December 07, 2023

“Day of the Shining Star” and the politics of the N. Korean leader’s birthday

Kim Il Sung and Kim Jong Il's are national holidays, yet Kim Jong Un's remains largely ignored

Today North Korea celebrates Kim Jong Il’s birthday: known as the "Day of the Shining Star." In this article, I will try to briefly outline the history of these holidays as its leaders have changed, and the birthday of the man whose ideas served as a prototype for North Korea: Joseph Stalin.

Stalin’s actual birthday was December 18 (or December 6 in the official Julian calendar of the Russian Empire) although he later changed it to December 21: the anniversary of a 1905 uprising in Moscow. This was the day which was celebrated in the USSR.