All posts tagged: US-North Korea relations

What does Kim Jong-un think of ‘The Interview’? Ask the NDC

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Cultural Politics / US-North Korea relations
Great National Unity will Crush Hostile Powers

Kim Jong-un is the head of the National Defence Commission (NDC), which is functionally the top organ of state power in North Korea (the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea). While no small debate exists about how skillful the young Kim Jong-un is as a bureaucrat, the extent to which he is operating under the influence of senior advisors, etc., there is no doubt that documents issued by the NDC are passing through his hands and, at […]

Carter in Pyongyang, Kim Jong Il in Changchun: Commentary

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American Foreign Policy / Chinese communist party / North Korea / North Korean border region / Op-Ed / Sino-North Korean relations

BEIJING — Jimmy Carter hardly rehabilitated the malevolent North Korean regime by showing up in Pyongyang, but the country’s communist leaders were undoubtedly glad to see him.  Kim Jong Il’s government is desperate to brandish success: it is nervously preparing for a Party Congress next month, an event where Kim Jong Eun, the youngest scion of Kim’s sprawling and polygamous family tree, will presumably be revealed as the  new symbolic leader of the North Korean […]

Death of Chang Song U / DPRK updates

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American Foreign Policy / North Korea / North Korea-Japan relations / US-North Korea relations

Surprisingly, this story seems not yet to have been picked up by English-language media.  Chang Song U, the brother of Chang Song Taek and a higher-up in the DPRK bureaucracy, was reported on August 25 by KCNA to have died.  Kim Jong Il was said to be saddened; much more detail is available in Chinese. In the meantime, North Korean media is celebrating Youth Day, talking almost daily about pro-NK activities in war-torn Mexico, and […]

Yonhap Reports: Bill Clinton to North Korea

US-North Korea relations

Yonhap News Agency reports that Bill Clinton is heading to North Korea to negotiate release of two American journalists.  The White House has no comment for the moment.   KCNA’s (Korean Central News Agency) website is mute for the moment on the topic, but KCNA announced via radio that Clinton had arrived in Pyongyang.  Yesterday the North Korean news contained a short post calling for  Lee Myung Bak to “ensure the people’s vital and democratic […]

French Dispatches from Tokyo: Philippe Pons on North Korean Provocations

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North Korea / US-Japan relations / US-North Korea relations

Why Read the European Press re: East Asia? A Justification I operate on assumptions that more sources, even flawed ones, are better than fewer.  (I also believe, unlike the classic example of Dick Cheney in 2002-03, that as we sift through these sources, it is important to let a thesis develop out of them rather than imposing one from above.)  Grabbing a wider net can only bring more perspectives to bear.  So even if European […]