If I ask anyone around here they all say “Don’t give me, don’t give me.”
Reasons why revolutions can’t be made in North Korea.
As investigator questioned about why civil rebellion can’t happen in frustrating situations, Young-Sook Han pointed out strict surveillance, control system with no freedoms of traveling, realities of which one can’t trust each other, and of high-degree brainwashing-education of North Korea.
[topic words] shantytown, citizen surveillant, travel, brainwashing-education
Do you want to know what the woman told me when I landed in China? But they said to me that I was unadaptable. “Why can’t you rise? Don’t just run away like this and fight with it with everybody.”, But I said, “You don’t know very much about it. That’s why you can say it like that.” North Korean houses are not like these, it's not like ones in here, it has one passage with an apartment house for the low income lined up, and all the high-class apartments are like that, and that’s why there are so many shantytowns. I don’t know if it’s because I lived in rural areas, but they all know who visited which house, and that’s how North Korea set up. But if someone says, ‘You-know-who has visited some random house,’ too soon, then someone tails on that house, and citizen surveillant comes in and out several times. “What on earth are you talking about?”
I mean, “how did you visit there,” “why did you visit,” and some things like that gets reported.
And why can’t we fight for it? We can’t just go and come back to that place. We need a certificate for traveling to visit downtown and uptown. Do you get it? We require that certificate. But if I don’t have any reasons for moving, they don’t even give one. The only time that I can travel is when I have ideas like, “My mom is dead.”, “My sister has a wedding today,” instead of that, I’ve never gone to a trip before for 20 years of my life in the 70s, and 80s, just because I didn’t have the certificate. I can’t even move as I want, so how can I contact with everybody.
And North had the best brainwashing-education in the 70s and 80s that everyone thought that they were right. They believe we live better than everyone in the world. They believe we should obey to that Kim-Ill Seuong, until to the death. That’s why we can’t get people united, with only three of them, just like my both daughter-in-law is here. But now in South Korea, they say that there are many underground churches in North Korea. And if we get united and go into North, they talk as if churches will rise again, which is nonsense! Do you know what my daughters-in-law say? They say, “Hey that’s all lie. If I go to North now, I wouldn’t even propagate to my brothers.”
Even to their brothers. Why? Because brothers are pair. But they are not sure if her sister will say “Hey, my sister-in-law told me that I should believe in Jesus,” to her husband. They can’t just assure that. But my sister and that man can’t be good for the whole life. They will always be a lack of goods in unstable situations so that they will argue with each other. Then without even thinking, the husband will give the wife’s parent’s home a rough ride. The place where people can’t go rougher because they are already rough, that’s North Korea. Then my daughter-in-law says, “Well I can propagate to my mom and dad.” because they know that mom and dad won’t give her a rough ride in many cases because she is the child of them. “But I can’t propagate to my sisters. I can’t trust them.”, they say like this.
When people send their child to school, they say “look around for the cars,” “Do whatever for whatever.”, But in the North, everyone says “Careful of what you say, careful of what you speak out.”. You will never know how frightening that sounds. “Some say that South is good to live.”, “Why do you think our politics are like this in this country?”, If we say words like these, if I speak these out, I would have fought out if I was the only one who would die. I wouldn’t care if I die, because it is just my life. What kind of things has my brothers and my kids done? We, this country captures all of them. All. So we can’t rise, South don’t know much about us. That’s why we escape from there like Jang-Yeop-Hwang. Does he have no power? No student? What does he not have? “Fighting in here means bumping my head on the hard rock, for real.”, he knew that and ran away. “If it were me, I would have gone out.”. We North Korean defector also should eat, if we are hungry, while people die in there, while people were dying when I was there, while I was dying. “I am starving, I would live if I could eat.” killing ones could not speak this out, and said “Obey to president Kim.” to the kids, to those who were listening to them, to those who were there while he was dying. Why? I don’t care if I die, but the later should be living well. We are just living in these scary times like this. But we don’t know. So North Korea would never, NEVER raise. Outer attacks should come; inner rebellions will never happen. North has no communication, and that’s basic, but there is none. And what can we do without it? And let’s say, say that ten, no three of them passed. Let’s say that “At least three,” three of them gave. Now that we moved, we should speak out to others. But what can we do with just three? And how should people leave behind know what who went out told them? They would never raise. If we sit down together, which I also did when I was there, we always say, “The U.S. is invading us.”. They only know about war. They are the ones who always say this ‘War! War!’, we are just who is crazy speaking out war. We do some shits like talking out of the war; sirens are ringing, puts some blackouts, if we become a bit unstable, and people feel like they would turn their heads at other places, that’s why now people say it’s war whatever happens. When we had nothing to eat, extremely bad as shit, me and my friends said “when is this U.S. going to attack us? Why the hell are they not attacking? Just kill us tonight or give us food.”. If we don’t die, now we know that we eat when the U.S. comes. “Why are they not coming in this damn situation?”, We lived like this. And last Saturday, today is Wednesday. On Saturday, my professor is the graduate of XX College of Theology, in the 1950s or something. And president and vice-president have visited him there. And they told him that for 50 years, from when he graduated Theology College, none of the people in there worked harder than her. So they said they would give somewhat prise for her from that college, and my professor thought “That’s too far,” and didn’t go. And on that Saturday, they visited in the evening. So we made dinner and ate it. And I thought when I saw them in my house that is the real U.S. When they ate dinner on the chair with that big nose, I felt something in my mind at that very moment. I didn’t even tell that to my professor. I wanted to grab them and say “please attack us, please, why aren’t you guys not attacking us, please attack at least now.”. It was that bad. I had that mentality. And when I was working in the kitchen after that, there was a woman who helped me. And I said, “If I go to North Korea, I am going to be shot to death.”. And the woman said, “Why?”. So I said, “I cooked for the Yankees.”. “Really?”, she said. “For sure. If we only meet South Koreans we are political offenders, and I’ve cooked for the Americans, so if I go back, I will get shot to death. We Norths are like this. So what can we do? No. Never. And like about this time, I’ve heard that they are doing something with the North Korean defector. And I went there, and when I listened, and since there were some trivial people gathered around, and they said that they were all professors. Well, there were so many colleges here, and one of them said, ”Umm since there are lots of North Korean defector here, let me ask you something. How do you think we should be united? Be frank.“. We don’t even have those kinds of colors. We don’t know what the left is, what the opposition party is, what the ruling party is. We need food to eat. So those all ten women are sitting still without saying anything. Nobody would. So I said, ”In my opinion, we can’t do it by ourselves. Those who try to do something with North by oneself are dumb.“.
“then what should we do?”, “We should have some international cooperation, and have some international laws to solve that problem, and if not, we South and North problems would never be solved.” And they said that it is wrong; it’s just not right. “remove the U.S.” which is entirely left, “let’s do it by ourselves.”. So I thought “Oh this is going dumb as I’ve expected.”. This times, will this work? Hell no. This is just too sad, just too sad.
Uniformity of North Korean society
Young-Sook Han said that she had never gone to a market to buy things in the 70s, and 80s. That was because of the market policy of North Korea in distributing every single goods, and no private profits are allowed, and every movement of those were monitored by citizen surveillant were severe. And decorations should not be existing since every distributed commodity were made in the same place, and Production plants could not have excellent ideas because they became cautionary to the North Korean society, which made the extreme uniformity of North Korea.
[Key words] Markets, Surveillant team, income, outcome, claim, North Korean pottery, Sinuiju pottery, public job
So the markets are like this, I married in the 70s when I moved. I went there with her father and married him, and for 20 years in the 70s and 80s, I had never gone out and bought something. Everything in the 70s and 80s was distributed even for a single fabric. The 60s, they had somewhat markets going on, when North had a bit better living than South. There were markets, I lived in Pyongyang at that time, so I sometimes watched them. But after in the 70s, all the ingredients were distributed. I’ve never bought my shoes, socks, toothpaste, a soap. My son, he had never seen this candy sold in North, he, my son did, so all other kids were the same. It was getting worse and worse and worse and worse. So North didn’t have the market, even the concept of it. In other words, selfishness, that was not allowed in this society; no one could do something with something and have more something. Umm, the Surveillant team, that team searched every single apartment and every single house about 29, 25 of them. Without a miss. Without a single home missed. Every house was on the list of the State Agency, and they could say “someone lives in that house.” And the surveillant team has a conference every evening.
"Gather up once in someday.”. They gather up and say “There was an order from the upper ones, so you should do this” kind of things, that we should do something, and I’ve heard that until my ears were ripped in the 70s and 80s, “Houses who don’t have matching incomes and outcomes must report.”. And this North has no personal business, no restaurants, markets, farms, private plants, everything is country-owned. Every farmer has distributed amount, professors even have a certain amount of distribution, so this is clear to our country. “That person has that amount of food he is earning, and gets that amount of money a month.”. We can’t hide that it’s too bright. And if now some kid buys a bicycle or a TV, or something?
We can't hide that, which doesn’t match income and outcome, so we should report that. Oh, at that time I thought “Why the hell are they doing this? Why should they do this, can’t we spend if we have left-over money?”, And now I think, they meant to prevent the link of outer money so they could not have spy supported. Yeah, that’s how North works. No factors of having un-matching income and outcome are allowed. We get the same food, the same money. My professor told me, “We don’t envy each other.”, Why? Because we understand the very same thing with the very same amount. In here they all differ. But in the North, wherever we go, we have the very same things.
North only have two pottery plant. “North pottery,” and “Sinuiju pottery.” Here, someone makes plates and some pottery with some ideas, but in the North, none. Plants follow the order from the uppers. Since plants produce the same product, they have the same plates, same potteries, same spoon, and even the same blankets, so we don’t envy each other. So we can’t want something more or do something more, and moreover, what’s more, frightening is if I am a bit smarter, and make something weird, and do something and have some exceptional talent, there, some old man had the technique innate. He didn’t learn anything from someone, and he was kind enough. He was good at having things stand still, and drag something, like doing something that has some flaws in it. So he is smart. But this public jobs he had was making some shelves, making something into machinery. Now that he is smart he could say something like “That’s wrong, I think this would be better.”. And after he speaks out like that, those who are below him, they are below that old, but the higher gossip about him. “That old man has no idea about it, and still he told me what to do.”. In that country, we shouldn’t say things more advanced, or more creative things. If we do, they think we are awkward, and tails get on us, the surveillance. So the old only says “I’ll do as you say.”, And do something like “sure, sure it is.” then he comes back and gets comfortable. This North country is just like that. That’s why they can’t speak out.
The North Korean reign of terror
Young-Sook Han also talked about the North’s reign of terror. Some entire families were often captured in the North, and she said that she was afraid if she would become one of those every time she saw that. All the international students were captured and gone, and firmly, her son’s friend’s families were gone, and there was no place to speak out of those things in the North.
[key words] terror reign, international students of Dong DeYoung, defense, political offender, judge, prosecutor
Like what I said before, why we can’t rise, sometimes people get captured secretly, and if we find why, then most of the cases are political offenders. We don’t even know if they are alive or dead. But anyway they are all captured away. So people get scared, I’ve experienced sometimes, my son and his friend who had the same elementary, middle, high school, I don’t even forget his name, XXX. He was the youngest, and my son was the oldest. So they went to school together for ten years. And that house was gone away after a night. “What’s wrong?” I asked, and XX families were all gone, just this morning. Now that we’ve heard that, we were scared. ‘hey, we’d better watch what we say.‘, ’I should be careful of what we say.’ And all the frightening feelings were all around my head. So that terror policy. How can we rise in that situation? We can’t. It’s scary. We’ve lived in there. It’s just terrifying, just terrifying.
There was this international student who went to Dong-young in the Japanese occupation. They couldn’t go to the South. There are no international students in the North now. All captured. With various reasons. And here, people who are smart tries to become the judge or prosecutor, in the North, there are no smart ones who want to be judge or prosecutors. We don’t need them. We need no defense. But here, people want that job. So I asked my professor, “Why do you want to have that job?”, and he told me they get paid a lot. ‘oh is that true?’. There is no defense in the North. They take us. If my parents are taken away, like this morning with both my kid and his friends, and daughter got married, one daughter. And they didn’t take her. And this daughter can’t say “Where did my parents go? Why?”. There’s nowhere to ask. She can only say that she is a criminal in frightening sensations. She thinks alone. People point at her, and that’s it. It’s terrifying.
The good times in Pyongyang, the 60s
For the question of the investigator, asking the good times in the North, Young-Sook Han said that her times when she was a child were the best in Pyongyang were the best. Pyongyang had better distributions than the province, with even small goods, and since her parents were well, so that must be the reason for her good times.
[key words] the 1960s, Pyongyang, acorn soy sauce, supplying system.
The 1960s were the best. That I was in Pyongyang. Yeah, that part that I lived in Pyongyang was one of the reasons. Provinces are not that good, why do I say that? I lived in Pyongyang in the 1960s, and my house, don’t have the same distributions from the province, not like Seoul and provinces here. Pyongyang had foreign peoples, so we displayed somethings, sell more to Pyongyang people, province was nothing. The 1960s, that I lived like that, from our farm, my grandmother always visited us. And she said, “Your food is too delicious that it tastes like honey.” she said like that, ‘it’s sweet, sweet.’ That I was young at that time, I tasted it and thought it was salty, and thought ‘why is this sweet?’. I asked her, ‘Grandma, grandma, why is this sweet to you?“ Then she would smile and say ” do you know the taste of soy sauce?“ and says to my mother, ”daughter, in our place, we have acorn soy sauce, and it’s just too dry that they can’t eat them.“. The province had soy sauces with some corns and acorns mixed, while Pyongyang had only acorns in it. So the fact that North lived well in the 1960s is not true of all the regions. Pyongyang was only a bit better, not the whole North did. And I’ve never bought something like candies I market after I married in the 70s and 80s — no fabrics on my own. Everything was distributed, even soy sauce.
Nam Yun Ho email@example.com
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