When will North Korea collapse?

It’s been debated about the implications of what will happen if North Korea collapses, but what I want to know is, when will it collapse, and what will the following occur?

It’s closed repressive society, with a government that seems to care little about its citizens. Governments like that can limp along for ages. It will begin to collapse when the government changes enough to remove some of the repressive aparatus, and people start pushing the edge of the envelope. However, if the government then reacts by cranking up the repression again it will be back to square one.

But how repressive is that appararus? Use an example of if I lived there what restrictions would I face?

Here are a few things off the top of my head…

You would only be able to obtain food would be at your place of work.

Your free time would be filled with ‘volunteer’ work.

You would be prohibited from owning a car, telephone or bike (amongst many other things).

You would only have one source of news.

You would be restricted in your movements, and certainly not allowed to leave the country.

Ok, is the food shortage in the countryside getting any worse, and is it true that there are farms for the higher ranking Korean officials?

How and why did the economy get into such a bad state that actually the economy went into the negative state?

Is the Military a huge drain? And when will this destroy the enite economy?
Is the dictatorship surviving solely on slave labour?

Military is a huge drain, AFAIK. I believe (for males) national service is a minimum eight years.

There’s a lot that’s unknown about N. Korea due to its closed nature, so the answers to those questions aren’t all that well-known.

I’m not certain that it will collapse. If 60 Minutes’ piece on Sunday was an accurate picture/representation of the status quo, Kim Jong-Il has an ironclad grasp on society there, and people have been effectively brainwashed into truly revering him.

People will just simply continue to starve to death, the military will just get bigger, they will sell arms in order to bring in revenue - but I hope I’m wrong.

I’m going to go with less than ten years, for a few reasons. A fairly good similarity we can find to the DPRK as far as isolation and entrenched leadership would be Cuba. Now Cuba has been able to limp along for ages since their military is pretty much the government, and has never really attempted to vye for more power from a charasmatic leader in Castro.

Kim jr., OTOH, must keep the far more substantial North Korean Military machine happy. That will require spending money when there is none. The Us vs. Them thing can only work for so long (Look at Denny Green’s Viking’s for a prime example of this) The Nuke ploy might be in part to appease those very same powers. Kim Sr. was a tyrant and all, but heck, they liked him. Kim jr. was initially seen as a bit of an unworthy nutjob, and has only survived thus far by felating the military egos whilst oppressing the hell out of the masses.

The danger in all this is that the DPRK’s Military isn’t exactly our first choice to lead a cat out of a paper bag, much less a country out of the dark ages. Add to that the fact that they are within shelling distance of Seoul, and it’s a scary proposition.

But who will succeed Kin IL Sung

I see no reason why North Korea should collapse – at least not without outside involvement. Mass starvation won’t cause the government to fail, as long as all power remains with the government.

Yes but without an adequetly fed population, in the long run, they’ll all be as tall as twelve year olds.

If it were going to collapse, it would have happened when Kim Il Sung died. Don’t expect a popular uprising from people with barely enough energy to find their next meal, even if they start to blame their leadership.

Only if Kim lets in too much Southern money and tourism is the system at risk of destabilization, methinks.

I thought that Sung was training his son to be his successor?

Lucky that ex-president Carter had just enough time to arrange food and fuel aid to North Korea right before Kim Il Sung bought the farm.

Thanks, Jimmy.

Not to mention the fact that those who DO speak up against the leadership end up in what is essentially the gulag.

Um, Doghouse, are you suggesting that a compassionate conservative would have let them starve while saying it was really for their own good? Or was that tongue in cheek?

Um, ElvisL1ves, I’m saying that Carter/Clinton got nothing for their deal except enabling the last Stalinist dictator to stay in power for another decade, and the people starved anyway.

It’s really hard to say. About the only equivalent I can think of is China’s experience. They went through a long period of starvation/low rations, and a very oppressive police state (think Cultural Revolution but worse for N.Korea). It was long after Mao kicked the bucket before a very connected leader (Deng Xiaoping) took control to liberalize the economy to forestall a civil war that probably would have broken out.

N. Korea isn’t the same but there are some parallels. I think there is a starved and beaten population. The best outcome probably involves Kim kicking the bucket and being replaced by a more pragmatic military strongman. Then slow changes ala Chinese experiences. Status quo could last a long time.

What would it be like working in a factory there? Is there any way to re-build the infrastructure?

Bwahahahahahaha. Nice typo, I think you meant build the infrastructure? Yes, it is possible to build the infrastructure, but it will take a lot of money. Of course, less money than a new war on the Korean penninsula, but more than S. Korea can finance.