TOKYO — Kim Jong Il, the North Korean leader who threatened the world with his nuclear weapons ambitions and suppressed his own people with imprisonment and isolation, left in the wake of his death Saturday an antiquated country with a power vacuum.
Kim’s death raises immediate questions about the future — and the stability — of perhaps the world’s most isolated state, which for six decades has been held together by the Kim family personality cult. Kim was deified by state media, described as the “Dear Leader.” A weeping television anchor Monday told North Korea of Kim’s death.
Security analysts and officials from Seoul to Washington have long believed that Kim’s death would double as a pivot point on the Korean Peninsula. But that poses a threat of its own — as North Korea tries to pass power to Kim’s youngest son, Kim Jong Eun, who is in his 20s.
Related news: Kim Jong-Un Privately Doubting He's Crazy Enough To Run North Korea (okay yes, that one's from The Onion)
Elf -- Monday, December 19, 2011 -- 07:56:14 AM -- 1426 of 1648
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