October 27, 2021


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.


Why one city in Nepal worships North Korea and follows ‘Juche’ ideology

A mistrust of outsiders and desire for self-reliance drive Bhaktapur to embrace North Korean style communism

Benjamin R. YoungBenjamin R. YoungOctober 18, 2021

The contentious field of North Korean studies: Schools of thought and divisions

Analysts and researchers often disagree on core issues, from how to label the Kim regime to the DPRK’s nuclear program

Benjamin R. YoungBenjamin R. YoungSeptember 24, 2021

Guns in one hand: Kim Jong Un’s revitalization of the Worker-Peasant Red Guards

Elite force featured in parade is akin to the National Guard, helping to repel invasion and respond to natural disasters

Benjamin R. YoungBenjamin R. YoungSeptember 17, 2021

How Xi Jinping’s growing personality cult differs from Kim family worship

North Korea’s idolatry is rooted in past accomplishments while China’s Xi stakes his legitimacy on future performance

Benjamin R. YoungBenjamin R. YoungSeptember 13, 2021

Understanding North Korea’s ‘final victory’ and why it matters

For top North Korean officials, the quickest way to ensure their system’s long-term survival is through reunification

Benjamin R. YoungBenjamin R. YoungSeptember 6, 2021

What the US withdrawal from Afghanistan means for North Korea

Pyongyang hardliners may think their idea of reunification is real again, but Korea differs vastly from Afghanistan

Benjamin R. YoungBenjamin R. YoungAugust 18, 2021

As economy struggles, North Korea invokes self-reliance to inspire workers

Juche is being reemphasized in Kim Jong Un’s North Korea. That’s not a good sign for the North Korean economy

Benjamin R. YoungBenjamin R. YoungAugust 12, 2021

Ideology still drives North Korea and China together

The dream of socialism may be dead in Eastern Europe but it is alive and well in East Asia

Benjamin R. YoungBenjamin R. YoungAugust 5, 2021
Featured Content

North Korea’s relations with Cuba: Revolutionary comrades and brothers-in-arms

Long united against U.S interventionism, the Havana protests show how far apart the two friends’ societies have drifted

Benjamin R. YoungBenjamin R. YoungJuly 13, 2021

In Kim Jong Un’s speeches, Marx returns to North Korea

Reappearance of communism in country's discourse suggests regime's loss of ideological control due to pandemic

Benjamin R. YoungBenjamin R. YoungJuly 7, 2021
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