For North Koreans, making their dear leader angry is almost always a death sentence. For some of the country’s top military leaders, however, this week was an exception to the rule.
Kim Jong Un, the Supreme Commander of the Korean People’s Army, has been in charge since his father’s death in 2011. One of the ways he is able to hold on to his power is by silencing, and often killing, those who disagree with him. Once, he had two officials executed by anti-aircraft guns because one of them challenged his ideas and the other fell asleep during a meeting. Another time, he had a man killed for slouching, making every strict Catholic school nun look like a complete slacker.
Now, news has surfaced of a meeting in September where Kim Jong Un arrived drunk and berated his top military leaders for their incompetence. “That none of you were able to produce not even one [sic] military satellite is a misconduct that is commensurate to treason,” he reportedly told officials, before making them stay up all night to write apologies.
The officials, judging by Kim Jong Un’s history, had every right to fear for their lives, so when Kim Jong Un had forgotten about it the next day, they were quite relieved. “Why are you gathered here?” Kim asked them. “Be careful about your health because you are all old.”
According to a source for Japanese newspaper Toyko Shimbun, “the military officials probably cried because of the sudden release of tension of being executed. Everyone is showing loyalty out of fear of being executed and no one dares speak against Kim.”
Note to North Korean officials: In the future, be sure to get your Supreme Leader drunk before displaying your incompetence.