The Kim dynasty has ruled North Korea since 1948. This hereditary cult of personality survived the Korean War which left much of the North decimated.
The US dropped 635,000 tons of bombs and 32,557 tons of napalm on the Korean peninsula, more than during the entire Pacific campaign against the Japanese during World War II. Gen. Curtis LeMay admitted the US had killed nearly 30 percent of the population. Three million civilians were killed.
The Korean War fostered an intense hatred of America. This explains in part the diplomatic intransigence of the regime and efforts to develop nuclear weapons and ICBMs some observers believe are capable of striking the Western US.
The North Korean state has seriously curtailed the basic liberties of its people. Political opposition and independent media are not permitted. Those opposed to the regime face severe repression, often resulting in torture and execution.
It is estimated 24 million people, 40 percent of the population, live below the poverty level. Due to the country’s isolation, there are serious food shortages. North Korea suffered four years of famine in the 1990s.
On 20 June, China’s President Xi Jinping met North Korean leader Kim Jong-un during the first Chinese state visit to Pyongyang in 14 years. That visit was followed by a historic meeting between President Trump and Kim Jong-un on 30 June, when each president stepped over the border at the Demilitarized Zone (DMZ) that divides the Korean Peninsula in late June; Trump became the first sitting US president to set foot on North Korean soil.
We forecast that President Trump will boost his chances to again win the Presidential Reality® Show by signing a peace treaty with North Korea (and Afghanistan) prior to Election Day 2020.