End of Communism in North Korea!!
The moment you switch on the news channel today on your television, you may come across the Breaking News of the death of one of the most famous communist leaders of North Korea, Kim Jong Il. In this wake, this article deals with the life of Kim Jong Il and communism in North Korea.
Kim Jong Il, the communist leader of North Korea became one of the most hated and condemned leaders across the world due to his leadership style which left North Korea economically destroyed and isolated from the rest of the world. Here is a bit of history of what happened in North Korea under one of the most hated leaders in the world.
The ideology of communism was brought into existence by Karl Marx and Lenin. The aim behind this ideology was to create a society which is free from financial, class and state disparity which was based upon common ownership of means of production. In theory, this ideology would help development of a country or state due to development of productive forces. This would lead to abundance of material wealth that would help in distributing this wealth based on need. Conception of this ideology was to oppose the Capitalist inequalities in the society.
North Korea and Communism
Alexandra Kim, a Korean national residing in Russia is known to be the first Korean communist. However, the first communist political party, the Communist Party of Korea was founded in Seoul in 1925 at a secret meeting. Kim Yong-bom and Pak Hon-yong were the leaders of the communist party. It became the Korean section of the Communist International in the year 1928. However, in the same year, the party disbanded due to internal conflicts between rival factions. The communist party still existed through different party cells.
After World War II, both the Northern and Southern parts of Korea were liberated from the Japanese rule. The Soviet Red Army freed Northern Korea from the clutches of Japan and started to look for suitable leadership to extend its Communist ideology here. Kim II-sung, a former guerilla leader and a Captain in the Red Army entered North Korea with his battalion and became a prominent figure.
The “North Korea Bureau of the Communist Party of Korea” was officially established on October 13, 1945. Since then, the party underwent various changes and has been associated with various political parties.
Kim Jong Il and Communism
Yuri Irsenovich Kim, also called Kim Jong-il was the great communist leader Kim II-sung and was born in 1941. He was known to live life like a carefree playboy in his younger days and assumed by people to never become disciplined. However, he took up political sciences during his university years and started rapidly rising through the Communist Party ranks during his early life. In 1974, he was chosen as his father’s official successor. He assumed power after his father’s death in 1994.
Kim Jong Il took various titles such as the General Secretary of the ruling Workers’ Party of Korea and Chairman of the National Defense Commission. In 1998, his chairmanship was declared the highest post in the state. This elevated him to the position of the most powerful person in the state of North Korea.
Kim Jong Il and North Korea
Kim Jong Il, as a North Korean leader, was condemned worldwide for his style of governing the country. It was said that Kim was planning nuclear programs when the country was facing economic disaster. North Korea’s economy struggled throughout the 1990s and the primary cause for this was the economic mismanagement. North Korea was led to economic shambles due to this mismanagement coupled with the inability to import goods and only 18% of arable land which eventually led to famine. During this time, Kim adopted the “Military-First” policy in order to reinforce the regime and strengthen the country. This saw a small positive improvement in the economic situation of the country despite its need for continuous dependency for food and aid.
When it came to foreign relations, North Korea under Kim Jong-Il’s rule has always been shrouded by mystery. North Korea was typically cut off from the rest of the world and its political deeds unknown. People were known to be forced to buy locally produced goods, while Kim himself used to enjoy imported goods. His nuclear program further alienated North Korea and the country was perceived a threat to international peace. Under Kim, North Korea signed a treaty with the USA in 1994 agreeing to freeze and dismantle its nuclear weapon’s program. However, in 2002, Kim admitted of secretly producing nuclear weapons. This added new tensions between USA and North Korea.
North Korea under the rule of Kim Jong Il and communism is currently considered the most secretive and repressed country in the world in terms of human rights. Though Kim has always been seen as being praised as “Dear Leader” or “Our father”, it is commonly believed that this was purely out of fear of being severely punished. It is sometimes ridiculed that people who dare to raise their voice against the government are never heard from again. This is also the general view supported by media outside North Korea. Media in North Korea is also known to be severely controlled.
Whatever the economic and political situation of North Korea under Kim’s rule was, the future of the nation is uncertain upon his death. It is certain that most of the countries will rejoice his death, but the fate of the country will be known only once his successor, his son Kim Jong-un assumes power.