Rodong Sinmun boasts global celebration for Party Congress

first_img Facebook Twitter By Daily NK – 2016.05.19 10:16am Ordinary Pyongyang residents have not received government rations since mid-April News SHARE Hamhung man arrested for corruption while working at a state-run department store RELATED ARTICLESMORE FROM AUTHOR Rodong Sinmun boasts global celebration for Party Congresscenter_img News News North Korea’s first Party Congress in 36years drew to a close on May 9. On that day, the Party-run publication RodongSinmun was filled with coverage about the conference. Pages one through fourdealt with Party Congress issues related to Kim Jong Un’s consolidationefforts. Pages five to seven announced the written decisions of the 7th Korean Workers’ Party Congress. Page nine featured articles discussing how variouscountries around the world were celebrating the Party Congress. In this editionof, “A Closer Look Inside the Rodong Sinmun,” we speak with Seo Jae Pyung,Secretary General for the Association of North Korean Defectors, to learn more.   1. Mr. Secretary General, thanks forjoining us. Can you tell us a bit about the background of the the PartyCongress? I don’t think there was any special reasonfor hosting the Party Congress exactly; I think it was mainly held in order topromote and solidify Kim Jong Un’s position as supreme leader. Looking at the contentof the Congress, there weren’t any significant changes made. In point of fact,Kim Il Sung, ordered that there should be no further Party Congresses untilcertain conditions were met, declaring, “Until the people dine on meat, do nothold a Congress.”  Kim Jong Un ignored this order to conduct his owncoronation. 2. The Rodong Sinmun reports that countriessuch as Russia, China, and Bulgaria had festivities to celebrate the PartyCongress. Was that really the case? I suspect this assertion contradictsjournalist reports from outside North Korea, no? After all, even North Korea’sallies, such as China, did not send a delegation to Pyongyang. North Korean embassies and friendshipsocieties abroad did host nominal parties in honor of the Party Congress. TheRodong Sinmun report is referring to these parties. But the embassies reallydidn’t have much choice in the matter. So they invited foreign guests to comeand celebrate the event. That being the case, I think it is a stretch to saythat the foreign countries enthusiastically embraced the Party Congress. The article was made in order to make itappear as if the North Korean regime has foreign support. But the foreign pressdidn’t cover these minor events.2-1. The North Korean regime consistentlyinsists that Kim Jong Un’s power is highly regarded around the world. What dothe North Korean people think about this? In the past, North Korean residentsbelieved the whole world knew about North Korea. But they don’t think that wayany longer. The authorities argue that, “stepping onto North Korean soilenables one to see the world,” but more residents are increasingly quipping,“How can one see the world from North Korea?” without hesitation. The NorthKorean propaganda machine does not have the same effect that it once had; it’sbeen rendered ineffective. In fact, the more the regime touts North Korea’sglobal status, the more the residents come to realize how untrue the statementsare. 3. The 6th Party Congress was held in 1980and was host to 118 foreign delegations, including China’s Vice President LiXiannian and Zimbabwe’s Prime Minister. But that wasn’t the case this time. Whywas that? During the 6th Party Congress, Kim Il Sungbattled through tough circumstances to advance the hereditary succession modelby putting his son forward as heir. He invited an international audience to doso. Kim Jong Un is being hit hard by international sanctions, which makes itpolitically difficult to extend invitations to international delegations.Furthermore, Kim Jong Un would risk being humiliated if he failed to deliver onthe promises he made to an international audience. To put it in another way,the international circumstances made it extremely difficult to host a Congress,but Kim Jong Un went ahead and pushed it through nonetheless.     4. The picture of Kim Jong Un on the firstpage of the Rodong Sinmun from May 9 leaps out at the reader. We see himwearing a Western style suit and tie, which is a new look. It seems as if he isgoing too far trying to emulate his grandfather. Your thoughts? In this context, when a politician wears anecktie, it’s a symbol that his status and position are protected. Kim Jong Unis using the symbol to substantiate his claim and show the country that he isthe supreme leader. So I think it’s a bit more complicated that simply himemulating his grandfather. It also shows us Kim Jong Un’s purposeful attempt tocreate his own image.    AvatarDaily NKQuestions or comments about this article? Contact us at [email protected] News North Korea Market Price Update: June 8, 2021 (Rice and USD Exchange Rate Only)last_img

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