Whenever North Korea’s dictator, Kim Jong Un, makes a public appearance, it’s a notable occasion. After all, this is one of the youngest and most ruthless leaders to ever make his mark on the world. His nation has become increasingly hostile and socialistic throughout the ten years he has ruled, with severe food shortages, lockdowns, and punishments ever on the rise.
This is also a man who has made no small threat to his plans to build more nuclear weapons and technologies that could destroy the world, should he be motivated to do so.
And yet, when he made an appearance and speech on Friday, it was not his world or even national plans that were most noted. Instead, it was the fact that Kim looked almost unrecognizable.
His speech was part of his attendance at the plenary meeting of the Central Committee of the Workers’ Party of Korea. In addition, it landed on the same day as his 10th anniversary of him succeeding his father, Kim Jong Il.
As such, he spoke about his plans for the nation in the coming year, focusing on the need for rural development, such as building tractor plants. In addition, he boasted that he would improve the standard of living in his country as well as cripple any “non-socialist practices,” according to Reuters. As usual, he kept rather tight-lipped about several things, with the ongoing food shortage in North Korea being number one and his nuclear arms plans coming in second.
But he also didn’t mention a word about the fact that he appears to have suddenly lost a massive amount of weight.
As you might know, Kim has always been a bit of a “bigger” guy. In fact, as the New York Post reported once, he usually weighs somewhere around 300 pounds. Call it a lifestyle of continual gluttony and getting what he wants or whatever, the point is he’s never been small.
But when he entered the stage on Friday, the world saw a Kim Jong Un that was nowhere near the same size.
Now, to be clear, this is not the first time we have seen a slightly slimmer Kim. After making a public appearance in August, much of the same was noticed. At the time, South Korean intelligence estimated him to have lost some 44 pounds.
And five months later, it seems the weight loss has continued.
So why the sudden lifestyle change?
Well, according to North Korean officials, Kim is losing weight because he suddenly feels sorry for all the people in his country who aren’t getting fed properly. If you didn’t know, the country is facing a massive food shortage and has been for some time – thanks, in part, to Kim’s insistence on lockdowns and his refusal to acknowledge basic human rights. And so, according to The Telegraph, he’s now eating less “for the sake of the country.”
As if he suddenly cares or that whatever portions he usually eats is now actually being given to those in need. Right.
The far more likely story is that Kim Jong Un is experiencing some rather serious health issues and is being forced to lose weight for that reason.
This past summer, we began to see evidence of this, starting in August. Remember when I said he appeared then and was estimated to have lost some 44 pounds? Well, what I failed to mention is that he also sported a rather mysteriously looking bandage on the back of his head, as if he had undergone surgery or survived a bad injury.
But in all truth, the rumors about his poor health began last spring when it was thought that Kim might have had heart surgery. Others even suggested that he had died and was quite naturally being replaced with a doppelganger.
I know that the last one is a bit farfetched… But since the North Korean government has been quite literally mum on the subject, it has given conspiracy theorists plenty of room to imagine whatever they want.
Of course, even though the country’s officials have now broached the topic, their explanation does little to quiet those rumors. I mean, it’s not like a man such as Kim Jong Un is going to change lifestyles overnight unless he has to. And certainly not because he’s suddenly feeling guilty about his people living in poverty.