North Korea Leadership Watch

Research and Analysis on the DPRK Leadership

Are we seeing the real KJI at last?

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"I am not the man you take me for": Kim Jong-il (or his double?) with fomer US President Bill Clinton. (Photo: KCNA)

Don Kirk has a brief dispatch in the Christian Science Monitor that questions whether former US President Bill Clinton actually met with Kim Jong-il or his body double.  I sincerely hope I am not wasting my time writing about General-Secretary Kim’s guidance tours if he is, in fact, using a body double for these appearances.  Several South Korean analysts are quoted in the article, but “far from verified” as Mr. Kirk writes.  Other than mindless speculation from Seoul-based DPRK experts, the only material evidence is a second-hand claim of a personal connection to the daughter of one of the body doubles.

Perhaps, the next dignitary who meets General-Secretary Kim can request his fingerprints or some other verifiable physical information–maybe a saliva swab tested against the DNA of an expat Kim relative.

Rumors of death and body-doubles have a precedent in the communist world: Leonid Brezhnev.  There were numerous rumors about Brezhnev’s demise in the 1970’s (see one story here) which turned out not to be false.

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  1. […] This frail man does indeed seem to contrast quite starkly with the jaunty individual seen embracing Hu Jintao and grinning at Bill Clinton.  And his left arm is firmly lodged in his coat pocket at all times. […]

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This article was written on 31 Oct 2009, and is filled under Kim Jong-il, Uncategorized.

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