North Korea, slave state of the 21st Century

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The U.S. Republican Party adopted its new policy platform, calling North Korea a ‘slave state’, on July 18, the opening day of the party’s national convention. Indeed, the majority of the people in the communist country live like slaves owned by the Kim family without fundamental rights as human beings.

I experienced the life of a [North Korean] slave when I was working in Kuwait as a foreign worker, so I welcome the recent designation, albeit belated. … I worked on a residential construction site in Umm al Hayman, where an abandoned two-story school was used as lodging for North Korean workers. There were just about 20 shabby beds in each classroom and everything was in poor condition. The lodging was surrounded by a 2m-high barbed-wire fence, which was erected at the request of North Korean authorities to prevent any runaway.

We were forced to work 15 hours a day from 7 a.m. to midnight, excluding lunch and dinner breaks, under direct sunlight of the desert and with searchlight at light. What kept me going in the harsh work conditions, though, was beef soup offered with steamed rice two or three times a week. Bread was offered for lunch and noodles were offered for dinner, but the amount was not sufficient. Beef was a highly valuable food for ordinary people in North Korea, so we felt that we were privileged to eat beef soup.

We worked hard, expecting to earn $120 of the promised monthly pay and send it to family members at home. However, we could not receive any money even after a few months of labor. The manager responded to the angry workers by saying “The company is in financial trouble” or “There is no order from the party to give you a pay”. Upset, the workers criticized the ‘company’, but no one blamed the ‘Workers Party’ of Pyongyang. They did not and could not dispraise the party, because they knew that the party was equal to the supreme leader and they were also afraid of further trouble.

[Read Rim Il’s full OpEdNews article]

This entry was posted in , , by Grant Montgomery.

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