A North Korean defector earlier this month revealed that he was "shocked" at the level of kindness and racial diversity he experienced when he first visited the United States.
Kim Geum-Hyuk, who now lives in Seoul, South Korea, spoke with the YouTube channel DIMPLE about his recent expedition to the U.S. and how the North Korean government portrays Americans to the public.
Kim, who considers himself a "victim of brainwash education," said North Korea "taught us to fight [Americans] til the end." He added that Americans are considered "street dogs" and "wolves" depicted as "people who torture and kill."
Kim quickly discovered, however, how "totally wrong" his former country's education system was about U.S. citizens.
"[Americans are] so nice, funny, and open to anything. I was so surprised when I first went to California. What I was taught in North Korea was an image of the coldness and wickedness of Americans," Kim said. "So there are Mexicans, Chinese, Koreans... So many people made up one community," he said. "I was just so surprised by the diversity."
Kim was also surprised that "everyone actually said 'hi' on the street." He said visiting the Grand Canyon was like going to Mars and that the size of Texas was bigger than he ever imagined.
Kim is currently working as a peace ambassador for One Young World and is studying political science and diplomacy at Korea University.