Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Military Parade in Pyongyang Hails 'Spirit of the 50s'


North Korea staged a military parade in Kim Il-sung Square in Pyongyang on Sunday to mark the 60th anniversary of the armistice that ended the Korean War. The massive show of confidence for leader Kim Jong-un and his regime was attended by senior brass and officials and dignitaries from abroad including China's Vice President Li Yuanchao.

In a speech delivered on Kim's behalf, senior military figure Choe Ryong-hae stressed the "spirit of the 1950s," which he summed up by "the strong belief that there can be no fatherland, people, or homes without a leader, defense of the leader against all odds with a willingness to die for the defense of the country and its leader."

This spirit "is a more formidable weapon than nuclear arms," he added.

Choe said the spirit of the 1950s has been "consistently inherited" by Kim Jong-un through his father Kim Jong-il, the nation founder's son.

The rhetoric mainly aims to legitimize Kim junior's hereditary leadership and instill loyalty to him.


North Korean Soldiers carrying backpacks with a radioactive symbol are seen during a mass military parade on Kim Il-sung Square in Pyongyang to mark the 60th anniversary of the Korean War armistice on Saturday. /North Koreas Korean Central News Agency 
North Korean Soldiers carrying backpacks with a radioactive symbol are seen during a mass military parade on Kim Il-sung Square in Pyongyang to mark the 60th anniversary of the Korean War armistice on Saturday. /North Korea's Korean Central News Agency
Kim himself wore a Mao suit rather than military uniform and did not speak.

The parade was smaller than the one held on Kim Il-sung's 100th birthday in April last year. Some 12,000 to 13,000 soldiers and about 300 pieces of military equipment took part, a South Korean government source said, compared to 15,000 and 800 last April.

One group of soldiers in the parade carried backpacks with a radioactive symbol. A South Korean military source said it is unlikely that they contain nuclear weapons, so the regime is probably just trying to give the impression that it has deployed nukes warfare ready and there is a unit in charge of them.


Source: The Chosun Ilbo

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