Category Archives: North Korea

For anti-imperialist solidarity, peace and friendship

Dalrymple is in Pyongyang to attend the World Festival of Youth and Students


Albanian Arcadia

Compared with the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Dalrymple tells an interviewer, even Hoxha’s People’s Socialist Republic seemed a paradise.

Brains of tinsel

Screen Shot 2016-08-20 at 13.16.38Turning to the Olympics and

the expenditure of billions on infrastructure that is so soon to crumble to worthlessness and liability, all for the sake of a couple of weeks’ gormless global entertainment,

Dalrymple writes that

only someone with brains of tinsel, such as Mr Blair, the former British prime minister who brought the games to London, could have thought it worthwhile; not as bad, perhaps, as the endless mass parades in Pyongyang, but of a similar genre.

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Encounter in Pyongyang

The Study House in Kim Il-sung Square

The Study House in Kim Il-sung Square

Strolling through the North Korean capital, Dalrymple finds himself

in the enormous and almost deserted square in front of the Grand People’s Study House. (All open spaces in Pyongyang remain deserted unless filled with parades of hundreds of thousands of human automata.)

A young Korean slides surreptitiously up to him and asks:

Do you speak English?

It is, says Dalrymple, an electric moment, for in North Korea, unsupervised contact between a Korean and a foreigner is as unthinkable as shouting, ‘Down with Big Brother!’ Dalrymple nods. The young Korean says:

I am a student at the Foreign Languages Institute. Reading Dickens and Shakespeare is the greatest, the only pleasure of my life.

It is a

searing communication. We parted immediately afterwards and of course will never meet again. For him, Dickens and Shakespeare (which the régime permitted him to read with quite other ends in view) guaranteed the possibility not just of freedom but of truly human life. Orwell and Huxley had the imagination to understand why—unlike me, who had to go to Pyongyang to find out.

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People ground to dust

Screen Shot 2016-01-09 at 15.59.25Dalrymple writes that in the broad, almost deserted boulevards of today’s Pyongyang as much as in the St Petersburg of 1839, a crowd, in the words of Astolphe de Custine,

would be a revolution.


Screen Shot 2016-01-09 at 15.53.44demand immense efforts to bring forth trifles, one of the differences between the tsarist autocracy and the totalitarian dictatorship being the absence of aesthetic judgment and taste of the latter.

Dalrymple points out that the purpose of North Korean ceremonies

is to humiliate, to force people to acknowledge their enslavement with simulated joy. Spontaneity is not the only thing abolished; sincerity follows into the dustbin of history.

Screen Shot 2016-01-09 at 15.52.21There was a time when Dalrymple regarded North Korea as

the ne plus ultra of contemporary political deformity. In those days, Islamism was hardly a speck on the horizon.

He should have known better, for as he says,

when it comes to the forms of self-evident stupidity and self-destruction, man’s inventiveness is infinite.

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‘A man is killed; a phone is advertised’

It is all one to us, writes Dalrymple.

It is all one to us, says Dalrymple.

‘Millions dead, freedom unknown and nothing to show for it’

That is socialism, says Dalrymple. Milksop, Western, populist, vote-grubbing, ‘democratic’ socialism, of the type practised by Harold Wilson or François Hollande, entails, Dalrymple points out, the — at first mild — ‘replacement of the impersonal allocation by price, by allocation by political influence’. As for full-throttled socialism, as practised, for instance, by the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics, it is theoretical fantasy and absurdity. It can only be imposed, Dalrymple notes, by force. The result in socialist countries was (is, in the case of North Korea and Cuba) ‘disastrous’. It has been murderous and very often genocidal, for socialism, as Michael Wharton famously described it, is like ‘a great road, stretching to infinity across a barren, waterless waste. Along it trudge half the peoples of the world, bowed, manacled, parched, exhausted. By the verges lie the gaunt wrecks of crashed and burnt-out nations; and skeletons picked clean by vultures and bleached by a pitiless sun’. Socialism, Wharton wrote, involves ‘the death of freedom, the enslavement of the masses, the withering of art and culture, the restless, ruthless hunt for scapegoats, the aggressive folie de grandeur of dictators’. Only a tiny number of fantasists deny that socialism was and is like this. But these fantasists, traitors and apologists for tyranny — the foremost example is the disgusting Alger Hiss — whether they be spies, fellow travellers or sympathisers, these ‘enemies of the open society’, have wielded, and continue to wield, very great power inside the Western establishment, indeed in one sense they are the Western establishment.

North Korea’s good name besmirched

Integrity: the London School of Economics

Integrity: the London School of Economics

Bestial Dalrymple and BBC Sweeney filth used LSE youth cadres as shield

The London School of Economics was a loyal, steadfast friend to the late Muammar Gaddafi, leader of the Great Socialist People’s Libyan Arab Jamahiriya and a humanitarian celebrated for his generosity of spirit (in relation to the LSE’s bank account) and love of the young (especially of young women and girls).

The LSE, while of course revering Muammar Gaddafi, had with the great Arab leader at the same time a warm, comradely friendship, referring to him always, affectionately, as ‘Brother Leader’.

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North Africa’s Norway

The LSE has been a dear friend also to statesman and leading intellectual Saif al-Islam Gaddafi. The LSE professor Anthony Giddens — who made at least two important trips to Libya as a guest of Muammar Gaddafi — has described Gaddafi fils as ‘a driving force behind the rehabilitation and potential modernisation of Libya’. The learned professor also predicted wisely that Libya was highly likely to emerge as what he called ‘the Norway of North Africa’.

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Giddens: guest of Gaddafi

Deep liberal values

The LSE’s David Held has also been full of praise for Saif al-Islam Gaddafi, saying: ‘I have come to know him very well and I must say I have come to like him a great deal….Saif is committed to resolving contentious international and domestic issues through dialogue, debate and peaceful negotiations….I’ve come to know Saif as someone who looks to democracy, civil society and deep liberal values for the core of his inspiration.’

And the LSE, this far-sighted and august institution of the higher learning, which is a byword for integrity, has bravely given support over the years not just to men such as these but to numberless other important world statesmen, thinkers, anti-Zionists, socialists, Arab liberationists and strivers for world peace.

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Ideological errors: the British state broadcaster

The LSE has above all never stinted in its support for the people’s democracies and in its opposition to the imperialist class opponent.


Imagine, then, the hurt and outrage the LSE must be feeling over the recent actions — of unparalleled foulness — of the British state broadcaster.

Gaddafi: love of the young

Gaddafi: love of the young

The BBC propagandists used to be reliably supportive of the people’s democracies and champions of international peace. No longer. In the ideological war, they have gone over to the other side. They have joined the ranks of imperialist media.


A rogue BBC bourgeois deviationist, fat, coarse, grimacing, malodorous, hypocrital, halitotic imperialist John Sweeney, a vanguard BBC Panorama propaganda operative, alongside two other unscrupulous BBC agents, appears to have succeeded in ’embedding’ himself in a delegation of innocent LSE students. The unwitting youths were on a friendship visit to the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea.

The Sweeney gang, the LSE reveals in dismay and sadness, decided it would be an enjoyable bourgeois-decadent dinner-party wheeze to gamble with the lives of the LSE’s young pioneers, not to mention the lives of the officials of the Democratic People’s Republic who were graciously escorting both the BBC spies (for that is what it has emerged they were) and the student comrades.

Sweeney: demon's snarl

The swine Sweeney: snarl of the imperialist demon

Despite their openly bourgeois attitude, their palpably disagreeable personalities, their manifold ideological errors and their problems with personal hygiene and comportment, the BBC imposters were guided through the Democratic People’s Republic with courtesy and great good humour, and accorded the same privileges as the LSE youth cadres. The counter-revolutionaries were enabled to visit busy and active collective farms, modern hospitals and humming factories.

These representatives of plutocracy were vouchsafed the rare privilege — a privilege that when granted to citizens of the Democratic People’s Republic induces nothing less than ecstasy and elation — of viewing a trio of beautifully maintained monuments:

  • the monument to the Great Leader and Eternal President of the Republic Kim Il-sung
  • the monument to the Dear Leader and Eternal General Secretary of the Workers’ Party of Korea Kim Jong-il
  • the monument to the Great Successor and Supreme Leader Kim Jong-un
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The Great Socialist People’s Libyan Arab Jamahiriya: loyal support, in good times and bad, from the London School of Economics

The foreign guests, welcomed so warmly into the grand Korean socialist home, were accommodated in a lavishly appointed hotel that offered hot and cold running water, squat-toilets, bedsheets, mini-Kim Il-sung museum and many other amenities considered luxuries in the Democratic People’s Republic — food, for instance.

The result of the unforgivable subterfuge on the part of the BBC filth was the lying, stinkingly fascist documentary Panorama: North Korea Undercover  (another link here).

This travesty was, needless to say, a world away from the sort of rigorous and credible commentary and analysis that you will find on the subject, say, of the Great Socialist People’s Libyan Arab Jamahiriya and penned by certain prominent and highly respected LSE authorities such as Saif al-Islam Gaddafi or Meghnad Desai.

Dear Leader of a gentle land

Dear Leader: traduced

The BBC documentary utterly failed to do justice to the complexities of the Korean issue or to bring out the challenges facing the Democratic People’s Republic.

Let us be clear about the DPRK. It is a gentle land of well-fed, happy and fulfilled workers and farmers, something of a paragon among the Asian nations.

It surely merits sympathy, and the BBC was formerly never less than sympathetic to the people’s democracies of the East as well as to the great Arab republics and to European friends such as the GDR. The DPRK deserves understanding rather than mocking and scoffing at this difficult time in its long history of struggle for independence and democracy and against imperialism and oppression.

All the DPRK is asking is give people’s democracy a chance.

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The Democratic People’s Republic of Korea: history of goodwill

In the people’s republics and in the LSE alike, the stench of these BBC lies has excited retching disgust. Everywhere in the Democratic People’s Republic, in collective farms, in the people’s factories, in the pretty squares and delightful parks that characterise the lovely northern part of Korea, in the country’s charming socialist bistros and cafés, you will see little groups of people meeting together spontaneously to give vent to their outrage and barely controlled fury at what the BBC reactionaries have done. Friendship on the part of the Democratic People’s Republic has, to put it mildly, been rewarded by ingratitude, impertinence and egregious untruths.

What right has the BBC to malign the DPRK, which has given its all for peace? What right do the British propagandists have to attack so maliciously the DPRK’s everlasting Great Leader, her sempiternal Dear Leader and incarnation of actually existing socialism Great Successor, her party and state leaders, and to seek to interfere with her humane and necessary internal security practices and procedures?


Saif: influential scholar

Saif: influential scholar

The LSE has always made an effort to get on well with all representatives of the people’s democracies – such as, for instance, the Great Socialist People’s Libyan Arab Jamahiriya.

Influential scholar Saif al-Islam Gaddafi, who like his late father is a man of deep liberal values, has been good enough to favour the LSE, over several years, with his energy, humanitarianism, searching ideas, originality, intellectual rigour and love of peace.

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Meghnad Desai: institutional ethics

When the notification came through that the LSE was to have the honour of playing a small, suitably humble though not insignificant rôle in the education of Saif al-Islam Gaddafi, all agreed that this was the greatest honour bestowed upon the LSE in its starred history. There was rejoicing not only in the halls of the LSE but throughout Europe, especially among the continent’s workers and intellectuals.

Through his signal merits — his work The role of civil society in the democratisation of global governance institutions: from ‘soft power’ to collective decision-making is widely regarded as one of the most important contributions to the subject of the last 40 years — Saif al-Islam Gaddafi needless to say received the LSE’s highest academic accolades, enriching the institution’s authority and reputation, and greatly enhancing the scholarly credibility of its research programmes in the area of democracy.

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Held and Davies with their idol

Institutional Ethics 101

Despite his full diary and many commitments — his labours in reforming Libya have been unceasing — Saif al-Islam Gaddafi also found time while at the LSE for lecturing work, teaching a course in Institutional Ethics to a select group of students including David Held, Meghnad Desai, Joseph Nye, Anthony McGrew, George Joffe, Nancy Cartwright, Bruce J. Allyn, Howard Davies, Francis Terry, Flora Rose and Omran Bukhres. (Saif al-Islam Gaddafi admits regretfully that it took some time for these students to grasp some of the elementary principles of Institutional Ethics 101, concepts that even undergraduates or pupils still at school would have few difficulties with.)

No wonder the LSE is so embarrassed and aggrieved by the enormity that has been perpetrated upon another of the people’s democracies, the Korean Democratic People’s Republic, by the British state propagandists.

Jus primae noctis

Dalrymple: bourgeois decadence

Dalrymple: priapic reactionary quack

Use of camouflage in this way is not, of course, new.

There is this mercenary English bourgeois reactionary doctor-scribbler Theodore Dalrymple who has, in his wretched running-dog essays and hack journalism, betrayed utterly his dear late father’s communist ideals.

A doctor, yes; but he has not been able to heal himself, suffering as he is the western disease of shallow, wretched materialism that courses through his body and mind. The plutocrat Dalrymple will write for any capitalist rag on any subject you please as long as he is paid richly, so as to be able to maintain his English and French mansions with their phalanxes of servants, where this oversexed quack regularly and gleefully exercises the feudal droit du seigneur.

Screen Shot 2014-03-16 at 07.58.09The sinister, ruthless Dalrymple is a psychiatrist. In the people’s democracies, psychiatry has always been a highly regarded profession, for psychiatrists play a vital rôle alongside security personnel in re-educating those unfortunate victims of false consciousness — those who act perversely against their class interest by entertaining ideologically incorrect views and who are crying out for instruction, guidance, help of the euthanasian kind, etc.

Yet this Dalrymple psychiatrist is a disgrace to his profession. This fascist octopus shamelessly exploited a group of blameless students when, in exactly the manner of the BBC Sweeney filth, he used them as human cover during a visit to the Democratic People’s Republic.

Forever night: the 13th World Festival of Youth and Students was held in Pyongyang in 1989. By use of make-up and other means, the spy Dalrymple, though aged 40 at the time, managed to pass himself off as a student and attended as a delegate

Forever night: the 13th World Festival of Youth and Students was held in Pyongyang in 1989. By use of make-up and other means, the spy Dalrymple, though aged 40 at the time, managed to pass himself off as a student and attended as a delegate

The sickening Dalrymple embedded himself in a delegation to the World Festival of Youth and Students run by the World Federation of Democratic Youth, which was then being held in Pyongyang.

What was Dalrymple’s purpose? This remains unclear. Possibly it was to foment illegal emigration from the republic. The scheming, scandalous Dalrymple, who in his personal life epitomises bourgeois decadence, later admitted the deception laughingly:

I was accepted as a member of the delegation because [guffaws] I was a doctor who had practised in Tanzania, whose first president Julius Nyerere was a close friend and admirer of Kim Il-sung.

Dalrymple also delivered himself of certain uncharitable observations about his fellow delegates to the Democratic People’s Republic. For instance, there is this comment about a female cadre:

A young woman of clearly middle-class origin, who wore only black shapeless clothes and had owlish round spectacles, [announced that] she was…shocked how…people who called themselves caring could eat meat. She was a person of very definite opinions, including a rather poor one of the male sex in general: when she signed her name, she appended a cross to the ‘o’ it contained, to turn it into the biological symbol for female.

Here is how a couple of male cadres are described:

Screen Shot 2015-07-11 at 09.53.35They were hard-faced communists, who dressed tough and cut their hair short so that their heads should appear as bony as possible. I overheard one of them describing a demonstration he had attended in England, in which there had also been a member of Amnesty International with a placard. ‘I went up to him and said, “I don’t believe in that bourgeois shit,” and he said, “Do you think political prisoners should be tortured and killed, then?” “Too fucking right, I do,” I said.’ The person to whom he related this charming little exchange laughed. What I found frightening about the pair of them was that their faces were contorted with hatred even as they laughed, and when they talked of killing political prisoners they meant it. They were members of a little communist groupuscule for whom Stalin was a god, not in spite of his crimes but because of them.

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Dalrymple appears to approve of the gross discourtesy of certain Scandinavian guests:

The Scandinavians, to my great admiration, unfurled two banners, one asking why Amnesty International was not permitted to investigate conditions in North Korea…and another expressing solidarity with the Chinese pro­-democracy students who had…been massacred in Tiananmen Square. Later, when the Scandinavian marchers returned to the body of the stadium, scuffles broke out as security men tried to wrest the banners away. A few of the Scandinavians were punched and kicked….When these scuffles broke out, I overheard some of my fellow delegates, the hard-faced communists, express a willingness, indeed an anxiety, to join in – on the side of the North Koreans, ‘to beat the shit out of them’. Discussing among themselves the famous scene when the single student (since executed) stood in front of the column of tanks in Peking and held them up by moral force alone, one of them remarked that if he had been the tank driver he would have driven ‘straight over the bastard and squashed him’. And his face showed that he meant what he said.


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Dalrymple himself is gratuitously rude to his Korean hosts, refusing to stand for the entry of the Eternal President (then more active than he is today) and insolently mouthing a version of Luther’s Hier stehe ich und kann nicht anders! Gott helfe mir, Amen!

The foreigners, caught up in the atmosphere of hysterical self-abasement, stood up and applauded as if to save their lives. I am not by nature brave, or even unconventional, yet in the moment of Kim Il-sung’s entry I decided that I would not stand, not if everyone in the stadium should hurl abuse at me, not even if I were to be threatened with torture or death itself. I was so appalled by the sight and sound of 200,000 men and women worshipping a fellow mortal, totally abdicating their humanity, that I do not think I am exaggerating when I say I should rather have died than assent to this monstrous evil by standing (my mother was a refugee from Nazi Germany). There I sat; I could do no other. The terrible obedience of the crowd, uncoerced at least in the immediate sense, indicated the power of the regime, a power that seemed absolute and limitless, that had entered the very recesses of minds, that had eradicated any countervailing force. Yet the power that was so strong was also brittle. It would only have taken 10,000 people not to have stood up for Kim Il Sung when he entered the stadium – the omission of one small act of obedience – and his power and mystique would have snapped like a twig, to remain broken and irrecoverable. My refusal to stand was but a feeble, isolated gesture; but a tiny crystal thrown into a sea of saturated solution can cause an immense precipitate, and one day such a thing will happen in North Korea and everyone, wise after the event, will marvel that it didn’t happen sooner.
Dr Theodore Dalrymple: imperialist running dog

Dr Theodore Dalrymple: imperialist running dog

The result of Dalrymple’s trip of treachery is his chapter on the Democratic People’s Republic in his 1991 work The Wilder Shores of Marx: Journeys in a Vanishing World (also published as Utopias Elsewhere).

The Democratic People’s Republic of Korea has rightly acted to ensure that this Dalrympian ordure cannot be spread further, and you will not find The Wilder Shores of Marx on sale in any of the many reputable booksellers of Pyongyang.

Prophylactic bulwark

The Democratic People’s Republic has also taken certain anti-fascist prophylactic measures to ensure that the likes of Sweeney and Dalrymple are henceforth denied entry to the country.

The republic must guard against the Dalrympian and Sweeneyish ideological syphilis.

Locked up in that foetid capitalist-materialist putocratic prison for so long, the howling fascist hyenas Dalrymple and Sweeney were mercifully released into a properly democratic and socialist republic — and they stifled their own best chance to breathe fresh air. What can you do with people like that?

Stop! Refugees from prosperity not welcome in North Korea

Stop! Refugees from prosperity not welcome in North Korea

The imperialist pair are barred. However often the despicable Dalrymple-Sweeney duo may try to slide in, and however often they may plead to return to this exemplary, peace-loving workers’ and peasants’ democracy, they will not be admitted. For an antiDalrymple antiSweeney bulwark has — with regret — had to be constructed. Border security has been tightened.

How many divisions have Dalrymple and Sweeney? It is not known for sure, but the Korean people’s forces stand ready. Struggle will be waged relentlessly, fanatically, against class enemies such as these.

The DPRK is the only place, if Sweeney and Dalrymple are honest with themselves, where they have ever been truly happy or at peace; this is where they really want to be. But it is too late. This pair of fascist rogues will never be readmitted. The mighty Korean people’s democracy, usually so gentle, has been roused. This vermin will ever be unwelcome in the DPRK.

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The Britons to whom Stalin was and is a god

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E.J. Hobsbawm: awarded the CH for services to Stalin apologetics

What are they like, the apologists for tyranny, the supporters of Mao or Hitler or Stalin, the defenders of the gulag, the enemies of a free and open society, the admirers of terror and genocide, the ones who want to see what Orwell called the ‘boot stamping on a human face — forever’? What are creatures like Eric Hobsbawm really like?

Dalrymple brings out some of their attributes in the course of an account of a visit to North Korea as part of a delegation to the World Festival of Youth and Students.

I was accepted as a member [of the delegation] because…I was a doctor who had practised in Tanzania, whose first president Julius Nyerere was a close friend and admirer of Kim Il Sung.

He describes some of the delegates.

They were hard-faced communists, who dressed tough and cut their hair short so that their heads should appear as bony as possible. I overheard one of them describing a demonstration he had attended in England, in which there had also been a member of Amnesty International with a placard.

‘I went up to him and said, “I don’t believe in that bourgeois shit.” And he said, “Do you think political prisoners should be tortured and killed, then?” “Too fucking right, I do,” I said.’

The person to whom he related this charming little exchange laughed. What I found frightening about the pair of them was that their faces were contorted with hatred even as they laughed, and when they talked of killing political prisoners they meant it. They were members of a little communist groupuscule for whom Stalin was a god, not in spite of his crimes but because of them.


Kim Jong-il’s dropsy and dipsomania

Dalrymple offers a diagnostic opinion after examining a number of photographs:

The Dear Leader had had a left-sided stroke, not surprisingly as he was a diabetic. His left arm hangs limply, atrophied but with the back of his hand slightly œdematous…sometimes he holds the left with his right hand…as hemiplegics often do. The fingers…are permanently flexed as after a stroke, and when he picks something up he uses his right hand…his left arm hangs useless….His facial expression is…vacant or…puzzled (though with a touch of malignity), as if he were suffering from cognitive defect….He looks at his happiest when examining a bottle of…vodka.

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White spirit brings a smile to the face of the Dear Leader and Eternal General Secretary of the Workers’ Party of Korea