If this is even half-way correct (Chosun Ilbo, 25 Feb 2011) it shows Kim Jong-il guilty of massive genocide against his own people.
North Korea has been begging for food aid, yet last year's harvest in the North is estimated by the UN Food and Agriculture Organization at 4.48 million tons, making it the best harvest in 20 years. North Korea's annual food demand is estimated at around 5 million tons. Nam Sung-wook of the Institute for National Security Strategy is quoted as saying that starvation to death happens when food output falls below 3.5 million tons. Until the present administration came to power in the South, the South gave some 400,000-500,000 tons and the international community up to 1 million tons. China has not responded to North Korea's requests for food aid, but might step in if the country nears collapse.
The main reason for the food shortage in the North is hoarding by the government and military—as much as a million tons of rice has been stored for a war, enough to feed the country's 24 million people for three months. Since 1987, North Korea has been setting aside an eighth of its rice output as emergency supplies in case of war and a further tenth for military consumption. It may also be hoarding for a grand celebration in 2012. After the severe 1995-97, when more than a million people starved, North Korea boasted of becoming a powerful and prosperous nation by then.
Blatant corruption and hoarding by the régime is also at fault. North Korean mines contain an estimated 2,000 tons of gold and 5,000 tons of silver worth billions. North Korean leader Kim Jong-il has apparently stashed away more than US$4 billion in secret bank accounts overseas. Yet there are no accounts that the North sold any of the gold or silver to buy food.
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