A look at what’s happening within the North Korean leadership.
Introduction Until the death of Kim Jong Il in December 2011, the big question affecting nearly every aspect of North Korean affairs—domestic or international—was who would be his successor. Now that this issue has been resolved by the selection and promotion of Kim Jong Un, the focus has shifted to the nature and sustainability of the new [...]
North Korea’s transition to third-generation Kim leadership appears to be going smoothly, indeed much more smoothly than many outside observers had expected. This should not be a surprise to anyone familiar with the history of the DPRK, which ceased to be a “normal” communist dictatorship decades ago, and instead became a regime of [...]
As I write this article, April is already more than half over. In North Korea, the party is over, bar the shouting. But in Pyongyang, the shouting never really stops, or not for long anyway. True, this event-packed month is not quite done yet. The 28th April Spring Friendship Art Festival still has a few days to run, bringing to the good [...]
Kim Jong Un added to his formal titles last week, suggesting that the North Korean transfer of power is well underway. There has been no evidence of threat from potential challengers or a popular uprising. Indeed, Kim’s acquisition of more of his late father’s titles during the Korean Workers’ Party (KWP) delegates’ convention and Supreme [...]
April 2012 promises to be an interesting month for North Korea and its observers, with at least four mega-events. The long announced celebrations to mark the 100th birthday of the country’s late founder Kim Il Sung will be held on the April 15. Two days before, the annual session of the Supreme People’s Assembly (the North Korean parliament) [...]
Kim Jong Il’s death was announced less than three weeks ago. But the world is surprisingly quickly getting used to the new leadership in North Korea, as if there were no concerns left at all. To provide a counterweight to this amazingly complacent mood, and the many speculations about a stable North Korean future (including my own), I’d like [...]