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North Korea to Accept Flood Relief Aid From the South.

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Kim Jong-un, new president of the Democratic People’s Republic of North Korea, has taken the auspicious step of accepting emergency aid from neighboring Republic of [South] Korea; auspicious because until now, Kim has followed, even exceeded, the steps of his father, Kim Jong-Il in expressing disdain for the free nation to the south.

The offer of aid comes in the wake of floods and storms in June and July that destroyed a great part of this year’s grain harvest. Reports indicate that 200,000 North Koreans are homeless, about 600 are dead, and 161,000 acres of agricultural land rendered cropless. North Korea annually finds difficulty in feeding her population, even in the best of years.

North Korea’s formal response to the offer from Seoul came through the International Red Cross at Panmunjom village, near the militarized border. The message indicated an acceptance of the offer, but stated a requirement for complete and specific details in document form.

Kim Jong-un, new to his role of president, lost substantial aid from South Korea last year. While food aid at that time was offered, Pyongyang held out for replacing the food with building materials and equipment, and rice. The offer was withdrawn because South Korean President Lee Myung-bak had concerns that the supplies would be diverted to the military.

There has been some hesitancy in providing foods and staples to the North, in view of the belligerent nature of the North Korean missile and nuclear armament programs. In recent years, South Korea has been  subjected to bombardment and killing from the North. An additional concern was the matter of the United States/South Korean military exercises carried out again this year in August. The North characterized these exercises a “rehearsal for war.”

In 2008 the South Korean administration halted aid, and repeated demands that Pyongyang cease nuclear proliferation.

Photo: thecable.foreignpolicy.com

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About John Lake

John Lake had a long and successful career in legitimate and musical theater. He moved up into work behind the camera at top motion pictures. He has done a smattering of radio, and television John joined the Blogcritics field of writers owing to a passion for the liberal press, himself speaking out about the political front, and liberal issues. Now the retired Mr. Lake has entered the field of motion picture, television, and video game (now a daily gamer!) critique. His writing is always innovative and immensely readable!
  • Glenn Contrarian

    One wonders just how long it will take for NK to fall or implode. Even Myanmar is opening up with baby steps to rejoin the international community, but NK? I will be truly surprised if they last another twenty years. I just hope that when the Pyongyang government falls, that they don’t try to take SK with them.

  • John Lake

    Reuters SEOUL, Sept 12 | Wed Sep 12, 2012 5:31am EDT “ Impoverished North Korea rejected South Korea’s offer of emergency food and medicines to help recover from devastating summer floods, two days after accepting what would have been the first shipment of government aid from Seoul in two years. Wealthy South Korea said last week in an unusually grim assessment of the North’s grain harvest that crop production for the year probably dropped more than 10 percent due to flooding and a drought. North Korea rejected help from the South, saying, ‘That type of support is not needed’, an official at the South Korean Unification Ministry said on Tuesday. North Korea has a record of flip-flopping on international agreements, especially on deals reached in so-called six-party talks to halt its nuclear weapons programme.”

  • Glenn Contrarian

    This is what happens when people ignore history. Sooner or later NK will implode, and it will not end well for the Kim family. They and the generals had better enjoy the power while they can – it won’t last.

  • John Lake

    You may be right, Glenn. The people on N.Korea are probably aware of the global opinions as to how the aid they need is unaccepted or diverted. They will eventually be driven by hunger to rise up. Since the N.Koreans have had difficulty with new missile systems, they won’t be able to profit by selling those systems. As you say, the days of hard lined Kim and his family are numbered.

  • Glenn Contrarian

    No, the local people are not aware. Very few have internet, and all televisions and radios are restricted to certain NK-only frequencies.

  • John Lake

    Perhaps the South will continue it’s policy of dropping leaflets, and doing what they can.

  • John Lake

    I sure that the wanna-be hackers aren’t listening, but for the record, today, March 31, 2013, I am intently watching for word as to the belligerence coming from Jong.