From politics to economics, from leadership succession to the introduction of fast food restaurants, there is a lot going on inside North Korea.
Four days after the North Korean Politburo stripped Jang Song Thaek, Kim Jong Un’s foremost mentor and protector, of all his posts and ranks, a special military tribunal of the DPRK Ministry of State Security convicted him of attempting to overthrow the state and to replace the people’s power and socialist system with his own personal rule [...]
Jang Song Thaek was executed in a blitzkrieg manner in less than four days after he was arrested at the Enlarged Politburo Meeting of the Cental Committee (CC) of the Workers’ Party of Korea (WPK). The immediate response of this author to the news of his execution was, “Oh my God, it is too much.” How could Kim Jong Un execute Jang, who is [...]
In recent weeks North Korea has actively publicized in domestic and foreign news media its determination to pursue an aggressive strategy to develop special enterprise zones (SEZs) throughout the country. This follows and complements the agreement reached between the two Koreas in September to reopen the Kaesong Industrial Complex (KIC)—which [...]
The downfall of Jang Song Thaek is the most significant political event in the history of post-Kim Jong Il North Korea. The removal of “Jang and his group” for “the anti-party, counter-revolutionary factional acts” is the second major adjustment in North Korea’s power configuration under Kim Jong Un’s leadership, eclipsing in [...]
The North Korean mobile telecommunications market has seen dramatic subscriber growth over the past five years contrary to initial speculations that mobile service would be limited to the elite. The 3G service, Koryolink, was launched in December 2008 by CHEO Technology JV Company, a joint venture between the Egyptian telecommunications firm [...]
A 38 North Product Review by Ruediger Frank A few months ago the ever-growing community of those interested in the DPRK learned that there is now something like a local version of the iPad—the Samjiyon tablet computer (p’anhyŏng k’omp’yut’ŏ samjiyŏn). After having had a chance to test it briefly during a visit in May 2013, I could [...]