The world watched as Kim Jong Il went from place to place, looking at things.
Now, it seems the honor has been passed along to his son, Kim Jong Un, who took over after Kim Jong Il's death in December.
The latest from North Korea's mouthpiece over the holiday weekend was a video (below) of Kim Jong Un visiting, or shall we say looking at, the zoo.
He appears very pleased to meet the animals and to have run of the place. No other humans, aside from his entourage and the woman who bows with a seal, are in sight.
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The Telegraph reports that the video — along with footage aired the day before on state TV of Kim Jong Un visiting an amusement park, an ice rink and a lowly old street in Pyongyang — is meant to bolster the current supreme leader's image.
That much seems clear, though in and of itself the footage doesn't signal that there is any urgency to do so. Meaning, it appears more run-of-the-mill and a continuation of the traditions we saw in the previous regime than it does a reaction to any particular threat.
The Telegraph does note some key differences between the two successive leaders:
[Kim Jong Un] has a more outgoing image than his father, who spoke just once – a single sentence – at a major public occasion. Jong Un has been seen hugging soldiers and linking arms with women.
What is less run-of-the-mill perhaps is today's report of North Korea's worst drought in 50 years.
According to the AP, which was able to visit at least one hard-hit area, the state is reporting little to no rainfall on the western coast since late April. One farmer the AP talked to — against the backdrop of cracked, parched fields — called the situation a "severe drought."
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Which points again, perhaps, to the PR machine. North Korea is almost certainly experiencing a drought, and there is no doubt that countless people are suffering as a result. But given how closed the country is, it's impossible to tell how far-reaching the effects of the drought are or how it is being handled by the state.
One thing we can say, however, is that while the drought has reportedly been going on, Kim Jong Un went to see the animals: