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North Korea on the verge?
Posted by: McQ on Saturday, March 22, 2008

It's been predicted so many times it's almost laughable, but if what is being reported now is true, "dear leader" may have some real problems on his hands:
A dire food shortage across North Korea has become so acute it has started to affect the country's elite in the capital, Pyongyang, reports say.

Aid agency Good Friends says food rations for some parts of the city have been cut by up to 60%, while others have seen their supplies cut off completely.

Only citizens who show absolute loyalty to leader Kim Jong Il and his regime are allowed to live in Pyongyang and are considered better off than their fellow countrymen.

But the food situation, which has mostly been felt in rural areas where rations have been suspended since November, has now spread to the city, according to the South Korean aid agency.

"Even ranking officials have run out of their (rationed) food supply, while a ban on (private) trade is strictly maintained," said an unidentified city official quoted by Good Friends.


"It is nothing but a death sentence."

The agency also said farm labourers were staying away from work because they were not getting any food. This was said to be affecting the planting of new crops.
There are two groups in NoKo who always get enough food, regardless of the suffering of the rest of the nation. Those are the loyalists in Pyongyang who run the government and prop up Kim Jong Il and the military who help him maintain power.

There's nothing in that report to indicate whether the military is suffering the same shortages as those in Pyongyang, but if I were to guess, Kim is less likely to let that happen than let the bureaucrats get hungry. He can always get new bureaucrats, but if the military were to mutiny, it's over.

If the military is suffering these shortages and they continue, I'd say Kim's time may be short.

The world is faced with a dilemma - let nature take its course and hope that the regime collapses, or offer food to a starving population. The obvious problem with the first option is there's as good a chance as not that the regime which would replace Kim's would be as bad or worse. And with the second, the continuation of the present murderous regime.

As badly as I want to see Kim's regime collapse, I'm afraid starvation for countless millions within the country isn't the way I'd like to see it happen. I'm just not Machiavellian enough to accept that as a viable option.
 
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"continence"?
 
Written By: Dan Holway
URL: http://
Don’t worry. The Chinese will step in if things get completely out of hand. They don’t want a (greater) stream of North Korean refugees coming across their border.
 
Written By: Dave Schuler
URL: http://www.theglitteringeye.com
And you have the problem that, if you give them food, it only goes to the party bigshots and the military, which means ’humanitarian aid’ winds up supporting the dirtbags causing the problem.
 
Written By: Firehand
URL: http://elmtreeforge.blogspot.com
The Chinese will step in if things get completely out of hand. They don’t want a (greater) stream of North Korean refugees coming across their border.
North Korea has been executing border crossers (a rather dramatic change) for the last month or so and has pretty much dried that up.
 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.QandO.net
And you have the problem that, if you give them food, it only goes to the party bigshots and the military, which means ’humanitarian aid’ winds up supporting the dirtbags causing the problem.
I don’t disagree - I just sayin’ I’m not a guy who is comfortable with letting people starve for any reason.
 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.QandO.net
I just sayin’ I’m not a guy who is comfortable with letting people starve for any reason.
Then sleep easy, because it’s Kim Jong Il that would be letting people starve, in any circumstance.

I know, I know.....cheap semantics.
 
Written By: shark
URL: http://
Better to short-run have people starve and then oust Kim than prop him up and let his brutality and insanity continue longer.

Short-term suffering is better than long term suffering...
 
Written By: Scott Jacobs
URL: http://
North Koreans continue to suffer from a Marxist disease in their midst.

It is called Kim Jong-Illness.

It is nothing that a little democracy won’t cure.
 
Written By: James Marsden
URL: http://
It is nothing that a little democracy won’t cure.
They just need a little vitamin Tank. :)
 
Written By: Scott Jacobs
URL: http://
As badly as I want to see Kim’s regime collapse, I’m afraid starvation for countless millions within the country isn’t the way I’d like to see it happen. I’m just not Machiavellian enough to accept that as a viable option.
It will happen that way either way. Even if we send food, it won’t trickle down to the millions. We learned that lesson in Somalia.
 
Written By: Phelps
URL: http://phelps.donotremove.net
Yes, sadly the North Korean people are well and truly screwed. I would hope that at least at some point all those who over the past 50+ years supported the NoKo Stalinist government or gave it cover would at least have the decency to be embarrassed, but my experience tells me they won’t skip a beat. The answer is that Kim just didn’t get Communism right. Hang on, though, Mugabe will. (Ooops.) Well, Fidel did. (Oops.) Well, Chavez will. And on and on and on and on.
 
Written By: JorgXMcKie
URL: http://

As badly as I want to see Kim’s regime collapse, I’m afraid starvation for countless millions within the country isn’t the way I’d like to see it happen. I’m just not Machiavellian enough to accept that as a viable option.
(sigh)
I’m with Phelps, here, Bruce. I gotta say, I’m not happy about it either, but given the construction of things, it wasn’t likely to go down any other way, Bruce. So long as the communists are in power, they’re always the last ones to feel the damage they cause.

It is, in fact, situations like this that give rise to the phrase: "There are worse things than war".

Hmmm. At the risk of throwing this thing off the track, perhaps that’s a question as should be asked; Would a war, in this case, have saved lives?




 
Written By: Bithead
URL: http://bitsblog.florack.us
North Korea has been executing border crossers (a rather dramatic change) for the last month or so and has pretty much dried that up

If things get bad enough, that won’t be enough of a penalty. If you are starving to death, and the nearest food is in China, you’ll try to go there. And in any case, a quick death by bullet is easier than a slow death by starvation.
 
Written By: kishnevi
URL: http://
Airlift?

Drop food simultaneously all over the back-woods with colorful English labels on the cans and bags of grain.
 
Written By: Synova
URL: http://synova.blogspot.com
McQ, I absolutely detest the thought of those people starving. And the thought of those party slimeballs getting enough to eat while the peasants starve. It’s just that, short of invasion, I can’t think of a damn thing we can do that would actually make a difference.

Which really pisses me off.
 
Written By: Firehand
URL: http://elmtreeforge.blogspot.com

 
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