”Better to die than to live like this,” Jang Gil Su, now 17, writes of a public firing-squad execution he saw in North Korea. By adulthood, many North Koreans have witnessed one; sometimes the charge is as minor as stealing food.
Fresh fruit is a rarity to most North Koreans; electric fences surround some orchards. At 15, Jang saw a couple be electrocuted while trying to steal some grapes. ”We never get a chance to taste an apple or grapes,” Jang explains.

Captions from a slideshow of drawings made by a young North Korean refugee, whose family was given safe haven in South Korea last summer after escaping from the north and taking refuge in U.N. offices in Beijing. Here. [Thanks again, Lia!]


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  1. Jang Gil Su’s drawings are pretty scary.

    Also take a look at Soon Ok Lee’s


    I’m not at all a fan of Bush, and sometimes I think that he is probably rejoicing at the existence of North Korea (if it didnt exist, perhaps he would have to invent it.. yes..) but when as a skeptical guy, I started looking into North Korea I realized that it is truly the worst (and most bizzare) place on Earth. Curious why I think that? Please see


    North Korea always surprises and is reliably entertaining..

    It is amazing that they have managed to maintain their blockade of information in the modern world.. it seems like it is so exceedingly fragile.. (The West is propping Kim Jong Il up.. many say..dooming the North Koreans to eternal hell, a place similar to PolPot’s Cambodia in many ways..)

    Don’t hold your breath that any of the ‘sunshine policy’ negotiations will ever bear fruit.. though..

    The facts cannot be revealed without major change occurring.. Kim Jong Il has dug himself in so deep with all the atrocities and lies that he can NEVER open up to the outside world and keep his power.. So we will get the endless runaround..
    They do have nukes, by the way.. Thats not all..

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