Kim Jong Un
Originally published 06/18/2013
Senior North Korean officials received copies of “Mein Kampf,” Adolf Hitler’s rambling prison memoir, as gifts for Kim Jong Un’s birthday this January, according to a report by New Focus International, a North Korean news organization that sources from defectors and volunteer citizens within the country.The famous Nazi autobiography was reportedly distributed as what’s called a “hundred-copy book,” which refers to Pyongyang’s practice of circulating an extremely limited number of copies among top officials, though most books are forbidden in North Korea. Gifts marking the leader’s birthday are typically imbued with special political significance.The book was apparently not distributed to endorse Nazism so much as to draw attention to Germany’s economic and military reconstruction after World War One. A North Korean who works on behalf of the country in China told New Focus that Kim gave a speech endorsing Germany’s inter-war revival and encouraging officials to read “Mein Kampf.”...
Originally published 04/18/2013
Walter Pincus is a national security journalist for The Washington Post.How provocative has the United States been to North Korea?For almost two months, the United States and South Korea have had more than 200,000 ground troops, tanks, helicopters, fighter-bombers, strategic bombers, submarines and destroyers exercising close to the demilitarized zone (DMZ) and the disputed sector of the Yellow Sea on the border between the two Koreas....[T]ry, for a moment, to put yourself in the shoes of 30-year-old Kim. He succeeded his father in late December 2011 and for the past five months has been maneuvering to consolidate his authority over the Korean Workers’ Party and Korean People’s Army. Early on he replaced three older generals who had been close to his father and talked of getting closer to the people.