Research and Analysis on the DPRK Leadership
DPRK state media reported that Kim Jong Un (Kim Cho’ng-u’n) conducted field inspections of Korean People’s Army [KPA] Navy Unit #123 and the coastal defense unit on Ch’o Island. His inspections occurred as the joint US-ROK military exercises Key Resolve were concluding south of the NLL. KJU’s appearances cap off a week in which the DPRK conducted a number of media events and other activities that combined a negative response to Key Resolve and excoriated South Korea’s current political leadership. In addition to a number of rallies and editorials, forward deployed ground forces of the KPA conducted live-fire exercises near the Koreas’ maritime border.
During his inspections Kim Jong Un was accompanied by Ri Jae Il, Pak To Chun, Gen. Kim Wo’n-hong, VMar Ri Yong Ho, VMar Kim Yong Chun, Gen. Pak Jae Gyong, Gen. Kim Yong Chol, Hwang Pyong So, Gen. Jong Myong Do, Col. Gen. Jo Kyong Chol, Col. Gen. Yun Tong Hyon and Jang Song Taek. KCNA English has adopted a new hierarchy when listing the retinue attending KJU’s inspections. Active duty, senior KPA officials are now listed before senior Korean Workers’ Party [KWP] officials. This format has only been applied to Kim Jong Un’s field inspections and does not appear to be utilized in news items on his appearances in Pyongyang.
KCNA reports on his Kim Jong Un’s inspection of KPA Navy Unit #123 which is identified as having the title O Chung-hup-led 7th regiment:
He got aboard Submarine Chaser No. 202 and headed for the unit despite rough waves. He learned about its arms and equipment and its seamen’s combat preparedness.
He expressed great satisfaction over the fact that all officers and men of the ship have intensified their trainings to be fully prepared for actions and have been trained to be matchless combat ranks capable of firmly defending the territorial waters of the country.
He made the rounds of the room dedicated to the education in the revolutionary history and the room devoted to the history of the unit.
Watching historical materials on the peerlessly great men of Mt. Paektu displayed in the room for the education in the revolutionary history one by one with great attention, he said the undying feats of President Kim Il Sung and leader Kim Jong Il who worked heart and soul for the strengthening and development of the naval force would go down in the history of the country forever.
He looked back on the shining course of battles covered by the unit under the care of Kim Il Sung and Kim Jong Il.
Ferried by the KPA Navy, Kim Jong Un inspected one of the islands the DPRK has exclusively zoned for its military. KCNA reports:
Watching the families of service personnel shouting “hurrah!” with excitement outside the barracks, he called them to his side.
He showed loving care and had a photo session with the families of service personnel, their eyes wet with tears of joy at having such a dream-like fortune.
He went round the room for the education in the revolutionary history and the room devoted to history.
Watching with keen attention the precious historical materials which bear witness to the leadership feats of leader Kim Jong Il, he looked back with deep emotion on the proud course covered by the defence unit on Cho Islet which has turned into an invulnerable fortress thanks to the devoted efforts of Kim Jong Il.
Saying that Cho Islet is a gate to the West Sea and Pyongyang is behind the islet, he instructed the service personnel of the defence unit to consolidate the combat positions as firm as a rock, always bearing deep in mind the instructions given by Kim Jong Il.
He walked the road on a steep hill and mounted a forward command post on top of a mountain.
After hearing a report on the situation from the commander of the defence unit, he feasted his eyes on the vast defence theatre of which the defence unit is in charge to acquaint himself with the terrain and the deployment of forces.
He asked in detail about forces and equipment of the enemy that may intrude into the operational theatre of which the defence unit is in charge, operational tactics, assignment of combat duties and the density of firing to beat back the enemy in the forward defence theatre. He examined an operational map with keen attention and lucidly clarified the issues arising in making preparations for battles.
He instructed the service personnel to step up combat preparations, always aware that their positions allow no retreat and there is no place to retreat even an inch there, and thus mercilessly wipe out the aggressors should they come in attack.
He had a photo session with the service personnel of a company under the unit before the monument to the field guidance of Kim Jong Il standing at the forward command post.
He made the rounds of the service personnel’s hall, library and mess hall to take deep care of the living of service personnel of the islet posts.
The service personnel of the defence unit are true patriots who have devoted their all to the security of the country and the people only though they live on the unfavorable remote islet, he said, stressing the need for the commanding officers to look after their living at all times with warm care as their real fathers would do.
At the end of the inspection, he told the commanding officers that he left Cho Islet to them and wished them greater achievements in rounding off the combat preparations in good health.
On Thursday (8 March) Kim Jong Un attended a concert by the Paris-bound U’nhasu Orchestra in Pyongyang. The concert was held in recognition of International Women’s Day. Prior to the concert, KJU’s last reported public appearance was (plosively) his inspection of the premises and personnel near P’anmunjo’m. KCNA reports:
The concert began with the national anthem. Put on the stage were colorful numbers including female quintet and chorus “Mother of Korea”, mixed chorus and pangchang “The Women Are Flowers”, mixed duet “My Lover Has Returned”, female solo and female pangchang “Our Daughter-in-Law”, orchestral music “Swinging Girl”, male solo and pangchang “The Tinkle of the Golden Ox Bell on Rungra Islet” and chorus “Single Mind.”
Some of the audience were invited to the stage when the concert reached its climax.
In their concert the performers sang high praises of the feats of President Kim Il Sung and General Secretary Kim Jong Il who built the socialist power of Juche on this land and the history of the Korean people’s struggle and successfully represented the strong will of the army and people of the DPRK to accomplish the revolutionary cause of Juche without fail, always sharing the destiny with Kim Jong Un who is ushering in a new heyday of Kim Il Sung’s nation and Kim Jong Il’s Korea with his outstanding Songun leadership.
They also vividly reflected the will of the Korean women and other working people to boost solidarity with the progressive women of the world who are struggling against imperialism and for peace, democracy, national independence, the socialist cause and equality and rights of the women.
Kim Jong Un acknowledged the enthusiastic cheers of the performers and audience and congratulated the performers on their successful presentation.
Enjoying the concert were Choe Yong Rim, Ri Yong Ho, Kim Kyong Hui, Kim Yong Chun, Kim Kuk Thae, Kim Ki Nam, Jang Song Thaek, Kim Jong Gak and other senior officials of the party, state and armed forces organs, those who had the honor of being received by Kim Il Sung and Kim Jong Il, women members of the leadership bodies of the Party Central Committee and women deputies to the Supreme People’s Assembly in Pyongyang, officials of the C.C., the Democratic Women’s Union of Korea, women scientists of the Ryonha Machine Management Bureau and the State Academy of Sciences including the Biological Engineering Branch, women teachers and researchers of Kim Il Sung University, Kim Chaek University of Technology and Kim Hyong Jik University of Education, women officials and innovators of industrial and service establishments and women writers, journalists, anchor persons, creators and artistes in Pyongyang, together with their spouses.
Also enjoying the concert were Chinese Ambassador to the DPRK Liu Hongcai, Russian Ambassador to the DPRK Valery Sukhinin and official diplomats of the Chinese and Russian embassies here and their wives.