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Q&A

Could Jews visit North Korea before the travel ban?

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It's academic now that US citizens are no longer allowed to travel to North Korea, but I'm still curious. This is one of the things I've talked to Monica about, and she was sure it was "problematic", but there may be room for more in-depth analysis.

There are statues to dead dictators all over, and the problem for Jews is that visitors are expected to bow towards them. I don't think the "guides" are programmed to accept no for an answer.

The North Korean veneration of dead dictators approaches or reaches religious levels of fervor, but they're not explicit AFAIK about the statues being idols.

I am curious about whether the visit would be automatically forbidden even if the North Koreans were clear that the statues represent humans and that bowing does not represent loyalty. What questions would a Jew need to ask to draw a conclusion about visiting?

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https://judaism.stackexchange.com/questions/37735/can-one-bow-before-a-king-can-one-bow-to-a-statue-o... (1 comment)

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