How North Koreans live in North Korea

December 20, 2011

North Korea is the closest and most isolated country of the world, and many people in all around world know nothing about North Korea. The international mass media tell lies about many things, for instance, what they say about Iran and Iranians is totally bullshit and wrong. So, they are not reliable and what they say about North Koreans can be as reliable as what they say about Iranians. We all should try to not accept mass media’s bullshits without our own research. We all can know more about North Koreans by our own research. What the mass media show us is not the true image. Unfortunately, North Korea’s regime is worse than Iran’s and many other countries. The Communists have created a pure hell in North Korea. But it doesn’t mean that all North Koreans are stupid or totally ignorant. The North Koreans are humans, like all of us, and all humans hate the tyrants and those who make their life hell. The reason and the human history show us that the humans hate the tyranny and corruption, and sooner or later they will rise up and protest against the tyrant. The North Korean propaganda machine shows us the pictures of mourning people in North Korea or China, but it’s exactly like what the Mullah propaganda machine, or Gaddafi and Assad propaganda machine shows the world. Unfortunately, the western mass media only repeats what these propaganda machines say. It’s really a great tragicomedy. North Korea that the Communists call it DPRK (Democratic People’s Republic of Korea) is a small country. It covers an area of 120,000 km2, and shares land borders with China and Russia to the north, and South Korea to the south. North Korea’s population is about 24 million (half of South Korea’s), and Pyongyang with 3.5 million is its capital and largest city. Other cities are less than 1 million. North Korea’s life expectancy is about 64 years. Infant mortality stood at a high level of 51 (12 times that of South Korea). Buddhism and Confucianism are the main religions in DPRK, but the majority (15 million) declare or pretend that they are irreligion, because the regime is anti-religion. Education in North Korea is free and compulsory until the secondary level, and is controlled by the government. North Korea has a high literacy rate, about 99%, but North Koreans live in an Animal Farm, a pure hell that the Marxists and the Communists call it “Communist Heaven” or “Communist Utopia”


The North Korean ‘Communist Heaven’ is a pure hell. Most of the people with phone, mobile phone, and Internet access are ‘pro-regime’. If one wants a phone installed, they would need to indicate why they want a phone. Most of telephones are installed in government offices, collective farms, and state-owned enterprises, and only 10 percent controlled by individuals or households. The mobile phones were forbidden. But in 2004, about 20,000 people could have mobile phones in Pyongyang, but it was forbidden again. In 2010, the number of North Koreans owned a mobile phone reach 300,000. And in 2011, this number increased to about 700,000 users. In fact, about 60% of Pyongyang’s citizens between the age of 20 and 50 have a cellphone now. The country has no commercial Internet service providers, and the ordinary North Koreans do not have access to the Internet. Since 2000, they have a nationwide Intranet service called Kwangmyong (bright), which connecting all government institutions, and features e-mail service, censored news, search engine, etc. It’s an Intranet (local network), and is not connected to the Internet. PCs are unusual at home, and many don’t have PC or laptop. Kwangmyong is largely used in the universities and libraries. Attempting to access to the Internet illegally can be punishable by long sentences in a labor camp, but it can not stop many young educated people. Near the border region, cell phones allowing the transmission of news and even video to the other side. Cell-phone videos have provided the outside world with rare glimpses of life inside the country, as well as documentation of human rights abuses. North Korea has a few Internet café, and a handful of elite ass-kissers have access to the Internet via a pipeline through China, but this is almost certainly filtered, monitored and logged. Some say: “Only a few thousand people are allowed direct access to the internet (legally). The rest are ‘protected’ by a local version of China ‘great firewall’, controlled by the Korean Computer Centre. Yet even today, more and more business cards in Pyongyang carry e-mail addresses, albeit usually collective ones [!] A west European businessman said he is astonished by the speed with which his North Korean counterparts respond to his e-mails, leading him to wonder if teams of people are using the same name. This is, however, North Korea, and sometimes weeks go by in virtual silence”


Satellite Internet coverage is available, offering download and upload speeds up to 400 kbit/s, however it’s so difficult to smuggle a satellite terminal into the country. According to the Daily NK, a pro-democracy news site based in South Korea, computer classes cost more than six months wages for the average North Korean. The country has a very minimal presence on the internet, but in 2007 the .kp domain was created for North Korea’s regime. There are only dozens of websites in North Korea, but the North Korean regime trains computer hackers in the universities. North Korea has a very high degree of censorship. There is no freedom of press, and all media outlets are strictly owned and controlled by the North Korean regime. Visitors are not allowed to bring a radio or TV set. Radio or TV sets, which can be bought in North Korea, are preset to receive only the government frequencies and sealed with a label. It is a serious criminal offence to manipulate the sets and receive radio or television broadcasts from outside North Korea. It is illegal for North Koreans to listen to anything other than state-run radio. North Korea jams the South Korean broadcasts and all foreign shortwave broadcast services. The type of the jamming on shortwave is ‘Jet Plane Noise’, which makes it very hard to hear the radio broadcasts (like Iran). But these horrible and medieval restrictions can not stop the people. Some say: “listening to South Korean radio could result in capital punishment. However, many North Koreans now illegally listen to Southern music, watch South Korean videotapes, etc. They often bribe the officials “. In fact, bribery has become prevalent throughout the country, and it’s a common feature in all tyrannies in all times. There are many similarities between Mullahs in Iran and Communists in North Korea. Kim Jong-il’s book, Guidance for Journalists, advises that “newspapers carry articles in which they unfailingly hold the president in high esteem, adore him and praise him as the great revolutionary leader”. All North Korean journalists are members of the Communist party. Only news that favors the regime is permitted, whilst news that covers the economic and political problems in the country, or criticisms of the regime is not allowed. And it’s exactly like our situation in Iran.


In North Korea, GDP is about $40 billion and GDP per capita is about $1,800. Mainly because of a prolonged mismanagement, Communist bullshits, and corruption and suffocation, the economic situation is so horrible in North Korea. Everything in North Korea is state-controlled, and there is no market and private sector. More than 25% of GNP in North Korea devotes to the military. In fact, the lack of freedom, from personal freedom to freedom of press, has a main result: tyranny and widespread corruption. It’s what Karl Marx and his stupid followers could not understand it. The average salary in North Korea was about $50 per month in 2004 , and the average official salary in 2011 is $2 per month, while the actual monthly income seems to be around $15, because most North Koreans earn money in illegal small businesses. It’s really horrible. It’s the Communist Utopia that the stupid bastard Marxists talk about it. Everything in North Korea is communist. The collective farms, the shared apartment, the shared email address, the shared phone, etc. Of course, food rations, housing, healthcare, and education are offered from the state for free. But many people die from lack of food and lack of healthcare. The World Food Program and UNICEF found that 7% of children were severely malnourished; 37% were chronically malnourished; and 23% were underweight. The North Korean famine resulted in the deaths of between 300,000 and 800,000 North Koreans per year during the three year famine in 1990s. A report from Amnesty International said that the North Korea’s health care system is unable to provide sterilized needles, clean water, food and medicine. Most hospitals operate without electricity or heat, and doctors are forced to work by candlelight. Hospitals no longer stock medicines because staff sells them on the black market. It’s exactly what is called “Communist Utopia”. The demise of the communist regimes in the Soviet Union and East European countries, that supported North Korea’s regime financially, created more economic disasters for North Koreans in 1990s. In fact, it created a great human disaster there. But the North Korean regime still talks about “Communist Utopia”.


North Koreans have not ‘freedom of movement’. They cannot freely travel around the country, much less travel abroad. The North Korean government treats emigrants from the country as defectors ! and they are routinely beaten and sent to prison camps, or even executed. Public and secret executions of prisoners specially in cases of escape attempts, is a great tragicomedy in North Korea. They don’t allow the people to leave “Communist Utopia”! and the poor people should live in North Korea like a prisoner. Even domestic travels need “Travel Permit”. Only the loyal and healthiest citizens are allowed to live in Pyongyang. Those who are suspected of sedition are expelled from the city. People traveling from Pyongyang to other regions typically travel by rail. But in order to travel out of Pyongyang, people need an official travel
. In fact, North Korea is like a big prison and no one can escape from it easily (like Iran). A tourist says: “there are restrictions for North Korean citizen traveling inside their country. Especially traveling to Pyongyang is not easy for local people and requires a special permit”. A small number of capitalistic elements are gradually spreading, including a number of advertising billboards along certain highways, but private cars in North Korea are still a rare sight. The streets in Pyongyang are almost empty. Satellite photos of North Korea show an almost complete absence of vehicles on all of its roads throughout the country, even in its cities. Only the authorities and the high rank ass-kissers may own or lease vehicles. The majority of North Korean have bicycles. A tourist says: “Traffic is scarce, we only see some tourist busses, some military trucks and very few ‘private’ cars. But they have ‘shared-space’ concept also for highways: They are used by cars, bicycles and pedestrians !“. The public transport in North Korea, specially in Pyongyang is not so bad. They had metro, trolleybuses and trams. Water transport on the major rivers and along the coasts plays a growing role in freight and passenger traffic. But North Korea’s international air connections are so stupid. All civil aircraft are operated by Air Koryo: about 35 aircraft in 2010, which were purchased from the Soviet Union and Russia.


There is no private Bank or foreign bank in North Korea. The Central Bank of North Korea, under the Ministry of Finance, has a network of about 250 local branches. In fact, the people have no extra money, so they need no bank ! North Korea’s economy has been unique in its elimination of markets. By 1960s, market elements had been suppressed almost completely. Almost all items, from food to clothes, have traditionally been handed out through a public distribution system, with money only having a symbolic meaning. Since the 1950s, a majority of North Koreans have received their food through the public distribution system (PDS). The PDS forces farmers in agricultural regions to hand over a portion of their production to the government and then reallocates the surplus to urban regions.About 60% of the entire North Korean population, which represents the entire urban population, receives food through this government-run system. The PDS daily per person rations was about 150 grams in 1994, and reached as low as 30 grams by 1997. The PDS failed to provide any food in 1998 and 1999 (average ration was about 5 gram). And that’s why millions were dead in North Korea in 1990s. By 2005 the PDS was only supplying households with approximately one half of an absolute minimum caloric need. Daily per person rations were halved in 2011 is about 200 grams. It’s really the true meaning of “Communist Utopia”. The only market in North Korea is the black market and the deception market. The political prisoners and their families are sent to the special camps, where they are prohibited from marrying, required to grow their own food, and cut off from external communication. But this fact that they have many political prisoners (some say about 200,000) proves that the North Koreans are not as stupid or ignorant as the world thinks. They fight and protest, but they are brutally suppressed. In fact, no one cares about them. The Chinese and Russian bastards help the North Korean regime, and the western politicians close their eyes. Only the South Korea helps them every now and then.


The propaganda in North Korea is so horrible and so laughable. A tourist says: “Their propaganda machine says that Kim Il-sung ‘created the world’, and Kim Jong-il could ‘control the weather’. We went to the Kumsusan Memorial Palace that is a mausoleum for Kim Il Sung. Before seeing Kim Il Sungs embalmed body, we passed some other rooms. In one of them we were given earphones and heard that the whole world was shocked after Kim Il Sung died in 1994 and that there was mourning all over the world [!!!]“. Approximately 90% of news broadcasts in North Korea is propaganda, in an effort to mislead the North Korean public as to the outside world’s perceptions of the country. Some say: “When Kim Jong-Il visited Russia in 2011, official DPRK media reported Russians as being ‘awestruck’ by the encounter, revering Kim Jong-il’s ability to ‘stop the rain and make the sun come out’ [!!]” We can laugh at these stupid jokes, but the poor North Korean should live with these horrible jokes. It’s like our conditions in Iran. In fact, all brutal dictatorship are horrible joke and horrible nightmare. The propaganda machine in North Korea said: “South Korea is a poverty-stricken land, where American soldiers shot Korean children”. But South Korea and its differences with the north can show us the great miracle of Communism. South Korea also can show us the great miracle of Mullahs and Islamists in Iran. South Korea was less developed than Iran in 1970s. North Korea has 12 newspapers, 20 periodicals, 4 TV channels, and 11 radio channels, that all are in Pyongyang and all are part of the state propaganda machine (like Iran). There is no Foreign newspapers (like Iran). Many North Koreans don’t have a television set in their home. But VHS tapes that smuggled from China is popular. South Korean music and Hollywood movies are said to be spreading at a ‘rapid rate’ throughout North Korea despite the threat of punishment; the police and inspection teams are regularly bribed (like Iran). 99% of people are literate in North Korea, but Education is strictly controlled by the government (like Iran). The school curriculum has both academic and ideological content (like Iran). More than 10 percent of instruction is devoted to the “Great Kim Il Sung” and “Communist Morality.” Primary schools are known as people’s schools, and children attend them from the age of 6 to 9. Then from age 10 to 16, they attend either a regular or a special secondary school. Two notable universities in the DPRK are the Kim Il-sung University and Pyongyang University of Science and Technology, both in Pyongyang. The Pyongyang Business School has been established by the Swiss government. The number of university-educated North Koreans is not large, but many North Korean are not stupid. What their state propaganda machine shows us, should not deceive us. What they show us are the North Korean Basiji ! The number of the North Korean Basiji is not clear, but it’s so obvious that they are not in majority.

Here , you can find more pictures of North Korea and Pyongyang. It’s a travel blog of an Austrian who traveled to North Korea in 2008.