Death of a Dictator: North Korean Leader Kim Jong Il, 69, Has Died
His son, Kim Jong-Un, is set to take over the reigns of the North Korean regime, one who may be even less stable than his father. To prove his readiness as leader, I wouldn’t be surprised if he’ll try to provoke some sort of crisis on the Korean peninsula in the coming days, especially if word reaches him that there are South Koreans who are jubilant over the news of his father’s death. Unsurprisingly, it is now being reported that South Korea’s military has been put on alert as a precaution …
Update: North Korea Declares Kim Jong Un ‘Supreme Leader’ as Memorial for Kim Jong Il Begins – “North Korea’s power brokers declared Kim Jong Un the supreme leader at a massive public memorial for his father Kim Jong Il, cementing the Kim family’s hold on power for another generation. The son, dubbed North Korea’s Great Successor, stood with his head bowed and somber in a dark overcoat on a balcony at the Grand People’s Study House overlooking Kim Il Sung Square and watched the memorial that doubled as a show of support for his burgeoning role as leader.” Read more.
In a ‘special broadcast’ Monday from the North Korean capital, state media said Kim died of a heart ailment on a train due to a ‘great mental and physical strain’ on Dec. 17 during a ‘high intensity field inspection.’ It said an autopsy was done on Dec. 18 and ‘fully confirmed’ the diagnosis.
Kim is believed to have suffered a stroke in 2008, but he had appeared relatively vigorous in photos and video from recent trips to China and Russia and in numerous trips around the country carefully documented by state media. The communist country’s ‘Dear Leader’ – reputed to have had a taste for cigars, cognac and gourmet cuisine – was believed to have had diabetes and heart disease.
‘It is the biggest loss for the party … and it is our people and nation’s biggest sadness,’ an anchorwoman clad in black Korean traditional dress said in a voice choked with tears. She said the nation must ‘change our sadness to strength and overcome our difficulties.’” Read more.
South Korean military declares emergency alert after Kim Jong-il’s death – “South Korea’s Joint Chiefs of Staff (JCS) on Monday placed all military units on emergency alert following the news of North Korean leader Kim Jong-il’s death. The JCS said it called an emergency meeting of officials handling crisis management and operations just after noon Monday, after the North Korean media reported Kim’s death. The JCS said it has increased its monitoring activities along the border along with the South Korea-U.S. Combined Forces Command. No unusual activity had been observed from the North, officials said.” Source – Yonhap News Agency.
Flashback: North Korea confirms Kim Jong-il’s son will take over as leader – “A senior North Korean official confirmed today that Kim Jong-il’s youngest son will succeed him as the next leader of the reclusive communist nation. In the first public confirmation of the succession plan, Yang Hyong-sop referred to Kim Jong-un as ‘the young general’ during an interview with Associated Press Television News. Yang said the nation’s people were honoured to serve him as their leader.” Read more.