NKorean leader’s son is ‘Brilliant Comrade’
By VIJAY JOSHI
SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — The youngest son of North Korea’s authoritarian leader has been given the title of “Brilliant Comrade,” a sign the communist regime is preparing the 26-year-old to succeed the ailing Kim Jong Il, a newspaper reported.
The report came Friday as the U.N. Security Council approved new sanctions against North Korea for its recent nuclear test. There was no immediate reaction from Pyongyang, which has repeatedly warned it would view new sanctions as a declaration of war. South Korea welcomed the sanctions Saturday.
U.S. and South Korean intelligence authorities disclosed during a meeting this week that Kim Jong Un is now being referred to in the secretive regime as “Yongmyong-han Dongji,” which translates roughly as “Brilliant Comrade,” South Korea’s mass-circulation JoongAng Ilbo newspaper reported Friday.
An unidentified intelligence official quoted by the newspaper said the title means the North will engineer a cult of personality for the younger Kim — much like it was done for his father and grandfather, Kim Il Sung, the only two leaders North Korea has known.
The eldest Kim founded North Korea in 1948 in the aftermath of World War II when the peninsula was divided between the Soviet Union-controlled north and the U.S.-backed south.
Flip back through our entries on the North Korean issue…
Per our June 2nd posting, North Korea has begun to ratchet up its rhetoric in advance of the anticipated succession of Kim Jong-un to the leadership of the DPRK; the chief rationalisation seeming to be that any leader of the insular communist regime must be tried by fire.
In its latest round of hostile hyperbole (as reported by the Korean Central News Agency – KCNA) it was declared that the nation’s growing nuclear arsenal would be wielded as a “merciless offensive means to deal a just retaliatory strike to those who touch the country’s dignity and sovereignty even a bit.”
(Even a bit? C’mon, Mr. Kim. By that standard, you’d certainly have to nuke yourself, personally. And maybe more than once! — Ed.)
It was the first time that North Korea’s nuclear arms have been portrayed as “offensive” in nature by its official news agency.
More details on Jong-un’s rise (including acknowledgement of that apparent fact by his eldest brother) and the DPRK’s most recent threats are available in this linked TimesOnline article.
Read about some little-known DPRK nuclear developments
in the following stories from our recent archives:
JUNE 2, 2009 Watch for Kim Jong-il to create a ‘defining moment’ to mark his youngest son’s anticipated ascendancy…
MAY 31, 2009 The following is a collection of images taken during (and after) the construction of the Syrian facility bombed by Israeli commandos on September 6, 2007. […]
MAY 27, 2009 Fifty-five years and ten months. That’s precisely how long the Korean Armistice lasted. […]
MAY 25, 2009 The UN Security Council has unanimously condemned North Korea’s latest nuclear firing test, which everyone seems to be assuming is their second such detonation. That might not be the case…
APRIL 27, 2009 It was early October, 2006. Overhead, satellites skimmed the sky above the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) and took careful note of the goings-on below.
On the ground, as well as far beneath it, technicians busily prepared for North Korea’s highly-anticipated, first nuclear weapons test – an event that was confirmed in dramatic fashion on October 9th, when it appeared on one of the seismographs I was monitoring…