A few weeks ago, North Korea went dark. Not a loss of power, but a loss of signal if you will. This happens periodically, as they deal with internal matters or assess how some of their shenanigans are playing in the rest of the world (or have had it firmly suggested by the Chinese that they stop whatever it was that they were doing). They have never been a major focus for me, so I generally note it and move on.
However, there are times they do this and become a black hole. It’s not just a loss of signal, it’s a cessation of activities out in the world as well as a total lockdown of information on an internal basis as well. A few times this has been done, I suspect, to see who gets speculated upon as a replacement for the current Kim in charge. Funny how often those mentioned in the media during those times have accidents, disappear, go into exile, or are flat out killed later.
The other times, well, those are interesting. It usually means that there is a major power struggle underway, either for leadership or to change policy. What comes out after is rarely a cause for celebration elsewhere.
One possibility of what is going on is here. It is an interesting take, and a bit different from anything I’ve come across.
For now, I trust South Korean intelligence reports a heck of a lot more than I trust the mainstream media, and they say Kim is alive. My own suspicion is that there is a major policy struggle underway, and those often enough include struggles for power and to remain in power. If it is about a successor to Kim, there are few good options I see.
We will learn soon enough.