North Korea or to use the official term The democratic People’s Republic of North Korea (DPRK) is seen as a war-child nation with a fate engulfed in uncertainty and confusion. Life here is perceived to be bad and the history of the land is stated to be the reason behind this. So let’s begin from where it all began. Located in East Asia, The land was ruled by Korean Empire till the 20th Century. In 1910 it was taken over by Japan. When Japan fell in World War two, the region was divided into two zones with the occupant army deciding the fate of the land. The North was taken by Soviet Union and South by USA. This was followed by Korean War in 1950. Though 1953 saw a cease-fire, the official peace treaty wasn’t signed and the tension still continues. With this background, let’s see why North Korea is not exactly a healthy happy place for you and your family.
10. A Hermit Kingdom
Made famous by Hillary Clinton in 2009, DPRK is by all means a Hermit Kingdom. The term means a nation which walls itself, be it literally or physically, from the rest of the world. They do not engage in conversation with any country. Thus if you live in North Korea, you can say goodbye to the assurance that your country will have your back, where ever you may be. Life here becomes difficult if you are a tourist as your nation won’t protect you with ease if you manage to get stuck there. Though independence, peace, and solidarity are the basic ideals of the country’s foreign policy, the final decision rests on Kin-Jong and thus people have no say in these matters.
9. Prepared for war
It is the most militarized country of the world with 9,495,000 active, reserve personal. It has 1.21 on duty guards and the army ranks 4th in the world. The war with Korea and unease with USA has kept the army on vigil. The Nuclear tests and programs has created unease in the world. During the tours the tourists are by no means allowed near the reserved area. The reports show that when the locals try to get near, they are kept away, brutally so. This is 40% of the population and is numerically equal to the population between the age of 20-45. So if you are lucky enough to get an elusive place in the university you can literally dodge the bullet , for the second and mostly implemented option is joining the armed forces. Poverty pushes the population to take this option and this is one reason why life of North Koreans suck, for the freedom is virtually nonexistent.
8. Restrictive rights
The entertainment in North Korea is restricted with only legal and ‘deemed appropriate’ Radio and TV is broadcast-ed. The News puts approximately 150,000 to 100.000 political prisoners in concentration camps where they go through forced labor, torture and beatings. The country keeps a close watch on any foreigners, even the aid workers. They are restricted from entering areas which may have inhumane conditions. the data acquired is from the refugees and hence the true nature is not revealed as the nationals are not allowed to travel outside the borders. The stories of public executions are widespread. So if you live here the life is tough for people will walk all over you and you can’t fight back.
The health care in North Korea is in bad shape to say the least. The hospitals lack basic medical facilities, basic equipment and doctors as well. The process of bribing the doctor to get better treatment is common. The patient has to pay for the hospital food, bed and water. The health care is one of the basic requirements of public and when a land can’t provide this minimal facility, it is clear that the locals have a tough life.
Economy of the land is bad. The population mainly depends on subsidized food and health care amenities . Hence they are all dependent on the government to supply for the, the income range can’t be judged for data collection of this dictatorial land is very difficult. The hard labor gives 2-3 $ per months in some cases. So if you are a citizen or plan to relocate prepare to shell out large bucks for your favorite brands and the proportion of your salary spent on that loaf of bread will kill your hunger. And if you are a labor, the hunger will most likely kill you.
5. Rankings and conclusions
It’s been ranked the lowest by the world Democracy index, Amnesty International and also by the Human Rights Watch and ranked the second most Happy Nation in their own survey. This shows two realities, one that the country fares lousily in the world circle and secondly the country is in wraps showing its public an alternate reality. So if you decide to live there, bid goodbye to the world you know, and enter into alternate reality spun by the Dictator.
4. No Infrastructure
The roads are empty and when they are not, the cars speed by without concern of mowing down any one. Apart from Pyongyang the public transport is dependable but in other cities it becomes necessary to get a transport. The red light doesn’t mean anything. The buildings are clumsy and cracked and require a tearing down. This shows that life in North Korea is dangerous and this is not because of the government or society, it is due to the clumsy infrastructure. Electricity is available till for 2-3 hours and so is water. Toilet Facilities are unavailable for half the population.
3. No Child’s-play
The children attend school and since 11 years education is compulsory but a different view into the matters bring out a grim reality. The kids swear alliance to Kim-Jong-Un at age 7 and refer to him as a Father there after. Children are sometimes whisked away to do the mandatory state service which in real sense is labor work in warehouses, plants or fields/streets. Parents are known to bribe in order to get the kids out of the hard work. As stated before, many of the students enter army at age 17 and few get to go to the university. Life here is miserable.
2. Hunger and Cannibalism
The famines rattled the nation in 1990s and the nation recorded 300,000 to 800.000 deaths per year in the three year time. Today the country depends heavily on the international help to feed its population. The conditions were dire in the time and stories of cannibalism still float about. Even today food is provided by Japan and USA to help reach the national calories requirement but level of life and the basic requirement of food is not fulfilled. The other two basic needs of water and shelter are shamefully shy of the required level.
1. Cruel perception of the world
One of the reasons why the life in North Korea sucks is because the world sees it as a cruel unyielding country. The clues till day support this result and hence life there is tainted by fear and shrouded in darkness. When the world as a whole warns you to stay away from some place, it is better to keep distance.