Tuesday, July 26, 2005

North Koreans Eat Grass

Gerald Bourke, a spokesman based in Beijing for the UN World Food Program, reports that food is so short in the Worker's Paradise of North Korea that the people are foraging for anything edible to survive. Says Bourke, "People are gathering wild food, grasses, bracken (ferns), acorns. I've seen people going up into the hills with sacks and coming down with sacks of grass and picking through seaweed."

The failed socialist state of North Korea survives on food donations from foreign countries, including the US. However, those donations simply support the Kim Jong Ils catastrophic rule, as the food is directed first to support the military and administration and then used to discipline the population at large. If you don't support the regime, you starve. The regime also sells the donated food to its starving people.

The North has suffered from famine through the 1990s, losing possibly two million people to starvation out of a population of about 23 million. The Global Situation Report tells of incidents of cannibalism in 1999:
So desperate are the people that some have resorted to eating children who die; others have reportedly captured live orphaned children found abandoned on city streets and killed them for food. Three youths were reportedly executed recently for murdering a woman and butchering her body for sale.

The reader is cautioned not to misinterpret this as a failure of Communist genius Kim Sung-Il's policy of "juche," or self reliance. It is a perfect example of juche in action: Instead of relying on foreigners for your dinner, the North Koreans are relying on their neighbors to provide their dinner.

The effects of the famine are reported by GSR:
What is most worrying to some observers is the fact that an estimated 63% of North Korean children are undernourished, with some 16% of children 7 years old or younger suffering acute malnutrition. Thousands of toddlers are too weak to take their first steps. Dr. Hoang Thi Van, a Vietnamese World Food Program emergency officer, estimates that 50% of these youngsters may be permanently stunted. Thousands of grade-schoolers are too weak to concentrate on their studies.

A generation of children may grow up physically and mentally retarded. The effects will be felt for decades. "The impact on the people is very serious because you have children suffering from deprivation of food at a very early age," says David Morton, U.N. humanitarian coordinator in North Korea. "This can affect -- this will affect -- their future physical and mental development and this will affect the long-term development of the country."

And while his people starve, commie dictator Kim Jong Il is hot in pursuit of atom bombs and and Swedish hookers, swilling Hennessy brandy while enjoying the high life.

Apres Kim Jong Il, le deluge!


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