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Propaganda balloons carry rumors of a North Korean porno

Anti-Kim Jong Un activists exploit creative means to surmount barriers.

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South Korean activists release balloons carrying anti-North Korea leaflets, in January 2010. Recently, the balloon campaigns have turned raunchy. (Chung Sung-Jun/Getty Images)

SEOUL, South Korea — For more than 60 years, North and South Korea have been divided along the demilitarized zone, or the DMZ.

Barriers — political, legal and physical — often prevent South Koreans from communicating directly with their northern brethren.

To surmount this, human rights activists in the South have gotten creative. One method: releasing balloons that carry messages across the border. They have even harnessed typhoon winds to ensure that their airborne information reaches its target.

Earlier this month, a group of anti-regime defectors gave its propaganda a raunchy twist.

The activists, led by prominent Christian rights campaigner Lee Min-bok, released a batch of balloons proclaiming that dictator Kim Jong Un’s attractive, 20-something wife, Ri Sol-ju, once starred in a homemade porno flick.

Seizing on newspaper reports, the group also spread rumors that members of a state-run musical troupe she performed in were supposedly executed by firing squad for their role filming even more steamy sex videos and selling the recordings, reports KoreaBANG (the link is mildly NSFW).

Of course, in a country with no Cinemax, how else can you get your satisfaction?

The allegation, though, is still a spectacular and unproven rumor.

It first surfaced in the Japanese newspaper Asahi Shimbun in August, but many North Korean defector groups have publicly cast doubts on it.

Despite their intentions, this and other activist campaigns have run into controversy — particularly in South Korea, the country that carries perhaps the heaviest burden of North Korea’s occasional temper tantrums and war threats.

In fact, police have banned another award-winning activist from sending airborne messages in recent months, citing national security concerns.

Some organizations connected to North Korea have voiced their disapproval, but what else would you expect from them?

One unofficial propaganda mouthpiece based in China, Uriminzokkiri, has already lashed out, calling the anti-regime activism “trash.”

Of course, if your life goal is to bring stability and democracy to North Korea, any such response from the so-called pariah is a badge of honor.

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/regions/asia-pacific/north-korea/131018/propaganda-balloons-north-korea-porno