Kim Jong Un bans citizens from taking off stylish leather jackets

NSEOUL, South Korea — Do whatever the leader says — just don’t imitate his style of dress. That’s the lesson to be learned from reports that the North Korean government is busy ordering people to stop wearing the discount leather jackets that look like the high-end jackets Kim Jong Un was photographed with while cheering on the killings. test rockets and ordered his people to work harder to overcome the county’s severe economic difficulties.

While the majority of North Korea’s 25 million citizens cannot afford more than the simplest of outfits, leather jackets reminiscent of the country’s almighty dictator have become fashionable in the country. the capital Pyongyang and other cities where members of the elite military officers class lived. , government officials and members of the ruling Workers’ Party live and work.

“Authorities in North Korea are cracking down on residents wearing leather jackets,” Radio Free Asia, a US government-funded news operation with extensive sources in North Korea, is reporting. They said it was “disrespectful to imitate the fashion choices of the country’s leader.”

The crackdown comes as Kim nears the 10th anniversary of his coming to power following the death of his longtime ruling father, Kim Jong Il, on December 17, 2011. Since then, he has been photographed in fashionable suits, sports shirts and headgear, usually worn only once and never seen again. However, nothing captures the imagination of North Koreans like that of the iconic long leather jackets that make him instantly a manly, athletic and prosperous figure. , as well as a fashion leader.

The identities of Kim Jong Un’s tailors — perhaps more than one tailor — have never been revealed, but their styles have been copied all over North Korea, being made rather crudely in North Korea. factories in the country or manufactured in China and smuggled through Yalu or Bordering the Tumen River.

RFA reported, “Leather jackets became popular in 2019 after Kim appeared on TV. “Initially, genuine leather jackets imported from China were only available to the wealthy, but soon garment manufacturers started importing imitation leather for domestic production.”

The haute couture trend reached its peak at the 8th Party Congress military parade last January when Kim and the toads in the parade stands all wore similar-looking leather jackets. Even Kim Yo Jong’s younger sister is caught up in a marriage, creating a trend that starts with well-off women as well as men.

However, it all comes down to something as hundreds of lower-ranking types are seen wearing shoddy replicas. Who do they think they are? Some felt it gave the impression that they were almost mocking the ruling elite. It seemed suddenly that the less fortunate had found a way to satirize their leaders without being sent to prison or even tortured and executed.

“To prevent cheap imitations and cheap imitators from wearing them,” says RFA, “fashion police patrol the streets to confiscate jackets from sellers and residents,” RFA said. sport.”

Kim Jong Un shows off his coat outside in the snow in Samjiyon city, North Korea.

North Korean News Agency, via Reuters

Undoubtedly, one reason for the extreme image sensitivity is that Kim Jong Un has been the target of much speculation as his weight has dropped from over 300 lbs to an estimated 260 lbs in the past few years. recent month.

It’s all too easy for people to joke about his team of tailors working overtime to make new outfits, including leather jackets, every time he loses a pound or two. Considering he’s only 5 feet 8 inches tall even with the insoles on, he’s still too heavy and analysts have discerned whether he’s started a diet or if he’s actually in poor health .

RFA quoted a source as saying that “wearing clothes designed to look like Highest Dignity is an impure trend aimed at challenging the authority of Highest Dignity.” According to the source, police have “instructed the public not to wear leather jackets as it is part of the party’s directive to decide who can wear them”.

Recently, Kim ordered missile tests and ensured that the nuclear complex 60 miles north of Pyongyang continued to produce nuclear warheads and sought to install nuclear warheads on the warheads of missiles that could carry nuclear weapons. possibility of reaching the US.

While Kim lectured his people about the urgent need to overcome the impoverished economy, 38North, an authoritative site at the Stimson Center in Washington, satellite imagery is cited demonstrating that the nuclear reactor at the facility is still fully blasting. The evidence, 38North said, is that steam “is emanating from the reactor’s generator hall” even as “water continues to be discharged from the auxiliary pipeline.”

Mr. Kim has shown no sign of giving up on his nuclear program despite a joint statement signed by him and Donald Trump at their summit in Singapore in June 2018 pledging efforts towards “denuclearization”. ‘ification’ of the Korean peninsula.

North Korea’s nuclear program is currently a contentious focus of South Korea’s current presidential campaign. Lee Jae-myhering, the Democratic Party or ruling Minjkoo’s candidate, told journalists of foreign news agencies on Thursday that the US and South Korea may “have to make certain concessions”, especially especially easing sanctions on North Korea, to reach a new agreement on denuclearization.

Lee’s relatively soft approach contrasts with that of the conservative People’s Power Party candidate, Yoon Seok-youl, who has said that sanctions must be maintained until North Korea is eliminated. abandon the nuclear program. Yoon has also supported the joint US and South Korean military exercises while Lee criticized them.

Lee also criticized Trump for trying to solve too many problems at once during his three meetings with Kim. “The nuclear problem is intertwined with many problems,” he said, “so trying to find a way to approach it at the same time is really impossible.”

Meanwhile, the nuclear program remains top of Kim’s agenda even as he seeks funds and resources to tackle economic problems. Some of his proudest moments have happened when ordering and then witnessing missile tests while wearing the leather jacket that has now become the essence of his popular image. . Kim Jong Un bans citizens from taking off stylish leather jackets


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