Picture North Korea

June 18, 2006

Picture a country that, perhaps uniquely among nations, has managed to go completely insane.

Seen from space at night, there are no lights north of the border. No lights.


What hope is there for this wretched, ruined, blighted place?

More pictures, sourced from Artemiy Lebedev, a Russian web-designer, who recently visited North Korea and took many photos, including ‘illegal’ ones:

Residential Pyongyang

No escape by sea: that fence is electrified

See the whole photo book here.

(Via Michael J. Totten.)

Check out North Korea Zone (serious), Juche Girl (don’t think she’s serious), Songun Blog (either likely or unlikely to be serious), Beloved Leader (definitely not serious).



  1. Good gracious. And to think that the North was once the industrially advanced part of the peninsula…

    Well, if Plato is right, and the polis is Man writ large, then I guess the polis can go just as insane as an actual writ-small man can…

  2. I think it’s called ‘socialism’, j_p_z.

  3. I’m wondering if you actually believe this satelite photo is real? Does the fact that there are no lights in China either look suspiciously like someone has done a bad airbrushing job, or that perhaps this was just intended to be an image of South Korea?

    Other photos of Nth Korea at night are pretty dim as well (I certainly don’t deny this or that it is a spectacularly blighted place), but they have at least some lights on.


  4. Could be, Steve. Or maybe NK had a power outage at the time of the shot. Still pretty telling in the other shots, though. Thanks for the link.

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