North Korea Leadership Watch

Research and Analysis on the DPRK Leadership

CMC Meetings Shown in DPRK Documentary on Kim Jong Un’s Military Activities

On 5 March DPRK state media released a documentary film which compiled film footage of Kim Jong Un (Kim Cho’ng-u’n) inspecting Korean People’s Army [KPA] units, observing training exercises and visiting construction projects utilizing KPA personnel from his accession in January 2012 to live fire exercises in 2013.  Loosely translated as Unleashing a New Heyday of the Formidable Forces of Mt. Paektu, the 80 minute film consists mainly of footage that has previously appeared in short documentaries about KJU’s activities.  Aside from a few new, brief scenes of KJU talking with note taking senior officials, the films includes footage of the expanded meeting of the Korean Workers’ Party Central Military Commission [CMC] meeting held late in the afternoon on 3 February 2013.  The meeting was a key event preceding the DPRK’s third nuclear test on 12 February 2013.  The CMC meeting ended with Kim Jong Un, assisted by Chief of the KPA General Staff Hyon Yong Chol, giving meeting participants handguns in presentation boxes.  

External establishing shot showing the KWP flag over the KWP #1 Office Building in Pyongyang (L);  The 3 February 2013 expanded CMC meeting (C); Kim Jong Un chairing the meeting (R) (Photos: KCTV screengrabs)

External establishing shot showing the KWP flag over the KWP #1 Office Building in Pyongyang (L); The 3 February 2013 expanded CMC meeting (C); Kim Jong Un chairing the meeting (R) (Photos: KCTV screengrabs)

Kim Jong Un chairing the 3 February 2013 expanded CMC meeting (top) and 3rd generation KPA commanders and officials (middle and bottom) (Photos: KCTV screengrabs)

Kim Jong Un chairing the 3 February 2013 expanded CMC meeting (top) and 3rd generation KPA commanders and officials (middle and bottom) (Photos: KCTV screengrabs)

CMC Members attended the 3 February 2013 meeting (L-R) Jang Song Taek; Pak To Chun; VMar Kim Yong Chun; Gen. Kim Won Hong; and Gen. Ri Myong Su (Photos: KCTV screengrabs)

CMC Members attended the 3 February 2013 meeting (L-R) Jang Song Taek; Pak To Chun; VMar Kim Yong Chun; Gen. Kim Won Hong; and Gen. Ri Myong Su (Photos: KCTV screengrabs)

CMC Members and senior officials attending the 3 February 2013 meeting.  In this image are VMar Kim Jong Gak (front row, R), Ju Kyu Chang (front row, 2nd R), Gen. Yun Jong Rin (front row, 3rd R) and Gen. Pak Jae Gyong (2nd row, R) (Photos: KCTV screengrabs)

CMC Members and senior officials attending the 3 February 2013 meeting. In this image are VMar Kim Jong Gak (front row, R), Ju Kyu Chang (front row, 2nd R), Gen. Yun Jong Rin (front row, 3rd R) and Gen. Pak Jae Gyong (2nd row, R) (Photos: KCTV screengrabs)

CMC members applaud during the meeting.  Among those in the front row in this image are Jang Song Taek (L), Gen. Kim Kyok Sik (2nd L), Pak To Chun (3rd L) and VMar Kim Yong Chun (4th L) (Photos: KCTV screengrabs)

CMC members applaud during the meeting. Among those in the front row in this image are Jang Song Taek (L), Gen. Kim Kyok Sik (2nd L), Pak To Chun (3rd L) and VMar Kim Yong Chun (4th L) (Photos: KCTV screengrabs)

Presentation boxes (L) containing an autographed message from Kim Jong Un (C) of handguns (R) presented to meeting participants (Photos: KCTV screengrabs)

Presentation boxes (L) containing an autographed message from Kim Jong Un (C) of handguns (R) presented to meeting participants (Photos: KCTV screengrabs)

Presentation ceremony of handguns at the end of the 3 February 2013 expanded CMC meetings.  Among those presented with these guns were: VMar Choe Ryong Hae (1.), Jang Song Taek (2.), Gen. Kim Kyok Sik (3.), Pak To Chun (4.), VMar Kim Yong Chun (5.), VMar Hyon Chol Hae (6.), Gen. Kim Won Hong (7.) and Gen. Kim Yong Chol (8.) (Photos: KCTV screengrabs)

Presentation ceremony of handguns at the end of the 3 February 2013 expanded CMC meetings. Among those presented with these guns were: VMar Choe Ryong Hae (1.), Jang Song Taek (2.), Gen. Kim Kyok Sik (3.), Pak To Chun (4.), VMar Kim Yong Chun (5.), VMar Hyon Chol Hae (6.), Gen. Kim Won Hong (7.) and Gen. Kim Yong Chol (8.) (Photos: KCTV screengrabs)

Over view of presentation ceremony at the end of the expanded CMC meeting (L) Gen. Hyon Yong Chol handing a presentation box to Kim Jong Un (C) and meeting participants applauding at the conclusion of the meeting (Photos: KCTV screengrabs)

Over view of presentation ceremony at the end of the expanded CMC meeting (L) Gen. Hyon Yong Chol handing a presentation box to Kim Jong Un (C) and meeting participants applauding at the conclusion of the meeting (Photos: KCTV screengrabs)

The film also included footage of another expanded meeting of the Party Central Military Commission, held between February and March 2012.  This would have been a key event preceding the 13 April 2012 launch of the U’nha-3 rocket, which crashed shortly after it was launched.  Unlike the February 2013 CMC meeting, KWP civilian officials are attired in KPA dress uniforms.  Based on the protocol from the February ’13 meeting, it is likely then-Chief of the KPA General Staff, VMar Ri Yong Ho, participated in the handgun presentation ceremony at the meeting’s conclusion, however VMar Ri is not shown in this film.

Overview of expanded CMC meeting held in February or March 2012 (L), Kim Jong Un chairing the meeting (C) and a view of CMC members and meeting participants (R) (Photos: KCTV screengrabs)

Overview of expanded CMC meeting held in February or March 2012 (L), Kim Jong Un chairing the meeting (C) and a view of CMC members and meeting participants (R) (Photos: KCTV screengrabs)

CMC members attending the 2012 meeting.  In the front row are Ju Kyu Chang (L), Choe Ryong Hae (2nd L) Pak To Chun (3rd L) and Kim Jong Gak (4th L) (Photos: KCTV screengrabs)

CMC members attending the 2012 meeting. In the front row are Ju Kyu Chang (L), Choe Ryong Hae (2nd L) Pak To Chun (3rd L) and Kim Jong Gak (4th L) (Photos: KCTV screengrabs)

CMC members standing at the 2012 meeting: Choe Ryong Hae (L), Pak To Chun (C) and Kim Jong Gak (R) (Photos: KCTV screengrabs)

CMC members standing at the 2012 meeting: Choe Ryong Hae (L), Pak To Chun (C) and Kim Jong Gak (R) (Photos: KCTV screengrabs)

CMC members stand during the meeting in 2012.  In the front row are: Gen. Kim Kyong Ok (L), Gen. Kim Won Hong (2nd L), Gen. Jong Myong Do (3rd L) and Gen. Ri Pyong Chol (4th L) (Photos: KCTV screengrabs)

CMC members stand during the meeting in 2012. In the front row are: Gen. Kim Kyong Ok (L), Gen. Kim Won Hong (2nd L), Gen. Jong Myong Do (3rd L) and Gen. Ri Pyong Chol (4th L) (Photos: KCTV screengrabs)

CMC members stand during the 2012 meeting.  In the front row in this image are VMar Kim Yong Chun (R), Jang Song Taek (2nd R), VMar Kim Jong Gak (3rd R), Pak To Chun (4th R), Choe Ryong Hae (5th R) and Ju Kyu Chang (6th R) (Photos: KCTV screengrabs)

CMC members stand during the 2012 meeting. In the front row in this image are VMar Kim Yong Chun (R), Jang Song Taek (2nd R), VMar Kim Jong Gak (3rd R), Pak To Chun (4th R), Choe Ryong Hae (5th R) and Ju Kyu Chang (6th R) (Photos: KCTV screengrabs)

CMC members and senior security officials stand during the 2012 meeting.  In this image in the front row are: Gen. Ri Myong Su (L) Hyon Chol Hae (2nd L),  Choe Kyong Song (3rd L), and Gen. Yun Jong Rin (4th L) (Photos: KCTV screengrabs)

CMC members and senior security officials stand during the 2012 meeting. In this image in the front row are: Gen. Ri Myong Su (L) Hyon Chol Hae (2nd L), Choe Kyong Song (3rd L), and Gen. Yun Jong Rin (4th L) (Photos: KCTV screengrabs)

Overview of an expanded Party Central Military Commission meeting held in February or March 2012 with images of Kim Jong Un speaking, and 3rd generation KPA commanders and security officials (Photos: KCTV screengrabs)

Overview of an expanded Party Central Military Commission meeting held in February or March 2012 with images of Kim Jong Un speaking, and 3rd generation KPA commanders and security officials (Photos: KCTV screengrabs)

Presentation box of a handgun (L) presented to participants at the 2012 CMC meeting.  The grip contains KJU's autograph (R) (Photos: KCTV screengrabs)

Presentation box of a handgun (L) presented to participants at the 2012 CMC meeting. The grip contains KJU’s autograph (R) (Photos: KCTV screengrabs)

Presentation ceremony of handguns at the end of an expanded CMC meeting held in early 2012.  Among those presented with handguns are: VMar Kim Yong Chun (1.), Jang Song Taek (2.), VMar Kim Jong Gak (3.), Choe Ryong Hae (4.), Ju Kyu Chang (5.), Kim Kyong Ok (6.), Gen. Kim Won Hong (7.) and Gen. Jong Myong Do (8.) (Photos: KCTV screengrabs)

Presentation ceremony of handguns at the end of an expanded CMC meeting held in early 2012. Among those presented with handguns are: VMar Kim Yong Chun (1.), Jang Song Taek (2.), VMar Kim Jong Gak (3.), Choe Ryong Hae (4.), Ju Kyu Chang (5.), Kim Kyong Ok (6.), Gen. Kim Won Hong (7.) and Gen. Jong Myong Do (8.) (Photos: KCTV screengrabs)

Presented with handguns at the conclusion of the expanded CMC meeting in early 2012 were: Gen. Ri Pyong Chol (1.), Gen. Choe Pu Il (2.), Gen. Yun Jong Rin (3.), Gen. Ri Myong Su (4.), Col. Gen. Jo Kyong Chol (5.), Gen. Pak Jae Gyong (6.), Lt. Gen. Pak Jong Chon (7.) (Photos: KCTV screengrabs)

Presented with handguns at the conclusion of the expanded CMC meeting in early 2012 were: Gen. Ri Pyong Chol (1.), Gen. Choe Pu Il (2.), Gen. Yun Jong Rin (3.), Gen. Ri Myong Su (4.), Col. Gen. Jo Kyong Chol (5.), Gen. Pak Jae Gyong (6.), Lt. Gen. Pak Jong Chon (7.) (Photos: KCTV screengrabs)

Kim Jong Un (L) concludes an expanded meeting of the Party Central Military Commission (R) held in early 2012 (Photos: KCTV screengrabs)

Kim Jong Un (L) concludes an expanded meeting of the Party Central Military Commission (R) held in early 2012 (Photos: KCTV screengrabs)

4 comments on “CMC Meetings Shown in DPRK Documentary on Kim Jong Un’s Military Activities

  1. Michael K. ferris
    03/18/2013

    Has anyone figured out what VMar Kim Jong Gak is doing since he lost his position?

    • nkleadershipwatch
      03/18/2013

      Rumor, I think via defector media, is that he is the president of one of the military academies. Speculatively and personally, I think he is a key manager in the strategic weapons program, given his career history in both the KPA’s political corps and conventional forces, level of clearance, his triple-barreled high profile (Political Bureau, CMC, NDC) and his loyalty to the ruling families. VMar Kim has usually been posted to places where The Center wanted the trains to run on time. Alternatively, VMar Kim may be supervising a restructuring of the KPA’s forces.

      • Michael K. Ferris
        03/20/2013

        Thank you for your reply. What is his background in the conventional forces?

      • nkleadershipwatch
        03/20/2013

        KJG served was a battalion commander, either in the tanks corps or the mechanized corps. He has also served as a deputy corps commander, one of the Vice Chiefs of the KPA General Staff and Vice Minister of the People’s Armed Forces. His active service in the conventional forces was in the KPA’s rear echelon, at least according to my notes.

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This entry was posted on 03/18/2013 by in 12 February 2013 Nuclear Test, 2007-2010 kpa management, 2012 Day of the Sun, 2012 KPA promotions, 2013 Day of the Shining Star (KJI Birthday), 2013 KPA Promotions, 2nd Academy of Natural Science, Administration Department, armored division, Artillery Corps, Central Committee, Central Military Committee, Choe Ryong Hae, Civil Defense Department, Col. Gen. Choe Kyong Song, Col. Gen. Jon Chang Bok, Col. Gen. Kim Rak Gyom (SRFC), Col. Gen. Pak Jong Chon, Col. Gen. Son Chol Ju, colonel general, corps command, corps commanders, DPRK EW, DPRK IW, Film Bureau, Fourth Korean Workers' Party Conference, Fourth Party Conference, Gen. Choe Pu Il, Gen. Hyon Yong Chol, Gen. Jang Jong Nam, Gen. Jo Kyong Chol, Gen. Kang Phyo Yong (MPAF), Gen. Kim Kyok Sik, Gen. Kim Myo'ng-kuk, Gen. Kim Yong Chol, Gen. Pak Jae Gyong, Gen. Pak Kwang Bok, Gen. Ri Myong Su, Gen. Ri Pyong Chol, Gen. Yun Jong Rin, Gen. Yun Tong Hyon, gsd, gsob, Guard Command, Hwang Pyong So (GPD; KPA VMAR), Jang Song-thaek, Kim Chong-un inspections, Kim Family, Kim Jong Un Visits, Kim Jong-il, Kim Jong-un, Kim Kyong Ok (OGD), Kim Sol Song (Kim Sul Song), KJI Personal Secretariat, Korea Committee for Space Technology, Korean People's Army (KPA), Korean People's Air Force, Korean People's Army Air Force, Korean People's Army Supreme Command, Korean People's Internal Security Forces, Korean Workers' Party (KWP), KPA construction battalions, KPA construction brigades, KPA East Command Zone, KPA External Relations, KPA General Political Bureau, KPA General Political Department, KPA General Staff, KPA General Staff Nuclear Chemical Bureau, KPA Large Combined Units, KPA Strategic Rocket Force Command, KPA supernumerary organizations, KPA Supreme Command, KPA West Sea Command, kpaf, kpif, Lt. Gen. Ryom Chol Song, Machine Building Industry Department, Mangyo'ngdae Revolutionary School Alumni, military security command [msc], ministry of people's security, Ministry of State Security, Ministry of the People's Armed Forces (MPAF), MPAF GPB, National Academy of Defense Sciences, National Defense Commission (NDC), Navy Command, NDC Administration Department, NDC Policy Department, North Korean press, nuclear weapons, Operations Bureau Department 10, Organization and Guidance Department, Pak To Chun, Party elders, Party History Institute, party life, Political Bureau, Propaganda and Agitation Department, Provincial Party Committees, Punggye-ri Nuclear Test Site, Pyongyang Defense Command, Reconnaissance Bureau, reserve training units, Ri Yong Ho (GSD), Second Economic Committee, Second Economy Commission, Secretariat, Sohae Space Launching Station, State Security Department, Third Floor, Unha-3 Carrier Rocket, VMar Hyon Chol Hae, VMar Kim Jong Gak, VMar Kim Yong Chun, worker peasant red guard, Working Organizations, XI Army Corps (SOF), Young Red Guard.

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