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March 12, 2010 Permalink

On the Spot with Kim Jong-il

The Korean Central News Agency (KCNA), North Korea's state-run (and only) news agency, sporadically releases photos of reclusive 69-year-old leader Kim Jong-il as he makes "on-the-spot" guidance visits. Kim Jong-il, continuing a practice begun by his father, Kim Il-sung, makes these visits to factories and facilities throughout the country, purportedly to offer his personal guidance. Followed by army officers, security personnel and plant managers - most carrying pencils and notepads to record the guidance of "Dear Leader" - he examines, listens, gives a talk, poses, then moves on, entourage in tow. When viewing the photos below, keep in mind that the KCNA is a state-run operation, most of the photos are undated, no photographers are credited, and independent verification of circumstances is nearly impossible. Collected here are a few recent photos released by the KCNA of Kim Jong-il giving "on-the-spot" field guidance. (31 photos total)

In this undated photo released by Korean Central News Agency via Korea News Service in Tokyo Wednesday, Jan. 27, 2010, North Korean leader Kim Jong-il visits the September General Iron Enterprise in North Phyongan Province, North Korea. (AP Photo/Korean Central News Agency via Korea News Service)
more photos
This page lists only comments and the first photo for the entry.
To see the entire entry, with all photographs, click here.

292 comments so far...

Mieux vaut en rire qu'en pleurer...

Posted by Beernozzle March 12, 10 12:54 PM

Not exactly a happy person....

Posted by Adriaan March 12, 10 01:02 PM

This is the first time I've ever seen a commentless batch of photographs on this site. While the photographs are uninspiring - especially in comparison to the usual fare - I figured at least someone would have something to say about the politics.

But then maybe this is the just deserts of this delusional narcissist - nobody cares about him and his saber rattling, or the machinations of North Korea as a whole, anymore. The world has figured out that he's just a yappy little dog, barking from the safety of his yard.

I at the least wonder what sort of guidance Dear Leader would have concerning corn starch production.

Posted by Firecracker George March 12, 10 01:03 PM

That coat.

Posted by Nick March 12, 10 01:07 PM

They must have rounded every single apple & live pig in the country for those pictures.

Posted by Anonymous March 12, 10 01:08 PM

well. apprantly Its a dead country just like him

Posted by Runlorafe March 12, 10 01:08 PM

Most scary photos I have ever seen...

Posted by Briefer March 12, 10 01:08 PM

Does Kim Jong-il have glaucoma? He's wearing those sunglasses in every photo - even at night.

Posted by raweber March 12, 10 01:14 PM

Something different for today. Amazing that he allowed all the picture taking, and it would not be staged, right :-)

Posted by Derek March 12, 10 01:16 PM

Haha he looks so bored.

Posted by JakobStr March 12, 10 01:18 PM

Y a pas de vie... juste le travail.

Posted by gza March 12, 10 01:18 PM

What's with the hat and glasses?

Posted by Janis Dreimanis March 12, 10 01:22 PM

Dude, what's with the sunglasses?

Posted by Crystal March 12, 10 01:24 PM

Photo #3: "It's people!"

Posted by Rob Cook March 12, 10 01:25 PM

C'est nul ?!

Posted by Joris March 12, 10 01:25 PM

Photos like this make me remember the times of Ceaucescu where this kind of on the spot guidance visits were common.

It was also the norm that shops /factories/ farms would be filled with produce, especially for the visit... but the illusion was build better in communist Romania.

These photos show a very... very... poor situation. If this is the best NK can show, than thinks are incredible bad out there.

Posted by danezia March 12, 10 01:27 PM

@16, 17, 18. Vibrant leader giving guidance indeed.

Posted by Jurriaan March 12, 10 01:27 PM

#14 I love how they're all wearing winter coats inside during a power point presentation. One of these days I'm sure they'll find the resources to install central heating.

Posted by Matt March 12, 10 01:28 PM

I wonder now whether Matt Stone and Trey Parker had it right when they had him sing "I'm so Ronely" in Team America: World Police.

Posted by Jeremy March 12, 10 01:29 PM

@ Firecracker George

I think the reason for the lack of comments is that it's hard to know what to think when looking at those photos. They stir up a number of uncomfortable emotions.

I agree that it must be awkward to an extreme degree to have your dictator arrive at your steel factory and attempt to optimize your furnace with advice that probably amounts to "make it hotter". The plant manager would just have to smile and nod enthusiastically and praise Dear Leader's insight while he panics internally over how he's going to avoid implementing such disastrous advice without getting himself thrown in prison.

It's a bizarre nation and I can't help but wonder if the citizens are truly as brainwashed as it appears they are or whether they secretly know what the rest of the world is like and wish they could join it.

Maybe someday.

Posted by Cvnk March 12, 10 01:34 PM

Can somebody help this dude ? He apparently lost its guide dog.

Posted by bob March 12, 10 01:34 PM

RE: Sunglasses; Clearly he thinks he is bono.

Posted by Anonymous March 12, 10 01:35 PM


Posted by DOm March 12, 10 01:36 PM

#3 - I'm betting he threw the cookie back onto the pile after handling it.

Posted by Mike March 12, 10 01:41 PM

the only time he smiled is when we was at the liquor factory

Posted by Ed March 12, 10 01:41 PM

Are any of these pictures not photoshopped?

The colors, overlaps, edges just about all look wrong to me.

Posted by Brandon March 12, 10 01:43 PM

No prices on the food in the grocery story. Factory shots often have a single machine in an otherwise sparse or empty room.

Posted by Jim March 12, 10 01:44 PM

The coat is probably because in the picture of him in the green shirt, you can see a bruise from an IV on his right wrist. He is sick.

Posted by Brian Kramer March 12, 10 01:44 PM

He reminds me of Brain, from that cartoon Pink and Brain, and he's also allways trying to conquer the world.

Posted by Sniffer March 12, 10 01:45 PM

People looks so gloomy, neither happy or angry to see him ! We must have all fruits and pigs of the country on these 31 pictures !

Posted by Eugénie March 12, 10 01:51 PM

#3: Waiting for someone to say 'Here comes the airplane!' and make 'Brrrm brrrm' noises so he can eat that biscuit.

#4: "So the bartender says, 'That wasn't the toilet, that was my mop bucket!'" Nobody tells that one like he does.

Posted by flandroid March 12, 10 01:54 PM

@Danezia. Your comment is exactly what was going through my mind ever since I saw the very first photo. Unbelievable...same images, only in color and with different faces....makes you wonder...really? 20 years after? another country around the globe? another culture? and yet same exact images...goes to show dictators and totalitarianism have no creativity, no originality.....

Posted by Cristina March 12, 10 01:56 PM

Toutes ces photos sont tristes, grises et austères. Celà reflète bien l'ambiance qui doit régner dans ce pays

Posted by verO March 12, 10 01:58 PM

Picture # 13 has a little typo [Phoot]. Please correct it and thanks for this unexpected collection.

Posted by Blue Hen March 12, 10 02:02 PM

Someone needs to take this pictures, and do humorous captions to them. For example, #20-
Kim: "I have never seen..... so many invisible children standing in a row....."
Crony #1: "Good one, sir! Invisible children in the shoes! Excellent joke! Please! A round of applause for his majesties joke!"

Posted by Jon March 12, 10 02:03 PM

Re: Sunglasses

Maybe he's just a fan of Cory Hart?

Posted by Boas March 12, 10 02:10 PM

The coat and hat are to give the illusion of equality. Others in his entourage are wearing similar coats and hats. He's just like everyone else and any of those other (old) men could be him!

Posted by Beagle March 12, 10 02:16 PM

Everyone looks terrified of him.

Posted by aburtch March 12, 10 02:16 PM

Não dá uma invejazinha danada dos comunistas ? .....................NOT !!

(dedicados aos dinossauricos comunistas brasileiros)

Posted by Franco March 12, 10 02:25 PM

The shades, the hat but why the gloves???
I wish I could visit that country.

Posted by Ernest March 12, 10 02:25 PM

I think 8 and 27 are the same place - look at the woman in violet. Or, these are 2 fake places...

Posted by Andrey March 12, 10 02:26 PM

The best thing will be to ignore this man, no pics, no comments, I just hope that the people in this "lost" country will ever get fruits like in "8" ?

Posted by Photomichl March 12, 10 02:27 PM

The corn looks like it was painted yellow for effect.

Posted by Leo Petr March 12, 10 02:27 PM

there is obviously nothing to complain about in that country. did you see all the fruit?

Posted by sam March 12, 10 02:30 PM

sorry, but I have to say it.. the level of the pictures is far low from the one you use to show us..

Posted by Ivan March 12, 10 02:31 PM

We need to pray for the people of North Korea. I can't begin to imagine what it's like living under that dude's tyranny. No freedom of speech or even religion. So sad. :/

Posted by Pedro March 12, 10 02:32 PM

23 say all :/

Posted by me March 12, 10 02:32 PM

So he was wearing the same coat, and the same hat, the same pair of shoes, and the same trousers, to all those distinct official visits to various different facilities all over the country?


Posted by Guido March 12, 10 02:47 PM

Picture # 31,
" Put the red 4 to the black 5 and then move your king to the empty spot"
" Brilliant !! "
" Its the hat ."
I know its weak, but thats all I got.

Posted by raul briseno March 12, 10 03:00 PM

Caption Contest!!!

Posted by Weatherproof March 12, 10 03:03 PM

#29: how many pigs ?

Posted by RecklessTypist March 12, 10 03:10 PM

"but look at all the food and flat screen computers we have in the North..."

the people are all well fed and happy to see their "dear leader!"

meh, if only the majority of those people knew what is happening outside of their borders.

Posted by kernow March 12, 10 03:16 PM

Good to see that the Red Bucket and Biscuit Cookie industries are booming.

Posted by josh March 12, 10 03:18 PM

Bland photos, indeed, but I think TBP does a good job covering a variety of subjects. Although there isn't much in the captions, the photos themselves have quite a lot of underlying social commentary...

Posted by spyra March 12, 10 03:21 PM

Really Big Picture, you have nothing better to post today than a bunch of pictures of Kim Jong Il standing around a bunch of factories? Boo.

Posted by haleigh March 12, 10 03:21 PM

Well this was exactly what I expected.
The places for his visits look like they were cleaned up for the occasion, more produce was stacked up and workers were instructed to look busy and happy. The eyes do not lie however. People do look tired and in some cases show signs of malnourishment. These people are so tired of his and his father's dogma and deserve so much more. But, I guess there is no oil there... just a bucket factory and a supermarket. Thanks for the photos.

Posted by opo March 12, 10 03:22 PM

I wish I had the opportunity to spit in his face.

Posted by monty March 12, 10 03:27 PM

couldn't help but think of this:

I'm not trolling and no, I don't think there are any political similarities, just two bored looking heads of state. The Obama one happens to make me laugh in the context presented; this Korean collection piques my curiosity.

Posted by Adam March 12, 10 03:28 PM

I fascinated by fact that on these photos he looks so funny and of course KCNA is have no intention to make his leader a clown like person! I cant stop laughing on each of the photos. His expression is fabulous, his sunglasses is cool and hat is just awesome. And with all my respect I can only imagine the way all peoples around him is catching every his word and movement.

Posted by Serge March 12, 10 03:28 PM

A tragedy!

Posted by Jakob March 12, 10 03:33 PM

i have been reading J. Driver's book on body language. ignoring Kim Jong-il's politics, mental instability, selfish a$$hole, etc...THE MAN IS A MASTER OF CONFIDENT BODY LANGUAGE. in most of the shots, he is standing w/ his face relaxed, hands at his sides. this is supreme self-confidence, especially given the situations. i see no self-touch / self-assurance gestures & very little w/ hands hidden in pockets or other tense tells. then check out everyone around him - MASSIVE amount of axious body language. fascinating stuff, thank you, BP !

Posted by double_G March 12, 10 03:35 PM

Groundhog Day anyone?

Posted by Mosez March 12, 10 03:38 PM

If the situation in N Korea weren't so depressing, these would be just about the most ridiculously funny pics... "Dear Leader" probably doesn't even know that the events are staged. I love the red velvet rail cover in #1. Classic.

But, I'll throw some captions:
#3 "and they can use it for a drum too!"
#6 "A box of Jujubes and a Diet Coke, too."
#11 " That's a nice sample, but we'll need one from everyone"
#20 "Are these the latest Jordans? I love me some new kicks."
#23 "Let's grab a few of these and go pick up some chicks"
#24: The Consecration of the Corn. (This one needs a real good caption)
#28: "and here's a look at this week's political dissidents that we locked up" (Yes, that's in bad taste, but it's all I could think of).

Anyway, thanks Big Picture, these are just so strange.


Posted by Papa Lazarou March 12, 10 03:40 PM

Photo 3: I bet $10 he didn't wash his hands before he digging around in the pile and picked this... whatever it is up. I bet another $10 that he put it back into the pile. Some unlucky North Korean got a mouthful of Kim Jong germs shortly thereafter.

Thanks, Big Pic. Another set of photos reminding me of how fortunate I was to have been born in America. I feel for the N. Korean people who have to live under this clown's rule. I hope his son is a better person and a better leader for his people.

Posted by kevjohn March 12, 10 03:43 PM


Posted by ace March 12, 10 03:49 PM

it's a good thing he's such a renaissance genius, or NK would be a real third-world pit. oh, wait...

Posted by drow March 12, 10 03:49 PM

There's a great leader for you. Stands around looking at sh** wearing a dumb-arse expression without doing a G-D thing himself. Spiffy sunglasses, though.

Posted by Anonymous March 12, 10 04:19 PM

It's your future if you not bringing your money for me... (Benlandia)

Posted by michael March 12, 10 04:22 PM

any one notice the poor black shee...I mean pig. He is doomed.

Posted by James March 12, 10 04:27 PM

Photo #2: The only true representative photo of NK: The cattle are even begging for food.

Posted by Riley March 12, 10 04:28 PM

Photo 4 looks 'shopped-- head in the upper right corner looks too large and oddly lit.

Posted by Jeff March 12, 10 04:30 PM

#3 "Soylent Green is people!"
#5 "If you pick up that chock, sir, you'll get a surprise that'll bowl you over."
#20 "Imelda Marcos ain't got nuthin' on me!"
#28 "Yes, sir, it's called 'Manga.'"

Posted by Vagueofgodalming March 12, 10 04:33 PM

"what a horrible person... poor north-korean people"

Posted by marilyn March 12, 10 04:43 PM

#4: I Has a Bucket! (for an explanation)

Posted by Tom March 12, 10 04:46 PM

He looks so photoshopped on most of the pictures.

Posted by ataradov March 12, 10 04:54 PM

the only picture you see him smiling is with VODKA :D

Posted by teecis March 12, 10 04:56 PM

Maintenant on connait la veste (unique) à la mode en corée

Posted by Antoine March 12, 10 04:57 PM

These photos remind me of the photos from Chernobyl.

Posted by Bundalicious March 12, 10 05:04 PM

Concealing the eyes is a common form of intimidation (through dehumanization).

If the most humanizing feature of the human face is ambiguous, Dear Leader's underlings will be more apt to see his as a deity, instead of just another person.

Posted by Psy March 12, 10 05:06 PM

This man reminds me about Ceausescu, the ex president of Romania. Was a Communist! Killed in 1989.

Posted by James March 12, 10 05:12 PM

These all look like they were taken at different date-in-time, but within 15 feet of one another.

Posted by Anonymous March 12, 10 05:14 PM

Are we sure he is not just a wax figure they are carting around? You know.... kinda like when people take a troll on all their vacations. Hmmmm..... only that would be a happy time.

Posted by Jolly March 12, 10 05:20 PM

all perfect all right, all dead.....

Posted by clopain March 12, 10 05:43 PM

apparently south korea is also short on even half-way decent photographers?

Posted by cal pal March 12, 10 05:48 PM

He sure does a lot of inspecting.

When looking at the folks in the background, I don't think you can find a genuine smile in any of these pictures.

Posted by kasakka March 12, 10 05:50 PM

He has that similar dumbfounded look that a certain community organizer would have if he were to conduct these types of visits.

Posted by Big Weezer March 12, 10 05:51 PM

this guy appears to me as a funny grandpa, but i guess the devil comes in many different shapes.

Posted by Steven from Holland March 12, 10 05:54 PM

I see these photos of him and always think of the "I'm so ronely" puppet in Team America.

Posted by Tom March 12, 10 05:56 PM

I can't look at him without hearing his musical numbers in Team America.

Posted by mick March 12, 10 05:59 PM

I will be a way cooler dictator.

Posted by Grand Uber Overlord March 12, 10 06:06 PM

Apparently they sell only two styles of warm coat in NK. Tan with lavender lapels, black with fuzzy lapels.

Posted by S. Carvalho March 12, 10 06:38 PM

interesting/thoughtproving collection in so many ways.....never seen anything like that before in pics.saw a danish documentary some months ago; where 2 young danish men adopted from NK as children, follow a jounalist for a visit2d country; all of them posing as a theatre group. "Det Røde Kapel" it was called.dat too was interesting&bizarre, to say d least.

Posted by arpana March 12, 10 06:50 PM

#4 We could sell these to Home Depot. Make a fortune!

Posted by clairedammit March 12, 10 06:51 PM

He forgot to visit camp 22 where 50,000 critics of his political agenda are being held.

Posted by gatzke March 12, 10 06:54 PM

Looks like they treat their pigs better than they treat their people...

Posted by richard March 12, 10 07:04 PM

It's good to have to such detailed photographs of the people who surround Kim Jung Ill. In the hopeful case that he dies or is "taken out" and replaced with something/someone better, North Koreans will know who to go after for having kept them repressed and in poverty for so long.

Posted by JoeBlo March 12, 10 07:15 PM

Where are the average, starving citizens?

What a narcissistic, evil man!


Posted by Jeff March 12, 10 07:55 PM

China is no better, they just embraced capitalism more.

Posted by George March 12, 10 08:00 PM

Dollars to donuts pic #3 is a conveyor belt of fresh piping hot bleached soylent green being fondled by Dear Leader which just so happens to be his favorite snack.

Posted by bitflipper March 12, 10 08:01 PM

There is the guy in the second row - the second from the left, with red helmet on the head - this is Takeshi Kitano.

Posted by Eugene March 12, 10 08:03 PM

It is interesting to see the woman in traditional Korean dress in #16. Now a rare sight in N Korea.

Posted by Shii March 12, 10 08:14 PM

parece ese dibujito de Droopy que sale en todos lados persiguiendo al ladron, sublime

Posted by guillermo March 12, 10 08:15 PM

"The Future's So Bright, I Gotta Wear Shades"

Posted by photic March 12, 10 08:18 PM

Are those state approved jackets?

Posted by Ernesto Tantao March 12, 10 08:21 PM

They have libraries? Of course the books are probably all about how to farm or how to build a house or how to salute Kim Jong-il, etc., but I was surprised to see two of them in the collection.

Posted by RAD March 12, 10 08:35 PM

These photos are great! Use them to play the Kim Jong Il game! Here's how:
1. Take any photo in the group.
2. Insert dialog where Kim Jong Il asks, "Is this a bucket/pigs foot/dead fish/etc.?"
3. Insert dialog where his henchmen reply, "Oh, yes, your Emminence/Immenseness/Highness/etc., that is a bucket/pigs foot/dead fish/etc."
4. Or make up your own dialog!

Posted by Robert in Colorado March 12, 10 09:20 PM

The great leader will save North Korea.

Posted by jason March 12, 10 09:42 PM

I wonder how many of the people behind him will be airbrushed out in a few years

Posted by Freedom Lover March 12, 10 09:45 PM

Notice how he does not use his left arm/hand in any of these pictures. He is sick or has had a stoke like they said he did,

Posted by Brian March 12, 10 09:47 PM

When freedom dies so does passion - these pictures say that so loud and clear. Fear, obedience, conformity to the extreme, all crush the soul of a country and its people. Imagine how being free ignites passion and life. Wow, so thankful to have the freedoms we all have and my heart goes out to these people. It's a long shot but may you someday taste freedom North Koreans - it is intoxicating and you can SMILE anytime you want too! :-)

Posted by Elias March 12, 10 09:53 PM

What's striking to me is that the photos operate only at a single, functional level: Show him standing, interacting with something. There's no effort to catch him in a good light (emotionally or literally), if a flash is used it's head-on, bordering on washed out. You'd think in an effort to portray their leader as strong, they would teach the photographer(s) how to take photos that evoke some level of interest and pride in him for the work everyone else has done.

Posted by Peter March 12, 10 09:54 PM

#27 It's good to see bad comb-overs are universal.

Posted by pdxfreckles March 12, 10 10:19 PM

Surreal. ThansK! Also liked the series of Obama doing the same thing that Adam posted.

Posted by Ritchie March 12, 10 10:26 PM

It's a different world....

Posted by Benjamin Sunding March 12, 10 10:30 PM

Of course these pictures are boring. That is, perhaps, the greatest critique of that society and the ideas which produced it. The "banality of evil" is so evident here. The most radical ideas, if they are not viable with economic and social reality, will produce a society that is... sparse. And strange. Everything they could muster, for one brief photoshoot... and it isn't even flashy or shocking or interesting...
I think this is one of the most eerie photo collections I've seen on here.

Posted by TeacherLady March 12, 10 10:35 PM

Everyone needs to know that this is the face of communism in most any communist country. When Castro visits factories in Cuba it is no different. This is the ultimate result of any march to the left of the political spectrum. Speaking strictly about the U.S.: If political spectrum was a volume control marked "Government", all the way down is anarchy, and all the way up is communism. When the U.S. started we had the volume turned all the way down, as we march towards the left the volume control continues to rise, we are not at DPRK yet, but any country is capable of that! If you don't think we are marching towards communism just visit the communist party U.S.A.'s web site and see how they trumpet the progressives in control of our government today: I know that a lot of progressives don't want communism, but communism does not care what you want, you are just a means to an end. And once you've got it, there's no getting rid of it.

Posted by TonyG. LBCA March 12, 10 10:51 PM

#14. Did you notice the gap between computer screen and the person pretending to use it. 'Animal Farm' oppression is, almost, reflected on every single image.

Posted by Selcuk Askin March 12, 10 10:51 PM

The looks on the faces of those around him are very telling of the situation. The fake smiles and nervous stares tell the true story of this horrible dictatorship and the fear of the people under it. I pray that they will know the freedoms we enjoy someday.

Posted by casey March 12, 10 10:54 PM

Over 31 pictures he is wearing the same coat (and hat) in 26 of them. Plus several in the entourage are wearing the identical coat! Picture 24 has 4 other men in the same coat.

Posted by Winnie March 12, 10 11:08 PM

I too think of Romania and Ceaucescu When it comes to North Korea. I Recently saw a BBC documentary called the Lost World Of Communism that dealt with Romania in part. Apparently Ceaucescu and Kim Jong-il were close friends, and Ceaucescu would visit North Korea where the two would chat and exchange experiences.

Posted by ♫ March 12, 10 11:10 PM

#12 - I have visions of him pressing the red buttons and making "BOOM!!" noises...

Posted by Dave W March 12, 10 11:13 PM

# 26 - He's the only one smiles...

Posted by Kam March 13, 10 12:12 AM

No, he smiled when he saw the kids' sneakers.

People look kind of strained and thin in some of those pictures. The pigs look thin, too.

Posted by Prokofy Neva March 13, 10 12:16 AM

yeah, i would like to see south korean pics now, please Big Picture.

Posted by Andres Diaz March 13, 10 12:38 AM

time travel to 80's

Posted by timetraveller March 13, 10 01:22 AM

Every time I look at these pictures, I notice something new, like the velvet lined upper guard rail the Dear Leader is holding onto in picture number 1. The lack of keyboards in front of the monitors in picture number 31 and the horrible comb over on the middle dude in picture number 27. These pictures are fascinating in a weird kind of way.

Posted by raul briseno March 13, 10 01:30 AM

Yes, yes!!! It"s a good copy of Ceausescu!!!

Posted by Dana March 13, 10 02:42 AM

I think it is amazing how most of the commenters do not get the point at all. Well, I was about halfway through before I got it.

Posted by Tuukka Simonen March 13, 10 04:41 AM

Great. everywhere you look it's clean, clena and clean. Great work of the cleaners or someone did an excellent fotoshop job.

Never before seen pigs that clean.

Posted by Erik van Erne, Milieunet Foundation March 13, 10 05:16 AM

Interesting picture series. And in almost every picture there's at least one guy in the background that has the facial expression of "Dude! Seriously! What do you know!? Shut up!"

Posted by Peter March 13, 10 05:29 AM

Interesting pics.. The so-called 'dear leader' is wearing the same outfit (glasses, gloves, shades) in all the photos (except #8). probably, these are taken on the same day!.. or photoshoped ?? I am sure these snaps will reming the people of the former soviet regime and eastern block countries of their pre-90's era.

Posted by Ritish March 13, 10 05:38 AM

29. Remind me about a joke: the kids are asked by the teacher "what are the jobs of your parents?" one kid said "my father is the boss of The Party's pigs" (farm)

it's deja-vu ... it's like:

Posted by Cornel March 13, 10 06:13 AM

Come back to USSR...

Posted by Vitaly March 13, 10 06:16 AM

Thats by far the best dressed communist dictator around

Posted by tim March 13, 10 06:23 AM

something wrong with most of the photos. something fishy!

Posted by Ryan March 13, 10 07:17 AM

What a bunch of pointless images in comparison with the usual excellent photographs and informative text,
Kim Jong-il does this KimJong-il does that inspects this and looks at that, blah blah

Posted by GW March 13, 10 07:42 AM

These pictures are really sad! I come from a former communist country - Bulgaria. They used to make the same propaganda photos here, too. State's officials in front of full food store shelves and "modernized" factories when in reality people were starving.. Ask about this somebody from Romania, too. Or anybody from the eastern block. This is pure hypocrisy and ridicule of human dignity! Goerge Orwell's fiction come true! I feel real disgust when I see this asshole wearing the same stupid coat on all pictures that are supposed to be taken from different locations and maybe on different days. It is not even photoshoped as somebody mentioned above! The goods are arranged some hours before the visit, the factories are "modernized" and so on. It is all made up in reality to convince the people that everything is going perfect in the country and that is the most disgusting thing about it!

Posted by Petko March 13, 10 07:47 AM

I think he's a sad man, one time smiling ...

Posted by akira March 13, 10 07:51 AM

why is this old unkil wearing an oversize winter coat? and gloves must be not to eave any finger prints, eh?

Posted by Vinod March 13, 10 07:52 AM

Why's that dude in #26 rubbing that other guy's leg?

Posted by Darsh March 13, 10 08:58 AM

People need to realize, that these pictures come from the most isolated country in the world. Sure it ain't as fancy as many of the other photo series on this site, but it sure as hell gives you a picture of how bad things are in respect to the population. Why do you think everyone's watching him like he's some sort of god? that's because they think he is. Alle the food was just put there for him, they don't have nearly enough food in that country.
To get a sense of the country i suggest watching the Vice guide's to North Korea (

Posted by sean March 13, 10 09:26 AM

Anyone notice the red velvet handrail in photo 1, odd ?

Perhaps this is his gift to the world, a game of spot the difference from reality with Kim Jong-il. Dictator, fashionista, steel works inspector & gifted golfer.

Posted by war games March 13, 10 09:36 AM

As someone from the UK whose sovereign is Queen Elizabeth II these tired images of slightly awkward subservient "ordinary people" meeting the head of state seem familiar.

Posted by Jeremy March 13, 10 10:49 AM

best thing about lil' Kim is he'll be dead soon...

Posted by Patrick March 13, 10 10:53 AM

Почему то Севорокорейский лидер всё время с каким то перекошеным лицом. Вот только на фотках с алкоголем видна не поддельная радость.

Posted by MrFreez March 13, 10 11:15 AM

the DPRK, f*%# yeah!
hey that obama spread (comment #58) is almost as funny, especially the conehead photo (#4). where do they get this stuff?

Posted by erGman March 13, 10 11:18 AM

I think Petko's comment above is only partially correct ... I don't think the arrangement of the "perfect" goods on the shelves are meant to be propaganda for the people, I think they are meant to "prove" to the leader that his plans are working. In Mao's day, they would transplant whole rice fields, bringing them close to the tracks Mao's train would pass by on, so that he could survey his kingdom and see "proof" that his ideas were good -- even though the farms were failing and people were starving. Mao's decree that every citizen would have a backyard furnace (in an attempt to match European steel production numbers) was an abysmal failure, but when he toured the countryside, they brought in good, factory-made steel to show him his ideas were "working." The North Koreans fear their leader and his lackeys, so there's a good chance they are making everything look good for his sake ... so they don't go to prison, or worse.

One of the most noticeable things to me about these photos that I don't think anyone has mentioned is that, wherever they are being taken, it must be FREEZING inside, because everyone is wearing coats -- what must the working conditions be like in winter??

Posted by Penelope March 13, 10 11:39 AM

#16. Any guesses to the age of the other textile worker in the background?

Posted by Paul March 13, 10 11:43 AM

Can anyone translate the banner in #14?
These pics were fascinating. Thanks for doing something different and showing a peek into a mysterious country.

Posted by Cameron March 13, 10 12:11 PM


Posted by RustyShackleford March 13, 10 01:01 PM

Wow. Very clean and "posed". Anyone else notice how paltry the quantity of "products" is in every case?

Posted by Adrian of Austin March 13, 10 01:11 PM

Kim Jong-il inspects, poses and visits... ridiculous...

Posted by al March 13, 10 02:14 PM

I was able to visit the DPRK (North Korea) last year. These sort of photos are everywhere... in the airport, in hotel lobbies, offices etc. Even the newspaper is mostly just reports of what Kim is supervising.

That said, the North Koreas are probably the most patriotic people I have ever encountered.

Posted by L. Post March 13, 10 02:22 PM

North Korea is best Korea

Posted by Wojak March 13, 10 02:24 PM

Notice, there're no any price tags on the shelves #8 and #27. I wonder if those fruits are dummies:)

Posted by ole March 13, 10 02:40 PM

agree with comment 45:

sorry, but I have to say it.. the level of the pictures is far low from the one you use to show us..

Posted by alvaro March 13, 10 03:09 PM

Notice the joy in all their faces and the fear in others until they get to the booze plant...everybody happy! Nothing like booze to drown out the emptiness of atheism and communism.

Posted by Jon Perkins March 13, 10 03:18 PM

En la #23 está en la fabrica de ginebra de la victoria (ver 1984)

Posted by zarce March 13, 10 03:41 PM

Notice in the library how there are only about 6 different books (and some of those old editions) He is there checking that only books he has written are on the shelves and all the others were burned!

Posted by Jon Perkins March 13, 10 03:42 PM

He wears sunglasses in every single picture; and is the only person in every picture wearing them.

Posted by Ray Ban March 13, 10 03:55 PM

you can see his left hand in photo #23 under the bottle. His palm looks purple and his index finger looks swollen...that's up with that?

Posted by poorwandering1 March 13, 10 04:49 PM

Amazing !!!!

Posted by paul March 13, 10 05:03 PM

I find these photos fascinating!

Thanks Boston Big Picture, you never disappoint.

Posted by Gigi March 13, 10 05:20 PM

that girl on the left in 23 looks HOT DAM!!

Posted by Martin Jessen March 13, 10 06:56 PM

i got the impression this was all done on one days swoop around for photo opp's so he could get back to his compound and watch movies and whatever.
i spend a year in a bunker on top of a mountain with a great view into the North.we all thought these people were nuts could commit an atrocity for any reason at any time.

Posted by Anonymous March 13, 10 07:37 PM

# 11 : "Look at this, I just peed in a bottle !"

Posted by Max March 13, 10 08:03 PM

Gloria eterna a nuestro amado Líder que ha sabido conducir sabiamente nuestra revolución a pesar de las enormes dificultades.
El futuro es el socialismo, el nuevo mundo florecerá eternamente para dicha de la humanidad. y un sol de felicidad nacerá en el comunismo.

Posted by Sandro Siboldi March 13, 10 08:07 PM

People look tired, products look cheap and places look cold and empty. If these are supposed to be official propaganda photos, I really wonder how the rest of North Korea looks like. Thanks for sharing these photos and all best best for North Korean people.

Posted by Heiner March 13, 10 08:07 PM

I was born in the communist Czechoslovakia. It was not a nice place to live but still a paradise compared to this murderous regime of unspeakable horrors of slavery, brainwashing, starvation and death.This is a face of pure evil. Hope one day this communist racist creep will go to hell.
When will the U.S. and its allies invade this place and topple the dictator, put him and his henchmen to trial and publicly execute this red bastard god?
Now, that would be a just war.

Posted by Filip March 13, 10 08:12 PM

I see that in almost every picture all are dresses against the co;ld. Are they not able to heat any building in the north?

Posted by JH March 13, 10 08:18 PM

These on-the-spot visits have been surreptitiously recorded, and the tapes have been smuggled out of the country. The tapes have made their way into my possession (I can't say any more about that), and I'd like to share Kim's quotes with you now. From the first 10 photographs:

1. "This red velvet along the guardrail isn't even halfway plush enough for my fingers! You see my gloves are still on, right? To the re-education camp with everyone in this factory!"

2. addressed to cow, in hushed and solemn tones "You will be my heir. You will lead our country into the next Shining Era of Juche. Your friend here, though, will be on my dinner table tomorrow night."

3. "This does not, I repeat, does NOT look or taste even REMOTELY like a Pringle! It's re-education camp for you nitwits!!

4. "Heh heh! You know, I drank so much takju the other night, I peed two buckets worth! I tell ya, I was pissing like a freakin' racehorse! Haha!"

5. "You tap this just right, and it's an E flat. You hear that? E flat."

6. "Lessee... you got 'The Michael jackson Story'? I hear he was fond of wearing one glove, too."

7. "When dem cotton balls get rotten, you cain't pick verrry much cotton!"

8. "How in the hell am I supposed to reach the apples with this piece of plastic in the way? To the re-education camp with you!"

9. "No no, you're holding the cue all wrong! And aren't there supposed to be balls on a pool table? These little ships don't look like they'll roll well at all! To the re-education camp with you!"

10. artist: "Your excellency, it's made entirely from the extracted teeth of loyal workers and peasants, who were overjoyed at donating them for your new monument. I call it, 'the Dear Leader's Eternal Inspiration'. Kim: "..." (but thinking: "it's camp for this bozo.")

Posted by Samm Bennett March 13, 10 10:39 PM

People in free societies misunderstand the 'patriotism' they see in dictatorships. They interpret it as they would interpret similar gestures at home: as voluntary expressions of support. The premise doesn't apply in a society where nothing is voluntary. The national passion in North Korea and China is fear. People fear the leaders, who (they are told) always watch. They fear the very real consequences of missing any opportunity to repeat what leaders want to hear.And they fear such a misstep most deeply when encountering foreigners. People like that have a way of challenging the leader's party line without even trying.

You don't know what individuals feel until they are free to express what they feel.

Posted by Chang March 13, 10 11:10 PM

22,665,345 people in North Korea estimate 2009. Production photos show enough output for 500 at the most.

Posted by margaret March 13, 10 11:59 PM

is that a fake Kim Jong il ? Alway wearing a balck sunglass.

Posted by firstegg March 14, 10 01:09 AM

Enjoy it while it lasts you narrow minded little'll be tits-up soon enough, and your anachronistic regime will be dust.
It's not if, but when....

Posted by Barrie March 14, 10 03:30 AM

Great! As we can see communism still lives - in a distorted and bended form. You can see many proofs that this idea (communism) is not working at all. Just have a look at satelite pictures of Pyongyang and Seul in the night. You can also watch the movie "North Korea - a state of mind".

Posted by Volen March 14, 10 06:05 AM

Who smuggled these propagandized pictures out of north korea? My take is how this grand master puppeteer can hold a total population of millions under absolute fear is beyond me; this kim guy is a total loser. Let him push the nuclear button because he's gonna get wacked big time, and then and only then will north korea begin to breath the air of freedom once again. Up yours kim!

Posted by vincenzo March 14, 10 08:33 AM

At least they all work over there.

Posted by Anonymous March 14, 10 08:50 AM

You could replace Jong-il with Sarah Palin and the entourage with Teabaggers, and these pics could retain their captions.

Posted by Firestarter5 March 14, 10 09:05 AM

in one word : Fear.
fight against fear its all in your mind.
all you need is LOVE!

Posted by gonçalo March 14, 10 09:20 AM

#27 ppl see all those fruits first time in their lives

Posted by bas March 14, 10 09:26 AM

it's all fake! there's NOTHING for sale in N. Korea. Those poor people..

Posted by Parfonsk March 14, 10 09:31 AM

What a flippant and deeply stupid comment, #171. This is a tragic situation and should be treated as such, instead of as fodder for tired jokes from amateur comedians.

Posted by Allan Park March 14, 10 09:49 AM

dear commenter #183. tragicomic, man, tragicomic. That's life. But excuse me for not being pious enough for you. Deepest apologies.

Posted by samm bennett March 14, 10 10:55 AM

The photographs looks like they had been taken 20 years ago.

Posted by Jorge Olivares March 14, 10 10:57 AM

I'm sure N. Koreans have their own reasons. Why can't we be friends?

Posted by Isana March 14, 10 11:09 AM
Posted by TheH March 14, 10 11:27 AM

A day in the life of a murderous despot. I find it quite interesting the biggest smile happens when he has booze in his hand.

If it weren't for those sycophantic hangers-on that follow him everywhere, he would have no power. Sad.

Posted by Eric March 14, 10 11:32 AM

Swine visiting swine in #29!

Posted by R2D2 March 14, 10 11:56 AM

Please note that even when he visited Factories with fires burning he wore The same Coat, Gloves, Pants, Fur Cap, and Dark Glasses, Even though the picture dates were spread across a great deal of time. He did wear a sport shirt in a few pictures, but always the same one.

Posted by Charles L. Baldwin March 14, 10 12:32 PM

#9 remind me of a scene from Austin Powers...

Posted by Andy Frazer March 14, 10 03:29 PM

It's interesting to compare with this :

Posted by aperiodic set of Wang tiles March 14, 10 03:38 PM

In all 31 pictures, Kim uses only his right hand & arm. His left arm is elevated, independently, in only three pictures (23, 25 & 29). In a fourth photo (#6) he is resting both arms on a countertop, with an ungloved right hand and a gloved left hand. Kim may suffer weakness on his left side, the result of his stroke.

Posted by Rick Gamble March 14, 10 05:37 PM

@George: "China is no better, they just embraced capitalism more."

Wrong. Read and learn first, then comment.

Posted by Ryan March 14, 10 06:16 PM

Hands off North Korea

Posted by Pat March 14, 10 06:37 PM

Something about these photos and the way his goons act makes me want to punch him.

Posted by PFULMTL March 14, 10 06:44 PM

@Samm Bennett
Merci beaucoup pour ton analyse sur les notes de ce bon vieux Kim
It made me laughing out loud .

Posted by Paul March 14, 10 06:54 PM

all set up scenes. grocery store has no prices on items? interesting. please, don't believe this crap.

Posted by z March 14, 10 06:56 PM

C'est fou comme tous les dictateurs du monde se ressemblent!...
Triste humanité...

Posted by thami March 14, 10 07:33 PM

It must suck to live there.

Posted by spaz March 14, 10 09:15 PM

He is the pig.. I would like to know where are these stores with all that goods when his "dear" people is starving and eating grass,literally,for just not dying..!

Posted by Jim Nine March 15, 10 12:24 AM

The big picture...

Running a communist country...

So easy, a north korean can do it.

Posted by politicaljules March 15, 10 02:25 AM

it looks like if they were stuck in the 60's

Posted by Thomas March 15, 10 04:12 AM

# 13 two jackets for one price bargain?

Posted by Uncle Jean March 15, 10 04:30 AM

I think, many - if not all - pictures are faked. For example, look at the left ear-piece of the "Dear Leaders" sun-glases in picture #10. There is a small piece of the photoshoped picture not replaced very well.

Posted by Bernaux March 15, 10 04:35 AM

*Sings* I'm So Ronery

It's a pity that their society is so repressed in this day and age.

Posted by Andy March 15, 10 04:43 AM

I feel like ol' Kim and I would be great friends. He's only excited about the shoes and booze too

Posted by Alex March 15, 10 04:44 AM

Take any series of photos of any western government leader and remove dates and the names of the locations and you end up with almost exactly the same series of photos. It's almost the least important series of photos that this blog has published. It's a shame.

Posted by Rob March 15, 10 04:50 AM

...this shoot garners a lot of opportunities for hilarious captions, I bet but guys, we can't judge another context using our own. This may seem wrong to us, but heck, we may seem wrong to them. Keep the comments down.

It's actually a pretty amazing sneak peek in this country. If anything I'm loving the fluffy hats and the cows. But yeah, I'll admit. These candids are funny.

Posted by theJMP March 15, 10 04:53 AM

Coming from a former communist country that used to model itself after North Korea, these images speak volumes to me. I'm from Romania, and Nicolae Ceausescu, the dictator that ruled the country from 1965 to 1989 saw NK as a model he should follow.
So what Romanians suffered until 1989 was simmilar to what North Koreans are suffering still. Those pictures are fake propaganda: the people are poor, miserable and can't do anything about it.

Posted by John March 15, 10 07:30 AM

Baa baa. Speaking of animal farm... Your all making the right noises, keep it up!

Notice the little red flags on people's lapels? Particularly on the last frame. Remind you of anyone? No *I* am more patriotic! No, Me!

Political PR photos, nothing to see here, move along. Though I like the one where he is holding a bucket, looks like the only one where he honestly smiling (That and it begs for the LOL "I found ma buket!"). The guy is old, he is likely in a Parka to make him look bigger and less frail. He wears those stupid glasses everywhere, I wouldn't be all that surprised if he is partially blind (or just has bad taste).

These photos are basically saying "hey look we are prosperous and modern" likely to his people, and now to the world, likely deliberately leaked. for that purpose. Notice all the imports, in both food and technology. Anyway don't see much of this part of the world, so interesting even for propaganda.

Posted by DarthVain March 15, 10 09:53 AM

Reply to number: 164

Ha, fantastic! She's probably spent a few years in the military, knows taekwondo and could break you in half.

Posted by Grant March 15, 10 09:56 AM

Reply to number: 169

I hope that doesn't happen. The risk to the people of South Korea is way to high.
Artillery is pointed at some of the major cities in the South, the consequences of doing something rash would be unimaginable, really unimaginable. The death toll would be spirit crushing.

Posted by Grant March 15, 10 10:02 AM

Every one of these photos is a caption contest waiting to happen

Posted by Mike March 15, 10 11:43 AM

Re: comment 205

Yeah, there's definitely something very weird about his sunglasses in #10.

Posted by Bob Maguire March 15, 10 01:25 PM

The fish in picture 17 looked like museum specimens, waxed and hardened, not like any fresh fish.

And there is just so much space everywhere. Look at busy factories of China, cramp pack with everything, people and stuff.

It's sad.

Posted by CWS March 15, 10 02:27 PM

Is it just me, or does the lady and shelves in #6 look shopped? I've been looking at it for the past 10 minutes and I can't bring myself to believe that the photo is unaltered. The flatness of her, the apparent light source coming from the upper right (as seen on the faces of his entourage)...something's not right here.

Posted by Jeff March 15, 10 03:42 PM

It's so hard to take Kim John-Il seriously because he looks so goofy.

Posted by andrew March 15, 10 03:50 PM

For what life may be like for the average North Korean, I recommend this article:

Posted by kentuckienne March 15, 10 04:32 PM

He smile only when the guy give him the bottle of Korean grappa. He seems like an italian politician when visit Victoria's secrets.

Posted by Paolo che mi ci ha portato Chiara March 15, 10 05:14 PM

Check photos 4, 15, 19 and 24. In every instance the older grey haired guy is holding the same booklet and taperecorder. Now look at the dates.

On top of that, our most loved communist leader never exposes his left hand but once. Where it is visible (booze factory #23) you can see that is's purple and bloated.

Posted by Justin Case March 15, 10 05:30 PM

Most of these are photos of a few rows of something-or-other in the middle of an otherwise empty room. These are just set photos. He's shooting a commercial for the "I'm human, I promise" campaign before going home to jerk off to Hannah Montana videos.

Posted by josh March 15, 10 06:57 PM

would love to have that big a** book of dead employees of the month in # 28!

Posted by mANUEL nORIEGA March 15, 10 07:15 PM

"157 Notice the joy in all their faces and the fear in others until they get to the booze plant...everybody happy! Nothing like booze to drown out the emptiness of atheism and communism."

Ha. I drink to drown out incessant din of religious hypocrisy and mindless consumerism. And I wear sunglasses and gloves indoors.

Posted by Kimmy J March 15, 10 07:21 PM

I cannot feel but horror, to see the "off with your head" kind of fear in some people's faces.

His pose, so like a spoiled child.
their pose, so afraid and still.

A powered spoiled old man.

Posted by Daniel March 15, 10 07:26 PM

This set of pictures is not worthy of this otherwise fine blog. 31 pictures of the same guy? What's going on here? Not only boring, but you have to wonder at the motivation for posting them. It's been along time since I've felt like accusing anyone of selling out to the commies, but I can't think of any reason these pictures are newsworthy outside of North Korea.

Posted by Sawhet March 15, 10 10:16 PM

We need to treat him as a human instead of devil if we really have the good intention to solve the problem.

Politics are never willed by one side. No matter how strong u think u r.

Posted by Hao March 15, 10 11:26 PM

any image you have without sun

Posted by mode March 16, 10 12:57 AM

@the guy who posted comment #227
dude people treat him like a devil because he is one. and did anyone said they were strong?

Posted by sympathizer March 16, 10 04:19 AM

These pictures remind me of the first page of Chapter 1 of the book Brave New World by Aldous Huxley.
"...followed nervously, rather abjectly, at the Director's heels. Each of them carried a notebook, in which, whenever the great man spoke, he desperately scribbled. Straight from the horse's mouth."
Isn't it interesting that this and the world in Brave New World is also the same? Suppression, dictatorship, etc. ...

Posted by Neko No Ko March 16, 10 04:26 AM

Dig the fake adidas in #20

Posted by Keya March 16, 10 04:39 AM

#31 Kim Jong-il advises the male player that now would be an appropriate time to perform a "Zerg Rush".

Posted by ddqq March 16, 10 05:45 AM

What did they allways write down in her ticklers? All Bootlickers behind the Chief Idiot. Allways and ever they have the Notebook in the Hand... and... WTF?

Posted by Auflinie March 16, 10 10:30 AM

OK... Nobody else remembers - #3 "Soylent Green is People !"

Posted by Likendepiks March 16, 10 11:16 AM


#6 I'll have a double cheeseburger meal with a side of world domination.

#20 Stupid Americans buy the ugliest shoes.

Posted by mamikaze March 16, 10 12:48 PM

What a sour puss, until the pic of him holding the likka!

Posted by melanie March 16, 10 04:14 PM


Posted by PAULSHERAR.COM March 16, 10 04:24 PM

How telling it is that the cattle appear to be the only smiling creatures in any of these photos. Unless you count the nervous terrified half-smiles of Kim Jong-Il's entire entourage. (As a side note, the dear leader kind of looks like an elderly Korean version of Roy Orbison in some of these photos. Not that it makes any of this less depressing.)

Posted by Eric March 16, 10 05:57 PM

There is something very Elmer Fudd-like about Kim. Ignore the fact he his a heartless tyrant and the photos are pretty funny.

Posted by Captain 40 March 16, 10 06:18 PM

Agreed with poster 193 -- definitely aftereffects of his stroke, maybe even evidence of a new one. His left side is draggin', for sure -- even his face does in a couple of the photos.

Posted by Captain Sassy March 16, 10 06:37 PM

He is wearing the same coat, the same hat, the same gloves, and the same sunglasses in most of these pictures even though the dates span a few years. With the exception of the ones where he is dressed for warmer weather (and looking much younger than in his last public appearance), most of these pictures could have been taken on the same day. That is why Fidel Castro always manages to be reading today's newpaper when photos are released of him to avoid people suggesting they are old, and Fidel is really dead.

Posted by Filiagape March 16, 10 07:22 PM

#2 the cows look so big and fat.., yet the picture shows nothing for them to feed.

Posted by d1eter March 16, 10 09:21 PM

For 210 comment:
brother, I agree partially with you, but look at our country now, after twenty years of "splendid" capitalism, do you really like what we've got there? loosing the industry, loosing the good education, loosing specialists(intelligent brains), loosing our own defense army, loosing almost everything, including the hope, but gain what?some greedy barons full of money and villas stolen by "free market privatization" through oligarchy mafia, and the rest of the people living in poverty, divided us so drastically. That's what capitalism brought to us, roughly speaking. Now I am asking you which system is better then the other?, it depends, probably non. The key of a decent life, and a decent society is the level of consciousness that people reached, which is missed in both systems unfortunately. I am afraid we need something else instead, but only under higher level of consciousness people. Otherwise, everywhere we've seen corruption as result of pour consciousness. So don't tell me how beauty is the capitalism, I'm living wthin it and I've seen lots of weak corners. Here, as much as you are healthy and a job to create more wellness for others, yes you are an asset, But what then, when you are not able to work because you are sick or lost the EI, the society will push you out as a garbage, and this because the money and their masters designed it so. I am not try to extol the communism from its atrocities, but we've got some good things there took place such as free competitive education up to the university level, isn't it?, free medical assistance (no insurance business) safety all over the places because bad guys were in prisons forced to work for the society they robbed, and so on. Yes we suffer for not free traveling(big deal), for not having a free speech (as in US today), political police abused those who tried to speak loudly against the regime ( almost the same nowadays in US), the food was rationalized but notat all obesity hit us or other diseases, isn't it? However, trying to put it somehow in one word , both system are artificial supported by money masters and by more or less visible force - two faces of the same coin.

Please take in consideration that I do not had any intention to offense anybody through upper text, just an opinion based on my experiences on both sides

best regards

Posted by Sarmis March 17, 10 02:07 AM

Interesting how they have to create everything themselves because so little is imported in....The shoes styles are clear rip-offs of major popular brands. They are likely poor in quality, incorrectly priced, and too few in number due to lack of market forces at work.

What I want to know is, when Dear Leader publishes these pictures in the state sanctioned news outlets, and ordinary North Koreans see these pictures of staged abundance, do they buy the charade? Put another way, how do they reconcile these pictures with the real life going on around them.

Posted by Publius March 17, 10 02:15 AM

#29 Caption:
Man on left: "Are they Lancashire pigs?"
Kim Ill: "Who the f**k is talking to you boy!?"

Posted by Bubba Thudd March 17, 10 03:09 AM

I think the Dear Leader gets all of his fashion tips from Snoop Dogg.

Posted by Kim Chee March 17, 10 06:01 AM

I am looking forward to my trip to North Korea in August, I will be posting the photos on my website hopefully covering the Mass Games and also Kim Jong il's birthday celebrations. It will be interesting to see if the leader is seen in public then.

Posted by Musa March 17, 10 06:26 AM

He is certainly getting his moneys worth out of that coat...

Posted by Anthony Jones March 17, 10 12:17 PM

cleanest looking pigs and calves I have ever seen

Posted by George March 17, 10 12:30 PM

What, no photo ops of the Dear Leader conducting any spot visits at any of the 6 sprawling, city-sized concentration camps? No supervising of the executions, torture, forced abortions, systemic starvation, or the purpetual degradation of the human condition in NK?? WTF! Yep...That communist/Juche/post-Japanese Imperialistic master race culture is really working out well for most ordinary NK's based on these photos. Is it better to be loved or feared??? I'd say the latter if I were that pot-bellied pygme as it's so apparent on the faces of almost everyone in these photos. So sad that so many eek out a hellish existence in was must be Alice in Wonder Land on a bad acid trip. Yet, I agree, girl in #23, has hottie potential...but like that Daffy Duck cartoon, once you pull down the face mask....

Posted by helpmespok March 17, 10 01:10 PM

it's weird how everyone is wearing coat inside

Posted by willy March 17, 10 01:53 PM

@157 Jon Perkins -- said: Notice the joy in all their faces and the fear in others until they get to the booze plant...everybody happy! Nothing like booze to drown out the emptiness of atheism and communism.

there is not emptiness in atheism. perhaps not even in communism. your presumption assumes there is something to fill and insinuates you hold a prejudice at least as strong as Kim Jong Il himself.

Posted by robert March 17, 10 02:05 PM

Too bad we won't see real pictures of North Korea like Yodok, food riots, people starving and dying in the streets, etc. until it's too late.

Posted by Andrew March 17, 10 06:00 PM

What a sad people. Everything is fake. I seriously doubt such a people could have nuclear capability.

Posted by Wolf March 17, 10 10:03 PM

North Korea and its bizarre regime will be missed when (or if) it succumbs to democracy.
After all, we can't really take them seriously which means we'll have little left to poke fun at, "weird & whacky State-wise"!

Posted by Trevor March 18, 10 12:13 AM

English 101............

Quote from #244:- "Interesting how they have to create everything themselves because so little is imported in...."

The word "in" after "imported" is superfluous, as imports are inwards, just as exports are outwards.

Posted by Trevor March 18, 10 03:11 AM

# 19 Here we recycle toilet paper...

Posted by Jean March 18, 10 10:10 AM

does anyone else think his forearm looks huge compared to his body in #8?

Posted by Peg March 18, 10 10:44 AM

Nice shoes!

Posted by Nicolas March 18, 10 11:34 AM

Kim Jong-il can haz buckit!

Posted by BigMo March 18, 10 12:24 PM

Chocolate production is up 25% this year, brother and sisters! Glorious! (Don't mind the man with the droopy triple-chin and the age spots.)

Posted by Marcus Johnson March 19, 10 01:16 AM

China was the same 30 years ago

Posted by sandow March 19, 10 08:10 AM

This is the strangest collection I have seen

Posted by Kelli Rowe March 19, 10 08:03 PM

guy had a stroke and is partially paralyzed. He never raised his left hand in any of the pictures.

Posted by Andy March 20, 10 11:19 AM

Nobody had the nerve to tell Kim Jong-il they were women's sunglasses...

Posted by Phil March 21, 10 11:12 AM

#17: Kim: How sad the fish is dead :-(.
#31: The new monitors has been arrived.

Posted by wos March 21, 10 04:45 PM

All the food of North Korea on a few photos, hell yeah.
Sad thing is that regular people have nothing to put in their mouth.

Posted by PF March 22, 10 03:44 AM

at least the foods are organic

Posted by lafingn March 22, 10 05:43 AM

Not enough space to seriously analyze but: Reuters must put some credibility to the photos or they wouldn't release them. Musa, just like many other tourists, will return with something since he will not be severely restricted from moving about. There are about 20 foreign embassies or interest sections there. Bill Clinton met Kim Jong IL, which none of those posting comments have done, and apparently didn't observe anything which supports the misinformed statements above. Even a poor country like Cuba knows that a well educated and healthy population is a necessity. Slaves and/or poor and poverty ridden people, seldom are educated, become technicians, scientists, doctors, teachers, artists athletes, etc. If WE hated oppression, we would, at least encourage our friends, no? Saudi Arabia, Dubai, UAR, etc., is where women might as well be horses. WE didn't have a problem with: the Duvaliers, Peron, Pinochet, Stroessner, South Africa before Mandela, etc. And, we don't plan to stop poppy cultivation in Afghanistan. The ignorance and stupidity posted above will be used in NK by the government as examples to show the people how they are hated in the US, and are seen as inferior people. "Dying in the streets," "systemic starvation," and "forced abortions" are contradictory. Living in NK is probably challenging, but most people there, as anywhere else, love their country and work to see that it survives. No matter what WE think is a better idea.

Posted by F. D. Gray March 22, 10 07:04 PM

@269, perhaps you should read what Christopher Hitchens has written on the subject. He's actually been there, and he describes it as if someone had read Orwell's 1984 and said "do you think we could pull this off?"

Posted by Inquisitor March 25, 10 12:42 PM


Posted by 小楼 March 26, 10 10:20 AM

Selected Quotes:

#2 the cows look so big and fat.., yet the picture shows nothing for them to feed. ironic...
#6 I'll have a double cheeseburger meal with a side of world domination.
#9 remind me of a scene from Austin Powers...
# 13 two jackets for one price bargain?
#11 - Kim Kim Jong-il shows off a bottle of cow piss that the government is passing off as apple juice.
#17: Kim: How sad the fish is dead :-(.
# 19 Here we recycle toilet paper...
#20 Stupid Americans buy the ugliest shoes.
#23 "...our most loved communist leader never exposes his left hand but once. Where it is visible (booze factory #23) you can see that is's purple and bloated."
#27 ppl see all those fruits first time in their lives
#29 Caption: Man on left: "Are they Lancashire pigs?" Kim Ill: "Who the f**k is talking to you boy!?"
#29 Swine visiting swine in #29!
#31: The new monitors has been arrived.
#31 Kim Jong-il advises the male player that now would be an appropriate time to perform a "Zerg Rush".
"157 Notice the joy in all their faces and the fear in others until they get to the booze plant...everybody happy! Nothing like booze to drown out the emptiness of atheism and communism." Ha. I drink to drown out incessant din of religious hypocrisy and mindless consumerism. And I wear sunglasses and gloves indoors.
Post Number 182: "it's all fake! there's NOTHING for sale in N. Korea. Those poor people.."

Posted by Don Eden March 28, 10 10:56 AM

Wow!!! Nice black sunglasses.

Posted by Wiki March 30, 10 04:42 PM

Photo #11- KJI inspects a batch of his own bottle urine, "Liquid Juche" , to be dispatched to all corners of his socialist paradise. Asked if he was excited about the release of his very own energy drink, the Dear Leader was quoted as saying
"Of course it is, I was inspired to come up with the concept after relaxing in one of my many mansions & European villas, counting the billions I have stashed in Swiss accounts & drinking the finest of wines & eating a great variety of food. It made me stop & think about all those meaningless peasants living in my great country who are currently just a little bit hungry. Who couldnt think of a better way to take their mind off eating than to make available a chance for them to drink the waste products of their own living god?"
And we have a scoop here at KNCA- The Dear Leader is in the early stages of developing 'Revolution Energy' - chocolate energy bars made from his own excrement!
Long live the revolution

Posted by The Divine Assassin April 1, 10 11:50 PM

Can see by the comments that the propaganda on the other side is working fine as well...

Posted by dysentry April 4, 10 08:33 AM


Posted by pimpin April 4, 10 11:38 PM

Does anyone realize how eerily "empty" most locations appear? It's like they slide a machine or two in each large room to stage some wishy washy demonstration to the dear leader. The grocery shop, if you may call it that, is a prime example of propagandist staging. Panoply of foods mixed around what appears to be a assorted central shelf can't be a production design.

Posted by valin April 5, 10 10:15 PM

He is cool than anything

Posted by Won Taou Kjingsut June 16, 10 10:12 AM

Documentary about real life in North Korea -

Posted by Stanislav July 31, 10 07:48 AM

lol at the Silent Hill Corn Factory in #24

Posted by William August 1, 10 07:39 PM

Picture 29: One of the pigs is out of the cage.

Posted by Mark August 3, 10 11:55 PM

Their all fake, they are all specified location for propaganda, For example,the woman in No.6 is a cardboard cutout and while the factories produce so much food,1000 people died of malnutrition in a single province in a single month.

Posted by pengshen August 4, 10 12:43 AM

China is much better,from a poor country to a huge industrial and economic giant with huge improvements in every direction(not just the economy) in the space of just thirty years.
You think before you comment.

Posted by ilovechina August 9, 10 12:39 AM

The only thing I see is fear and submission from people around him.
Such propaganda!... They sure know how to use Photoshop.

Posted by Anonymous October 23, 10 08:46 AM

Same shoes, same clothes same glasses.
This may be a dictator but surely have the admiration of the
elites governing with him.
Much like the elites from Washington who do not care about
the people who elected them on a first place.
There are more the similarities than the differences, I wonder
they cannot get along....

Posted by thinker November 26, 10 12:21 AM

i like the nordkorea leader he show no weakness to the us,thats whats the us need a hard hand!!!

Posted by pit buch November 26, 10 07:11 AM

These pictures have a great surrealistic quality in them, which reminds me of the Good Ol Days of Socialist Labour Hero's.
Indeed the stuff in the shops is not priced, the Great Leader seems to have only two sets of clothes, one for the summer, one for the winter, and where the hell did he buy those really ridicilous glasses?
Not in his own country i bet! hahaha!

Posted by Pope John Paul the Pennyless November 26, 10 07:38 AM

of course,he leads a luxurious life which you can hardly imagine. In front of the media, he pretends to wear the same coat in order to show his great image before the north korea people. i recoginse his son in Macou, China.
your guys can really impossible to imagine how much money he spend in one year. It is up to 100M us dollars. suppose the common north korea people only earn about 5-6 us dollars a month.

Posted by MIZUTANI November 30, 10 02:14 AM

It's hard to take him seriously. This little man in a parka with big aviator sunglasses and a poofy hairdo; it just doesn't seem to equal "evil dictator."

Posted by Jon December 4, 10 04:21 AM

KIM is the evil. I thing that this awfull small disgusting guy should be in killed. Actually I thing Stalin is in compaer to Kim {also to his imbecile father and disguting son as well] an angel.

Posted by pamer December 11, 10 09:17 AM

guide ? to what ? to how to destroy a country ?

Posted by Fidel December 19, 10 08:20 PM

He is a Very dirty man, he needs to treat his people with care and intellegence before we treat him that way, he should be ashamed of himself everything he has put his people through..
He is a devil and so was his father, ANYONE who can do that to his OWN people should be taught a lesson

Posted by Hanna Johnson February 17, 11 12:55 PM
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