Grace Baek Jeffrey Trail Middle School 8th Grade
Just a few months ago, several threats of nuclear bombing paved a definite path for the North Korea and the United States to a war. However, through the summit that occurred on June 12 in Singapore, the backs that were once turned have now faced each other. North Koreans are now shining rather a positive light on Donald Trump. As extremely controversial presidents, both Kim Jong Un and Donald Trump, this news is gaining national attention and becoming the cynosure of the nation. The media is blowing up as the issue is becoming the main focus for both politicians and citizens of the United States. On the other hand, the aspects of North Koreans have not yet been presented. How exactly are North Koreans reacting to this matter?
Due to limited exposure of the media, North Koreans received this news only through the Korean Central Television which is the only channel able to be assessed for most. Crowds of people gathered at a big screen on streets, displaying the arrival of Kim Jong Un to Singapore. Because the Korean Central Television claimed that Kim Jong Un was welcomed with “deep respect and boundless enthusiasm”, the public was assured with great confidence that the meeting would be successful. Through the North Korean media, citizens were given “an idea not just of what’s going on, but also of how the government expects them to respond”. The high sensitivity of the topic prohibits North Koreans from truly expressing their opinion. Han II Gwang, a Pyongyang resident explained that “when [he] woke up this morning, [he] saw the news in the newspaper that [his] respected Marshal went to Singapore for the North Korea-U.S. summit”.
Through the recent summit, North Koreans are reacting optimistically towards Donald Trump, though broad. It possibly might be the most positive attention that Donald Trump has ever received, and might ever receive. According to North Korea’s official news agency, Donald Trump is highly recognized through his actions in hope of “achieving peace, stability, and denuclearization of the Korean peninsula.”
Yet, the actual truth lies behind the minds of North Koreans, not the minds of the North Korean media. Just as the United States has prejudices on North Korea, North Korea similarly holds preconceptions about the United the States. The citizens cannot be completely faulted for assuming the United States as the “evil nation”.
With their only source of information as the regime, it is fairly easy for the government to control the morals of their citizens. Just one example is The US Imperialists Started the Korean War, a propaganda book falsely accusing the U.S for its aggressive behavior by provoking the Korean War.
The authoritarian society only permits the slightest bit of information to come out and in; therefore, it is way too soon to jump to conclusions. The most important part of the relationship between North Korea and the United States is undoubtedly the response and the opinions of the citizens. It seems as if the media forgot this too soon.
<Grace Baek Jeffrey Trail Middle School 8th Grade