North Korea may be escalating its saber-rattling and making threats about nuclear domination, but the communist nation now has an Achilles’ heel: Feeding its soldiers.
Reports from near the North Korean border indicate that despite leader Kim Jong Un’s tough talk, the situation in his country is becoming dire. Soldiers have apparently gone unfed for so long that they’re ransacking villages, forcing civilians to clash with the regime and signalling major instability.
“Villagers in Ryanggang Province, at the Chinese border, claim local farming officials have been barging into their homes and taking food intended for their families after last year’s bad harvest,” stated The Daily Mail.
“Officials carried out home searches in Paekam County (Ryanggang Province) to determine how much food some families had,” reported DailyNK, a South Korean news site that monitors events in the reclusive North.
“As an excuse to enter and demand bribes, they said to the residents, ‘Are we just going to let our military starve while the Americans lick their lips and prepare to eat us alive?'” continued that report, based on sources on the communist side of the border.
It isn’t just word of mouth that is raising red flags about the country’s precarious position. Recent photographs also show North Korean soldiers stealing food such as grain and corn from local villages.
— Daily NK (@The_Daily_NK) January 22, 2018
The shortage of food for the regime’s troops most likely has several causes, including drought and particularly poor harvests, yet it’s also clear that sanctions put in place by the United States and the UN are also taking their toll on the rogue country.
“Even though the price of rice hasn’t changed much in the markets, people are especially worried that the effects of international sanctions will continue to mount and soon cause even more problems,” a North Korean source told DailyNK.
How long can the communist regime last with growing unrest and starving soldiers? That’s no doubt what western decision makers would like to know, but there are indications that major cracks are forming in the foundations of Kim’s power.
“Tactics employed by collective farm authorities have been particularly ruthless in some regions, with officials at times completely ransacking homes in order to collect every last grain of food. This has become a source of conflict,” DailyNK explained.
Over the last few months, several well-publicized defections have taken place, with North Korean soldiers risking their lives and even taking bullets just to reach the South. There may have been additional attempts, either successful or failed, that were not reported for security reasons.
One thing is clear: Socialism and communism are abysmal failures, no matter what variety is tried.
It’s time to finally throw socialism into the dustbin of history — and the Kim regime itself may end up there soon enough. The international sanctions are doing their job, and the obstinate country appears to be weakening from within.
Despite all the criticism and nay-saying, the Trump administration’s strategy of applying pressure on North Korea while calling Kim Jong Un’s bluffs seems to be working.
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