North Korea has a policy of 선군, or “Military-First”, so we’re putting military-related stories first!
The folks over at 38North.org have a 3D rendition of some of the buildings at the 서해 위성 발사장 (西海 衛星 發射場/West Coast Satellite Launch Facility) in 동창리 (東倉里/TongChang Village)
…DailyNK has noted that they noticed some trucks going in and out of the area, possible indications of preparing for a launch by bringing in supplies.
“How’s the view from Room 39?” The economic performance sure looks different on the ground:
North Korea claims that a South Korean merchant vessel “rammed” one of their ships, sinking it. They are asking for an apology. According to some analysts, the alleged South Korean ship was in the area at the right time, but not at the actual coordinates given by North Korean media.
김정은 (金正恩/Kim, Jong-un) is breaking with tradition. Rather than awarding citizens some prize, like a TV, extra food, or candy, he’s actually giving everyone money. Yes, money. He’s just going to throw it at you like that. He didn’t even bother to think about what you’ve always really wanted: That pony.
원산 (元山/Wonsan)‘s new airport, the Kalma Airport, was originally a military air base, but has been redesigned and remodeled to become a civilian airport, which should attract more tourism to the 마식령 스키장 (馬息嶺 스키場/Masikryong Ski Resort), and other nearby attractions.
Mr. Stephen Haggard points our attention to a report that just came out, analyzing the different markets within North Korea, comparing conditions within urban regions.
Despite the debate over whether or not North Koreans are starving due to the drought, there were concerns over whether or not the 개성공업지구 (開城工業地區/Kaesong Industrial Complex) will have enough water to continue operations, mainly coming from South Korean legislative representative 심재권(沈載權/Shim, Jae-Kwon). The 통일부 (統一部/Unification Ministry) dismissed those concerns.
Supposedly, according to state media, 1,800 homes were built in 30 days, for those that were displaced by floods in the 라진 (羅津/Rajin) region.
Do you know where the Supreme Leader might be? [(PAWStamp) “A CLUE! A CLUE!”]
Analysis at 38North.org says after the recent heightened tensions between the two Koreas, there is evidence that the 中央政治局常務委員會 (중앙 정치국 상무위원회/Политбюро ЦК КПК/Political Bureau Standing Committee) is gaining more and more significance. As evidenced with the increased meetings throughout the year, and before and after the heightened tensions.
And we end this section with a link to the Kim, Jong-un Looks At Things Tumblr blog. This time: Looking at baby salmon.
Now, we’ll get to North-South relations, reunification issues, life in North Korea, & refugee matters.
Mr. Marcus Noland brings to our attention an article by the English version of DailyNK about Perez Esquivel, a Nobel Peace Laureate, who was imprisoned for his nonviolent protests against military dictatorships sweeping throughout South America, and was imprisoned in several countries for it. He recently spoke out against North Korea’s poor human rights record.
In addition to South Korea’s 2nd largest Buddhist Sect 천태 (天台/Cheon-dae), meeting with North Korean Buddhist delegates last Saturday, on celebrations for the 10th anniversary on reconstructing 령통사 (靈通寺/Ryong-tong Temple) in 개성 (開城/Kaesong). Celebrations are to be had on November 3rd. On top of that, South Korea’s largest sect, the 조계종 (曹溪宗/Jogye Order) visited them a day before, to discuss the celebrations over the anniversary of their reconstruction of the 신계사 (神溪寺/Shin-gye Temple), to be held on October 13th.
In preparing for upcoming celebrations, security measures have increased, and authorities are restricting access in and out of the capitol 평양 (平壤/Pyongyang).
… Now, not just in the capitol, but also in places far removed from it, like the Northwest border city of 신의주 (新義州/SinUiJu), is seeing roof access for buildings restricted, and border guards are placed on top of buildings, and all over public arenas.
North Korea showed off a new tablet. This time, running Windows 8?!?! Uhm… Not sure Microsoft authorized this…
Sino NK takes a look at the North Korean-led report on their own assessment of the human rights situation. That means someone actually took their own time to read the North Korean report. Respect. The analysis does a very good job at breaking down the selected angles and statements used, and looking at what they chose to address, and how to address it. You can check it out, the link is in our shownotes.
This is our final segment. A hodgepodge of stories we didn’t know where to put, like this one:
Monday, October 5th, 주원문, the South Korean citizen with US permanent residency, was repatriated to South Korea across 판문점 (板門店/Pan Mun Jom). He was put in a North Korean prison, allegedly for illegally crossing the border from China, back in April. And in a public speech, said it was to promote reunification. He was held for investigation by South Korean Intelligence officials to see if he broke their 국가보안법 (國家保安法/National Security Laws).
…Earlier today, he was released after initial questioning. The investigation is still ongoing.
劉雲山 (유운산/Liu Yun-shan), 中央政治局常務委員會 (중앙 정치국 상무위원회/Политбюро ЦК КПК/Political Bureau Standing Committee) of the 中國共產黨(중국공산당/Постоянный комитет Политбюро ЦК КПК/Communist Party of China), will visit North Korea for the celebration of the 70th anniversary of the founding of the 조선로동당 (朝鮮勞動黨/Трудовая партия Кореи/Korean Workers Party [KWP]), on October 10th.