North Korea Leadership Watch

Research and Analysis on the DPRK Leadership

Will you still need me, will you still feed me when I'm Sixty-Four?

The Korean Workers’ Party is officially sixty-four years old.  Perhaps the 12 October missile tests were a commemoration not only of the KWP, but its steadfast support for songun chongch’i.  The KWP subsidized a fireworks display held around East Pyongyang near the Party Founding Monument.  Floral baskets were placed in front of Kim Il-sung statues in Pyongyang and the provinces, Workers’ Organizations’ art groups entertained, and titles (Order of KIS, Labor Hero) were passed out.  On Friday, Kim Jong-il attended a concert at Mansudae Art Theater featuring some of his favorite domestic singing groups–the Mansudae Art Troupe, Unhasu Orchestra and the pop-classical Samjiyon Band.  Samjiyon Band (a spin-off of the Mansudae Art Troupe) is one of the DPRK’s music groups that entertains General-Secretary Kim at the banquets and dinner parties he hosts at his residences.  There is neither photography nor video of General-Secretary’s appearance, but I will look for the next installment of the monthly Guidance Tour films where previous theater appearances have turned up.  Finally, SPA Presidium President Kim Yong-nam, Premier Kim Yong-il and NDC Vice Chair/Minister of the PAF VMAR Kim Yong-chun lead a group of senior Party and State officials on a political education re-fresher course through the Party Founding Museum.  Nice to see Kim Yong-nam in the role of note taker for a change.

On Monday morning, it was back to business when Rodong Sinmun called for heroism among the North Korean population on the newly launched labor mobilization effort, the 100-Day Campaign (was the missile test the starting gun on this?).  And not to pick nits, but if this is about building a “strong and prosperous state” for 2012, wouldn’t it make more sense to just launch a 900-Day Battle Campaign and be done with it?

KPA soldiers getting ready to get ready for the KWP Anniversary's fireworks display. (Photos: KCTV)

KPA soldiers getting ready to get ready for the KWP Anniversary's fireworks display. (Photos: KCTV)

(From left to right) DPRK Premier Kim Yong-il, SPA Presidium President Kim Yong-nam and VMAR Kim Yong-chun, NDC Vice Chair and Minister of the People's Armed Forces watching the fireworks display. (Photo: KCTV)

(From left to right) DPRK Premier Kim Yong-il, SPA Presidium President Kim Yong-nam and VMAR Kim Yong-chun, NDC Vice Chair and Minister of the People's Armed Forces watching the fireworks display. (Photo: KCTV)

Fireworks over Pyongyang skies. (Photo: KCTV)

Fireworks over Pyongyang skies. (Photo: KCTV)

More fireworks in Pyongyang. (Photo: KCTV)

Collective genuflecting at the Grand Monument of Kim Il-sung on Mansudae Hill. (Photo: KCTV)

Collective genuflecting at the Grand Monument of Kim Il-sung on Mansudae Hill. (Photo: KCTV)

Kim Yong-nam and other State and Party heavyweights touring the Party Founding Museum. (Photo: KCTV)

Kim Yong-nam and other State and Party heavyweights touring the Party Founding Museum. (Photo: KCTV)

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  1. […] Leadership Watch keeps up its steady diet of meaningful posts with an analysis of Korean Workers’ Party festivities, linking the missle tests to that particular act of […]

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This article was written on 13 Oct 2009, and is filled under Uncategorized.

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