Free Markets, Free People


The Kim is dead, long live the Kim … or not

Kim Jong Il, dictatorial ruler of the hermit kingdom of North Korea, has assumed room temperature.  A tearful announcer on the NK news service announced it last night.   The 69 year old ruler will be replaced by his 3rd son, Kim Jong un – or at least that’s the announced plan.

There is speculation as to whether or not that will be the final outcome.  Kim Jong un will only be the third leader (all from the same family) that NK has had in its relatively brief history.   General Thurman, the US commander of troops in South Korea summed the situation up pretty well in his confirmation hearing in June where he warned the Senate Armed Services Committee that  the older Kim’s death could increase the military threat on the peninsula, since "Kim Jong-un’s youth and inexperience increase the likelihood of miscalculation, as does the imperative for him to establish credibility with the military hardliners he needs to support succession. These factors make him less predictable in the near-term."

As if to emphasize that point, we have this:

North Korea test-fired a short-range missile off its east coast on Monday, the same day it announced the death of leader Kim Jong-Il, South Korea’s Yonhap news agency said.

The agency quoted an unnamed government official as saying the missile launch was unrelated to the announcement that Kim had died Saturday of a heart attack.

Naturally, anyone who has observed North Korea knows that nothing like that is “unrelated”.  Everything is tightly controlled and done for a purpose.  And the missile firing is not an “unrelated” incident.

This will be a situation to watch closely.  The military is a very powerful faction in NK.  And you have to figure there are those within its upper hierarchy that would like to see a change in leadership, most likely to an even harder line that now.  Dangerous times on the Korean peninsula as this leadership position plays out. 

~McQ

Twitter: @McQandO

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9 Responses to The Kim is dead, long live the Kim … or not

  • Josh Trevino’s tweet of the year: “I’d like to think God let Havel and Hitchens pick the third.”

    Heh!

  • Dangerous times on the Korean peninsula……………and we have a SCOAMF in the White House. Dangerous indeed.

    That said, OBL, Khadaffi and now Jim Jong Il? 2011 was a banner year for bastards going to the hell they’ve richly earned.

  • Oh, don’t be such an alarmist. This is a process of transition. is going to end up much better, the transition to that point requires involving parties, is certain to bring protests and the military is going to do what it must to assure as much stability as possible during the transition. It’s good that is gone, it’s good that a wave sweeping out the dictatorial thugs is going through the world. It’s important that the US is on the right side of history this time. This is part of a transition in global politics reflecting the information revolution, weakening of sovereignty (again, expect the practical demise of the central bureaucratic sovereign state by 2050 – it’s already a long way there), and in the world demographics. This is history being made, and if you know history, it doesn’t get made without some conflicts. But it is overall not only good, but inevitable.

    All due credit to the good Prof Erb and his generic political science comment generator.

  • Oh, don’t be such an alarmist. This is a process of transition. Egypt/NK/Libya/Syria is going to end up much better, the transition to that point requires involving Islamic/Communist/AcidHouse parties, is certain to bring protests and the military is going to do what it must to assure as much stability as possible during the transition. It’s good that Mubarak/Kim/Gaddafi gone, it’s good that a wave sweeping out the dictatorial thugs is going through the Arab/Asiam/European/American world. It’s important that the US/Germany/France/Kiribati is on the right side of history this time. This is part of a transition in global politics reflecting the information revolution, weakening of sovereignty (again, expect the practical demise of the central bureaucratic sovereign state by 2050 – it’s already a long way there), and in the Arab/Asiam/European/American world demographics. This is history being made, and if you know history, it doesn’t get made without some conflicts. But it is overall not only good, but inevitable.

    With all due credit to Prof Erb’s “generic political science comment generator” (TM).

  • Headline:

    North Koreans Mourn Hysterically At Loss Of “Dear Leader”–
    Bad Luck Barry Hardest Hit

  • http://pjmedia.com/vodkapundit/2011/12/19/required-viewing-48/

    Remarkably realistic and historically correct…

  • Naturally, anyone who has observed North Korea knows that nothing like that is “unrelated”. Everything is tightly controlled and done for a purpose. And the missile firing is not an “unrelated” incident.

    You’re probably right.

    But I wouldn’t be sure that they’re that competent; if it was actually scheduled in advance, it may well have gone off by inertia even after the death of Dear Leader.

    (Hell, if I was in the NK military at that level and had Orders to run a missile test to frighten the Imperialists on Monday morning, I’d follow them even if the Dear Leader had appeared on the radio telling me we were All Capitalists Now.

    Because Orders are Orders, and what’s not an order on the radio might just be a test of my obedience.

    And NK officers who don’t obey don’t get second chances.)

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