The long awaited death of Kim Jong Il has finally happened. He can join Hitler, Stalin, Saddam, and his father in whatever afterlife psychotic mass murderers get. But the succesion is the rub. North Korea is truly a garrison state, it is a military camp, surrounding a Potemkin villiage, (to serve the servants of the elite) surrounding a tiny Xanadu for the Kims and their intimates, the rest of the country is a Gulag, not much nicer than the camps of Hitler or Stalin.
"Police State" hardly begins to describe it. The Kims are virtual dieties, the state is constructed to enforce their worship. Old Kim Il Sung, although long dead, is still officially 'head of state'. What passes for music in N.Korea, is 'popular' hymns praising the 'great' and 'dear' leaders. North Korea is closer to a mass psychosis than a functioning country. But it is armed to the teeth, and hostile, paranoid to the point of madness. The Military is lead by men in their 70's and 80's, old a deeply conservative, with a death grip on their power and privileges.
Famine has been a reality for most of the population for years, no one knows the death toll, it might be millions, but the Kims 'party on', and the military polishes it's guns. Easily the worlds most evil government, North Korea is a bomb that can explode if 'jostled' even slightly at this dangerous juncture, lets hope it doesn't explode.