and Japanese news agencies to show he's "not an uneducated and evil person."
He added that he doesn't have any links to North Korea or its leader, but that because of his friendly tweets he's received an offer from North Korean officials to visit.
"I'd love to see the Arirang Festival in person," he said. That's country's mass gymnastics display that's been called "the strangest show on earth."
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Why would this guy want to be friends with a government that brutally oppresses its people? I do feel sorry for the N. Korean people.
Why are we dealing with Vietnam? We went to war with Vietnam and we lost thousands of Americans life’s there but we have no economic embargo in place over there... It’s all politics! Cuba is only 90 miles away from our shores but yet, we are holding them hostage with an embargo…Before I get drill here, I would like to say I’m not a communist at all, on the contrary. I love my country but there are certain things that just don’t make sense to me. Some of you can say “oh, but Cuba was trying to establish a base for ICBM’s… THAT WAS IN THE 60’s (cold war)… WE WENT TO WAR WITH VIETNAM!
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