It seems to me imperative that the human rights movement, hitherto unpardonably tongue-tied about all this, should insistently take up the case of North Korea and demand that an underground railway, or perhaps even an overground one, be established. Any Korean slave who can get out should be welcomed, fed, protected, and assisted to move to South Korea. Other countries, including our own, should announce that they will take specified numbers of refugees, in case the current steady trickle should suddenly become an inundation. The Chinese obviously cannot be expected to take millions of North Koreans all at once, which is why they engage in their otherwise criminal policy of propping up Kim Jong-il, but if international guarantees for runaway slaves could be established, this problem could be anticipated.
Weiss, we are told gravely, has “done this before,” meaning she has said politically incorrect things. Thirteen years ago she called Tony Kushner a “self-loathing Jew” in a review of his play Caroline, or Change . Kushner once called the state of Israel “a moral, political catastrophe for the Jewish people” and wrote the movie Munich , which was a moral-equivalence piece evincing at least as much disgust with the Mossad for tracking down and assassinating the Palestinian terrorists who carried out the 1972 Olympics massacre as it did with the PLO murderers themselves. Nonsensically, Weiss also stands charged with “body-shaming” for praising the costumes in a production of Mamma Mia , saying they “make the most of the many ‘real women’ figures on stage,” referring euphemistically to plump performers, but contrasting them with backup dancers who had “perfect bodies.” An aggrieved cast member replied in a huff that all women’s bodies are perfect.
Orwell wrote 1984 while seriously ill with tuberculosis, and afterward commented that had he not been so ill, the book might not have been so bleak. To his consternation, after its publication, 1984 was used as propaganda itself, especially by Western forces in post-World War II Germany. Much later, there were many attempts to censor the novel, particularly on the grounds that it contains pro-Communist material and sexual references. The book has also been adapted to both television shows and movies, and has served as inspiration for a variety of other artistic endeavors, such as David Bowie's Diamond Dogs album, which includes a song titled 1984 .