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Monday, December 10, 2007

Some Americans Have Been Invited to North Korea by the North Korean Government

posted by on December 10 at 11:37 AM

And they are the members of the New York Philharmonic. NYT:

“We haven’t even had Ping-Pong diplomacy with these people,” said Ambassador Christopher R. Hill, the Bush administration’s main diplomat for negotiations with North Korea and the assistant secretary of state for East Asian and Pacific affairs… State Department officials said the orchestra’s invitation from North Korea and its acceptance represented a potential opening in that Communist nation’s relationship with the outside world, and a softening of its unrelenting anti-United States propaganda.

The invitation arrived by fax. And it was accepted once North Korea had accepted all of the Philharmonic’s conditions:

They included the presence of foreign journalists; a nationwide broadcast to ensure that not just a small elite would hear the concert; acoustical adjustments to the East Pyongyang Grand Theater; an assurance that the eight Philharmonic members of Korean origin would not encounter difficulties; and that the orchestra could play “The Star-Spangled Banner.”

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