So Kim Jong Il sent Kim Jong Chol, his son with the (ahem) hormonal imbalance, to Chongjin to carry out some “inspections,” and things did not go well:
In particular, for Kim Jong Cheol, who is being considered as Kim Jong Il’s leading successor, this seems to be an opportunity for on-site training and testing his leadership and insight. However, the source remarked that Kim Jong Cheol could not perform according to Kim Jong Il’s expectations.
Another source said, “Jang has focused on exposing corruption, but Jong Cheol has mainly concentrated on instilling social disciplines. Jang’s actions have garnered support from the citizens, but Jong Cheol has only received complaints.” The source said, “The citizens in North Hamkyung Province have suffered a lot as a result of the inspections. Jong Cheol has received special counsels from the above (Kim Jong Il) several times, but the situation has become worse over time.”
He also said, “Many people thought he lacked experience, but due to the recent inspections, many people harbor disappointment towards Kim Jong Cheol. His leadership seems to be rather weak.” The source relayed that Kim Jong Cheol has been marked as “yet a novice” and an “incapable person” although the high-ranking officials of the province have been hesitant to say so openly.
Regarding the evacuation of the inspection group, the fact that the person in charge of the inspections is related to Kim Jong Il has aggravated civilian sentiment even further. The story has been circulating that the evacuation of Kim Jong Cheol resulted from the recognition that civilian sentiment in North Hamkyung Province could quickly spread into criticism.” [Daily NK]
I don’t suppose you can claim to have had a successful reign of terror if it ends with mass protests.