The whole interview is really interesting (and depressing).
This part fascinated me the most.
In the first line from the above quote they talk about a moral compass, something that he only knew as the "rules of the camp", as he was born in the camp. So it was no question for him to report his family for trying to escape. They were executed and he had to watch.Blaine Harden: He had a compass. But the compass were the rules of the camp, the only compass he had. And it was only when he was 23, when he met somebody from the outside, that that started to change.
Anderson Cooper: When he met Park.
Blaine Harden: When he met Park.
Park was a new prisoner Shin says he met while working in Camp 14's textile factory. Unlike Shin, Park had seen the outside world. He'd lived in Pyongyang and traveled in China, and he began to tell Shin what life was like on the other side of the fence.
Shin Dong-hyuk: I paid most attention to what kind of food he ate outside the camp.
Anderson Cooper: What kind of food he had eaten?
Shin Dong-hyuk: A lot of different things. Broiled chicken. Barbecued pig. The most important thing was the thought that even a prisoner like me could eat chicken and pork if I were able to escape the barbed wires.
Anderson Cooper: I've heard people define freedom in many ways. I've never heard someone define it as broiled chicken.
Shin Dong-hyuk: I still think of freedom in that way.
Anderson Cooper: That's what freedom means to you?
Shin Dong-hyuk: People can eat what they want. It could be the greatest gift from God.
Anderson Cooper: You were ready to die-- just to get a good meal?
Shin Dong-hyuk: Yes.
It's a long read, but I can only recommend it:It was only after seeing what family life was like outside Camp 14 that Shin says he started to feel guilt about what he had done to his own mother and brother.