kim jong un

Using Dennis Rodman as a case study, a new article examines the role of high-profile athletes in sports diplomacy.

North Korea's current foreign policy is based around only two things -- surviving and respect. "Ultimately they want to be recognized as a nuclear power and then reset their relations with some of their antagonists, South Korea and then the US, as a nuclear power," he said.


No country is further from Madison Ave than Soviet-style North Korea, but advertising is beginning to emerge as makers of goods try to pitch products to a rising group of consumers and a wealthy class of citizens.

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un said Wednesday his country has developed nuclear weapons of a size small enough for a ballistic missile. [...] North Korea’s public diplomacy, or lack of it, has only increased the pressure. Last week, North Korea answered new United Nations sanctions by firing projectiles into the sea. Kim also threatened to carry out a nuclear strike against South Korea and the United States.

New planes, new in-flight entertainment options, smart new uniforms for the cabin attendants, even business class. It’s all part of supreme leader Kim Jong Un’s effort to boost tourist numbers 20-fold to 2 million by 2020 and supplement the nation’s meager foreign exchange.

According to recent documents released by UNESCO, North Korea has submitted kimchi to be nominated as an Intangible Cultural Heritage, meaning that it would be officially recognized as important to world heritage and merit cultural protection from UNESCO. The submission for Intangible Cultural Heritage status, titled “Tradition of kimchi-making in the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea,” is looking like a shoe-in for UNESCO status. 

The problem with “Dennis Rodman: Big Bang in Pyongyang,” primarily, is that the filmmakers decided to make a film about Dennis Rodman going to North Korea. The 93-minute documentary promises the unmistakable stench of a shit-show just in the title alone. So it’s not that surprising to discover that “Dennis Rodman: Big Bang in Pyongyang” is awful — both in the “shock and awe” sort of awful, as well as in the “absolutely terrible and affronting to humanity” kind of way.