While few will shed tears over the execution of King Jong Un’s uncle Jang Song Thaek, the develop is a interesting plot twist in the horror story that is Communist North Korea. For those who felt Kim Jong Un may be a puppet leader, this latest development shows his rule is not to be challenged while he is clearly looking to place blame for the regime’s failures on the previous generation. Unlike his self-serving father, it seems the young dictator is once again trying to show his people, and the world, that he is to be taken seriously as a leader with a mission to prove himself worthy of his beloved grandfather’s legacy.
It is highly unlikely the purge is Kim Jong Un’s way of eliminating hardliners from his regime in order to spur reforms; it is far more likely he wishes to prove himself the most hardened hardliner of all. Unfortunately, this medieval approach to consolidating power likely means world leaders will be far less willing and able to cooperate with the Kim Jong Un regime should an opening for diplomacy arise. After all, this type of behavior is unacceptable to our modern civil society, considering the uncle could have been jailed or excommunicated. More importantly, it reveals the insecurities of the young Kim Jong Un that will prevent him from compromising.
Considering North Korea’s increasing aggression toward South Korea, the US, China, and the rest of the International Community during the last days of Kim Jong Il and the rise of Kim Jong Un, this latest turn of events hints at a regime desperately trying to proof itself the unquestioned power in North Korea. Unfortunately, North Korea’s inability to express its insecurities and aggression outwardly likely means the North Korean People will see an even harsher future. As Kim Jong Un purges his inner circle, he will probably intensify the government’s neglect and abuse of all North Koreans.
As the People experience greater hardships, the Kim Jong Un regime will crush them into silence and that will spark even greater outrage that will someday lead to major civil unrest. The more Kim Jong Un tightens his grip, the more the North Korean People will have to defend themselves. After all, even the most abused people can only neglect their own interests, and/or allow others to neglect their interests, for so long before they have to fight for what they need and want. As such, the predictably cruel nature of the authoritarian regime will likely create greater instability as the North Korean People have already been neglected and abused for far too long.
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