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North Korea

The Takeaway

North Korean Rocket Test Falters

Friday, April 13, 2012

Thumbing their nose at weeks of international warnings early this morning, North Korea launched a test rocket early this morning. American officials maintain the communications satellite was cover for North Korean plans to develop a ballistic missile. David Sanger, Chief Washington correspondent for our partner The New York Times, explains what to expect when the UN Security Council meets to discuss a possible response today.

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On The Media

The Perils of Reporting in North Korea

Friday, April 13, 2012

This week, news organizations selected by the North Korean government were permitted to report inside the country on the launch of a supposed weather satellite by the autocratic regime. The launch, which was more about military power than meteorology, was a spectacular failure. Bob speaks with B.R. Myers, who says that despite that failure, the mere presence of international media is useful to North Korean domestic propaganda.

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On The Media

The Associated Press in North Korea

Friday, April 13, 2012

The world’s media may have been invited for a rare peek into North Korea this week but one news organization was already there - the Associated Press.  After a year of negotiations the AP opened the first all format, full-time bureau in Pyongyang in January, the first western journalism outfit to ever do so.  Executive Editor and Senior Vice President of the Associated Press Kathleen Carroll talks to Bob about what it means to bring the AP’s journalistic standards to reporting in North Korea.

 

Smog - I'm New Here

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The Takeaway

North Korea Prepares Long-Range Rocket, US Prepares Negotiations with Iran

Monday, April 09, 2012

We talk to BBC correspondent Damian Grammaticas, who was among a group of foreign journalists taken by train to North Korea's north-west coast to see the final preparations for the rocket launch, and the New York Times' Steven Erlanger explains the demands that the U.S. and its allies are planning before a new round of negotiations with Iran.

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The Leonard Lopate Show

North Korea, Past and Future

Wednesday, April 04, 2012

Victor D. Cha, the former Director for Asian Affairs at the National Security Council discusses North Korea, the world's most controversial and isolated country. His book The Impossible State: North Korea, Past and Future documents the rise of the Kim family dynasty, and the obsessive personality cult that empowers them, and he illuminates the repressive regime's complex economy and culture.

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The Takeaway

North Korea Agrees to Halt Nuclear Work

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

North Korea has agreed to suspend uranium enrichment and agreed to a moratorium on nuclear, and long-range missile tests. The State Department says Pyongyang will also allow the International Atomic Energy inspectors to verify and monitor the moratorium on uranium enrichment and confirm disablement of its nuclear reactor at Yongbyon.

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The Leonard Lopate Show

Adam Johnson on His Novel, The Orphan Master’s Son

Wednesday, February 01, 2012

Adam Johnson describes his latest novel, The Orphan Master’s Son, which follows a young man’s journey through the icy waters, dark tunnels, and spy chambers of North Korea, the world’s most mysterious dictatorship. Part thriller, part story of innocence lost, part story of romantic love, the novel is a portrait of a world hidden from view: a North Korea rife with hunger, corruption, and casual cruelty but also camaraderie, beauty, and love.

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The Takeaway

Shedding Light on the World's Most Mysterious Regime

Thursday, January 12, 2012

To citizens around the world, what goes on above the 38th parallel is largely a mystery. Though there are no questions about the numerous human rights abuses that go on in North Korea — extreme food rationing and hunger, arbitrary violence by the state, the impossibility of traveling past the country's borders — the daily reality of living through them have gone undocumented. Through years of research, Adam Johnson attempts to convey the very real and existential crises North Koreans face with his new novel.

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The Takeaway

Kim Jong-il's Pop Culture Eulogy

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Along with "supreme leader" and "our Father," Kim Jong-Il was also known as "Dear Leader." And certainly, there were few tyrants that satirists dearly loved lampooning more than the self-loving, eccentric late dictator. From "co-starring" as the singing antagonist in "Team America: World Police" to being portrayed as a wife-abducting weatherman on "30 Rock," Kim Jong-il's legacy is in large part an absurd one. Celeste Headlee remembers one of the world's most eccentric evil dictators.

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The Takeaway

North Korea Holds State Funeral for Kim Jong-il

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Tens of thousands of North Korean people and soldiers lined the snowy streets of Pyonyang Wednesday for the carefully choreographed funeral procession of deceased leader Kim Jong-il. Kim's son and designated successor, Kim Jong-un, was seen walking alongside the hearse carrying his father's body. North Korea's iron-fisted leader since 1994, Kim reportedly died of a heart attack on December 17 at age 69. Funeral services are scheduled to last for two days.

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On The Media

North Korean Propaganda

Friday, December 23, 2011

After the death of North Korean leader Kim Jong-il, we look back on a 2010 interview with academic B.R. Myers. Bob spoke with Myers, who describes how propaganda was a key tool Kim used to wield almost complete power in North Korea.  

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The Takeaway

North Koreans Mourn Kim Jong-il

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

North Korean state television broadcast images on Tuesday of Kim Jong-un, the country's presumptive new leader, and senior government officials visiting the body of dictator Kim Jong-il, who died Saturday of at heart attack at age 69. Kim Jong-il's death is only the second time in North Korea's 80 year history that leadership has changed. Kim's father, Kim Il-sung died in 1994. Video that emerged on Monday of North Koreans hysterically grieving has been watched all over the world. John Sudworth of the BBC reports on the latest from Seoul, South Korea.

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The Takeaway

'Barbecue Diplomacy' and The Future of North Korea

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

A day after the announcement of the death of dictator Kim Jong-il, around the world, all eyes are on North Korea. More specifically, the world is closely watching the deceased leader's heir apparent, his youngest son Kim Jong-un. Last year, Kim Jong-un was named a 4-star general and vice chairman of the National Defense Commission. After a period of mourning, he's expected to take full power of North Korea.

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The Takeaway

After Kim Jong-il, What's Next for North Korea?

Monday, December 19, 2011

Within hours of announcing North Korean dictator Kim Jong-il's death on Sunday, the country's ruling Workers' Party released a statement saying North Korea would unite Kim's youngest son, Kim Jong-un. Not much is known about Kim Jong-un, who was named his father's heir apparent last year. He is believed to be in his late twenties, and apparently went to boarding school in Switzerland. Whether the younger Kim will be able to maintain control of his country and stick to his father's brand of hard-line Communism remains to be seen. The older Kim left North Korea's economy in shambles, and thousands of people are believed to be starving.

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The Takeaway

A Look at the Life and Legacy of Kim Jong-il

Monday, December 19, 2011

The Takeaway continues its coverage of the death of North Korean dictator Kim Jong-il with a look at his life and legacy with two men who have been close North Korea observers for years. Stephen Bosworth, former U.S. ambassador to South Korea, served as the special representative for North Korea policy. Michael Breen is the author of one of the few English language biographies of Kim, "Kim Jong-il: North Korea's Dear Leader."

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The Takeaway

North Korean Dictator Kim Jong-il Dead at 69

Monday, December 19, 2011

Kim Jong-il, the North Korean dictator who made his isolated country a nuclear power, died on Saturday of a heart attack at age 69. State media kept the death a secret for nearly two days, suggesting a possible leadership vacuum. North Korea's ruling Workers' Party released a statement suggesting that Kim's youngest son, Kim Jong-un, had succeeded his father. North Korea conducted a short-range missile test on Monday, according to unconfirmed reports from South Korea.

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The Brian Lehrer Show

After Kim Jong-il

Monday, December 19, 2011

Following the death of dictator Kim Jong-il, Charles Armstrong, director of the center for Korean Research at Columbia's School of International and Public Affairs (SIPA), discusses what's next for North Korea and the region.

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The Takeaway

The Life and Death of Kim Jong-il: North Korea's 'Dear Leader'

Monday, December 19, 2011

He ruled North Korea with an iron fist for 17 years. His infamous isolationism and nuclear ambitions made him a part of George W. Bush's notorious "Axis of Evil." He was one of the last Communist leaders in the world around whom a cult of personality existed. But how Kim Jong-il, the North Korean dictator, will be truly be remembered by his people is yet to be seen. Referred to as "Dear Leader," Kim sank his country into deep famine and ravaged its economy. Though media images out of North Korea may show people weeping in the streets, it's hard to know whether there is real grief behind the tears.

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The Takeaway

This Week's Agenda: Kim Jong-il Dies, Congressional Showdown

Monday, December 19, 2011

The death of Kim Jong-il and the future of both North and South Korea will dominate the headlines this week. Also, Republicans and Democrats are about to have another showdown over a deal to extend payroll tax cutsCharlie Herman, business and economics editor for The Takeaway and WNYC, and Takeaway Washington correspondent Todd Zwillich discuss the major stories for the week ahead.

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The Takeaway

Nuclear Talks Resume With North Korea

Thursday, October 20, 2011

The State Department has announced that the United States will resume nuclear talks with North Korea next week for the first time since 2005. The talks are welcomed by Kim Jong-il, who even hinted at the possibility of resuming six-party talks to end his country’s nuclear program. Separate negotiations currently taking place in Bangkok will also touch on the remains of American soldiers still missing in action from the Korean War. Almost 8,000 men are still missing from that conflict, and the remains of nearly 5,500 are thought to be in North Korea.

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