Lawrence Peck, an advisor to the North Korea Freedom Coalition, claims that pro-North Korean organizations in the United States are collaborating with groups sympathetic to South Korea's socialist leader Moon Jae-in and his governing Democratic Party of Korea, formerly known as New Politics Alliance for Democracy (NPAD).
In an op-ed for TownHall, Peck asserts that in recent years, these organizations have significantly increased their lobbying efforts directed at the "U.S. Congress, the Biden administration, the media, and the general public."
"This has serious national security implications, because some of those engaged in such lobbying, through meetings with members of Congress and Senators, are individuals who have been communicating and collaborating for years with North Korean intelligence agents," he wrote.
North Korean supporters defend the regime by condemning detractors as well as minimizing or completely ignoring its repressive nature and crimes against humanity, said Peck, who has lived in South Korea for almost six years as a consultant to major Korean business organizations.
Peck also outlined six key things to remember about the pro-North Korea movement in the United States.
First, the many types of pro-North Korea organizations and individuals connected with them. Peck stated that there are both overtly hardline factions and those he referred to as "front groups" inside the organization.
He cautioned that the "fronts" are often more dangerous than the openly pro-North groups because they operate in a different manner and appeal to a far wider demographic base. On the surface, they refuse to take a position in support of the communist country, claiming instead that they are merely committed to "peace" and "unification" between the South and North countries. Peck compared them to the pro-Soviet front organizations in the United States back in the 1930s.
Second, there are a large number of people who are ordinary members of pro-North Korean organizations, especially "fronts," or those who provide assistance to such organizations but who may or may not genuinely support the North Korean regime.
These people, according to Peck, are "enablers" of the pro-North Korea movement because, although they don't identify with the movement, they are completely ignorant of the harm they are doing by helping pro-North Korean sympathizers.
In his third point, Peck draws a difference between pro-North Korea activists and American citizens who participate in lobbying.
Lobbyists in the United States do this in order to exercise their constitutional right to communicate their thoughts to their elected officials. Pro-North Korean activists, on the other hand, work in collaboration with North Korean intelligence operatives stationed at the North's U.N. mission in the city of New York, says Peck.
Additionally, Peck pointed out that some pro-North activists have not only widely praised the North, but they have also encouraged and supported "violence against their fellow Americans and the U.S. as a nation."
"Not only hardcore groups but also some of the "fronts" routinely vilify America in the harshest language, and some have engaged in anti-Christian and especially vitriolic anti-Semitic rhetoric. Pro-North activists are certainly radical leftists, but they are more extreme in their views than many others on the left," he said.
The fourth observation made by Peck is that the line between the overtly pro-North organizations and the pro-North "front groups" has grown more muddled in recent years.
Because of their increasing cooperation on issues such as lobbying against North Korea's sanctions, some Korean-Americans and Korea specialists see pro-North and pro-Moon organizations as having acquired some degree of "legitimacy" and "respectability." That makes it a fifth on Peck's list.
Lastly, Peck noted that members and supporters of pro-North Korea are a diverse group of individuals, ranging from Marxist-Leninist Koreans or Korean Americans to extreme ethno-nationalists, anti-Semites, and those who just despise their nation and their fellow citizens of the United States.