14 Things You Didn’t Know About North Korea

1. North Korea is a producer of meth. That’s right. They call it “Ice,” or 어름. Smugglers bring it into the West and sell it for pure profit here. There is apparently a secret organization in Pyongyang called Room 39. It’s known that this organization controls over 100 companies. The UN estimated North Korea to make anywhere from $500 million to $1 billion annually from illicit activities.

2. There’s a really tall hotel (105 stories) that’s still under construction in Pyongyang (since 1987, reportedly said to have been completed in 2002, but the opening of the hotel keeps getting delayed). It’s been empty for almost 30 years now. Esquire called it the Worst Building In The History Of Mankind.

Ryugyong Hotel, August 2012.
Ryugyong Hotel, August 2012.

3. The current head of state, Kim Jong-un went to a private boarding school in Switzerland. He is a fluent English speaker and loves basketball and is crazy, which is why he and DRod get along so well.

4. There’s a social classification system that is cut up into 50 subclassifications. It’s called Songbun and it is determined at birth.

5. Remains of unicorns were apparently found near Yongmyong Temple and King Tongmyoung rode that son-of-a-bitch like, all the time.

Postcard, published by the Government Railways of Chosen.
Postcard, published by the Government Railways of Chosen.

6. Smoking weed in North Korea seems to be legal. Too bad they don’t have anything to quell the munchies.

7. They run on their own calendar. So instead of the year 2014, it’s year 103.

8. Americans have actually defected to North Korea. Why? Why would you do this?

9. The late Kim Jong-il has a series of titles, including the world-recognized Great Leader.

10. North Korea is not a communist state. They instead follow Juche, which is more of a political religion and a jerkoff session to their Great Leader.

11. There’s an empty city that’s used to try and intimidate South Koreans living close to the border. At one point, the two sides blared propaganda and patriotic music at one another close to 20-hours a day.

 DPR Korea soldier pointing to the DMZ.image - Kristoferb
DPR Korea soldier pointing to the DMZ.
image – Kristoferb

12. Kim Jong-il coached the North Korean national soccer team using an invisible phone. Pretty impressive for a country that can’t feed its own people.

13. The best way to get on the good side of North Koreans is tell them that you’d like to pay your respects to the Great Leader. Once you place flowers and bow to a statute, they’ll be your best friends forever.

14. North Koreans cried (in hysterics and probably fearing death) when Kim Jong-il died, which scared the shit out of people living outside of North Korea. We did get an answer to the question, “Can brainwashing really affect a population?”

Yes. Yes it can. TC mark

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