Advertisement

Kim Jong Un: Military school teachers should be 'envy of all'

Kim said loyal subjects would be well rewarded and seated on "gold cushions."

By Elizabeth Shim
North Korean leader Kim Jong Un met with Pyongyang's military educators on Nov. 3-4, and urged them to train a new generation of "revolutionaries." Photo by Rodong Sinmun/Yonhap
North Korean leader Kim Jong Un met with Pyongyang's military educators on Nov. 3-4, and urged them to train a new generation of "revolutionaries." Photo by Rodong Sinmun/Yonhap

SEOUL, Nov. 5 (UPI) -- Kim Jong Un has called for the strengthening of ideological training for North Korea's military and the minting of "revolutionaries." But behind the scenes, the North Korean leader has been relaxing restrictions on the growth of the country's gray markets.

Pyongyang's state newspaper Rodong Sinmun reported Thursday that Kim had delivered a speech at a meeting for North Korean military educators, urging the strengthening of ideological education that could mold students into soldiers.

Advertisement

"Classrooms, training grounds and laboratories must be modernized, and must meet the standards of modern computerization," Kim said during the meeting held Nov. 3-4. "The dedicated efforts of teachers are like the red blood of warriors and more precious than underwater pearls."

Kim also suggested the teachers would be well rewarded for their work.

RELATED South Korea's president urges North Korea to return to dialogue

"I want our military school teachers to be the envy of all and seat them on gold cushions," the North Korean leader told the gathering.

Kim's assurances to his military about the relevance of an ideology rooted in the country's communist past, however, come at a time when North Korea is experiencing historic changes in its unofficial economy.

Advertisement

North Korea state media does not publicize the rapid developments taking root across the country, but sources say sweeping changes are taking place in North Korea, as authorities are losing their grip on information flows, and more ordinary North Koreans are engaging in some form of free-market enterprise.

RELATED North Korea debuts accessible toilet for disabled at new airport terminal

South Korean news outlet Daily NK reported that Kim has been instrumental in relaxing restrictions on market activities, or early forms of North Korean privatization.

Park In-ho, chief editor at Daily NK, said that Kim's preoccupation with the power transition since 2012 has been a boon to North Korean entrepreneurs doing brisk business in town and city gray markets. Kim also has taken a "laissez-faire" attitude to the growth of the markets, Park said.

RELATED Defector: North Korea computer tablet operates on South Korea memory chips

Latest Headlines

Advertisement
Advertisement

Follow Us

Advertisement