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Korea Life: What Do Koreans Think of Kim Jong Un and North Korea

Korea Life: What Do Koreans Think of Kim Jong Un and North Korea

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Pyongyang will reach the final preparation stages for test-firing an intercontinental ballistic missile (ICMB)”, said Kim Jong Un, the leader and dictator of North Korea, on his New Year’s public address. Inevitably, a statement like that is bound to cause worry for the rest of the world. The United States outgoing Defence Secretary Ashton Carter last week vowed to “shut down” and shoot down any North Korea missile launch or test headed to the US and/or any of its allies, like South Korea and Japan. US Presidential elect Donald Trump said in a tweet that “it won’t happen.

The international community has been very vocal about Kim Jong Un and his regime. However, apart from public officials and ministries like the Unification Ministry, Korean citizens hardly talk about Kim Jong Un and North Korea. Perhaps maybe because they don’t see North Korea as a threat. Regardless, we decided to ask the young and old, working class and unemployed, rich and poor, upper, middle and lower class, and a whole lot of diverse Koreans what they think about North Korea. Our interviews, like always, were conducted via text messages, chat and phone calls, on social media and of course face to face

The following are direct quotes from some of our interviews with Koreans and none of it has been edited or changed. Translating interviews conducted in Korean  language to English and correcting grammar mistakes only where necessary in English interviews are the only changes we’ve made. The meanings, sentences or anything else has not been changed and/or manipulated in any way, shape or form.

“North Koreans are very poor. I think they are good people too, like Koreans[South Koreans] but they have a crazy dictator. I wish for unification between North and South Korea”

Song Eun
Female, 12 years old, elementary school student

“North Korean people are very poor because Kim Jong Un is very crazy. But I’m not afraid because Obama and Korean men in the military will fight and protect us”

Female, 13 years old, elementary school student

“I don’t think about North Korea and I’m not afraid of them. They can’t fight and they are very poor. We[South Koreans] can buy many missles and fighting equipments.”

Male, 13 years old, elementary school student

“As a person who doesn’t have much knowledge about North Korea, I actually have positive thoughts about them. even though we are biologically parted away from each other, our blood and history share the same adversity. However, people get agitated so badly by the mass media that the intention towards the North is very negative. I hope the future president will work hard to [be]re-united once more although I guarantee it will be impossible if the fat c**t[Kim Jong Un] stays in his position”

Male, 17 years old, high school student

“North Korea is making nuclear [weapons] so a lot of countries such as USA, and Euro[countries in Europe] say North [Korea] should not develop nuclear technology. If Korea war happens again, we don’t know if the North [will] use nuclear [weapons]. It is so dangerous for countries that are divided.”

Male, 19 years old, high school student

“Kim Jong Un is a shameless ar****le who doesn’t give a damn about his people, starving them and disturbing world peace. North Korea has to be removed from the world.”

Jung Hyun
Male, 20 years old, recent high school graduate

“Humm , Kim Jong un is so crazy for everyone even North Koreans hate him. And… ummm..he wants all people to obey him..and South Korea needs to be careful all the time because we can’t expect when he will attack us..”

Female, 21 years old, unemployed

“North Korea has maintained a dictatorship for three generations now, starting with Kim Il Sung. There is a popular Korean saying: history reflects the present. We can look to history to predict the future of North Korea and according to history, the future doesn’t look too good for its people [North Koreans] and Kim has no intention of giving up power.”

Female, 25 years old, artist and office worker

“Nope, North Korea doesn’t bother me. Although I wouldn’t have spent 2 years of my life in the military preparing for a potential war if we were reunited. Even though I hope we do, I don’t expect us to.”

Male, 26 years old, part time worker

“I actually don’t think about North Korea and I don’t worry about them.”

Female, 31, English teacher

“Kim Jong Un is one crazy motherf****r. Only a sick bastard would order the killing of their uncle over a simple disagreement.”

Female, 35 years old, public worker

“I feel so sorry for North Koreans. They have to endure the insanity of their “supreme leader”. I wish for a unification between us[North and South Korea] but it’s likely never going to happen in the near future.”

Female, 35 years old, lawyer

” I don’t follow politics nor North Korea. I have no interest in it. Although I’m also convinced they[North Korea] pose no threat to us. Kim Jong Un would be foolish to launch an attack on us.”

Female, 51 years old, housewife

What do you think of North Korea and Kim Jong Un? Let us know in the comment section below. Also, be sure to follow and like Koreanized on

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