|▲ Page 4 of Rodong Shinmun on the 23rd, just one of a great many pages filled with attacks based on the ‘Statue Demolition Society’ plot. (Rodong Shinmun capture © Daily NK)|
Having “revealed” at a press conference in Pyongyang on Thursday 19th that former defector Jeon Young Cheol had re-entered North Korea in secret as part of a plot to blow up a Kim Il Sung statue, North Korea is now using the basis of the 'statue terror' plot it claimed to have uncovered to attack South Korea and the United States on a daily basis.
Starting on the 19th with the press conference and continuing with growing vigor through the 20th and 21st, by the 22nd and 23rd the Workers’ Party mouthpiece Rodong Shinmun, its external news agency Chosun Central News Agency and the propaganda website targeting South Korea ‘Uriminzzokkiri’ were publishing a total of 13 (22nd) and 16 (23rd) articles between them.
On the 24th, Rodong Shinmun then published a total of 18 different articles on the subject, all of which were then re-published by Uriminzzokkiri. Chosun Central News Agency only carried 3, but despite this relative restraint it was enough to carry the total to more than 50 in just three days.
“Pigmies like traitor Lee and rogues can never understand that our people value their supreme dignity more than their own lives and are always ready to defend it at the cost of their lives,” one piece carried by Rodong Shinmun mused on the 21st, adding in a separate article on the same day that “any attempt to disparage this dignity can be accounted for nothing but an unpardonable open challenge to it, a political terrorism and an extreme frenzy about confrontation against [North Korea].”
Therefore, a piece on the 23rd declared, “Now the hearts of all our teachers and students in this country are burning with the resolve to take a thousand fold revenge on the United States, the headquarters of terrorism and plot and its lackey the Lee group,” before adding in a second piece entitled ‘Unpardonable Crimes Against Nation and Reunification’, “The U.S. and the puppet group of traitors shall pay a thousand fold for the crimes in a sacred war of the Korean People's Army and people to firmly defend their highest dignity and sweep away all the criminals.”
However, there is little cause for concern. By placing the emphasis on declaring that the North Korean people are united in their determination to defend the regime to the last man against the ‘Statue Demolition Society’ of which Jeon was allegedly a member, the media trend on display reveals itself to be a reflection of the regime's need to generate domestic loyalty to the regime.