[imText1]Seeing American news reports that 40% of North Korea’s national budget is spent on Kim Father and Son idolization propaganda, South Korean citizens are asking themselves if that much money could really be spent on that.
Up until now, the actual number of idolization figures and the amount of money allocated for them has not been revealed. However, when we look at the number and size of these idolization figures springing up all over North Korea, the fact that these represent a large dedicated portion of the national budget can be easily ascertained. If every kind of idolization propaganda item were put together, the number would equal several hundred times the number of crosses on churches throughout the South.
The amount of money spent on statues and anniversary celebrations for Turkmenistan’s deceased leader Nayajopuna, or on Iraq’s Saddam Hussein, are no match for the amount spent on Kim Father and Son.
As Kim Jong Il made his appearance on the scene as successor in the 70’s, within 10 years the entire nation was covered with statues, and even today construction has not stopped.
Recently, historical monuments to Kim Jong Il’s great deeds have been constructed. at Jagang Province Weewon Electric Power Plant, North Pyongan Province Changsong County, Yupyong; South Hamkyong Province Yonpo; North Pyongan Province, Hyangsan County, Sangso-ri; and Yomju County Yongbok-ri, Bakchon County, Dansan-ri.
At recently constructed monuments, mosaics of Kim Chong Sok (Kim Jong Il’s birth mother) made of colored glass, tiles, and natural stone are prevalent.
North Korea’s Kim Jong Il is not wasting money worthlessly by creating this idolization propaganda. The reason that the construction of these monuments has not stopped, even during a period of economic crisis, is because his intention is to use the vulnerabilities of citizens and young people to induce a spirit of sacrifice as they gaze on the Great Leader and the General (Kim Jong Il)
Of course, although among adults there are not many who like Kim Jong Il, he is the leader of the country and is still going strong, the intention is to arm the youth with a way of thinking that tells them it is wrong to betray the General.
140,000 Idolization Propaganda Items
The most representative of all of the idolization propaganda is Kim Jong Il’s resting place at the Gumsusan Masoleum.
In addition to the Masoleum, if you include the entire collection of each type of Kim Jong Il idolization statues, Revolutionary Spirit Institutes, Historical Places, Battlefields, On-the-Spot Guidance Memorials, Eternal Towers, Slogan Boards and Engraved Slogans, and (the Kim) family’s idolization propaganda materials, the figure reaches about 140,000.
There are about 70 statues of Kim Jong Il nationwide, erected on the hill at Mansudae and at each Province location. While there are Kim Jong Il statues in the gardens of each National Security Agency building, there are Kim Father and Son plaster figures at each of the Research Institutes.
Nationwide, there are 200 Kim Father and Son Research Institutes; one large scale facility in each city and county, one each at national government and cabinet level agencies, and one at each of the city and county offices subordinate to the People’s Safety Agency, Regional Public Security Office, and the National Security Agency have been constructed. The size, furnishings, and maintenance of these institutes are better than that found in museums in the South.
Additionally, although small in size, Kim Father and Son Research Institutes can be found at each village and labor district. As there are about 30 villages and labor districts in each city-county, nationwide there are about 6,000 (200 X 30 = 6,000) of these institutes. The condition and furnishings of these buildings are the best in North Korea.
In the villages or labor districts, one of these institutes can be found at each subordinate farm, large operational team, 2nd Class and higher agricultural enterprises, and at each North Korean Army battalion and larger size unit. Taking these into account, nationwide there appear to be tens of thousands of these Kim Father and Son Institutes.
In the countryside, one can find representative idolization and propaganda figures nationwide in the construction of Eternal Towers and Jongil Peaks at Kumgang Mountain, Myohyang Mountain, etc., and slogans idolizing Kim Father and Son can be found on natural rocks.
The Eternal Tower found at the center of every province, city, county, and labor district nationwide, is commonly referred to as the “Longevity Tower.” The tower was inscribed with “We respectfully wish for our Great Leader’s longevity,” however, after Kim Il Song’s death in July of 1994, the inscription was changed to “”The Great Leader is with us forever.”
During 1996-1997, when millions starved to death, the citizens complained loudly about the importation of granite and special cement from overseas for use in the construction of these towers.
Constructing Idols with Special Materials Imported from Overseas
The statues and gypsum figures found at the Kim Father and Son Institutes, as well as other art forms are created and maintained by Art Creation Companies located in each of the Provinces, including the Mansu Dae Creative Company, and the April 15 Cultural Creative Team.
Within the Mansu Dae Creative Company is separated by categories consisting of the Arts and Crafts Creative Team, the Business Art Creative Team, the Engraving Art Creative Team, the Cinema Creative Team, the Statue and Gypsum Creative Team, and the Chosun Paintings Creative Team, and specializes in creating symbols used to idolize Kim Father and Son.
Creations in the image of Kim Father and Son are made by Creative Branch Number 1. No one other than those assigned to Creative Team Number 1 can manufacture this type of art. Those assigned to this team have received special certification that allows them to draw the images of Kim Father and Son, only after having passed a political test and receiving certification from the Party, and certification of their skill.
While there are about 500 people working in the Mansu Dae Creative Company, the Art Creation Companies in each of the Provinces have about 30 in residence propaganda agitators in each of the cities and counties. The Special Finance Branch of the central government provides unlimited funding to cover the costs required to manufacture these items, and provides appropriations for purchasing high quality goods from overseas.
Covering tens of thousands of square meters in the Baekdu Mountain area, there are Grand Monuments at Bochonbo, Samjiyeon, and the Hwangjae Mountain area where several thousand people manage idolization propaganda materials.
If Kim Father and Son have been to any of the Historical Revolutionary sites or battlefield sites, a museum is constructed there. For example, if Kim Father or Son has visited a farmhouse, persons at the farmhouse are no longer permitted to enter it, and personal effects are thereafter protected and managed by experts.
When Labor Party propaganda workers come up with a new competitive idolization idea, it is a happening that calls for a humorless presentation. When visiting Songjin Steelworks, Kim Il Sung used his hand to gauge the thickness of a steel plate and the very next day this several ton piece of steel was taken to the museum and placed on display. In this way, the competition among flatterers to display their loyalty has become a reason for the sharp increase in idolization propaganda.
Damaging Nature with Carved Slogans
At spots of beauty like Baekdu Mountain and Mohyang Mountain, etc., there are colossal carved slogans on the mountainsides.
▲ At Sobaeksu Valley, the professed hometown of Kim Jong Il, the six granite letters of the “Jong Il Peak” slogan placed on the mountain at Changsu Peak weighs 60 tons each and were put in place by helicopter.
▲ At Hyangno Peak on Mount Gumgang, the letters in the mountainside slogan “Chosun’s Famous Gumgang Mountain Is The World’s Famous Mountain. Kim Il Sung – September 27, 1947,” are 20 meters high, 16 meters wide with stokes of each character 3 meters, and a depth of 1 meter.
▲ On the rock at Mohyang Mountain’s Yusan Waterfall, the letters in the slogan “The Comrade Great Leader Kim Il Sung Is With Us Forever – July 8, 1994,” are 3 meters high, 2.3 meters wide and the letters “Kim Il Sung” are 3.2 meters by 2.5 meters.
▲ The letters at Gumgang Mountain Manpokdong and Bopguidong waterfalls reflecting “The Great Leader Kim Il Sung Is With Us Forever – July 8, 1994,” are 8 meters high and 5 meters wide.
▲ The engraved letters at Gumgang Mountain’s Waegum River Guryong Waterfall that reads “Chosun! Let’s Boast of our 5,000 Year History – Honored to Have Escorted the Comrade Great Leader Kim Il Sung – July 8, 1994,” are 4 meters high and 3 meters wide and the letters at Gumgang Mountain Gukji Peak saying “Hangil’s Female General Kim Chong Suk,” are 5 meters by 6 meters.
▲ Baekdu Mountain’s Hyangdo Peak’s “Baekdu Mountain – The Revolution’s Holy Mountain – Kim Jong Il February 16, 1992,” is done in embossed white lettering so that when it snow they won’t be covered.
▲ Gumgang Mountain’s Oknyo Peak lettering that reads “Gumgang Mountain is Chosun’s Driving Spirit – Kim Jong Il,” is 11 meters high and 8 meters wide.
In addition to this, Kim Father and Son idolization slogans on trees and engravings can be found in uncountable numbers at every well know place and tourist spot across the nation.