In the book Lord of the Flies, a group of children are stranded on an isolated island, and their attempts to rule themselves become disastrous.
The same may be happening now in North Korea. Kim Jong Un, North Korea’s head millennial-in-charge, this weekend promoted his baby sister — a millennial who could be as young as 29 – to a top government position.
The consolidation of power may be an indication that 33-year-old Kim Jong Un is getting rattled by U.S. President Donald Trump’s constant statements that something needs to be done about the regime before they get their hands on nuclear weapons that could threaten the U.S.
In times of crisis, a dictator like Kim Jong Un would tend not to turn to the most qualified individual, but rather to the one whom he most trusts, whether she’s got the brains and know-how he needs or not. That is often the case with dictators, such as former Iraqi strongman Saddam Hussein, who put his sons Uday and Qusay in top government positions. Moreover, there is a tendency in many Asian countries to trust relatives, as many institutions, from courts to law enforcement, are often seen as untrustworthy, and family is seen as the only reliable option.
In North Korea, the leadership has always been paranoid about inside threats. That drove Kim Jong Un in 2013 to kill his uncle, Jang Song Thaek, whom he saw as a political threat. The North Korean leader also reportedly executed 300 individuals since he came to power, including over 100 senior officials.
The move could also mean Kim Jong Un is getting rattled. While Borderless News has no inside information on this, it’s possible he believes Trump is the one who could be the ultimate end of the regime.
That’s why North Korea is doubling down on its pursuit of nuclear weapons, as North Korea views nukes as the only way to keep the regime in power. North Korea’s leaders have always been astute observers of the world, and they’ve seen the U.S. unseat dictators in Iraq and Libya in the past decade-and-a-half. In Libya, strongman Muammar Gaddafi was killed by his own people and his body was placed in a freezer in a local market while thousands of people nationwide came to gawk at it. Kim Jong Un does not want this to be his fate.
The move also means that Kim Jong Un’s inner circle is getting smaller and smaller. He killed his uncle and assassinated his own half-brother, Kim Jong Nam, earlier this year, as the half-brother had been critical of the regime. Other sources claim that Kim Jong Un’s uncle had proposed a coup that would depose Kim Jong Un and put Kim Jong Nam in charge.
This South Korean politician and former general told Borderless News that elite circles in North Korea are all fearing for their lives, and no one knows who Kim Jong Un will target next.
Kim Jong Un’s baby sister, Kim Yo Jong, is believed to replace her aunt, Kim Kyoung Hui, who was a key player in the former regime. This continues a trend of getting rid of – at times killing – key members of the former regime, in a bid for Kim Jong Un to put his own people in key positions.
Kim Yo Jong is believed to be in her late twenties, and has long sat in key positions in the Workers’ Party, which is the only political party that is allowed to exist in North Korea. The U.S. Treasury Department has blacklisted her, along with six other North Korean officials, for severe human rights abuses, including activities to promote censorship in perhaps the most isolated nation on the planet.
Kim Jong Un and his baby sister have the same mother, Ko Yong-hui. The mother was born in Japan to a Korean family and was a former dancer who was believed to be the third partner of their father, Kim Jong Il.
In the end, Kim Jong Un will do what he thinks he has to do to survive. Hiring his baby sister is part of that. Whether this will prove to be a foolish move for him remains unknown.
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