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August 5th, 2009
09:30 AM ET

Journalists Freed

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Two American journalists, detained in North Korea since March, arrived back in the U.S. this morning along with former President Bill Clinton.

Current TV’s Laura Ling and Euna Lee were arrested in March while reporting from the border between North Korea and China. They were sentenced in June to 12 years of hard labor on charges of entering the country illegally to conduct a smear campaign.

Clinton made the trip to North Korea after the families of the women asked him to travel to the Communist country and seek their release.

John Bolton, former Ambassador to the United Nations, criticized the move saying the Obama administration is rewarding North Korea for its bad behavior. Bolton, in an interview with the French Press Agency, went on to say, “It comes perilously close to negotiating with terrorists.”

So what do you think? Leave us a comment and we’ll share some of them on air in the CNN Newsroom, 11am-1pm ET


Filed under: Don Lemon • Tony Harris
soundoff (140 Responses)
  1. Jim Barclay

    A true dilemma. Everyone cringes at the thought of young Americans in the hellhole of many foreign prisons, but have we set a precedent? We have thre Americans in an Iranian prison. It appears they may have broken the law. Should they be punished, or pardoned because we don't approve of Iranian law or prisons? Are American travelers now safer – – or at greater risk of "arrest"?

    August 5, 2009 at 9:47 am |
  2. TC Hartwell

    It doesn't seem right that a former President had to travel to North Korea just to seek the relief of the two journalist from a country that
    wants to fire missle towards the U.S. I know that President Obama
    couldn't do what Clinton did but it seems that former President can go abroad to countries and complete getting people out of harms way of
    them knowing that its a high risk for any American to travel to countries that are either in "WAR",or in volved in "Terriorism". How Odd! that we have to go and "Rescue" them because they got into
    trouble due to they're neglegence.

    August 5, 2009 at 9:49 am |
  3. Mike

    I support the former president's actions. If he hadn't stepped in, those journalists would have been over there for a long time. And If we hadn't used diplomatic methods, then how would we have gotten them back?

    August 5, 2009 at 10:04 am |
  4. TC Hartwell

    I believe that former President Bill Clinton told the President of Korea
    that its OK to test Nuclear missle and that the U.S. will not interfere
    as long the North Korean use the nculear for power for the countries electricity and water program etc. and not to use the nuclear missle for attacking the U.S. Let the women free and show the world that U
    North Korea are a "Good Will Ambassador" Or how much did the families of the two journalist offer to pay President Bill Clinton to fly to North Korea in a private jet? Humm!

    August 5, 2009 at 10:08 am |
  5. Diane McKeel

    There is possibly hope North Korea will look at humanity as a word in their language. How great for them and their families. They gave this hope to them as journalists and humans.

    August 5, 2009 at 10:16 am |
  6. D Patil

    It is amazing that CNN has cleared Al Gore of any resonsibility or wrong-doing in arrestment of the journalists. It is even more shameful that partial credit is being given to him.

    August 5, 2009 at 11:09 am |
  7. Derrick

    I disagree with John Bolton’s comment but it does raise questions to whether Iran will try the same tactics with the three climbers being detained. Does this pave the way for a Noble Peace Prize for former President Bill Clinton?

    August 5, 2009 at 11:19 am |
  8. Diniece

    I'm elated that former President Bill Clinton and Vice President Al Gore were able to be reunite these two American women with their families. The act of negotiation was at its highest stakes. It shows the commitment of the U.S. when its citizens are in harms way. A job well done.
    Now, we should not read as much into it as it was mostly for getting these two women home safely. People are trying to read too much into the situation. Talks of resolution are not devised overnight. If there are any other indications of possible talks, we can then assume.
    As for now, let us be happy that these two Americans are home safe and sound

    August 5, 2009 at 11:49 am |
  9. Marie Fuller

    What did we give up to North Korea to get them out of there. Nothing that I can see. We did prove that some things can be solved diplomatically. Dealing with terrorists!?! Hardly. Having them see that holding these two young women would give the world more reason to see them as unreasonable is more like it. But , of course, as everything, this will be over analyzed to death (until something else happens that the talking heads will want to get in to).

    August 5, 2009 at 12:32 pm |
  10. Charlie Erickson

    Yeah!!! Welcome home. Now let's work on the others, elsewhere.

    Charlie.

    August 5, 2009 at 12:45 pm |
  11. Can O Whoopass

    Were these 'journalists' spying for Bush and Cheney or not?

    Shut up, Bolton and go fishing.

    August 5, 2009 at 12:45 pm |
  12. Coach Bronco

    It's a shame that we couldn't have exchanged John Bolton for the two hostages. The whole world would be better off.

    August 5, 2009 at 12:45 pm |
  13. Zeke

    John Bolton's comments are ridiculous, but the man is a terrible ambassador, who seems to think diplomacy only involves talking to friendly officials. He could only get his position due to a recess appointment to begin with, why do we pay attention to a word he says now after the miserable failure he was?

    August 5, 2009 at 12:46 pm |
  14. E Wheeler

    These two journalists freedom means that children have their mothers again. I don't know what if better than that, is Mr. Bolton suggesting that he would sacrifice these mothers just because a former President had a photo op?

    August 5, 2009 at 12:46 pm |
  15. Nancy

    Bolton's comments are destructive and out of line! Don't give him anymore attention, please.

    August 5, 2009 at 12:46 pm |
  16. Donna Smith

    Bolton is a fool once again.....

    August 5, 2009 at 12:46 pm |
  17. deemayjee

    I'm sorry to say, but those remarks by john bolton were totally out of context. its these same pple that would complain if nothing was done to free the two journalists if they were left there to die. now the deed has been done, he claims the Obama administration is negotiating with terrorists. What else did u want the administration to do?

    August 5, 2009 at 12:47 pm |
  18. Conrado

    Consider the source: John Bolton represents an ideology that most American's reject and an approach that favors hostilities over diplomacy. Bill Clinton's mission succeeded. Period.

    August 5, 2009 at 12:47 pm |
  19. Chris B

    John Bolton is a typical partisan politician. He cares more about his Republican party than he does about our country. Instead of celebrating the return of our 2 journalists, he's turning up the political bluster. It appears that Republicans want the US to fail, because if the USA is doing well, they'll have no hopes in 2010 and 2012. How sad.

    August 5, 2009 at 12:47 pm |
  20. Michael

    I cannot believe the ignorance of John Bolton. I realize that republics are known for looking at the bigger picture which is what he may be doing, but if republics would ever like popular support again at some point they must stop looking like political machines and like human beings.

    August 5, 2009 at 12:47 pm |
  21. David Kimball

    John Bolton was a big part of the Bush Administration's failures. Clinton went and rescued these ladies. That's all there was to it.

    August 5, 2009 at 12:47 pm |
  22. sonny

    BOLTON IS WRONG . GOOD JOB CLINTON.

    August 5, 2009 at 12:47 pm |
  23. Michael E Johnson

    When does Bolton intend to inform their families, to their faces, that he believes it would be better if their daughters, sisters and wives remained in a North Korean gulag for 12 years ???

    August 5, 2009 at 12:47 pm |
  24. Ron

    I think Josh Bolton should try and walk across the North Korean border. Then when he wants to be freed we can say we don't negotiate with terrorists and he spend forever there.

    I think Mr. Bolton would have a different attitued if it was one of his loved ones being held in North Korea.

    August 5, 2009 at 12:47 pm |
  25. Peggy

    John Bolton advocates a foreign policy that we have seen to be disastrous. I think the Obama administration handled this very well.

    August 5, 2009 at 12:47 pm |
  26. MRochelle

    I am so glad that our country did what was necessary to rescue these young ladies. Welcome back home Euna and Laura.

    August 5, 2009 at 12:48 pm |
  27. Kate

    John Boltons remarks are way out of the ballpark. These are the kind of remarks that puts American more at risk.

    August 5, 2009 at 12:48 pm |
  28. joel palmer

    John Bolton is a prime example of the bankrupt thinking of Bush era neo-cons. Their abject failure in foreign policy is replete with disaters and missteps that have tarnished the reputation of the US around the globe.

    They are furious at the successes of the Obama administration including Bill Clinton's stunning coup today. It shines a bright light on their stinking mess they made of foreign affairs from 2001-2008.

    August 5, 2009 at 12:48 pm |
  29. Garrett K

    I think sending the former president in was the best choice. It kept the white house separate enough from the situation, but also saved two U.S journalists, who we couldn't just leave in North Korea.

    I just hope this wasn't a win for North Korea, having one of our strongest political figures come to their country. We had to negotiate, and the last thing we need right now is to weaken our position in the conflict going on with North Korea. But at least the journalists are safe and back with their families.

    August 5, 2009 at 12:48 pm |
  30. Dean

    Who cares if it gives North Korea some photo op that they wanted, bottom line two innocent people are safe. How dare anyone politicize the safety of these girls.

    August 5, 2009 at 12:48 pm |
  31. GabeX

    its all about results. pres. clinton was able to get the two journalists back home safe. It was the right call. How else would they have gotten home...?

    August 5, 2009 at 12:48 pm |
  32. laila white

    I am glad to see that former President Clinton was able to bring the journalist home. Whats sad is that all these republican politians are quick to critisize every move that promotes any progress in the current administration...as a people we need to support and uphold our government so in other words. if you cannot bring something positive to our current state keep it movin...

    August 5, 2009 at 12:48 pm |
  33. Liberal4Obama

    When you are a neocon like John Bolton is any kind of diplomatic overture is always the wrong thing to do, this are the same people who LIED to the American people and got us into a war of choice in IRAQ. This are the same people who during their 8 years of non-engagement with the DPRK allowed them the time to develop and test nukes. This is the same people who got 150k American troops stuck in IRAQ with no timeline for getting them home, why would anyone BE SURPRISED that they would mind leaving 2 GREAT AMERICANS stuck in North Korea, thats what they do, leave GREAT AMERICANS like our soldiers behind, under Bush a soldiers family had to buy BODY ARMOR on their own dime cause Bush and Cheney never thought that was something urgent, thats how much they care about AMERICANS.

    August 5, 2009 at 12:48 pm |
  34. Ben

    Would Mr. Bolton feel more comfortable seeing his own children/grandkids still held in North Korea? Or would he rather have them back on American soil?
    Maybe he has no concern for any American held against their will on foreign soil

    August 5, 2009 at 12:49 pm |
  35. H. Bader

    To former UN Ambassador John Bolton and all other nay-sayers, remember the timeless phrase "keep your friends close, but keep your enemies closer". Way to go Bill Clinton and team!!!!!

    August 5, 2009 at 12:49 pm |
  36. Lindsay Bruce

    I agree with the actions taken. I believe John Bolton is sniping about the fact that someone in the U.S. had to talk to some of those "Godless" North Koreans, but the reality is that someone needed to get the ball rolling. He may be willing to sacrifice others for his principles, but the better course of action was the wayitwas handled. Shame on you John!!!

    August 5, 2009 at 12:49 pm |
  37. Victor

    Former President Clinton saved two lives. Who can honestly say that was a bad thing?

    August 5, 2009 at 12:49 pm |
  38. Leland

    John Bolton is an rigid.ideologue! No wonder the Senate wouldn't confirm him as UN Ambassador. "If they don't think like us, we'll ignore them 'till they do," seems to be the Bolton philosophy. How in the world do you expect to have a chance to bring someone around or at least meet them halfway if you don't talk? If Bolton were in charge, I guess he'd have left those two women to rot in a North Korean prison.

    August 5, 2009 at 12:49 pm |
  39. Francesca Matthews

    I think Bolton is way out of line. For a start, the Koreans have not indulged in "terrorism" and people should stop using that term so loosely. To think that Bolton would rather have these women suffer in a hard labor prison camp than give Clinton credit for a major coup is sickening. He's trying to politicize Clinton's success in a very cynical manner.

    August 5, 2009 at 12:50 pm |
  40. Don Brattin

    Clinton proved the theory, you can get more with sugar than you can with a club!
    Bolton is a direct decendent of the Bush/Cheney administration who felt the need to bully any country not agreeing with us.
    Clintons success will benefit Obama in talks with Korea concerning the nuclear policy.
    Respect and diplomacy works.

    August 5, 2009 at 12:50 pm |
  41. Don Scott

    John Bolton represents the failed policies of the last administration. What he has to say has no credibility for me.

    August 5, 2009 at 12:50 pm |
  42. Ellen

    John Bolton never negotiate if he could fight instead. I believe this administation did exactly the right thing. Thank heavens we still have Americans like Clinton with the credibility and desire to negotiate.

    August 5, 2009 at 12:50 pm |
  43. Eileen Kelly

    Bolton was a really bad UN rep for the US and his comments continue to be so off. I know it is necessary to report what this person says but he only confirms his lack of couth.

    August 5, 2009 at 12:50 pm |
  44. Vasaba

    Great job by Bill Clinton!
    Great humanitarian help, as per Gore.
    Why it stops there only, when nothing been done to when 35000 Tamils massacred in Sri Lanka by the brutal and religious biased Sihalease Government and 300000 Tamils in seige in concentration camps even now.
    hope they Al Gore, Clintons open their eyes to see the world events without bias.

    August 5, 2009 at 12:50 pm |
  45. Morev

    Former ammbasador Bolton is way off base on this one the key point is we got two American women back from a horrible fate if left in north Korea. That should be all were focused on

    August 5, 2009 at 12:50 pm |
  46. julia lucente

    I think Bill clinton going over to north korea was a great move from are government. We gave north korea the attention they wanted and got back the two journalist, I don't see the bad side to this.

    August 5, 2009 at 12:50 pm |
  47. Al Manring

    The Folks that say we made a mistake in how the ladies were released could have traded some of their family to Korea in exchange for them and let their relatives stay in jail for twelve years in Korea.

    August 5, 2009 at 12:51 pm |
  48. Alfred

    Didn't John Bolton hear that President Clinton's mission was humanitarian? The two journalists are americans and Bolton wants them to suffer in North Korea? Stop going against EVERYTHING Obama does!!

    August 5, 2009 at 12:51 pm |
  49. Ken, Long Beach, CA

    I think the way that this was handled was extraordinarily well done. I give no credibility to John Bolton's statement. If it was left up to him and the Bush administration, these two journalists would still be locked up, and left to die in North Korea. John Bolton's own words are reminiscent of the party of NO.

    August 5, 2009 at 12:51 pm |
  50. Dr. Sam

    Bolton is ever wrong. Didn't the US under Bush negotiate with terrorists in Iraq, including the so-called Sunni awakening, n order to secure peace in Iraq? Are we not talking about a possible negotiation with Taliban in Afghanistan today?

    August 5, 2009 at 12:51 pm |
  51. donna bernard

    The whole situation was handled perfectly, from the White House all the way through Gore, Clinton, and the Swiss. It couldn't have been handled any better. Bolton is such a sabre-rattling, he really isn't a diplomatic diplomat. The point was to get our citizens back, not to continue the Bush anti-diplomacy attitude.

    Glad the women are back, safe.

    August 5, 2009 at 12:51 pm |
  52. Nicholas

    I feel Bolton's remarks on the subject were uncalled for. Clinton went in and in less than 24 hours had the 2 journalists on their way back home. The fact that he did it through diplomacy rather than froce makes it all the more impressive in my eyes.

    August 5, 2009 at 12:51 pm |
  53. Chuckou

    keep in mind the Lib's are converting the US into socialism, so NK would be a perfect friend. If you are that stupid to walk into NK, you deserve what you get.

    Who paid for the airplane, and all the expense involved with this release? US Taxpayers?

    Next are the captured in Iran, then copy cat captures, over and over

    August 5, 2009 at 12:51 pm |
  54. anna yanochik

    This was a big win for America. Thank you President Clinton ,President Obama, and all who helped free the journalists.

    August 5, 2009 at 12:52 pm |
  55. James R. Collette

    Typical Bolton and the right wing. Not a word of thanks for the efforts from "citizen" Bill Clinton to get our people out of N. Korea. Instead the same political attacks. This was about freeing people in trouble. Not about upholding a method of non-communication that has not worked and caused more problems for our nation. There is a reason why Bolton and the rightwing was voted out.

    August 5, 2009 at 12:52 pm |
  56. AL

    I believe it is good that the two journalist have been returned, and am glad for them, but this is nothing more than a facade by Obama, using Clinton to cover for him. He has now established a precedent that is totally contrary to long established U.S. policy of not negotiating with terrorists, or terrorist nations. John Bolton's remarks are absolutely correct. We need more straight talking people like John Bolton, not the spineless, self serving, appeasing politicians that permeate DC.

    August 5, 2009 at 12:52 pm |
  57. omar

    John Bolton need to hass . Mr. Bolton who was selected to be the ambasador to th UN while the law makers were on recession , because he would'nt get comfirm because of his arrogance .

    August 5, 2009 at 12:52 pm |
  58. Charlie Ryan

    This is always a close and difficult issue. If you give terrorists and non-legitimate miscreants what they want for when they have Americans in their custody, you are in fact putting all Americans at risk as that will encourage them to take Americans and hold them for something they want. It is ALWAYS wrong to treat with terrorists. National govenrments is a more sensitive question. On the one hand is treating the arrest of Americans as legitimate is bad, on the other is the anguish of the families involved and the individual interests. On the one hand, these women chose to go there. They chose to put themselves at risk for their story. It was not in the national interests, but in their own journalistic interests. On the other hand, they are, by all reports, fine people with good families. On the whole, both Sec Cohen and Amb Bolton have good points, and neither is over the top. In this case, I believe the Obama administration treated this just about right, and we are all glad the women are back home. Hopefully, with an even greater appreciation for America.

    August 5, 2009 at 12:52 pm |
  59. virginia, san diego california

    Bolton is using his position with the magazine to put fear in the hearts of Americans. but he and others won't succeed.. doesn't he realize that he is doing more harm? and that's probably why he is no longer with the United Nations..Please don't fuel his ifre by giving him "free" press.If he has something to say at least wait until he has all of the facts.. oh maybe that's it .. he's in the dark.. no one consulted him..let the women rest .. give those that assist in their release continue to make relations with nn. korea and other rebels nations better.

    August 5, 2009 at 12:52 pm |
  60. RA Perez

    While the actions by the two journalists was risky and led to their incarceration, I am happy things turned out the way they did for their sakes and that of their families. Asking former President Clinton to do this and accepting the challenge was a honorable gesture by Mr. Clinton and my hope is that this moment will open further dialogue with North Korea and the rest of the world hopefully calming perceived fears the North Korean government has about countries trying to "destroy" their way of life.

    August 5, 2009 at 12:53 pm |
  61. Beth from Ohio

    I think John Bolton is a typical Republican of this day whose intent it is to criticize, diminish and demonize everything President Obama does. I am grateful to former President Clinton for doing what he could to help in this precarious situation. Instead of complimenting or being grateful, Bolton criticizes and demeans. These people must be really fun to live with. Negative. Negative. Negative.

    I am confident our President knows how to deal with North Korea in future negotiations...Republicans shoot from the hip.. Thank God we have a President that thinks things through before taking action and considers consequences from all perspectives.

    August 5, 2009 at 12:53 pm |
  62. Al

    I agree that this was a delima. The women were stupid in their actions, yet stupidity should not mean being in the slammer indefinatly. You push the limits, you pay the price. Same with those in Iran. Why even take that chance when one knows full well what may happen? Are these people aware at all?
    Boltan's remarks come from a person that has little credibility in any rational circle. A typical response from another of the "shoot em first" bunch that used to be in the whitehouse.

    August 5, 2009 at 12:53 pm |
  63. Terry bellard

    Two subject: 1john bolton is wrong, he is living in the coolwar years.

    2 why is everyone talking about healthcare reform as a plan . where is no PLAN only proposals;

    August 5, 2009 at 12:53 pm |
  64. George Gut

    I do not know whether Bolton has any daughters, but if he did I have to ask whether he would let them rot in hard labor for the sake of 'principles'. If so then I suggest that he is indeed a pitiful excuse for a human being.

    August 5, 2009 at 12:53 pm |
  65. Dennis

    Just remember who John Bolton worked for.
    The Bush era agenda was secret deals and below level politics that served only a few.
    The John Boltons of the world can not get past their ignorance when it comes to world affairs and those who benefit from it.

    Dennis / Nashville,Tn.

    August 5, 2009 at 12:54 pm |
  66. Nougman97

    With regards to the release of the two journalists from North Korea, I am elated that there are now adults in the White House. The old business of "I am not going to talk to you because I disagree with your policies" is dumb and immature. Instead of observing and learning a thing or two, Bolton burried his head in the sand and continues to regurgitate the same old lines" We don't talk to theorists". Good ridance.

    August 5, 2009 at 12:54 pm |
  67. Sybilla

    What I think is sad about this whole situation is that people can't seem to just be plain happy ! What I also can't understand is when the US was standing down from the conflicts in Iran there were those out there who whined "why isn't the President doing more," and then when an ex President does a good thing and saves two Americans then they say that Obama is negotiating with terrorists. So let me get this straight, it's okay to step into a countries business that we have no business in, but to save our people we need to stay out of it and not negotiate with terrorists. You can't have it both ways people!! We don't know the full scope of how they ended up in North Korea, we don't know anything about the "evidence" that was supplied at the they're trial and we all know that North Korea hates the US and would do anything to hurt us.

    August 5, 2009 at 12:54 pm |
  68. bill in Dayton

    Absolutely, Mr. Bolton was horribly out of line. We have to get about BUILDING a better world . . .with respect, diplomacy, cooperation. Sure there are bad actors, and some need to be faced at times with strength, but not with fear, threats, testosterone and intimidation. We have got to learn to build our local an international communities WITH others - with everyone contributing, not over-simplifying issues and drawing threatening lines in the sand. Build a sand castle instead . . . together.

    August 5, 2009 at 12:54 pm |
  69. Tes

    I don’t understand why everything has to be politisized under the republican party. These journalists (Laura and Euna) deserves every powerful person’s effort to set them free. If anyone, the white house or the former president, Clinton knew what it takes to bring them back to freedom, let it be. What would the republicans would have done according to Bolton? Start a war or leave the journalists to rot there? They couldn't even get a clean rice to eat for God's sake. Unbelievable!

    TL
    Washington, DC

    August 5, 2009 at 12:54 pm |
  70. LJ Deanda

    Not to be rude or disrespectful, with respect to to Bolton's comments concerning Pres. Obama's dicision to send former Pres. Clinton to obtain our two U.S. citizens release from N. Korea, someone tell me of something positive he did to help former Pres. G. W. Bush when he was in office. Please let him shout from the peanut gallery all he wants with his worthless comments, just don't give him a world stage by letting him spout his worthless comments and advice. He had his chance and didn't do a thing with the opportunity to serve this country.

    August 5, 2009 at 12:55 pm |
  71. Norm

    I support the actions of the former President and the current Administration and I am very glad the young ladies have returned home safely.

    Mr. Bolton's record does not suggest he has the capacity to conduct effective diplomatic relations with a country that is not already aligned with the United States.

    What did Bolton ever accomplish with regards to North Korea?

    The Bush Administration simply ignored North Korea for eight years, while they developed nuclear weapons. BRILLIANT!

    August 5, 2009 at 12:55 pm |
  72. Dave Abbott

    Mr.Bolton was not exactly known for making friends in the U.N. With him it iwas either black or white and he failed to see the sometimes you need to talk before you get something done. You can not just say I have the bigger stick and you must do what I want as Mr.Bolton seemed to do during his term as U.N Ambassador. I will take is comments like a grain of salt as they deserve.President Clinton is respected in the World and he was the perfect person to do the job.

    August 5, 2009 at 12:55 pm |
  73. Stanley Lehto

    It is just hard to believe Bolton would even consider saying those outlandish statements about the releas of those two Americans from North Korea.
    It just goes to show how far the right wingers will go to disrupt anything that goes on these days. What is scary is that close to a half of the population will agree with these nut-cases. Which goes to show how people can slowly get brain-washed when they only watch Fox News and listen to Russ Limberger-cheese on the radio 24 hours a day.
    There is help out there for you folks so please think about looking for some.
    Stan Yem, Wa

    August 5, 2009 at 12:55 pm |
  74. John McNerney

    John Bolton's comments are not unexpected. His comments demonstrate and verify the excellent judgment of the Senate in not confirming him as our UN Ambassador.

    August 5, 2009 at 12:55 pm |
  75. Chuck in Indiana

    John Bolton is wrong. Our goverment gave no ground to North Korea in securing the release of the journalists. By allowing Pres. Clinton to travel to North Korea and bring them home we can be proud and relieved that our government did what needed to be done and did so in a well thought out way.
    I expected Ambassador Bolton to react in the way that he usually does. His hard line did not work in the past years and it is now time to try another approach.

    August 5, 2009 at 12:56 pm |
  76. Lorna

    Who cares what John Bolton thinks? He is not exactly a person who is highly thought of. I do think people need to stop wandering around willy-nilly into places they don't belong with their false sense of entitlement to do so. That said I am happy for the women and their families. By the way Mr. Bolton, this is what diplomacy looks like for those of you who think bullets and war is the answer. The right wing talking heads will be in great consternation about all this as they wanted the journalists rescued but sure didn't see that happening in quite this manner.

    August 5, 2009 at 12:56 pm |
  77. Terry bellard

    There is no Health Care Plan.

    August 5, 2009 at 12:56 pm |
  78. Dr. Colleen M. Driscoll

    I just watched your news clip of John Bolton's remarks regarding the release of the two journalists. I have been following Bolton's speeches for years and found that he likes to play the negative, still living in the cold war, role. Instead of sharing the happiness of the two women and the rest of the country, he has to make it look like an evil act. He's so negative he couldn't even get approved for the UN Ambassadorship.

    One of the major faults of U.S. foreign policy has been that our officials take a hard line attitude and think that they will solve the issues we have with other countries. We would do much better in our foreign relations, including with the countries with whom we do not approve, if we would engage in more person to person and humanitarian activities. Remember that governments come and go, but the people endure. I would guess that there is more respect for the United States now among the North Korean people, even if it is in silence.

    August 5, 2009 at 12:57 pm |
  79. Stephan

    This is a story I'm especially interested in. Who knows what Kim and Clinton talked about? I think the visit was more political than it was humanitarian. I believe the visit was a way for the Obama administration, to negotiate with the North Koreans, for the reporters without actually doing it. Bill Clinton was just a lucky bonus, who was suppose to meet with Kim during his last term, but never did. I would bet Obama sent a message to Kim regarding some kind of diplomatic talks.

    August 5, 2009 at 12:57 pm |
  80. Elma

    Al Gore, the State Department and President Clinton achieved a great accomplishment in securing the release of the two young journalists. This was the best possible way of handling the situation and not involving the Obama Administration directly. How can anyone criticize the result? John Bolton is wrong to come out and critize the release efforts – they were successful and may lead to the beginning some kind of dialogue with North Korea.

    August 5, 2009 at 12:59 pm |
  81. Marie Weidel

    I support the actions of this Administration in sending former President Clinton to aid in the release of these two journalists. John Bolton was wrong in criticizing this accomplishment. If it were up to the Republican Party, they would have languished there for the 12 years and probably wouldn't have survived – a very uncaring philosophy.

    August 5, 2009 at 12:59 pm |
  82. jackie green

    Hi Don,
    We as American know that with every positive situation their is a negative . Now let's put that with this situation. Democrats save two jounalist from a dangerous life situation (positive). Republicans say NO if you talk to the terriorist you are giving into them and it makes us seem weak.(negative) Seems to me it makes us seem Smart and above it all. WE GOT OUR FELLOW AMERICANS FROM HARMS WAY.

    August 5, 2009 at 1:00 pm |
  83. Michelle

    Well...I think that it's difficult for the average person to understand what was right, and what was wrong with the negotiated release of these two American women.

    What I can say is, I was proud to be an American today, proud of President Obama, proud of former President Clinton and Vice President Gore.

    One thing is for sure, in light of the current town-hall catastrophes that are virtually stopping the health care discussion from happening. And the incessant attacks on the President that he's not a native born American citizen, I am glad to receive some good news about our country.

    I hope and pray for the day we can grow up as a country and finally put to rest the horrible "Karl Rove tactics" of the past. And finally move this country forward in the ranks of the modern world.

    August 5, 2009 at 1:00 pm |
  84. Beth

    I knew this 'negotiating-with-terrorists' line would emerge eventually and it is a reminder of why, for the first time in 35 years, I did not vote Republican in the red belt part of VA. Those women are people – wives, mother, daughter, sister. If they were my family, I wouldn't give a hoot what they had to say to the N. Korean's to return them to me safely. And I think most of us average people out here who love their families and live in the real world think the same way, regardless of our political alligiance. Men like Bolton, and those who will be criticizing whatever move returned those journalists to their families, have lost their souls to thea kind of politics that puts dogma in front of human beings.The conservative movement never will recover if they don't get in touch with us regular joes out here – and they probably need to quit touting their family platform if they are going to put their politicks over their humanity.

    August 5, 2009 at 1:00 pm |
  85. Virginia

    The right thing was done. Those young American women are home. John Bolton is really struggling to find something to criticize. His bias is very transparent and foolish.

    August 5, 2009 at 1:01 pm |
  86. Lewis

    Bolton seems to forget under the Bush Adm. the North Koreans...built 3-5 nuclear weapons...The Republicans are acting more like communist and terriost...they have violated every Americans consitutional rights during the Bush years of Nation Building and there Holy Crusade... we are Americans...We do not lie to start a War..Bolton and the Republican party have destroyed the Reputation of this Great Country...It's time for this country to unite and not be divided...for as oneAmerica. we are the strongest country in the world...but divided???

    August 5, 2009 at 1:01 pm |
  87. Terry

    Mr. Bolton’s comments are at best thoughtless. I wonder if those who are so disturbed by President Clinton’s intervention in this matter would be as critical if it were one of their loved ones being held. I for one am grateful that this humanitarian effort took place.

    August 5, 2009 at 1:02 pm |
  88. Mikala Alakai

    Bolton is a dangerous rightwing relic left over from the Cold War. The opposite of what he advises is most always the best course, so in that respect he is useful.

    August 5, 2009 at 1:02 pm |
  89. Nate

    It never seems to amaze me how the very same people who cause the problems and makes the mistakes always are willing to offer their expert opinions and criticisms when the new guy comes in to clean up their messes. The last administrations stance on N Korea was to not talk or sit down with them until N Korea is willing to publicly Kiss Our A–'s. Look how that turned out! N Korea is now NUCLEAR! It's like a drunk driver who wrecks his car and then compains about the driving of the EMT official who rushes hin to the emergency room. I think that the GRUMPY OBSOLETE PARTY is going to complain whenever this administration make ANY move. I wonder what the WALRUS would have to say if those American girls were HIS! Dialog should ALWAYS be an intelligent persons FIRST option. But then again, we're talking agout the GOP-the opposite of REASON!

    August 5, 2009 at 1:03 pm |
  90. Carrie

    Great job , well done, for all involved.

    Bolton is way out of line ....turning this into a critical political moment for the right wing is just over the top! Hate filled speech has no place for such a joyous outcome.

    How very sad for some in the GOP to be so uncaring of others that they do not want to enter into talking to our enemies ...these family values right wing radicals need to read what the scriptures teach about how to treat our enemies.

    For now we just need to celebrate these lovely Americans release from such a horrible fate and praise God that our prayers were answered.

    Shame on those who want to trun this into politics as usual!

    August 5, 2009 at 1:03 pm |
  91. gilbert bachman

    Done with appropriate caveats, it is always advantageous to have dialogue with our enemies. We have seen the results of the Bush administrations refusal to have face to face discussions with those countries that we have had serious differences.
    There is no obligation to reach a fatal agreement with North Korea. It is obvious that they want to continue with their nuclear program. Although unacceptable, skilled, respectful and patient negotiations could result in an innovative and acceptable agreement.
    We do not want another Iraq.

    August 5, 2009 at 1:04 pm |
  92. Ron Krause

    Bolton's comments are beyond over-the-top. Why is it impossible for so many Americans to accept our country's leaders acting from a position of strength instead of power? As a responsible parent should act with a "problem child", reason and "diplomacy"...in the long run...re-shapes the child's thoughts and understanding of what should be their appropriate action patterns. Corporal punishment might "win the moment", but in the long run it breeds angry children who are bitter and act out that bitterness in aggressive behavior. As oppossed to "might makes right", and as the USA moves forward into the 21st century, our country's true best interests will be served by leadership that believes in reason, diplomacy and the process of "showing the way" to our foes. Gee...let me think....Clinton/Obama civil, communicative behavior versus Bush administrations' "cowboy speaking victory speeches on aircraft carriers proclaiming to the world that the wild west philosophy of might makes right" behavior...as adults in this shrinking world community...how can we forget the last eight years so quickly?....as much as is humanly possible, let's strive towards being an educated, thoughtful and "lead by example" nation of peaceful solutions when humanly possible.

    August 5, 2009 at 1:05 pm |
  93. Norm Pelissier

    Bolton is definitely over the top. Must be a Republican.

    August 5, 2009 at 1:06 pm |
  94. Dr Sue

    Bolton has no creditability and needs to keep his mouth shut! He is dead wrong, Bush policy of not talking to our foes is dead.

    August 5, 2009 at 1:06 pm |
  95. Linda Brown

    This is a fantastic thing. What effort went on to get these two women freed from a miserable hateful country. President Clinton and VP Al Gore are only to be commended for the efforts they put into Lee and Ling's release. There is ALWAYS going to be trouble between the US and North Korea - it's been going on for fifty years! This moment in time is one where we shined as a country and did a humanitarian thing, something that get so lost in the shuffle of diplomacy and state relations.

    August 5, 2009 at 1:06 pm |
  96. Lee in Denver

    I think this was a brilliant way of killing 2 birds w/ one stone, securing the journalists' release while giving N. Korea the opportunity to make a generous gesture, putting them in a good light and affording them the appearance of equality with the US, thus easing the way for further discussions. I understand Bolton's reservations, but think he has missed the point both culturally & in terms of human behavior. When things go wrong in a relationship, not speaking to the other party, calling them names (Axis of Evil), etc., is generally not going to get things back on a talking basis. Remember that kid in high school w/ the behavior problems? The more you told him how bad he was, the more he tried to live up to that. Countries & their leaders - not so different. Reward good behavior & you get more good behavior, generally...

    August 5, 2009 at 1:06 pm |
  97. calvin

    So John Bolton is upset with the effort and apparently the success of President Clinton and the State Department in obtaining the release of the two young women from North Korea? And my response would be- Who Cares? Bolton was the face of the Bush Administration in their position to "never negotiate or even talk with those with whom you disagree" . If he is upset then we must have done well!

    August 5, 2009 at 1:06 pm |
  98. Robby

    Why doesnt CNN tell the real story about these two women? Tell your viewers that these two women were not just journalist, they entered that country illegally with intentions of exposing the North Korean human rights violations! Why doesnt our government come clean on this, these two women were not innocent and had no right at all entering North Korea! In our country if people entered illegally and spied on our government we would jail them as well!

    August 5, 2009 at 1:07 pm |
  99. Marcia Grabski

    Bolten's remarks just confirm how the Republican Party has become a party of sore losers & winers. The party of NO and Dissension. They are comming up with ridiculous complaints. They are putting the party before the country and the people. They have forgotten what democracy means by disrupting debates and not allowing open discussion. It would be laughable if it wasn't so disgusting.

    August 5, 2009 at 1:07 pm |
  100. Chaney McEachern

    Bill Clinton is a "private citizen" He was asked to do this task and did it with dignity and grace. I am delighted for these two women, and their families. We just plain dont give a rip!!!! what John Bolton says. Doesnt anyone understand the Repubs, will not give Dems any positive input at all, about anything. Go Obama.

    August 5, 2009 at 1:09 pm |
  101. Randi Grogan

    President Bill Clinton should be acknowledged for his excellent work. Al Gore for his tireless fight to get these two journalists freed. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and President Barack Obama. John Bolton has an enormous amount of hate for the Clintons and Democrat’s in general. If I recall correctly his wife was also someone who despised the Clintons. Again, if my memory serves me correctly she died in the plane hitting the Pentagon in 2001.

    I have the utmost respect for President Clinton. I actually cried when I seen this story unfold on CNN. I am a very devout Democrat and feel that President Obama showed the world he means business. To ask the former President to intervene showed me excellent leadership. It also showed me that politics remain opposed, would John Bolton prefer these two women to remain in N. Korea and endure what possibly would be 12 years of hard labor.

    There is no doubt in my mind if this had been on GW's watch and GW asked his father former President Bush he's be praising the efforts. John Bolton holds no credible merit as far as I'm concerned. To take a stand denouncing the current Administration is irreprehensible. My view on Bolton is right up there with Rush, O’Reilly and Coulter, they are not my voice they all show hatred. They are all extremist who oppose everything I find essential in this Country. President Clinton deserves credit not ridicule for his fine work in getting these two journalists freed.

    August 5, 2009 at 1:09 pm |
  102. Yesi

    It makes you wonder if this John Bolton's daughter or mother were the ones detained in North Korea, if he would have made that same comment. I would think, he would have done everything he possibly could to ensure their safe return, including doing what was done. Not only is it obvious that he has no soul or empathy, but it shows what type of mentality he has. It reminds me of an ignorant, irrational, erratic, narrow minded human being. In fact it reminds me Kim Jong II. If you use common sense and logic at all, it is clear that you have to be above that way of thinking, even if it's being diplomatic.

    August 5, 2009 at 1:11 pm |
  103. golinus

    The comment by Mr. Bolton is not surprising. He always rejected anything to do with diplomacy and then wondered why the senate did not appoint him U.N. ambassador... In general, the party of "No" (GOP) is going to be unhappy with any successes. Like their key spokesman (Limbaugh) says, they want Obama -and the country- to fail on everything, including humanitarian efforts.

    August 5, 2009 at 1:12 pm |
  104. Nicole Villasenor

    I think John Bolton's comments were heartless and cold, undiplomatic and anti humanitarian. Can he look Laura Ling and Euna Lee in the eye and tell them that they should still be in a North Korean prison? I was filled with joy at the sight of a sobbing mother embracing her daughter for the first time after facing the prospect that they would be robbed of each other for twelve years. I am filled with hope that something so wonderful can be achieved despite the dismal relations between our countries. Thank goodness John Bolton isn't in charge.

    August 5, 2009 at 1:13 pm |
  105. lesley Shone

    John Bolton has a history of making ill-timed and negative comments. It's hard to understand why he cannot join with the nation when we have a wonderful act of international diplomacy to celebrate. He is a bitter man who is politically unable to be bi-partisan.

    August 5, 2009 at 1:17 pm |
  106. Dennis Fisher

    Would Bolton and, by association, the Repub;icans prefer to see the journalists rot in a North Korean jail? Those two women should be thankful that the Republicans are not in power.
    Then again, it may be just partisan politics i.e. jealousy that the releases were obtained by a Democratic Administration. I would like to think that if the Republicans were in power,they would also have striven for the releases.So, why can they not abandon their partisanship and enjoy the moment?
    I, as a Canadian,think Bill Clinton and the President performed admirably .No more silly and mundane comments should be forthcoming from the GOP.Get a life just like the journalists were lucky enough to get.
    .

    August 5, 2009 at 1:19 pm |
  107. Linbit

    John Bolton is a neocon. The administration, including the State Department handled this just right. Bill Clinton was exactly the right person to go to North Korea. Thank God John Bolton wasn't calling the shots!

    August 5, 2009 at 1:20 pm |
  108. Kathy, TX

    Bolton is sooo off base. It is exactly this same kind of negative, hot-headed testosterone that got us into to two war, spending 100's of billions of tax dollars a year that we could certainly use to fix our own economy right now, I say God bless every one of the brave men and women involved in getting Laura and Euna released. Its a powerful feeling to be an AMERICAN. May God continue to bless America.

    August 5, 2009 at 1:20 pm |
  109. Steven C. Price Sr., Precinct Chairman, #2143, Leon valley, Texas

    I am not trying to stray-away from the fact that… as Mr. Bolton stated; “It comes perilously close to negotiating with terrorists.”

    I believe that simply stated; This was not a “Negotiation!”

    There was an offering of forgiveness, of the alleged criminal acts, that were said to have been committed by these individuals. (On the surface)

    In a political context; this was a VERY powerful moment in our history of what might even by some… be called "negotiating." This was truly a very humanitarian act by the North Korean’s. And, I do believe that all of this could have been a well orchestrated ploy to make it look so… Even in knowing and saying this…

    The Korean's as we all know, could have taken a much more violent and negative approach in their effort to punish and make an example how they intend to deal with any other alleged “American” criminals and in dealing with this and any other obvious and most potential "International Incidents."

    I think that; we have come a long way... We do have hope...

    I am originally from the Panama Canal Zone. I know how people can sometimes… simply disappear...

    Thanks Bill and the Boy’s,

    God Bless America!

    Y Que, Viva Panama’

    August 5, 2009 at 1:23 pm |
  110. Another Disgusted American

    How appropriate that the neo-con Bolten is having a fit over the clear and happy success brought by moderates using the antithesis of his warped, patriarchal, and ultimately anti-humanist approach to world domination. It is important to remember at this point that he was a poster child of the neo-con movement. Their failed policies of success through fear, guns and blood (never their own) have made their corporate masters happy, but have failed miserably to make any true and lasting human progress. Not only would such slime have gladly traded these two sweet lives in support of their sick cause, he and those of his ilk would have used this incident to start up public support for another needless war, using the fear of a nuclear North Korea as cover for their true aim, which is to spread the illness of belief in power as everything and bring wealth to their pocketbooks.

    August 5, 2009 at 1:23 pm |
  111. Kathryn Chilcote

    Whereas I am happy the women were finally resuced, I have to ask at what price? Why were they doing their reporting or research so close to a known dangerous area of the world? In other words, if people are going to take the risk of being in a dangerous part of the world, for work, is stands to reason that they should have to finance their own rescue. We also have three hikers now in trouble, who decided to do some vacationing in an area of the world where we are at war. Who should finance their resuce? With the world in a recession, we need to spend money on education, health care, and feeding poor people, not spending financial and political resources in rescuing young people who should know better. We just cannot afford to rescue people because they act irresponsibly. Even reporters need to understand the need to stay within a budget, even for rescues.

    August 5, 2009 at 1:23 pm |
  112. Susan Roth

    I wonder where John Bolton was when George W Bush negotiated with the Chinese at the start of his administration when they intercepted a US military plane and kept the crew hostage?

    August 5, 2009 at 1:27 pm |
  113. Louise Fleming

    John Bolton's comments clearly reflect the right-wing position of being oppositional to any positive results from the Obama Administration, especially because Bill Clinton sealed the successful release. Bolton and the Republican Party will not be satisfied until America starts a war with Iran, and then you'll see the positive words begin to flow.

    August 5, 2009 at 1:28 pm |
  114. Robert Henry Machado

    It goes without saying that John Bolton is one of the most divisive and controversial individuals to play a role in recent U.S. foreign affairs. In my estimation his views, his abrassive style, and how he treats subordinates or anyone for that matter is highly dis-respectful inappropriate, and unprofessional. His relevance was marginal and his positions on matters of International relations and foreign policy was nestled right to the right of George W.Bush which stated "its my way or the highway." That type of philosophy is not only irresponsible and dangerous it is what caused the United States to suffer an unprecedented loss of support by those who oppose us naturally but from those whom had previously been allies (un-naturally). Bolton has truly made a mark on everything he has touched....a bad mark. What he has to say is best kept to John Bolton rather than worthy of public interest; It is much safer that way.

    August 5, 2009 at 1:32 pm |
  115. Michael

    Important thing is diplomacy worked and AMERICAN LIVES were spared the agony of torturous inhuman conditions. Isn't it the reason we are in Afghanistan – to protect AMERICAN LIVES wherever that takes us. In the Reporters' case I see the North Koreans getting (in their view) a foothold and legitimacy to the notion that they can bring the US to face to face talks and may be attempt to show they can be reasonable. It could be a start to something – I've seen biiter enemies settle substantive issues via diplomatic means. As for the hard nosed blowhard approach of the Boltons – thats so anachronistic in today's world and look where it got us these past years – labeling and castigating does not get you anywhere. Anyway the Boltons will always be hard set in their ways, pitifully unable to assess and realign their views beyond ideological harnesses that have been fused onto their vision field and now have calcified into a very myopic tunnel vision. Very sad if I may say.

    August 5, 2009 at 1:32 pm |
  116. Nate

    In all due respect to Mr Bolton, what are his accomplishments? He's always negative and abrassive. He should rejoice in the reality that America still has some assets that the rest of the world are still willing to sit down and talk intelligently about serious issues. The Grumpy Opposition Party's 'Just Say No' message haven't worked for the last administration, and they want to critidize the 'Let's Hear What Others Have to Say' policy fo the Obama team. God bless Former President Bill Clinton for not being as narrow minded as the critics. Droping bombs don't make US great; Knowing that you can hold out hope that you belong to a country where reason generally prevails over idiocracy that makes us great. Ask the American girls who came home safely. This is an example of elections having consequences. Imagine the outcome if McCain/Palin had won. Those two young American girls would still be there waiting on the GOP to resovle the issue by NOT TALKING to the N Koreans. If the GOP fought half as hard for the American citizen as they fight for the Insurance companies and HMOs, America would be a better place!

    August 5, 2009 at 1:37 pm |
  117. Dan in Tucson

    Let's ask John Bolton and his cronies how they would feel if they were sitting in the North Korean prison instead of enjoying America freedom. These people spew nothing but negativism and frankly I am sick of hearing it.

    August 5, 2009 at 1:39 pm |
  118. Robert Henry Machado

    It puzzles me that on a joyous occassion there is still reason for negative comments. Can't Americans for once take the good news and leave it at that. It doesn't happen everyday where we as a nation can rejoice about something that is just a good thing. Why is it important or even relevant for that matter that even good news has to be broken down analyzed and returned rained on and full of creative speculation.
    This does not have to be made out to be bad news because we are use to it and must have a daily dose; its good news so why can't we simply leave it at that?

    August 5, 2009 at 1:41 pm |
  119. dawn

    I'll never understand why Americans continue to put themselves in harm's way by even travelling to hostile nations like North Korea and Iran, let alone transgressing those enemy borders. But it is what it is.

    I wholeheartedly applaud President Obama, our Secretary of State, Vice President Gore, and particularly the amazing President Clinton, as well as the host of others involved in logically and methodically thinking through the issue and devising such a smart, viable and successful strategy that brought Lisa and Euna home. This Administration is honest, insightful, intelligent and process driven. It operates as a team and a genuine partnership in seeking the truth, finding solutions and fighting for justice and our constitutional rights. I thank God every day that we've returned to being an America we can be proud of.

    John Bolton should just crawl back into his hole. How typical for that arrogant, angry, ignorant blowhard–along with the rest of the lying, corrupt, greedy, war-mongering Republicans and the mental Bush fans– to merely critique, complain, cast dispersions or call for bombings ... while doing absolutely NOTHING smart or productive and accomplishing ZERO.

    Can anyone imagine George W. Bush–the "strategery" president with delusions of grandeur who, sadly, was incapable of putting a coherent sentence together without a coach or wireless earpiece–speaking articulately or rationally on ANY subject? Negotiating ANYTHING? Can anyone name a single positive accomplishment in the 8 disastrous years of that tragic, appointed administration that benefited America or Americans? Of course not ... instead, a predicted terrorist attack occurred on our soil on 9/11 on THEIR watch, while they did absolutely nothing to stop it. Bush and Cheney did Afghanistan ineptly and lied us into Iraq–solely to fill their own pockets and make their cronies and Corporate America rich. They tried to privatize and destroy Social Security. They gave banks and pharmaceutical companies the license to rape and pillage. For 8 years, they condoned polluting our environment, abandoned the education of our children, and alienated the world. And one of the final failures of the Bush-Cheney legacy: watching New Orleans drown ... and doing nothing to help bring it back to life.

    Pompous talk is cheap, Bolton. Give your misguided, temper-tandrum tongue a rest ... and let the adults in charge now do the right thing and get something done.

    August 5, 2009 at 1:48 pm |
  120. Nate

    I dissagree with Mr Bolton. The Obama team could save the world from a nuclear catastophe and the GOP would find a reason to complain. Fortunately todays Americans are not nearly as gullable as yesterdays, and the internet allows people to research and investigate and not merely take the word of politians with agendas. The GOP wish that they had a diplomat that had the stature of a Bill Clinton, a Barack Obama, or a Hillary! Instead they can only offer us the likes of a screaming shouting Baynor, an Mc Connell, or a Limbaugh! I'm glad that we finally have mature, reponsible Grown UPS in charge of the football and foreign affairs. Bill Clinton shoould be awarded the medal of Freedom for his effort.

    August 5, 2009 at 1:53 pm |
  121. yesi

    It makes you wonder if this John Bolton's daughter or mother were the ones detained in North Korea, if he would have made that same comment. I would think, he would have done everything he possibly could to ensure their safe return, including doing what was done. Not only is it obvious that he doesn’t have any empathy, but it shows what type of mentality he has. Demanding respect, being a bully, “tough”, or being irrational will never get you positive results. In fact that mentality reminds me of Kim Jong II, Fidel Castro, and Hugo Chavez. Look at the past 8 years we had with President Bush, and how much every country hated us because we had that same “tough” mentality. It is clear that you have to be above that way of thinking, even if it means being diplomatic. No matter if other leaders like I mentioned above aren’t that way.

    August 5, 2009 at 2:10 pm |
  122. Dr. Sam

    “Bolton is ever wrong. Didn’t the US under Bush negotiate with terrorists in Iraq, including the so-called Sunni awakening, n order to secure peace in Iraq? Are we not talking about a possible negotiation with Taliban in Afghanistan today?”

    August 5, 2009 at 2:42 pm |
  123. Babiker B

    I am so happy at the peaceful resolution of the journalists' crisis. Most important that they are back home with their loved ones. There are other ways and means to pick up fights with the North Koreans. People like Ambassador Bolton and other coservatives have no interested in the journalists' fate or in their families ordeal. They see this whole incident only as an oppotunity to sharpen their axes against Obama, the democrats and declare their ideological wars.

    August 5, 2009 at 2:45 pm |
  124. michael armstrong sr.

    The United States was merly retreving two young lady's from a dangerous situation I can ashure you that president Clinton might have offerd food or oil for the release but you have to realize thats a small price for a human life especially a American's life sometimes you gotta give a little to get a little.

    August 5, 2009 at 3:02 pm |
  125. J

    Bolton doesn't deserve any media attention. Two Americans were rescued. Bolton was not their hero! Enough Said!!

    August 5, 2009 at 3:12 pm |
  126. Nick

    Why are these women being treated like heros? They broke the laws of another country. They knew it. They were caught. They were sent to prison.

    The U.S. government sends these types to Gitmo and doesn't even put them on trial.

    Double standard?

    August 5, 2009 at 3:39 pm |
  127. Richard (American in Toronto)

    John Bolton is irrelevant. Do we suddenly give credence to the man who writes:
    "A sounder US policy [towards North Korea] would start by making it clear to the North that we are indifferent to whether we ever have 'normal' diplomatic relations with it, and that achieving that goal is entirely in their interests, not ours."

    John Bolton is hawk, war-monger/fear-monger... a naysayer with a long-documented disdain for diplomacy and an anti-American totalitarian dictatorial view of the role of the presidency. There is no need to report what he says, he will be automatically opposed to anything and everything Obama does.

    Bolton and those who share his views brought us the War in Iraq and today bring us the Birthers and the Town Hall Disruptors. They are about profiteering and corporate power, not national security - and certainly not American Democracy.

    When you are asked by the main stream media to endure commentary of the likes of John R. Bolton on President Clinton’s irreproachable success in obtaining the journalists’ release, do not forget what was written about him by members of Congress back in 2006:

    “…Under Mr. Bolton’s watch, North Korea — the most immediate threat to the United States in the area of nonproliferation — has become significantly more dangerous. The Bush Administration’s most touted success in this area — the disarmament of Libya — came about because Mr. Bolton was kept off the case, not because he was on it.”

    August 5, 2009 at 3:49 pm |
  128. michael armstrong sr.

    Nick first of all unlike most people getting captured over seas they had a reason for being there and they made a serious mistake that got them into trouble and there is no likelynous to this with gitmo these lady's were abducted for political ransom.

    August 5, 2009 at 4:03 pm |
  129. Richard (American in Toronto)

    I'm astonished and deeply disappointed that any thoughtful could display the lack of insight and critical thinking skills necessary to reduce this heroic event to anything even remotely resembling "negotiating with terrorists." This is a clear and irrefutable demonstration of how to "Outwit, Outplay, Outlast" them.

    August 5, 2009 at 4:03 pm |
  130. Richard (American in Toronto)

    I’m astonished and deeply disappointed that any thoughtful American could display the lack of insight and critical thinking skills necessary to reduce this heroic event to anything even remotely resembling “negotiating with terrorists.” This is a clear and irrefutable demonstration of how to “Outwit, Outplay, Outlast” them.

    August 5, 2009 at 4:05 pm |
  131. B Tayeb

    John Bolton is again on the wrong side of History. I wonder why CCN would quote people like J Bolton!! Who is he and who care what he thinks?? We seem to assign too much credence give to such crackpots. Well done Billy Clinton. Welcome back Luena and Laura. This is not the end of a story it the beginning of a new era.

    August 5, 2009 at 6:45 pm |
  132. Lenny, Dallas, Tx

    Mr. Bolton, the "Bush Doctrine" was a collosal failure. So please, crawl back under your rock or bury your head in the sand or whatever it is that you normally do.

    August 5, 2009 at 7:53 pm |
  133. Bee

    So good that they have made it safely home! Great news.

    August 5, 2009 at 11:23 pm |
  134. Mrs. Habibah Shakir

    Thank you President Barack Obama for having the courage and humanity to request President Bill Clinton and Vice President Al Gore secure the release of the women journalists from bondage in North Korea. As an African American female Muslim, I value your leadership in demonstrating the effects of peaceful negotiations which can result in improving the respect of Americans worldwide.

    Mrs. Habibah Shakir
    Executive V.P. Marketing
    Taqwa Productions Inc.
    Atlanta, GA

    August 6, 2009 at 1:56 am |
  135. Chris

    I would say that the North Koreans got exactly what they wanted from the beginning -– in their eyes this is power, favorable attention, respect, plus their own people see their leadership as equal to the US or maybe even stronger.

    August 6, 2009 at 2:41 am |
  136. marc

    It was great to see the two freed jounalist at home.However, I am astonished at the heroes welcome they received. These two silly women in search of a news story almost caused an international incident, just as the " supposed" hikers in iran! What gives you the right to flout outher country's laws? and you wonder why ther world hates you? Im a great admirer of America, but please stop or think at least. the state department should strongly inform travelers or going or indulging in activities in other countries with other countries the US has poor relations with.

    August 6, 2009 at 7:38 am |
  137. Darlene Stukas

    I HOPE the two girls LEE & LING are resting peacefully w/their families plenty of time for us to find out how they really feel. God Bless Bill Clinton. What an angel he really is! Also kudo's to Al Gore & Mr. Bing for the plane!

    August 6, 2009 at 12:24 pm |
  138. Chris

    This was manipulation by the North Koreans and nothing more! Good job of it too wasn't it? They not only fooled their own people, but most Americans as well.

    August 6, 2009 at 5:25 pm |
  139. takenenough

    I am not surprised that the health care industry is buying Congress again (spending over a million dollars a day). Just like the Bankers and the Wall St executives did. There are trying to deceive the American people and buy Congress. The system only works well for them that are making billions in profits while millions go without health care. We need a public option to compete with the private, and Tort reform. If their product is better people will buy it. What are they afraid of a little competition? If you don't want the public option, stay with your present coverage. Don’t stop me from having that option just because you don’t like it. We are 37th in the World as far as providing health services. Millions cannot get any coverage because of outrageous premiums, deductibles, exclusion clauses, and pre-exiting conditions. We spend billions for defense but cannot help our fellow Americans in distress.

    August 18, 2009 at 10:53 am |
  140. takenenough

    I agree with the President that the news media is giving too much attention to the troublemakers that are disturbing these town hall meetings. Lets start focusing on the problems instead of what the anti-health care lobby wants which is no reform. We need the public option no cooperatives. If you like your present insurance, stay with it. Don't stop me from having that option.

    August 18, 2009 at 10:58 am |

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