Kim Jong Un: 10 years of missiles, murder and economic misery

Kim Jong Un was not even 30 when he took control of North Korea after his father’s death in December 2011.

Some predicted that when the weight of ruling an entire country was thrust upon the Swiss-educated chubby young man, he would choose a path of reform, calculating it would be of greater benefit to his people than isolation, confrontation and missile tests.

But that is not where Kim has steered his country. In fact, the opposite happened.

“Kim Jong Un has always had a natural instinct for power,” Go Myong-hyun, a research fellow at the Asan Institute for Policy Studies focusing on North Korea, told Al Jazeera.

In fact, that is probably why he was chosen as the “only successor and leader of the Juche revolution” by his father, even though he was the youngest child and not necessarily the obvious heir to the throne.

“He had the most important quality to be the leader of North Korea, his obsession about power,” Go said.

Under Kim Jong Un, North Korea has stepped up arms testing and now possesses threats in the shape of thermonuclear weapons and intercontinental ballistic missiles that can strike most of the mainland United States, even in 2017 stoking fears of nuclear war between the countries.


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