May 22, 2024

About the author

Benjamin R. Young

Benjamin R. Young is an Assistant Professor of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness at VCU (Virginia Commonwealth University). He is the author of Guns, Guerillas, and the Great Leader: North Korea and the Third World (Stanford University Press, 2021). He received his Ph.D. from The George Washington University in 2018. He has previously taught at the U.S. Naval War College and Dakota State University. He has published peer-reviewed articles on North Korean history and politics in a number of scholarly journals and is a regular contributor to NK News.

More articles by 'Benjamin R. Young'

North Korea’s 1970s Hallyu: socialist spectaculars in the Third World

North Korea’s 1970s Hallyu: socialist spectaculars in the Third World

Kim Il Sung deployed art troupes as a way to spread his version of socialism and deepen diplomatic ties

North Korea’s 1970s Hallyu: socialist spectaculars in the Third World
Benjamin R. Young
Benjamin R. Young April 3, 2020
The history of Cold War North Korea through the five stages of grief

The history of Cold War North Korea through the five stages of grief

The DPRK leadership's failure to unify the country during the Korean War left a deep scar on the national psyche

The history of Cold War North Korea through the five stages of grief
Benjamin R. Young
Benjamin R. Young February 26, 2020
The revolution that wasn’t: is North Korea really a “revolutionary” state?

The revolution that wasn’t: is North Korea really a “revolutionary” state?

Despite official claims, early DPRK history was not marked by radical change to the status quo

The revolution that wasn’t: is North Korea really a “revolutionary” state?
Benjamin R. Young
Benjamin R. Young December 25, 2019
The need for speed: time as a political tool in North Korea

The need for speed: time as a political tool in North Korea

The U.S. should take note that Kim Jong Un can literally change the time on a subjective — or political — whim

The need for speed: time as a political tool in North Korea
Benjamin R. Young
Benjamin R. Young December 11, 2019
How Trump joins the list of notorious tyrants who praised North Korea’s system

How Trump joins the list of notorious tyrants who praised North Korea’s system

North's personality cult, state media controls have charmed dictators for decades

How Trump joins the list of notorious tyrants who praised North Korea’s system
Benjamin R. Young
Benjamin R. Young June 25, 2018
What exactly is North Korea’s “cultural heritage”?

What exactly is North Korea’s “cultural heritage”?

Pompeo last month used a unusual euphemism when discussing a deal with Pyongyang

What exactly is North Korea’s “cultural heritage”?
Benjamin R. Young
Benjamin R. Young June 10, 2018
Who controls the DPRK? A brief history of North Korea conspiracy theories

Who controls the DPRK? A brief history of North Korea conspiracy theories

Many have posited that it is not really Kim Jong Un who is pulling the strings

Who controls the DPRK? A brief history of North Korea conspiracy theories
Benjamin R. Young
Benjamin R. Young May 30, 2018
Singapore’s long, cozy relationship with North Korea

Singapore’s long, cozy relationship with North Korea

The city-state's history of ties to Pyongyang make it a fitting site for the Kim-Trump summit

Singapore’s long, cozy relationship with North Korea
Benjamin R. Young
Benjamin R. Young May 20, 2018
How Washington’s view of North Korea’s reunification plans is shifting

How Washington’s view of North Korea’s reunification plans is shifting

Changing Beltway consensus on why Pyongyang seeks nukes has major implications for U.S. policy

How Washington’s view of North Korea’s reunification plans is shifting
Benjamin R. Young
Benjamin R. Young February 27, 2018
The story of a North Korea-backed rebellion in Sri Lanka

The story of a North Korea-backed rebellion in Sri Lanka

DPRK backing for an ultra-leftist insurgency in 1971 ended in the expulsion of their diplomats

The story of a North Korea-backed rebellion in Sri Lanka
Benjamin R. Young
Benjamin R. Young October 10, 2017