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[Opinion] Anti Kim Jong Il Video

Posted January. 18, 2005 23:04,   


“Where are they? Where?” A man asked in a hurry and then a camera shot inside of a building. A board on the wall read, “Down with Kim Jong Il! People, let us rise up against the dictator. Free Youths Group.” The scene changed to under a bridge. “Until when do we have to starve to death? Where do they take us? People, fight for free democracy!” The phrase was also written by the Free Youths Group.

The 35-minute-long so-called “Anti Kim Jong Il Video,” which was released on the Internet two days ago, are full of explicit condemnation of North Korean leader Kim Jong Il and claim for change. The Free Youths Group in the video is an anti-establishment group which was allegedly organized from within the North. The civic group that has the video said the North Korean group really exists and that they are planning a support project for the anti communist group. However, the government does not seem to believe the claim. It is likely that the video was produced by an anti-North Korea group comprising North Korean defectors in China.

People’s views about North Korea are clearly divided. Some think that the North Korean regime has reached its limit. As information has continuously flown in from the outside world since the mid-1990s and nothing has changed, North Koreans’ complaints are now on the verge of explosion. Many others think that the communist regime is still strong. The South Korean government including President Roh also thinks so.

No one can know the fate of North Korea. The regime might collapse over night, or it might suddenly change its direction and lead a successful innovation and opening. The best option for the South at the moment would be to be prepared thoroughly for every possibility. The government should not forget the fact that even the greatest American economists in the 1980s such as John K. Galbraith, Paul Samuelson, and Lester Thurow failed to predict the collapse of the Soviet Union until the very last minute.

Song Moon-hong, Editorial Writer, songmh@donga.com