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North Korea Erases Executed Official From the Internet

Soulskill posted about a year ago | from the personhood-redacted dept.

Censorship 276

itwbennett writes "The North Korean state propaganda machine has edited and deleted hundreds of news articles that mention Jang Song Thaek, the former top government and party official and uncle to leader Kim Jong Un, who was executed Thursday. Earlier this week, Jang was arrested in front of hundreds of senior members of the ruling Worker's Party of Korea and denounced for numerous alleged acts against the state and Kim Jong Un. From arrest to trial to death took only four days and the unprecedented fall from grace is widely being interpreted as an attempt by Kim Jong Un to keep officials loyal and scared."

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Word unlocked. (5, Insightful)

SuricouRaven (1897204) | about a year ago | (#45685277)

The term 'Orwellian' tends to be overused a bit these days. But, having read 1984, this is something straight out of that book. The adjective is appropriate in this situation: Go ahead and use it.

Re:Word unlocked. (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45685289)

I am more than certain that not a single soul posting on Slashdot feels the need for anyone, anywhere, especially not one of their own, to give permission to use blatantly inflammatory language to describe anything at all.

Re:Word unlocked. (3, Funny)

ttucker (2884057) | about a year ago | (#45685605)

Just remember that Germany voted for Hitler. History can and does happen again, unless we care to learn from it.

Re:Word unlocked. (3, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45685813)

Um, no. Hitler did not win any election.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/German_presidential_election,_1932

Re:Word unlocked. (4, Funny)

JustOK (667959) | about a year ago | (#45685849)

You know who else voted for Hitler?
Hitler!

Re:Word unlocked. (4, Informative)

Penguinisto (415985) | about a year ago | (#45685611)

Funny thing is, the language in this case isn't so much "inflammatory", as much as it is descriptive. See also The Memory Hole [wikipedia.org] .

(I wonder if NoKo actually calls the folks tasked with this job the Korean equivalent of "Ministry of Truth" as well...)

Re:Word unlocked. (1)

MightyMartian (840721) | about a year ago | (#45685295)

It's the North Korean Happy Fun Time Hour! Be sure to clap for Dear Leader very enthusiastically! Be sure to stay tuned right to the end, when we show all the lucky children of our great country what it looks like when someone is executed by mortar fire. And remember, clap very enthusiastically... or else.

Re:Word unlocked. (5, Insightful)

phantomfive (622387) | about a year ago | (#45685399)

It's the North Korean Happy Fun Time Hour! Be sure to clap for Dear Leader very enthusiastically!

You might be joking, but one of the accused's crimes was, in fact, to not clap enthusiastically enough. It's almost like they are trying to parody themselves.

Re:Word unlocked. (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45685521)

It's the North Korean Happy Fun Time Hour! Be sure to clap for Dear Leader very enthusiastically!

You might be joking, but one of the accused's crimes was, in fact, to not clap enthusiastically enough. It's almost like they are trying to parody themselves.

Who got accused of what? You can't find any evidence of this supposed uncle on reputable web sites. Only tinfoil-hatted conspiracy theorists believe that Kim Jong-Un ever had an uncle!

Re:Word unlocked. (5, Informative)

kallisti (20737) | about a year ago | (#45685501)

In a book on the life of Shostakovich, there was an anecdote about Stalin giving a speech at a farm collective. After he finished, there was a thunderous applause that continued on and on for over half an hour. No one wanted to be known as the first one to stop clapping.

Re:Word unlocked. (1)

SB9876 (723368) | about a year ago | (#45685545)

Hell, there's YouTube videos showing this. They had to have a bell ring to let people know it was safe to stop clapping.

Re:Word unlocked. (4, Funny)

JustOK (667959) | about a year ago | (#45685859)

What they don't show is that the bell ringer was shot on the first ring because it was too early. The bell kept ringing because he was...a dead ringer

Re:Word unlocked. (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45685393)

You have been banned from r/pyongyang

Re:Word unlocked. (2, Insightful)

TapeCutter (624760) | about a year ago | (#45685397)

He murdered his uncle for political reasons and doesn't want everyone to know about it, that kind of behaviour predates 1984 by several millennia.

Re:Word unlocked. (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45685527)

And what does that have to do with what the GP said?

Re:Word unlocked. (4, Informative)

UnknowingFool (672806) | about a year ago | (#45685747)

Well if you remember 1984, the main character's job was to re-write history removing individuals from books, news stories, etc.

Re:Word unlocked. (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45685763)

He murdered his uncle for political reasons and doesn't want everyone to know about it, that kind of behaviour predates 1984 by several millennia.

I think photoshopping the guy out of pictures, deleting all references to him is what makes it 1984 worthy.

How do you even know he was murdered, given the above?! This is not simply "hiding a murder"...

Re:Word unlocked. (5, Insightful)

arth1 (260657) | about a year ago | (#45685785)

He murdered his uncle for political reasons and doesn't want everyone to know about it, that kind of behaviour predates 1984 by several millennia.

This is not insightful. He murdered his uncle and erased him from history, and very much wanted every North Korean politician, military and ambitious individual to know about it. It's a demonstration of utter ruthlessness designed to ensure obedience.

When you work for a man capable of doing that to his own uncle, you tread lightly. And that's what he wants. He knows that you and everybody else knows the charges were false - he wants you to know that. But never say it. And if you're in North Korea, you won't.

Re:Word unlocked. (4, Interesting)

vux984 (928602) | about a year ago | (#45685835)

He knows that you and everybody else knows the charges were false

I'm with you on everything in your post but this. Were they false?

I don't pretend to be up on North Korean politics, but I recall reading when Kim Jong Un came to power that some of his family members, Aunts and Uncles wielded a lot of power, and that Dear Leader himself had to tread pretty lightly to maintain the balance of power.

It could well be that his Uncle was making a play for power. Or it could be that Kim Jong Un has consolidated enough support for himself that he can openly move against his opponents. Just saying, ... not that I think Kim Jong Un is some 'force for good' in North Korea, but I'm pretty skeptical that his Uncle was innocent of anything.

Re:Word unlocked. (-1, Redundant)

K. S. Kyosuke (729550) | about a year ago | (#45685411)

If this were Orwellian, they'd probably say that he never existed. This is more Stalinistic than that, I'd say.

Re:Word unlocked. (1)

Concerned Onlooker (473481) | about a year ago | (#45685759)

Go read the article. That is exactly what they are doing; removing all references to him. Orwellian is the proper descriptor.

Re:Word unlocked. (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45685793)

If this were Orwellian, they'd probably say that he never existed. This is more Stalinistic than that, I'd say.

They are already photoshopping him out of everything. Do any of you read the damned news?

I can't believe we are debating if this is properly Orwellian enough when '1984' gets casually tossed around when healthcare or anti-money laundering regulations come up.

Re: Word unlocked (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45685417)

In china, they have whole departments for the social networks to delete posts containing certain phrases. Like entire buildings full of people monitoring what they are saying, and deciphering codes just so they can control what people talk about.

Literally deleted within 15 minutes.

Re:Word unlocked. (1)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | about a year ago | (#45685687)

Do they really have enough electricity in North Korea to operate their telescreens?

Happy Friday from the DPRK! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45685279)

Thank you for being a friend
Traveled down the road and back again
Your heart is true, you're a pal and a cosmonaut.

And if you threw a party
Invited everyone you knew
You would see the biggest gift would be from me
And the card attached would say, thank you for being a friend.

Obummer's exit plan (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45685285)

How soon before Obummer follows lead declaring himself supreme leader and executing his political competition?

Re:Obummer's exit plan (3, Insightful)

MightyMartian (840721) | about a year ago | (#45685323)

How soon before what's left of your pathetic, useless brain leaks out the one nostril you don't pick?

Re:Obummer's exit plan (-1, Flamebait)

Impy the Impiuos Imp (442658) | about a year ago | (#45685385)

Thank you for being a friend, Obummer the slop jockey with a finger up his nose!

I'm learning! Look ma!

Re:Obummer's exit plan (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45685469)

Like how Obummer was gonna end the warrantless NSA spying until he became president and then gave the telecoms immunity and continued to expand the mass surveillance?

Sorry, I don't trust known lying criminals.

Re:Obummer's exit plan (3, Insightful)

Ralph Wiggam (22354) | about a year ago | (#45685595)

Senator Obama voted for warrantless NSA spying 4 months before he was elected President. Try paying attention some time.

Re:Obummer's exit plan (0, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45685671)

Nope, it seems to be that you weren't the one paying attention. He was making campaign promises in 2008 to end the warrantless wiretaps [cnet.com] . One of his spokesmen in 2007 even claimed he would filibuster any act that would provide the telecoms with immunity [politifact.com] .

In October 2007, Obama spokesman Bill Burton issued this unequivocal statement to the liberal blog TPM Election Central: "To be clear: Barack will support a filibuster of any bill that includes retroactive immunity for telecommunications companies."

That is until he got into office and signed the law himself.

Re:Obummer's exit plan (0, Offtopic)

Beavertank (1178717) | about a year ago | (#45685375)

I'll take "never", for that one. Outside of diseased minds and idiot trolls, no one actually thinks that's a legitimate possibility let alone likely outcome.

Re:Obummer's exit plan (0, Flamebait)

MightyMartian (840721) | about a year ago | (#45685439)

There are a lot of diseased minds among Tea Party and Libertarian types.

Re:Obummer's exit plan (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45685547)

I'll take "never", for that one. Outside of diseased minds and idiot trolls, no one actually thinks that's a legitimate possibility let alone likely outcome.

Can you say "extrajudicial killings of US citizens"?

Re:Obummer's exit plan (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45685591)

Don't be silly. Those are just imaginary things you silly "idiot troll". Just like his massive expansion of domestic surveillance. Obummer is simply bringing us hope and change. Don't make us send a drone at you for questioning Dear Leader.

Re:Obummer's exit plan (1)

qbzzt (11136) | about a year ago | (#45685489)

Considering that the basic prerequisite for overthrowing the Republic is to gain the personal loyalty of the military (and preferably the veterans, especially in places like the US where they are armed), I'd say either "never" or "when he feels like committing suicide". The US military oath is to obey the constitution first. A president who declared himself supreme leader would suffer from a case of high velocity lead poisoning very quickly.

Re:Obummer's exit plan (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45685539)

The US military oath is to obey the constitution first.

So is the oath of all public officials. What's your point?

A president who declared himself supreme leader would suffer from a case of high velocity lead poisoning very quickly.

No, most of you Internet tough guys would be cowering in your homes.

Re:Obummer's exit plan (-1, Troll)

JDAustin (468180) | about a year ago | (#45685561)

I suggest you look into how many top officers (colonel or higher) have been purged for the military in the past 5 years. To start with, look at who's been purged as a result of Benghazi (hint, it's not the people who screwed up, but the people who wanted to rescue our personnel).

Re: Obummer's exit plan (1)

qbzzt (11136) | about a year ago | (#45685743)

The issue isn't the senior officers. It is the rank and file whose loyalty is required to overthrow the constitution.

Arrest To Death in 4 Days for J.S. Thaek (4, Funny)

rmdingler (1955220) | about a year ago | (#45685287)

They exercised his right to a speedy trial all right.

Re:Arrest To Death in 4 Days for J.S. Thaek (2)

bob_super (3391281) | about a year ago | (#45685361)

The moment guilt is obvious, what's the point of spending 15 years on death row and cost millions in tax dollars?

Re:Arrest To Death in 4 Days for J.S. Thaek (1)

turgid (580780) | about a year ago | (#45685383)

I'm sure if they'd kept him alive a few days longer, they could have thought of even more guilt for him to have. It all sounds a bit amateurish to me.

Re:Arrest To Death in 4 Days for J.S. Thaek (4, Insightful)

Beavertank (1178717) | about a year ago | (#45685391)

Due process, for one. And the fact that guilt is rarely obvious enough to justify a lightning quick death.

Re:Arrest To Death in 4 Days for J.S. Thaek (1)

MightyMartian (840721) | about a year ago | (#45685455)

Relax. This is a dictatorship. They can keep convicting of crimes and adding more death sentences until the Sun burns out.

Re:Arrest To Death in 4 Days for J.S. Thaek (2)

Pseudonym Authority (1591027) | about a year ago | (#45685487)

The crime was probably pissing off King Fatass. In that case, guilt would be pretty obvious.

Re:Arrest To Death in 4 Days for J.S. Thaek (1)

MightyMartian (840721) | about a year ago | (#45685449)

Even cheaper and faster, you don't have to wait for guilt to be obvious... or true.

Re:Arrest To Death in 4 Days for J.S. Thaek (5, Informative)

Jeremi (14640) | about a year ago | (#45685483)

The moment guilt is obvious, what's the point of spending 15 years on death row and cost millions in tax dollars?

I won't comment on North Korea, but in the USA there have been at least 311 cases [innocenceproject.org] where "guilt was obvious" but in fact the person had not committed the crime they were convicted of.

If you're willing to accept that your proposal would cause the state-sponsored killing of hundreds of innocent people, okay, but you should say so explicitly.

Re:Arrest To Death in 4 Days for J.S. Thaek (3, Insightful)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | about a year ago | (#45685711)

The people advocating such schemes tend not to be 'willing to accept' so much as 'overtly gleeful about' a bit of the old collateral damage, so long as it isn't real people or anything.

Re:Arrest To Death in 4 Days for J.S. Thaek (3)

bob_super (3391281) | about a year ago | (#45685897)

I guess my sarcasm didn't show. I should have put "obvious" between quotes. We are talking about a son and grandson of dictators.

I am actually against both the death penalty and life without parole, but I do recognize that in the rare exceptions of some truly over-the-top crimes where the defendant is very proud of his guilt, it should be both available and a whole lot quicker.
A lot of the innocence project's work was on crimes where I do believe the death penalty should be applicable. The US system is broken. There's a reason why so many states have banned the death penalty.

Re:Arrest To Death in 4 Days for J.S. Thaek (2)

Desler (1608317) | about a year ago | (#45685597)

Because there are numerous cases of people being wrongfully convicted and/or executed despite everything thinking their guilt was obvious?

giving new meaning to the phrase (3, Funny)

themushroom (197365) | about a year ago | (#45685377)

"You have disappointed me. From hereon: You're dead to me."

"Thaek, I find your lack of faith disturbing." (1)

rmdingler (1955220) | about a year ago | (#45685541)

" I will erase even the memory of Thaek from the histories..." Anakin, Xerxes, Is there no quotable threshold this 'Un won't breech?

Re:giving new meaning to the phrase (2)

newcastlejon (1483695) | about a year ago | (#45685659)

Jang: That's all well and good, but do I really have to be dead to everyone else?!

WTF (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45685293)

Dammit, who is the slop jockey who changed the damn Slashdot layout to this steaming turd?

agreed (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45685343)

it sucks the sweat off a dead man's balls.

House of Cards (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45685299)

It sucks to be anyone in North Korea, even Kim Jong Un. This is a man who has to kill people every once in a while to make sure people know who's in charge.

Re:House of Cards (4, Funny)

MightyMartian (840721) | about a year ago | (#45685333)

Yes, my heart goes out for Kim Jong Un, truly a victim of circumstance...

Re: House of Cards (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45685395)

Only one man dared to stand up to Kim Yong-Fam: Hans Motherfuckin Brix!

Re:House of Cards (3, Insightful)

bondsbw (888959) | about a year ago | (#45685401)

Maybe if he killed himself, everyone would win.

Re:House of Cards (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45685733)

Because the resulting power vacuum, internal power struggle, and probable civil war would definitely be a win for everyone involved.

Re:House of Cards (1)

TheloniousToady (3343045) | about a year ago | (#45685851)

Yes, this execution evidences some element of fear. Though we don't need to feel sorry for Kim Jong Un, I wouldn't want to be in his shoes. Dictators rarely die of natural causes.

First (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45685309)

[Comment redacted]

History repeating itself? (5, Informative)

aphelion_rock (575206) | about a year ago | (#45685311)

"is widely being interpreted as an attempt by Kim Jong Un to keep officials loyal and scared."

Sounds like Stalin all over again....

"The purge was motivated by the desire to remove dissenters from the Communist Party and to consolidate the authority of Joseph Stalin. " http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Great_Purge [wikipedia.org]

Re:History repeating itself? (1)

Beavertank (1178717) | about a year ago | (#45685409)

Well, the USSR was also an authoritarian state whose leaders remained in power through a combination of fear and enforced ignorance among the population, so it shouldn't be too surprising that another state run in much the same way follows a similar trend. Especially since North Korea is like the USSR on steroids in that respect.

what steroids do to 'the little man' (1)

themushroom (197365) | about a year ago | (#45685531)

More like a banana republic with nukes than the USSR, but we can presume Kim has taken some historical tips.

Re:History repeating itself? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45685565)

Especially since North Korea is like the USSR on steroids

N. Korea would have to kill most of it's population just to match the Soviet Union, never mind surpass it. During '37 and '38, according to their own archives, the NKVD executed an average of 1000 people a day; 600k in two years. They were the original photoshoppers [lmu.edu] .

So don't exaggerate the atrocities of N. Korea. They're lightweights.

Re:History repeating itself? (1)

Ralph Wiggam (22354) | about a year ago | (#45685625)

And considering that Kim Il Sung was installed into power by Joseph Stalin, it is even less surprising.

Re:History repeating itself? (1)

mbkennel (97636) | about a year ago | (#45685633)


Like the USSR on steroids? More like the USSR on adulterated PCP.

The USSR sort of worked and had excellent physical science.

Re:History repeating itself? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45685757)

You need to read up on history. North Korea is USSR on mild sedatives.

Re:History repeating itself? (1)

dido (9125) | about a year ago | (#45685647)

Stalin did exactly the same thing to Commisar Nikolai Yezhov after his fall from grace. They purged him from all official records and even went as far as photoshopping (much harder before digital photography) pictures of Stalin and Yezhov so that the latter disappeared.

Slashdot isn't the Internet? (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45685319)

Uh... Slashdot is on the Internet last time I checked, and this article RIGHT HERE mentions Jang Song Thaek, so I'm pretty sure he was not "erased from the Internet".

Re:Slashdot isn't the Internet? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45685503)

Slashdot is on the Internet last time I checked, and this article RIGHT HERE mentions Jang Song Thaek

No it doesn't.

obligatory statement to the NK noobs (1)

themushroom (197365) | about a year ago | (#45685359)

"That's not how the Internet works."

Oh sure, the locals (not having ample Internet, and being fed the story by speakers across the countryside) might think his uncle that taught him his tricks was a traitor scumdog etcetera because that's the story Kim Jong-Un has concocted recently, but the rest of the world hasn't lost their copies of the newspaper, the stories that are on the websites, and other proofs of concept that Photoshop or a text editor aren't going to negate from the other 99% of the world's media.

Reply from North Korean citizen (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45685553)

Kind sir, I must point out that you are incorrect. Our venerated Dear Leader, Kim Jong-Un's father, invented the internet. This knowledge would have been passed from father to son due to their god-like telepathic abilities. I am certain that the person you are referring to, who I can no longer remember, never actually existed on the internet and is purely a figment of your over active imaginations.

Welcome to the UK... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45685373)

Welcome to the UK... several hundred years ago. I'm Henry the VIIIth I am, Henry the VIIIth I am, I am...

News? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45685381)

How is this news, again? I thought that was standard operating procedure in North Korea for the past few decades...

Re:News? (1)

maxwell demon (590494) | about a year ago | (#45685429)

The news is that North Korea has an internet from which it can erase that information.

Re:News? (1)

MightyMartian (840721) | about a year ago | (#45685493)

My understanding is that the chief difference here is how publicly Jang Song Thaek was purged. He was a member (by marriage) of the Kim family itself, and the Kims have always been somewhat cautious on state media services not to impugn any of the Kims, because it risks undermining the notion that they are the rightful rulers of North Korea. Under normal circumstances it seems more likely that he would disappear; and apparently he has been sent packing a couple of times before, only to return.

My reading of what the analysts think is that Jang Song Thaek either got to uppity (he seems to have been Kim Jong Un's mentor during the early days of his reign), or possibly was attempting some sort coup or at least end run around Kim Jong Un, and was likely not alone. Other officials have apparently disappeared as well, and this is as clear a message to any of Jang Song Thaek's as-yet undiscovered sympathizers or allies that Kim Jong Un is in charge, has the loyalty of the military, and no one, not even those in the DPRK's inner ruling circle, is immune.

Captain Jean Luc Picard of the USS Fabulous. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45685403)

This begs the question: (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45685447)

Why are millions of people afraid of a 3 foot tall man with the motor skills and mind set of an obese infant? Why doesn't someone karate chop his goofy ass out of the country?

Hong Kong Phooey (1)

themushroom (197365) | about a year ago | (#45685481)

Why doesn't someone karate chop his goofy ass out of the country?

That may have been what his uncle was trying to do.

Re:This begs the question: (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45685491)

They don't have any oil.

Remembers me of the movie The Dictator (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45685465)

... I bet none of them are killed. Maybe they sit all together in an restaurant in USA eating some Chinese food.

How many Humans did Obama murder today? (0, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45685467)

Ah, the owners of Slashdot doing their daily patriotic duty, promoting NON-TECHNICAL stories on a so-called nerd site, if in doing so they push warmongering propaganda against North Korea, China, Russia, Iran or Syria, or propaganda designed to make the sheeple think Israel or its political ally, Saudi Arabia, are wonderful nations.

Meanwhile, one can watch online videos proving that the recent massacre at a Yemeni hospital was carried out be special forces, NOT terrorists, which when combined with Obama's murder of an entire group of wedding travellers yesterday in Yemen leave us in no doubt that the USA ordered both acts as a specific part of their 'strategy of tension' operations in Yemen- designed to create the same horrific circumstances currently seen in Syria.

Obama not only mass murders civilians across the globe, he actually boasts about his "taste for murder" at political gatherings with his allies. So tell me again why you allow the owners of Slashdot to force you to notice the speck of sawdust in the eye of another, while ignoring the plank in your own eye?

Stalin? (1)

SuperCharlie (1068072) | about a year ago | (#45685475)

I think it was Stalin who erased people from existence. paintings, books, tax roles, every mention in every place. Very thorough, and very very paranoid.

Just like the Republicans are doing here (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45685477)

So many people disappear and are never heard from again. Only a few get media coverage.

Jang Song Strisand? (4, Funny)

Kaenneth (82978) | about a year ago | (#45685499)

I never heard of him before this article; now he's indelible.

Didn't they miss the point (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45685507)

If you are going to use him as an example, you can't go and delete all references to him. Then no one will be scared of the consequences that befell him. Because they can't find out.

catch-22 (3, Funny)

themushroom (197365) | about a year ago | (#45685567)

You make a good point. This will be really embarassing for his memoirs: "I learned everything about leadership from my un--... uh, my dad." Of course he could spin this as having gifts from his deity since he can't admit his uncle existed and schooled him.

Also, whatever the North Korean version of Thanksgiving will be pretty awkward from henceforth.
"Auntie, you look good..."
"Eat shit, you little bastard."

Re:catch-22 (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45685783)

What are you talking about?

Supreme Leader Kim Jong-Un never had an uncle like that, and surely he didn't need anyone to teach him leadership - the leadership skills are in his blood, inherited from his grandfather, The Eternal President of the Republic Great Leader Kim Il-Sung.

Seriously, though, where did you ever see top nobs actually writing their own memoirs? They've got professional biographers who'll sidestep and paint over any uncomfortable parts of the past.

Re:Didn't they miss the point (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45685569)

If you are going to use him as an example, you can't go and delete all references to him. Then no one will be scared of the consequences that befell him. Because they can't find out.

Nork apparatchiks know.

Same difference. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45685551)

West: media conglomerate exercise its "property right" to amend or remove articles;

NK: state-owned media corporation exercises its "property right" to amend or remove articles.

Hell, Britain's Conservative Party recently erased a decade's worth of articles and speeches full of broken Party promises, then set robots.txt so it'd be wiped from archive.org.

And, yeah, summary executions suck. I mean I just about prefer a 4-day summary public execution to a secretive bomb-from-overhead summary execution, but neither's justice.

There is a lot of evidence that NK sucks: "too many" punishments for political crimes (every nation punishes the politically dangerous, but most are more selective); collective punishment of families; etc. But its ability to selectively document or revise history is not something unique to NK. Nor is its ability to summarily execute. And justice in the US from "lol rape lol" to the zoo conditions of Miami County PTDC point to a barbaric regime here, though our media is much less motivated to report treatment of our inmates than the "enemy"'s.

So let's not go down the bullshit "at least we're not as bad as NK" route. Of course we're not as bad as NK, but we should be moving much further away from them, not rest on our laurels because we're better.

He could have been a jerk... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45685603)

He could have been a jerk, and tried to give the kid a hard time. On the other hand, killing a relative --one who goomed you for the job you now have-- is a signal that one of us has already gone batshit crazy. I think part of the problem is that absolute power corrupts absolutely. I would surmise that the power structure in the hermit kingdom is fragile with those at the top demanding utter and complete fealty from underlings. Any kind of 'second signal' from on high means that you have to nip that signal in the bud. An entire legion of followers following the 'second signal' must be brought into line if there is to be harmony. The fragility of the system means any 'correction signal' must be unambiguous and transparent through 100 levels of power, from warlord to peon. The correction signal in this case meant the death of an uncle. The kid now has complete fealty of all the generals. They don't dare breath a word against the fat kid. Also it sends a signal to others that the kid is batshit crazy. I don't know what parallels you can draw between the release of the American this past week and the killing of the uncle, but something in the back of my head says they might be related (like uncle was saying: 'kill the American, show us you have a pair...chicken', and the kid spared the American, and showed the uncle that he has a pair). Just a guess, but like I said...the power structure is fragile, and the system and kid are batshit crazy. An even more crazy idea is that the uncle dreamed up the idea and was willing to be the sacrifice so the kid would have power (although even I have a hard time with that one).

Was hopeful in Jong-Un... (2)

Gordo_1 (256312) | about a year ago | (#45685725)

Look, his uncle was probably as much a despicable character as any in the NK ruling party, likely performing or being complicit in any number of crimes against humanity, so no real loss to the human race here in all likelihood. What I find disturbing though is that Jong-Un has displayed callous disregard for human life in recent months in order to maintain complete control over the population.

I had high hopes for him when I learned that he'd been schooled in Switzerland, spoke English and had made positive comments in the past about the plight of the NK people. I figured he was young, idealistic, and maybe not all that different from myself -- had I been placed into a very difficult situation due to my family lineage. If placed in such a situation, I imagine that for a year or two I might have acted the part (whatever that means) in order to maintain control long enough to come up with a plan to bring some level of reforms to the country and ensure a longer-term transition to democracy.

Then again, you never really hear about a dictator who had a change of heart and became 'sane' after being able to operate with complete impunity for a while. I guess it's true when they say absolute power corrupts absolutely.

It seems that his age and boyish looks belie the fact that Jong-Il chose and groomed his successor very carefully.

Re:Was hopeful in Jong-Un... (1)

CohibaVancouver (864662) | about a year ago | (#45685803)

What I find disturbing though is that Jong-Un has displayed callous disregard for human life in recent months in order to maintain complete control over the population

No different than his father or grandfather in that respect. All of them shipped men, women and children off to gulags to suffer and die. His father feasted while children starved to death...

sacrificial lamb (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45685847)

...maybe 'lamb' is a bad word to use, but for all we know his uncle was a sacrifice and this was KJU's coming of age 'test'. They get him to beak off the king here and there and then see how he plays it. Why wait for corruption to happen naturally when you can help speed it along.

OTOH it's pretty much fucked up in any scenario. Par for NKs course.

Preemptive strike (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45685729)

If this is supposed to keep other officials scared, perhaps it will work.
If it was me in such a position, I'd be scared by it. Scared enough to make a preemptive strike just to be on the safe side.

Sympathy? (5, Insightful)

Charliemopps (1157495) | about a year ago | (#45685821)

This guy was one of the top brass in NK. Lets keep in mind how many millions of tortures and death he's likely responsible for. The worlds better off without him, and we can only hope NK becomes unstable soon. Those poor people that live there, my God. How can we still have such a place on this earth.

Un lasts until Un is taken out. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45685873)

Even the DPRK military leaders now see what is coming down the hill toward them.

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