Thursday, December 29, 2011

Restaurant Owner Had Ties To N. Korean Diplomat

Cubby’s Barbeque, owned by Robert Egan, in Hackensack, New Jersey is not only famous for their delicious barbeque. They are also popular for entertaining famous people from time to time. Owner, Robert Egan has spent the last decade selling his popular barbeque foods to some very important people. One very important person who enjoyed the delicious food from Cubby’s was Pyongyang’s former diplomat, Kim Jong-il who died December 17, 2011.

Hanging on the wall of this popular barbeque restaurant are many photographs of Egan and Jong-il. By sharing good food from the barbecue smokers, it helped to gain trust between the two countries on a lower level and an unending friendship between the restaurant owner and the North Korean diplomats. These photographs bring two lives together; the life that Bobby Egan lives as an unofficial diplomat to the United Nations and the Cubby BBQ restaurant.

Beginning in the 1970s, Bobby Egan has been on a search and rescue mission for prisoners of war and soldiers who have been missing in action in North Korea and Vietnam. Inventing unofficial group names to help give him access to North Korea easier, has helped him to become friendlier with diplomats. By sharing his talents of food through his restaurant with these diplomats, it helped him to gain information to help send POW’s home to their families.

Through entertaining the foreign diplomats of North Korea, Egan formed a bond and friendship that helped him to gain access to the foreign lands. Every meal the North Korean diplomats ate was free. This ensured that they would continue to come back to the Cubby Restaurant each time they visited the United States.

Although many people believe that entertaining foreign diplomats is an act of decency, other’s view it as bribery for information. North Korean authorities claim that there is some doubt of any relationship between Jong-il and Egan at all. Some even go as far to claim that the foreign diplomats only saw it as a free meal. However, by sharing these wonderful meals from his restaurant, Egan was able to gain trust and friendship from Kim Jong-il and other North Korean diplomats.

According to the American government, Robert Egan was not part of their efforts to release any POW’s from North Korea or Vietnam. Sources are unsure whether there was any connection between Egan and the United States Intelligence agency. Egan has not been to North Korea in five years. He hopes someday to be appointed by the President to be an ambassador to North Korea and open a Cubby’s Restaurant in Pyongyang right next to the U.S. Embassy.


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