As a North Korean agent, Kim Hyon-hui killed 115 passengers on a Seoul-bound flight to disrupt the 1988 Olympic games in South Korea. She was apprehended by authorities and after her trial she accepted Jesus Christ as her personal Savior and found new life in Him.
As the Winter Olympics are underway, Kim’s story of redemption and a fresh start — and her plea to be forgiven by the South Koreans — has come to the forefront after years in which she maintained a low profile.
“In North Korea, I lived as Kim Il Sung’s robot,” Kim, now 56, told the Washington Post. “In South Korea, I got to live a new life. Can my sins be pardoned? They probably won’t be.””
While the general public may never forgive a mass murderer, God’s grace pursued this unlikely recipient of His unmerited favor.
Born in Kaesong in 1962 to a diplomat, Kim excelled in school and was recruited early in her college career to work as a spy for the world’s most repressive communist dictatorship. Schooled in propaganda from childhood, Kim thoroughly believed in the absolute benevolence of her dictator — and the malevolence of South Korea, of Japan and of the United States. She believed she was defending her nation.
After seven years of training in Japanese, Chinese, martial arts, code-cracking, infiltration and covert operations, Kim was ready to carry out orders to blow up Korea Airlines 858 in a desperate attempt to disrupt and discredit South Korea during their hosting of the 1988 summer Olympic games.
Traveling with a senior partner under a fake passport and Japanese identity, Kim boarded and left a time bomb, disguised as a small Panasonic radio in carry-on luggage. She and her partner, Kim Seung Il, got off the plane in Abu Dhabi.
Tragically, the bomb exploded and killed all the passengers over the Indian Ocean.
Kim and Seung crisscrossed the globe to throw off tails, and eventually make their way back to North Korea. But in Bahrain, security grew suspicious and detained them.
Realizing they were about to taken into custody, the couple bit off cyanide pills hidden in cigarettes to commit suicide.
“We were taught that if an agent fails on a mission, he or she needs to commit suicide,” Kim told the Daily Mail. “We need to swallow the pill to protect the secret. We know very well that our families in the North would be harmed, so naturally we decided to swallow the pills. At the time I thought my 25-year-old life ends like this.’
The poison worked for Seung, but Kim woke up in the hospital. Read the rest about Kim Hyon-hui Christian.