Defectors NK Military

Dramatic video shows North Korean soldier’s defection; doctor says he will survive

The U.N. Command, which stands face-to-face with the Korean People’s Army (NKPA) at the Korean DMZ, has released footage of the defection last week of an NKPA soldier right through the so-called-but-not-really-that-at-all Joint Security Area, or JSA: The video shows the soldier, who may have been the driver for an NKPA general, hauling ass toward …

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Defectors NK Military

What’s extraordinary (and what isn’t) about a North Korean soldier’s defection at Panmunjom

It has been an eventful day along the Korean Demilitarized Zone (DMZ). South Korean authorities say that a 58-year-old Louisiana man was found on the wrong side of the Civilian Control Line, where he was doing something “for political purposes.” Details to follow, presumably. The ROK Joint Chiefs have also confirmed that a North Korean soldier …

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Defectors NK Military Refugees

Five North Koreans, including two soldiers, have defected in June 2017 (so far)

Nat Kretchun’s latest report on Pyongyang’s efforts to control the spread of outside and subversive information suggests that the state has mostly written off its thirty- and forty-somethings as a lost generation, irrecoverably disillusioned by the collapse of the state’s rationing system, corruption, and the influx of South Korean DVDs. Instead, Kim Jong-Un is focusing …

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Border Control NK Military Subversion

N. Korea, dissent & desertions: as internal control tightens, border control degrades

I haven’t yet had time to read Nat Kretchun’s new report on the circulation of samizdat inside North Korea, but Reuters, The Washington Post, and Sokeel Park helpfully summarize its bleak findings: Kim Jong-un is not a Swiss-educated reformer, is not bringing Glasnost to North Korea, has turned Koryolink into a tool for hunting down dissent and dissenters, and …

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NK Military

Rimjin-gang source: North Korean army units understrength due to draft-dodging

He reported that “According to an officer of the Military Service and Mobilization Division, the number of new recruits is only around 86% in proportion to the number of discharged soldiers.  Since the military is facing recruit shortage, the state authority has ordered to conscript every potential recruit–except people with a serious physical problem.  Therefore, …

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Border Control NK Military Regime Change

RFA: North Korean border guard under arrest after killing seven comrades

This blog has closely followed reports of indiscipline within the North Korean military, resistance against the state, strategies for political subversion, and the breakdown of border control. Last week, another report of a mass shooting incident by a North Korean border guard reinforced my belief that morale and discipline within the border guard force are declining. …

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Border Control NK Military

To prevent war, talk to North Korea’s soldiers about rice, peace & freedom (updated: it happened again)

When the U.S. Army wants to breach a minefield, it deploys a Mine-Clearing Line Charge to blast a path through it with 1,750 pounds of C-4. The procedure looks like this: Obviously, the North Koreans know this, so they can’t possibly think that planting a few more anti-personnel mines along the DMZ — right where …

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Border Control Defectors Human Trafficking NK Military Sanctions

Latest N. Korea defections: 6 soldiers, 3 workers, a top student, a general & slush fund manager

It has been three months since 12 young women and a man defected from that North Korean restaurant in Ningpo, China, and since 100 North Korean workers in Kuwait staged a mass protest against their minders. I’d begun to wonder if the regime had cauterized the wounded cohesion of the very people it needs most …

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