Thursday, December 4, 2014

Kim Jong (the Only) Un

                The given name of North Korea’s  leader has now been reserved only for him, according to reports. All North Koreans who had the same name when Kim came to power in 2011 have been forced to give them up, a South Korean government official confirmed. He stated, “It’s true that in North Korea, they now allow only one Jong Un.”
                There was mild hope in some quarters when Kim first came into power that he would prove to be a more modern, open and less brutal ruler than his dad and grandfather were.
                Then he had his uncle executed by firing squad when he started accruing too much power.
                That tended to curtail the optimism.
                Moreover, all North Korean homes and offices must sport portraits of Kim Il Sung and Kim Jong Il, the current dictator’s  grandfather and father, respectively. There are statues of these two men in all major cities. Their birthdays are national holidays. North Koreans wear lapel pins bearing their images, many while nearly starving.
                No one, at least outside North Korea, knows how many people were forced to give up their name, but Jong Un was a common name- for  men and women-  in both Koreas.

                Yet in North Korea, there will now be only one Jong Un. Unfortunately for North Koreans, it’s the wrong Jong Un.

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