While most of the world—“most” because we are still waiting on Tehran, Havana, Caracas, of course—has appropriately reacted with outrage at this week’s nuclear test by the North Korean regime, there was also news of lesser import but nearly as chilling. It seems the regime of Kim Jong Un has not only been investing significant resources in their missile and nuclear technology programs but also pouring millions into expanding their system of gulags.
The North Korean Economy Watch Blog has analyzed Google Earth images and believes that there have been recent major expansions of at least two prison camps, Kwan-li-so No. 14 in Kaechon and Kwan-li-so No. 25 in Chongjin. This latter camp appears to have almost doubled in size.
While the regime directs resources toward growing its penal system and military hardware, there are continuing reports of famine.
Just imagine: there are parents who can’t feed their children; brothers and sisters watching each other whither and starve; best friends disappearing into the abyss of a prison camp. To these suffering people, nuclear tests are almost meaningless, except they probably know that their hunger is directly related to the repugnant priorities of their “leaders.” Nuclear tests are a significant threat to world stability and expose the mendacity of Kim Jong Un, but the crimes against the people of North Korea are a moral wound that will take generations to heal.
When the world’s eyes are on North Korea and its leader, let’s not forget the people who suffer the consequences of its nuclear program and those brave souls who challenge the regime.
Learn more about life in North Korea in the Freedom Collection interview with Kim Seong Minh:
This blog was written by Kent Patton, Blog Editor of the Freedom Collection.
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