I find it a bit unnerving to learn that the U.N. lowered the flag to half mast in New York City and Geneva in recognition of Kim Jung Il's death.
The funeral for Kim Jung Il was held today.
Tens of thousands of military officials in uniforms stood still waiting at the plaza in front of the palace. At 10 a.m., the hearse carrying Kim's flower-decorated coffin atop made a grand entrance. Kim's successor, Kim Jong Un, escorted the hearse on foot with his left hand holding onto the sedan's side mirror. On the left was top military leader Ri Yong Ho, and just behind the young Kim was his uncle and Kim Jong Il's brother-in-law Jang Sung-Taek. Jang is believed to be the power behind the scenes.
"They are trying to stick a very powerful front image," said Lee Jung-Hoon, professor of international relations at Yonsei University. The entire procession is carefully choreographed "to make sure that the entire nation mourns and they pledge their loyalty" to these handful of men in the inner circle.
The official funeral lasts two days, after which late Kim will be laid to rest at Kumsusan Memorial Palace, where his father Kim Il Sung has laid embalmed since 1994. On Thursday noon, the nation will observe three minutes of silence -- trains, ships cars are required to blow whistles and sirens.
Clearly, Kim Jong Il's son is not ready to take over. He is being groomed and will eventually be ready for his destiny. The people have every right to be apprehensive of their future. There are shortages of food, electricity and all basic necessities for modern life.
The people have been brainwashed for decades. They have been taught since childhood how to act and respond to dictators. For anyone living in freedom to comment on the scenes of grief is wrong. They have been carefully orchestrated and fear any hints of disobeying orders. Any thinking person knew this was to be expected. It's all an act and the people have no choice but to go along with it.
The person who should be mocked is U.N. secretary general Ban Ki-moon. He made the decision to lower the U.N. flag to half mast in Geneva and New York City in recognition of Kim Jung Il's death.
The flag of the United Nations flew at half-mast Wednesday at the world's body headquarters in New York and its Geneva offices to mark the funeral for late North Korean leader Kim Jong-Il.
Choi Soung-ah, a spokeswoman for UN secretary general Ban Ki-moon, said it was customary practice for the UN flag to be lowered to half-mast upon the deaths of leaders of UN member states.
The United Nations exists to promote and defend human rights around the world. Actions such as this, equating the leader of North Korea with any other world leader, proves the organization is out of touch and ineffective.
The non-governmental organization UN Watch said while protocol had to be followed, "the world body must not forget that its founding purpose is to defend basic human rights.".
"Sadly, that message is at serious risk of being blurred today," UN Watch executive director Hillel Neuer said
"Today should be a time for the UN to show solidarity with the victims -- the millions of North Koreans brutalized by Kim's merciless policies of starvation and oppression -- and not with the perpetrators."
Tens of thousands of weeping North Koreans bade farewell Wednesday to longtime leader Kim as his young son and successor walked beside his father's coffin through a snowbound Pyongyang.
It is more compassionate to voice a show of disbelief towards Ban Ki-moon. His decision is wrong.