• James_C

    This is a great account.  Great piece Mark, thanks very much for the contribution. Really interesting to hear how sharp he was in his last days.

  • James_C

    This is a great account.  Great piece Mark, thanks very much for the contribution. Really interesting to hear how sharp he was in his last days.

  • ibisbill

    “While this statement [no beggars in North Korea] seems laughable in the context of the severe food
    shortages that North Korea would endure from 1996 on, it was not a
    ludicrous thing to hear about the North in 1994.” Ahem, why was it not ludicrous in 1994? Where did the visitors go outside Pyongyang? Were they free to walk around Pyongyang without a minder? How long did they spend in North Korea? The author is naive at best.

    • Ted Brown

      You have to remember ibisbill that food shortages, i.e. the famine, didn’t really start until late 1995, over one year on from his visit.
      Also at that time, walking around Pyongyang was a bit easier than it was now.  When WCW hosted their wrestling tournament in PY the year after, many of the wresters skipped the hotel to look around the city..

  • ibisbill

    “While this statement [no beggars in North Korea] seems laughable in the context of the severe food
    shortages that North Korea would endure from 1996 on, it was not a
    ludicrous thing to hear about the North in 1994.” Ahem, why was it not ludicrous in 1994? Where did the visitors go outside Pyongyang? Were they free to walk around Pyongyang without a minder? How long did they spend in North Korea? The author is naive at best.

    • Ted Brown

      You have to remember ibisbill that food shortages, i.e. the famine, didn’t really start until late 1995, over one year on from his visit.
      Also at that time, walking around Pyongyang was a bit easier than it was now.  When WCW hosted their wrestling tournament in PY the year after, many of the wresters skipped the hotel to look around the city..

  • Afostercarter

    For full disclosure: Was it not the case that this trip was basically organised by the Unification Church? Not that this detracts at all from the value of this fascinating account. But it does seem a salient fact, and as such should not go unsaid.

    • Mark Barry

      Mr. Foster-Carter, thank you for your comment. The Summit Council was founded by Rev. Moon. Obviously his trip to the North in 1991 laid the basis for later cooperation, including Pyonghwa Motors. The 1994 trip to NK itself was co-organized by Summit’s director, Antonio Betancourt, and President Carazo, both of whom had met Kim Il Sung 5 times. BTW, great piece you wrote for the BBC yesterday: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-17701230

      • http://twitter.com/nknewsorg NK NEWS

        Thanks for highlighting that article Mark, we missed it somehow!

  • Afostercarter

    For full disclosure: Was it not the case that this trip was basically organised by the Unification Church? Not that this detracts at all from the value of this fascinating account. But it does seem a salient fact, and as such should not go unsaid.

    • Mark Barry

      Mr. Foster-Carter, thank you for your comment. The Summit Council was founded by Rev. Moon. Obviously his trip to the North in 1991 laid the basis for later cooperation, including Pyonghwa Motors. The 1994 trip to NK itself was co-organized by Summit’s director, Antonio Betancourt, and President Carazo, both of whom had met Kim Il Sung 5 times. BTW, great piece you wrote for the BBC yesterday: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-17701230

      • http://twitter.com/nknewsorg NK News

        Thanks for highlighting that article Mark, we missed it somehow!

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  • http://psjournal.tumblr.com/ P’yongan Society Journal

    “I do not believe his answers were ghost-written, but were largely dictated by Kim, because the tone had the same unmistakable authority as when I heard him speak.” 
    I recently talked to a Chinese man who met Kim Il Sung on seven occasions and he also mentioned his distinctive voice. “He sounded like a movie star, even in Chinese.” 

    Thanks for posting! 

  • http://psjournal.tumblr.com/ P’yongan Society Journal

    “I do not believe his answers were ghost-written, but were largely dictated by Kim, because the tone had the same unmistakable authority as when I heard him speak.” 
    I recently talked to a Chinese man who met Kim Il Sung on seven occasions and he also mentioned his distinctive voice. “He sounded like a movie star, even in Chinese.” 

    Thanks for posting! 

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