Posted by: Bruce | February 8, 2013

New Years Day 2013. The gauntlet is down for North Korea’s Supreme Leader Kim Jong-un, some jagged reality and a voice from the deep.

New Years Day was pretty average for me. The weather, typical summer, temperature in the low to mid 30’s (Cent) and humidity which raises a sweat just blinking an eye.

The haircut is a little too Hitler-ish for me.

The haircut is a little too Hitler-ish for me.

I’m not complaining. Sometimes I do. Given the situation others in this world are born into, I shouldn’t. My family has food on the table and a roof overhead. We are not in the middle of a civil war. We don’t have to ‘love’ our country’s leader. We’re okay.

An average day but with some lingering impressions. One of those, a news article on North Korea, a catalyst for a few random thoughts on a country which has a ‘supreme leader’ just 30 yrs of age. Married apparently and with a new child.

http://www.smh.com.au/it-pro/business-it/the-challenge-of-googling-north-korea-20130109-2cgar.html

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/09/02/world/asia/02korea.html?_r=1&

Army parade - a Google imageSo I wondered a little about North Korea, Googled some stuff and was a bit surprised at how much is available by way of images. It seems that some outsiders, and/or tourists, may get limited access to this country. I have included a news link or two and from one of these I’m reminded of the Berlin Wall. North Korea has its own Berlin Wall. What goes on behind closed doors?

I have also included the following link, an article written by someone with a more personal interest in North Korea. Well worth the read plus Korean recipes (traditional I think).

http://www.thesquishymonster.com/2012/06/my-koreanness.html

APTOPIX North Korea Staged in PyongyangAs for me, I just can’t go for any country that has any sort of self appointed supreme leader that the whole population ‘loves’. Really, there is no such person alive who can fulfil that description. No single human knows it all. The leaders know it, and if they don’t, they must have an ego that keeps them in la-la land. The public displays of affection are all show but helps keep them out of jail. The only leaders we like in Australia are the ones we can change by voting them in or out.

Kim Jong-un, was born into his privileged position as Supreme Leader, no choice but on the lucky side of power and wealth. North Korean citizens were born into their position also with no choice, but on the unlucky side of power and wealth. And it is their country, as much as his. It is their world as much as his. I wonder if, in the future, he will let his own child travel the world? What if his child were denied that privilege? No problem with that?

North Korean girls perfoming (busanhaps.com)We hear of people risking their lives to defect to another country; we don’t hear of people defecting to North Korea, just those returning to minimise their families’ persecution. I can’t see myself moving to North Korea anytime soon to make a good life for myself and family. I probably couldn’t, even if I wanted to, because I’d be seen as an evil westie.

To prevent freedom of travel from one side of the border, or to the other side of the world displays such incredible ignorance and arrogance. It’s amazing that one person, a ‘supreme leader’ thinks he has the right to keep the world from 24 million or so North Koreans. The majority of those being the usual, everyday, good human beings.

bild-korea (Google image)Supreme Jail Warden is an equally appropriate title along with that of Supreme Leader. Because that what his country boils down to. One of the largest jails in the world with 24 million or so inmates and he swings the keys.

Image: A North Korean guard brutally kicking a labour camp prisoner while another guard casually watches. An enraging image of the guards’ inhumanity and the suffering of a defenceless person. https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/495736484

No doubt Kim Jong-un has a tough job, regardless of the totalitarianism, dictatorship, oppressor type job description. Will he continue as the leaders before him? The powers that be in his life (including parents) have had the best part of 30 years to work on him and ensure he does. Now that the country has posted a video on Youtube about a dream of nuking America, it’s apparent they have succeeded.

http://www.theaustralian.com.au/news/world/north-korea-posts-youtube-video-featuring-us-city-under-attack/story-e6frg6so-1226571073945

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2011-01-24/n-koreans-forced-to-watch-executions-report/1916636

http://www.foxnews.com/story/2008/10/29/executions-torture-in-north-korea-worse-than-animal-slaughter/

A Challenge to Kim Jong-un ……….

DSCF2151So an open challenge for you anyway, Kim Jong-un. If you are speaking the truth, that your people love you so much, open the borders, knock down the walls. Be a man and set them all free. Let those who stay choose a new leader. You can put yourself up as a candidate, but would anyone stay to vote for you?

North Korean soldier (a Google image)Who knows. Kim Jong-un is young, an unknown quantity. Will he make a name for himself through infamy or perhaps be the next Mikael Gorbachev the world sees. He should be old enough and smart enough now to understand the meaning of choice. So far it appears he chooses tradition and continues the long line of Jail Wardens that run North Korea.

He must know that change is inevitable. Will he bring it about or lose the battle?

_39786115_bottle203 A Googe imageAnd now for something competely different: On a change of topic, another headline grabbed my attention this day and, despite it being in the news often, still makes you sick. That is, lowlifes who use smashed bottles or glasses to slash and stab another person. On New Years Day, evil does not automatically disappear. What sort of people think this is okay? Scary.

http://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/news/innocent-stranger-brutally-glassed-after-passing-party-in-sydneys-west/story-e6freuy9-1226546444672

117Continuing with change I’ll jump back to New Years Eve. I walked later in the afternoon and parked myself on a rock on the edge of Lake Macquarie. Sunset was not that far away. As I pondered the meaning of life, the good, the bad and the ugly; a yacht appeared passing me about 50m off shore. Four or five adults on board, heading somewhere before sunset. One guy onboard, facing shore, spotted me and called Happy New Year to me. The others on board looked. As I waved and replied, I knew before I opened my mouth, that my voice was not in the same league. His easily carried the distance and I felt a twinge of envy as my reply sounded positively lame in comparison. Still, the others on board waved, so at least they heard me. I did like the Happy New Year call out though and it’s not forgotten.

As a finish to New Years Eve, I watched the modest fire works display from the shores of Wangi Wangi with my younger son. Previous years three kids watched. The numbers are dwindling. Time moves on.

Words for today;  The Berlin Wall and Behind Closed Doors

Scary stuff for those trapped in North Korea.

More to come;   same blog time, same blog channel

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Responses

  1. I hate to form conclusions based on a few photographs, but I can’t help it. The guy looks mad with power. History is filled with decent people who took control of governments and soon changed for the worse. Kim Jong-un seems to be already well on his way down the wrong path. Or maybe it is the haircut.

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    • Same with me on the photograph bit; trouble is, we don’t get to see or hear anything good about the country. With so many of its people in the military, the country must run to a well written script dictated by the ‘supreme leader’. Indoctrination seems inevitable and rule by fear the standard of life. It may no longer call itself a communist country but it sure sounds like one.

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