Wednesday, April 15, 2009

North Korea's Public Diplomacy

Did you know that North Korea has a PD website? Because I didn’t until now. Many Western media have portrayed North Korea as a threat to the world (but who would blame them?), yet at the same time there is a website online displaying photos, videos, music clips and information (history, culture, and much more) about North Korea.

North Korea’s public diplomacy is managed by the Foundation of the Korean Friendship Association.

According to the webpage:

The Korean Friendship Association (KFA) was founded on November of the year 2000 with the purpose of building international ties with the Democratic People's Republic of Korea. It has members from 120 countries.

The KFA has full recognition from the Government of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea and is the world-wide leading organization of its supporters.

It has offices in DPR Korea, Spain, Norway and Thailand.


The main objectives of the KFA are:

- Show the reality of the DPR Korea to the world

- Defend the independence and socialist construction in the DPR of Korea

- Learn from the culture and history of the Korean People

- Work for the peaceful unification of the Korean peninsula

And here are their activities:

- Public Expositions of the D.P.R.K. (pictures, books, music...)
- Conferences and meetings about the Korean history, society and other aspects.
- Information and consulting in diplomacy and business.
- Radio, T.V. and other media programs.
- Cultural Exchange with different countries.
- Link contact with associations/companies/individuals interested in North Korea.

Plus the website is available in many other languages besides the standard Spanish, French, and German, demonstrating their efforts to engage with a wider global audience.

It’s interesting to see the image that North Korea wants the world to see of them. Although I’m sure that the “reality of the DPRK to the world” is more like an illusion. This is become it is these “positive” images that North Korea want you to see. There are no other images from an outside source to prove that North Korea is like what the images on the websites portray. But I give North Korea credit for trying to improve its image. And if you get the chance listen to this song Raise your weapons to wave the Supreme commander or any of their other songs. You’ll be waving more than just your weapons high to North Korea’s public diplomacy!

1 comment:

  1. Nice find, Manith. I would not say that I am surprised, though, because North Korea goes to great measures to influence its populace and they are very sensitive to the outside world as well - I speak of Kim Jong Il and his cadre as "they."

    Check out this "mass games" clip:

    I would say that you also found one of the countries with the largest say-do gap out there...I don't know if the U.S. can compete with them on this one.