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Although the majority of North Korea does not have much in way of electricity at night, Kim Jong-il has no problem navigating the Internet.  (Source: Global Security)
Kim Jong-il claims to be the world's Internet expert; Al Gore jealous

North Korean leader Kim Jong-il met with South Korean President Roh Moo-hyun this week in the North Korean city of Kaesong. This meeting is only the second ever meeting between North and South Korean leaders.

One topic of conversation during the meeting put forth by Roh was a request that South Korean companies operating in an industrial park in the North Korean city of Kaesong be allowed the use of the Internet.

The response from the Dear Leader, according to Yahoo! News, was, “I'm an Internet expert too. It's all right to wire the industrial zone only, but there are many problems if other regions of the North are wired.”

Kim went on to say, “If that problem is addressed, there is no reason not to open [web access].” Kim did not elaborate on the "many problems" caused by opening Internet access to all of North Korea, though clearly the intention of Roh's suggestion is to increase North Korean exposure to South Korean and Western influence.

North Korea explicitly prohibits its 23 million citizens from accessing the Internet and mobile phones outside of government research groups. South Korea, by comparison, is one of the world's most digitally connected countries.

However, given the secretive nature of just about everything in North Korea, it's been difficult to even ascertain just how "connected" Kim actually is. Satellite photographs of North Korea at night reveal very few lights, indicating the country does not have a very high capacity for electricity, let alone computers or Internet.

What is known, is that Kim and the ruling party has a definitive taste for all things Western. Kim's son, Jong-nam, was arrested and expelled from Japan while trying to enter Disney Land in 2001.  Late last year, the U.S. imposed a ban on all luxuries originating from the U.S. destined for North Korea, including the Great Leader's beloved iPods.


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RE: Kim has a reason to be proud
By ElFenix on 10/6/2007 9:19:11 PM , Rating: 2
the lack of a peace deal and not the kims' paranoia (especially after seeing what happened to dictators like Nicolae Ceausescu) is keeping back north korea? that's rich.


RE: Kim has a reason to be proud
By Obadiah on 10/7/2007 2:55:29 AM , Rating: 3
quote:
the lack of a peace deal and not the kims' paranoia (especially after seeing what happened to dictators like Nicolae Ceausescu) is keeping back north korea? that's rich.
The dictatorship in North Korea does not exist in a vacuum, few ever do. But the threat of resumption of hostilities is one of the strongest tools that the Kim's have to justify and maintain their dictatorship.

Perhaps you've seen this quote from the Nazi Hermann Goering before:
quote:
it is the leaders of the country who determine the policy and it is always a simple matter to drag the people along, whether it is a democracy, or a fascist dictatorship, or a parliament, or a communist dictatorship. Voice or no voice, the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is tell them they are being attacked, and denounce the peacemakers for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger. It works the same in any country.


By Pneumothorax on 10/8/2007 9:50:15 AM , Rating: 2
Hmmm.. Sounds very similar to what I've been hearing in good 'ol USA.


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