Author Archive

Don Q Kim

Don Q Kim is a doctoral candidate in East Asian Studies at the University of Cambridge, and a former North Korea desk officer at South Korea’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade. His research is currently focusing on Japanese imperialism in the 1920s.

In the wake of the rather premature death of North Korean leader Kim Jong-il at the age of 69, North Korea is expected to enter a period of violent turmoil and power struggle. Kim’s heir apparent is his youngest son Kim Jung-un, who is perhaps too young in his twenties and too inexperienced in political and military affairs to receive natural respect from his fellow Koreans, particularly in the context of a socialist Confucian culture. In the expected battle royal, he will face a strong rival in his uncle Jang Seong-taek, whose wife is Kim Jong-il’s only sister and who has a strong link to the military leadership through his elder brothers (one of them, Jang Seong-U, was the commander …