The UN report about North Korean atrocities was released just few days ago. We already had some clues about what is going on in DPRK, but this report gives other horrible details. I am not willing to enlist all the crazy things that make DPRK unique, simply because it would be a very long list and we know probably only a part of the story.
An interesting question is: when this will end? And how?
A military solution is a very unrealistic, dangerous and unpredictable scenario. Even if the North Korean army is obsolete, it is still massive and a war could end up in a very high death tolls for both sides. Let’s also consider that China would never allow any UN action in DPRK and would actively support DPRK in a war scenario against a Western coalition. Also, DPRK is likely to possess several nuclear weapons and Seoul is about 50km from the border. They don’t even need an intercontinental missile to kill million of people. Another thing: there is not enough motivation to risk thousands of lives to “free” the North Korean people. DPRK is a very hermetic nation, this also assures that their impact on the external world is very limited. They just spend their time torturing themselves, organising huge (and impressive!) mass games, worshiping Kim Il-Sung and his genial Juche idea, and programming crap video games.
An intelligence action that neutralizes the Korean leaders probably is extremely difficult, because of the technical difficulties of such operation, and also because the power seems distributed across the oligarchy rather than on Kim Jong-un alone.
What else the free world can do?
A regime like that is base on the deep brainwashing of their
slaves citizens. Many regimes around the world are facing an hard time because of internet and especially social networks. DPRK however has amazingly succeeded in isolating the population from the rest of the world. Many people that have an active role in the regime have a very limited knowledge of what’s happening in their prison and the reasons behind their recurrent famines. The steps for freeing the North Korean people are 2:
- Provide (even occasional) access to foreign media to the public.
- Allow North Korean people to communicate each other while remaining anonymous.
Which are the technological solutions?
- Broadcasting on the same frequency of the state channel. Tuning a TV is a crime, so the only way to reach a wide audience is using the same frequency of public state. This require a high power station in South Korea and poses technical challenges.
- Smuggling compact radios, able to receive any channel.
- Smuggling devices to setup a Wi-Fi Direct. With those device people could setup a network and communicate each others. Obviously these devices must be ready to be used by people without any technical experience.
- Even smuggling just Walkie Talkie? Many people could enjoy talking through radio channels without being recognizable (even if radio source can be localized).
I am quite fascinated from Wi-Fi Direct devices (or any similar protocol). Million devices must be made available to the population, they should be resilient to jamming and provided with just few crucial apps. Since the government will declare these devices illegal, they should be small, easy to conceal, maybe even totally silent. The main purpose of this is not give web access to the North Korean people, probably they don’t trust much what is coming from foreign countries. What is important is to make them connected, so they can share their frustration and they can eventually organize themselves.
After the second step, a social chain reaction, i.e. a North Korean revolution, is very likely to happen. The North Korean system is too crazy to be stable. The only reason it has lasted so many decades is that the oligarchy has succeeded in freezing any social/technological/political evolution. If this system is properly perturbed, it can fall much more quickly than many other milder regimes around the world.
It’s like the Berlin Wall: it was a so stupid thing that a simple misunderstanding between DDR bureaucrats made it fall.