Yesterday frightful cartoon
Reporting on an increasingly inflammatory dictatorial regime. It's clear that whatever happens on the top level of DPRK hierarchy, Pyongyang won't give up, and will do all it can to strengthen its nuclear deterrence, continue to fire off short-range missiles to Japan's sea while big plans are on rebuilding North Korean economy with the neighbors' help, China. So get ready for what DPRK prepares next! It could spark thrills! The dynasty new young leader to be announced soon, sources say.
"The Chosun Workers' Party Delegates' Conference will open in Pyongyang, the city of the revolution, on September 28th, 2010, for the election of the highest organs of the Chosun Workers' Party."
It should open on Tuesday. Scheduled for early September but it was postponed without any explanation from the secretive state. Recent assignments were announced.
Kang Sok-Ju, North Korea's first vice minister of foreign affairs, has been appointed to the position of a vice premier of the cabinet, the Korea Central News Agency said.
Kim Kye-Gwan, Pyongyang's chief negotiator in six-nation nuclear disarmament talks, was named to fill Kang's slot at the foreign ministry while Ri Yong-Ho, Kim's deputy in the nuclear talks, was named a vice foreign minister.
The announcement came as North Korea prepares for its biggest political meeting for decades next week, expected to pave the way for a power transfer to Kim Jong-Il's youngest son, Kim Jong-Un.
September 28th conference is expected to put a new and young leadership line-up in place, spell out possible policy shifts and give top party posts to new leader Jong-Un and his supporters, such as the senior Kim Jong-Il's powerful brother-in-law Jang Song-Thaek.
"Jang can likely thank his wife's influence on Kim Jong-il in large measure for his resuscitation. Kim, whose power rests in his position as chairman of the national defense commission, not only gave Jang a place on the commission but named him in June as vice chairman. Jang's power and prestige were on display when he accompanied Kim in May to Beijing for a session with Chinese President Hu Jintao, at which they made the case for a vast infusion of aid and investment." Asia Times writes on September 23.
Kim Jong-Il health and the silence of his French doctors
The Kim Dynasty DPRK has always kept links with France. Still there is no diplomatic relations between the two. Paris and Pyongyang relations are deep though and, say, proceed discreetly. Economical relations. French industrial groups are trying hard to get on business relations with DPRK for acquisition of raw material and ores, textiles manufacturing etc. And in addition to KJI love for French wines (...), an other type of cooperation existed, some suspect financial, and a medical one, for a while. For instance Kim Jong-il was "allegedly" cured by French doctors since his "alleged" stroke in 2008. Not to forget an astonishing "kind of romance" floated between France and North Korea offspring. Of course anyone official in Paris won't say a word about it.
Kim Jong-Il's Romantic 'Tribulations' from Pyongyang
From left, Kim Ok, Song Hye-Rim and Ko Young-Hui
Kim Yong-hui (1953 - 2004), Kim Jong-Il third wife, appeared to be born of Korean family in Osaka Japan, her family originally from Cheju island and then moved to North Korea in the early 1960s with her parents at a moment when many Koreans living in Japan "returned to the fatherland". Then in the early 1970s, she began to work as a dancer at the famous Mansudae Art Troupe in Pyongyang. This is where she met Kim Jong-Il while she entertained VIPs at a party he organized. Most women with whom Kim was involved were celebrities.
Yong-Hui was the mother of two of Kim Jong-il's sons, Kim Jong-Chol in 1981 and Kim Jong-Un in 1983, Jong-Un is now 27 years old, 28 in Korean age. The first son Kim Jong-Chol studied in France or in Switzerland (like the second brother Jong-Un) or in Singapore and is seen as intelligent, with a passion for basket-ball. Milder than his younger brother who, according to witnesses and sources, would better rather fit the ferocious look of a dictator than Jong-Chol.
At this stage there are contradictions between gossip and reality. KJI was said as favoring good family reputation, with a worker background rather than a rich linked Korean background family like Yong-Hui but this sudden change means his valuing Kim Yong-Hui family might also indicate a sign of his changeable character. Quite fearful for a "Dictator" obsessed with propaganda, as Japanese and South Korea media reported.
Kim Yong-Hui became sick and was treated for cancer in Paris, France and died in Paris in August 2004.
A DPRK princess' suicided after a failed love story?
An other puzzle to the North estrange romances: The romantic tragedy of a Kim Jong-il's niece Jang Keum-Song. The story of the only daughter of rising star Jang Song-Thaek and Kim Kyung-Hee (the very tough and powerful younger sister of Kim Jong-Il) was a shock. The news about her "alleged" suicide for having her heart broken in an "alleged" love story was reported on 2006 September 15 on the DailyNK. The cause of her death by medicines revealed the stern opposition of her parents to her marriage because her boyfriend was of a lower rulers class "of mean birth" as put by the DPRK propaganda and revealed by watchers.
So was the unfortunate destiny of Jang Keum-Song, 29, who was the sole birth child of Kim's brother-in-law and confidant Jang Song-Thaek, KJI's lng time confident who, let's say it again is introduced now as the political rising star of the DPRK, behind the Chosun's Workers dynasty kids.
Here is how the Daily NK reported about her suicide: "His [Jang Song-Thaek] daughter who had attended at Kim Il Sung University fell in love with a man. His parents were general workers in a rural area. He was so smart that he could get an admission from Kim Il Sung University. Later, the Head Secretary scolded his daughter, saying “You can never be married with him”. The desperate daughter ate agrochemical pills to kill herself. Fortunately, she did not die, yet became insane. To the end she had wondered here and there and died." By Park Hyun Min, Reporter of Daily NK (2006-09-20)
One wishful thinking is that not only French magazines, such as Gala and Voici, pale copies of people's rich and famous Vanity Fair, but also more serious publications, have now to keep looking at DPRK with different eyes not only because there are "sparkling" stories, accounts of horrors and tools for propagandist tales (both from the west and the hermit regime) but because all around in the transfer of power of the most secretive dynasty on the earth there are important consequences that could modify the course of events in the whole Asian region.
Remains to see if the North Korean coming leadership, whatever clues are sampled abroad, would eventually follow China’s market policy example with the neighbor and big sponsor's support. And, by the way, it would be good to know how the expected leader Jong-Un looks like. Anyone, an authentic recent picture?
Changes will be brought from China
Hu Jintao is reported to have agreed with Kim Jong-Il who is to nominate Jong-Un to perpetuate the dynasty leading mission, which is this time an economic revolution with or without reunification according to sources in Beijing. And this is not entirely impossible as we are to see that traveling educates the youth...and boost economies.
To be continued...
Update October 1st 2010: Confirmation of what I wrote in this chapter: It is reported in Bernama news (Malaysia) October 1st that the PRC is seeking to build an economic zone in the northeastern region bordering the DPRK, aiming to promote trade with the world's most reclusive country, Yonhap news agency reports. Thirteen cities in the Dongbei region, commonly known as Manchuria, issued a joint proposal on Thursday to build the Yalu River Economic Zone and to boost trade with the DPRK. The participating cities include Dandong, Dalian, Tonghua and Mudanjiang, all of which are located either in the Liaoning province, the Jilin province or the Heilongjiang province. The three provinces make up the Dongbei region. Telex http://bit.ly/ddq2Lc
Sources: Joong Ang Ilbo, Daily NK, Xinhua, A Times, other Sources wont be identified according to their requests (AG recommends to take this post and quotes of sources with precaution), Reporter's Notes (edited).