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North Korea

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'yorz
1254535.  Tue Oct 10, 2017 6:31 pm Reply with quote

Just curious - and then what? All facets of that country revolve around one person. What would happen if he's no longer there? How will the population react? Can the army keep a lid on everything?

BTW - an interesting wiki article on NK defectors - a much higher number that I would have thought. And - the majority are women. Wouldn't have guessed that.

 
suze
1254539.  Tue Oct 10, 2017 6:54 pm Reply with quote

'yorz wrote:
Just curious - and then what? All facets of that country revolve around one person. What would happen if he's no longer there? How will the population react? Can the army keep a lid on everything?


We know so little about what goes inside North Korea that we don't really know the answers to those questions.

Much as North Korea claims to be a republic, it's effectively an absolute monarchy. If the quasi-royal family were somehow eliminated, would it all come crumbling down and North Korea would plead for unification with the South?

Well, maybe. But then plenty of people thought that something of that sort would happen in Cuba once Fidel Castro was no longer in charge, and it hasn't. (But might it have done if Castro's death had happened towards the end of Obama's first term rather than towards the end of his second?)

We don't really know how China would react if President Trump really were to launch some kind of attack on Pyongyang, nor yet how Russia* would react.


* Russia may be more relevant than we think here, since there is some suspicion that the Kim dynasty is of partly Russian heritage. Most of the official North Korean photographs which purport to be of Kim Il-sung are demonstrably not him, but some who encountered him reported back that he looked as if - and drank vodka as if - he were half Russian.

 
barbados
1254546.  Wed Oct 11, 2017 12:59 am Reply with quote

I suspect there will be some collapse in NK were that to be the case, and the resulting unrest would spill over into SK.

 
'yorz
1254552.  Wed Oct 11, 2017 1:58 am Reply with quote

Whole population suffering from Stockholm syndrome?

 
PDR
1254553.  Wed Oct 11, 2017 2:11 am Reply with quote

Alfred E Neuman wrote:
Oh, I don't know, I'm sure Barby and PDR will rally eventually. :-)


:0)

No worries about that. I'm not at liberty to pontificate in public about NK.

PDR

 
L on earth
1254579.  Wed Oct 11, 2017 4:50 am Reply with quote

If anyone's interested in the defectors' stories, 'Nothing to envy' by Barbara Demick is really good.

If the ruling family crumbled, I would imagine they would likely be replaced with a similarly despotic general. If the whole government fell down and the country fell into chaos, then I think there would probably be a bit of an international fight about who takes charge of fixing it. China would want a sympathetic government, but SK would probably want a government that could build up the North's economy and subsequently reunify the country. Which could lead to China pushing armies into NK, and a potential skirmish between the two.

Depressingly, I can't see any future scenario that plays out well for North Korea and its citizens. Although maybe I'm just cynical.

 
bobwilson
1255403.  Fri Oct 13, 2017 8:58 pm Reply with quote

suze wrote:


As for why we have no detailed discussion on North Korea, isn't that simply because there is no one here who supports North Korea? A discussion in which everyone agrees is unlikely ever to be lengthy or especially interesting.


There may be no-one here who supports North Korea - but can anyone give me a specific reason for being against the place/country/system? I mean a reason based on actual evidence rather than Daily Mailoganda.

They haven't (afaik) invaded (or threatened to invade) anywhere? (I'm discounting South Korea since technically there is only one Korea). Or have they? We quite freely admit we know little about the country (apart from the daft haircuts - to which the obvious rejoinder would be Bon Jovi and Punk).

I've made enquiries - and it's not that difficult to visit the place. Well, you know, I'm kind of bored - so why not? (It does specifically say I can't go there if I'm a US citizen - but other than that, getting in looks like it's relatively easy).

I'd be up for it - but it's probably going to be my last intrepid adventure (I'm getting a bit old for this); anyone fancy contributing to the necessary expenses?

I mean
Quote:

If anyone's interested in the defectors' stories, 'Nothing to envy' by Barbara Demick is really good.

defectors stories are hardly a source of unbiased opinion, are they?

 
Alfred E Neuman
1255409.  Sat Oct 14, 2017 12:34 am Reply with quote

bobwilson wrote:
defectors stories are hardly a source of unbiased opinion, are they?


And bobwilson's posts are?

Sorry Bob, I suspect you'll have to pay for your own holiday.

 
Bondee
1255419.  Sat Oct 14, 2017 3:04 am Reply with quote

I'd bankrupt myself to pay for the whole thing if he promised to stay there.

 
'yorz
1255439.  Sat Oct 14, 2017 4:21 am Reply with quote

Start your paper rounds. At least we would get a better idea of what goes on there and what life's really like.

 
Alfred E Neuman
1255445.  Sat Oct 14, 2017 4:30 am Reply with quote

How do they collect their TV licenses?

 
Bondee
1255448.  Sat Oct 14, 2017 4:46 am Reply with quote

The secret police arrive in the middle of the night.

Henry Rollins on his trip to North Korea.

That's a clip from a performance called Critical Conversations in which he goes into his trip in much more detail. It's well worth a watch if you have the time.

 
suze
1255458.  Sat Oct 14, 2017 5:35 am Reply with quote

bobwilson wrote:
There may be no-one here who supports North Korea - but can anyone give me a specific reason for being against the place/country/system? I mean a reason based on actual evidence rather than Daily Mailoganda.


That the country is de facto an absolute monarchy is a start, I would suggest.

I know you're not entirely sold on the whole "democracy" concept, but quite a lot of people are.

 
bobwilson
1256223.  Tue Oct 17, 2017 6:48 pm Reply with quote

I would agree with you (from what I know, which I admit is very little) that the country is

Quote:
de facto an absolute monarchy


And I also confess to being

Quote:
not entirely sold on the whole "democracy" concept


Nonetheless, I don’t see how either of those facts are relevant.

Even the most ardent supporters of democracy (or rather, representative political democracy, which is what is generally meant) would surely not claim that it is, of itself, an end?

What is surely desired is accountability – democracy (to use the shorthand) is merely a tool that is intended to safeguard that accountability.

I say “intended” because it very rarely actually does ensure accountability – see for example post 1255880. I don’t see a great deal of accountability occurring in that case; equally importantly, at least we know the name of the alleged miscreant in North Korea – in our “democracy” the responsible individuals are hidden from view, can legitimately claim to be “following orders”, and (ultimately) claim to have a mandate from the people which is conceptually difficult to challenge.

Regarding Bondee’s links – I have watched the short one which is an impressionistic (but interesting) piece; I haven’t had time to watch the full talk yet but will do so asap.

btw – for the record – I wouldn’t want Bondee to be banned from the forum for three days for his post 1255419 above even though it is little more than a thinly veiled, passive aggressive “get back to Russia”

 
Bondee
1256451.  Wed Oct 18, 2017 1:59 pm Reply with quote

bobwilson wrote:
btw – for the record – I wouldn’t want Bondee to be banned from the forum for three days for his post 1255419 above even though it is little more than a thinly veiled, passive aggressive “get back to Russia”


Yep, that's right. It was so thinly veiled that I felt the need to white it out before I posted it.

 

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