For those who can't get enough of North Korea, here is a link to its official news agency's web site, actually hosted on a Japanese server. Probably the most interesting thing about the stories on here are that they are so incredibly boring. Moreover, there is a self-importance to them, such as the one announcing that Korean People's Just Cause Supported by Ukrainian Figure, who is probably one of about six members of the "Ukrainian 'Treasured Sword of Songun' Association for the Study of the
Juche Idea." Even if there are eight members, it's still not exactly a mass movement of workers and peasants rallying to the cause of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea.

Something else comes through too, a sound like one hand clapping. Take for example this story announcing Kim Yong Nam Greets Belgian King, and another Kim Yong Nam Greets Colombian President. Neither admits that the King of Belgium or the President of Colombia ever greeted Mister Kim back.

It must get lonely in Pyongyang.

Further, North Korea's news site is as drab and boring as meditations on the glory of Kim Jong Il's haircut. Strangely, the North Korean government has a much better designed site, with nice pictures, especially of a smiling Great Leader and Dear Leader, along with their inspiring biographies.

Additionally, it is fully of good information, including for business people interested in setting up operations in North Korea. One of the main advantages cited is:

Highly qualified, loyal and motivated personnel. Education, housing and
health service is provided free to all citizens. As opposed to other
Asian countries, worker's will not abandon their positions for higher
salaries once they are trained.

Nor let us forget:

Stable. A government with solid security and very stable political system, without corruption.

That "solid security and very stable political system" is definitely worth noting.

So for those interested in the North Korean viewpoint, there are ways to see it. The only problem is that one site might make you laugh, and the other could bore the dead.




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Comment by Jim Werbaneth on July 22, 2010 at 11:53pm
Stephen,
Team America aside, I do agree with you. The overtures to Belgium and Colombia read like plaintive cries of "Won't someone be my friend?"
Comment by Stephen G on July 22, 2010 at 7:13am
im 'ronery, so very 'ronery...
Comment by Jim Werbaneth on July 21, 2010 at 9:18pm
Thanks, Roger. The national web site is definitely less boring than the news site, and I've actually used it in the class; the official biographies of Great Leader and Dear Leader excellent examples of the cult of personality in action.

Now I probably should say something nice. If I did, the news site might report it as "American Figure Shows Support For Just Struggle of DPRK."

Nahhh... I think I'll keep on ripping them.
Comment by Roger Morley on July 21, 2010 at 2:28am
You were very right - I got bored to death by their blinkered websites. Good article by you though

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