What about the travel agen­cies?

The Washington Post Sunday - - SUNDAY OPINION -

Re­gard­ing the June 14 ed­i­to­rial “Mr. Warm­bier’s ap­palling mis­treat­ment”:

The re­lease of Otto Warm­bier from bru­tal cap­tiv­ity in a North Korean prison was a re­minder that Amer­i­cans travel at their own risk to the Demo­cratic Peo­ple’s Repub­lic of Korea as pri­vate cit­i­zens. Then again, I was sim­i­larly cau­tioned by the State Depart­ment against cross­ing the Ber­lin Wall into then­com­mu­nist East Ger­many in the 1960s.

But if it’s easy to un­der­stand young male im­pul­sive­ness, it is an­other mat­ter en­tirely to al­low seem­ingly fly-by-night travel agen­cies off the hook. How closely, for ex­am­ple, did they keep an eye on Mr. Warm­bier and his fel­low trav­el­ers? These and other trou­bling ques­tions re­main to be an­swered. The tragic irony of all this is that the North Korean poster that the hap­less Mr. Warm­bier ap­par­ently ripped off a wall in his tourist ho­tel likely could have been eas­ily pur­chased on­line.

John Star­rels, Chevy Chase

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