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.
quote: Nonsense. The Great Irish Potato Famine occurred due to a mold that decimated the staple food for the nation. It killed at least a million people...and it had nothing to do with economic cycles or rulers "not being answerable to the people".
quote: The effects of the mold were first seen in Belgium not Ireland. In fact, potato crops all across Europe were affected in the same proportion. Why then was Ireland the only one to experience famine?
quote: The claim was made that this famine was no more than a conspiracy of British rule.
quote: Ireland was struck much harder than the rest of Europe, for the simple reason that in 1845, Ireland was primarily a one-crop nation,
quote: There is a clear and distinct difference between initiating a disaster, and exacerbating a pre-existing one. One can argue, with a good deal of success, that British rule contributed to the effects of the potato famine. But blaming it entirely upon government action is foolishness.