Thursday, July 2, 2009

North Korea 北韓 북한

I wonder what it must be like to be an average North Korean citizen. Some writers have described living in its government-controlled society as like existing in a bubble, but I don't think that's quite right; even in a bubble, you can see the outside world.

Perhaps "living in a bubble, with Dear Leader's soap in your eyes" would be more accurate.

Even a seemingly innocuous news story about a new Italian restaurant in Pyongyang is turned into a self-glorifying tribute to Kim Jong Il.

There is a restaurant specializing in Italian dishes in Kwangbok Street, Pyongyang.

Its main dishes are various kinds of pizza and spaghetti dishes including pizza margherita and spaghetti vongole bianco. It also serves famous Korean and foreign dishes.

Manager of the restaurant Kim Sang Sun told KCNA:

There is a moving story behind the appearance of this restaurant. Leader Kim Jong Il took care that a restaurant specializing in Italian dishes was opened, saying the Koreans should be let to taste world-famous dishes. He took necessary measures, learning that the restaurant found it a tough row to hoe, having no cook experienced in Italian dishes. Now our cooks are just as good as Italians in making Italian dishes. No wonder the Korean and foreign customers are satisfied with the famous dishes of the world served by our restaurant.

I think The Onion did a perfect job of parodying the North Korean fantasy-world propaganda machine in the following video. Enjoy...

1 comment:

E.Michael Liu said...

hi steve, thanks for stopping by, i have been too busy with work and school, thus the long absent from blogging, but i promise i will try to keep up....... how is Taiwan??
hope all is well with you, and hope to talk to you soon.