[Writer's Choice] North Korea: Facts

Yumi Kim , Feb. 16, 2019, 4:04 p.m.


There is a lot about North Korea that the world doesn’t know largely because of the government’s intense control over their citizens. However, the little information obtained about the totalitarian country derives from foreigners who dare enter North Korea. While there, they collect observations, recount stories, and take photos; even if it can cost their life. Today we bring you some facts about North Korea that you may not know.

#1 In the 1950’s, they built a fake town “propaganda village”, consisting of apartments, schools, and hospitals to portray a successful, happy, and peaceful place in hopes of receiving South Korean defectors.  

Image result for north korea propaganda village


#2 Archaeologists from the Academy of Social Sciences in North Korea apparently discovered a unicorn lair.


#3 Kim Jong-Il (father of Kim Jong Un) was the biggest client for cognac brand Hennessy, reportedly spending 1 US million dollars a year on Hennessy.

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#4 If you were born on July 8th or December 17, then you cannot celebrate your birthday on those date due to the respective deaths dates of past rulers Kim Jong-Il and Kim Il-Sung, therefore, people celebrate their birthday the next day. Those days are dedicated to full mourning of the past rulers.


#5 North Korea paid Chinese actors to cheer act out the part of North Korean fans. It was reported that 1000 handpicked Chinese actors were used during the 2010 World Cup.

Image result for world cup 2010 north korea fans


#6 It is mandatory for all North Korean teachers to know how to play an accordion, so they can teach all students. It is referred to North Korea as the “people’s instrument”.


#7 Blue jeans and piercings are ILLEGAL. Kim Jong Un refuses to “Americanize” North Koreans.

Image result for levi jeans commercial


#8 There is a limited approval of haircuts a person can get. North Korean men can choose between 10 approved haircut styles whereas women have 14 approved hairstyles to choose from.


#9 Kim Il-Sung (grandfather of Kim Jung Un) made a new calendar. We may be in the year 2018 but, North Korea is in 106.


#10 North Korea is the same size as the U.S. state Pennsylvania.

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#11 Kim Il-Sung was given eternal Presidency on July 8, 1994, which makes North Korea the only Necrocacy country in the world; meaning its government still operates under the dead Kim Il-Sung.


#12 North Korea exercises a “three generations of punishment” rule. If one person commits a crime then they are sent to prison and so will their entire family, and the subsequent generations: children and grandchildren who must remain in prison for life.



#13 The lack of resources has farmers using human feces as fertilizer for their crops which led to a parasitic worm epidemic.

Image result for north korea fertilizer


More is known about the “hermit” country every time a North Korean defector manages to escape or when a courageous journalist visits the country.

Did any of these facts catch you by surprise?

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