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OpinionThe Queen

Opinion: Should The Queen be sending a national day message to the North Korean ruler?

Picture by Stephen Lock / i-Images

Buckingham Palace confirmed yesterday that The Queen had sent a message to North Korea as they celebrated their national holiday. This came after North Korean state television, KCNA, revealed that Her Majesty had sent a telegram to the Supreme Leader Kim Jong-un on 7 September.

They claimed: “Kim Jong Un, president of the State Affairs of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK), received a message of greeting from Elizabeth II, queen of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, on September 7.

The message from the Queen read: ‘As the people of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea celebrate their national day, I send my good wishes for the future’.”

When KCNA first revealed the information, I was hesitant to believe it; North Korean state television is not known for its honesty but rather ridiculous propaganda. To my surprise, however, Buckingham Palace later confirmed that The Queen had indeed sent the message to North Koreans on the advice of the Foreign Office, claiming it had been done before and was “standard practice.”

Should it really be standard practice to send messages to tyrants who continuously violate human rights, constantly threaten their democratic neighbours to the south with nuclear weapons and kill off their own people?

North Koreans have no rights; they are brainwashed into believing their Supreme Leader is a god and that they are the most powerful and greatest country on the planet. They are told that people in the West are starving and that they are saving them when in reality, it is their people who are starving to death due to the Kim regime.

Travellers to North Korea have their movements strictly controlled, and need I remind everyone of what North Korea did to American college student Otto Warmbier who was imprisoned there in 2016 for supposedly stealing a propaganda poster? He was returned to the United States in a comatose state after the country said he suffered a “neurological injury” (he never regained consciousness and died in the U.S). The US federal court later found North Korea liable for his torture and death. Warmbier is not a stand-alone case. This happens over and over again.

Also, the message would have also arrived in North Korea shortly before they fired yet another long-range missile in their quest to acquire nukes. Of course, there would have been no way of knowing they were going to test a new missile before sending the message; however, Kim Jong-un is known to try to flex his power and the North Korean military around this time every year. So why take a risk and send a message to Kim Jong-un for the national holiday knowing his past actions around the holiday?

Sending a message to Kim Jong-un only inflates his ever-increasing dangerous ego that continues to threaten the world. He doesn’t need the illusion of any support, and sending a message like this only gives this tyrant more confidence to continue his reign of terror on his people. Sending the message is not a good look for Her Majesty, who I think is a wonderful woman. Her advisors and the Foreign Office clearly steered her in the wrong direction here.

The Kim family has been dictating North Korea since the country’s founding in 1948. Jong-un’s grandfather, Kim Il-sung, first took control of North Korea and turned it into a communist state and ruled until his death in 1994. His son, Kim Jong-il, took over after his death and reigned over North Korea until his own death in 2011 when his son, Kim Jong-un, succeeded him.

Under the Kim family’s repressive rule, North Koreans have starved to death, been sent to labour camps and killed for any type of dissent.

About author

Brittani is from Tennessee, USA. She is a political scientist and historian after graduating with a degree in the topics from the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, in December 2014. She also holds a master's degree from Northeastern University. She enjoys reading and researching all things regarding the royals of the world. Her love of royals began in middle school, and she's been researching, reading, and writing on royalty for over a decade. She became Europe Editor in October 2016, and then Deputy Editor in January 2019, and has been featured on several podcasts, radio shows, news broadcasts and websites including Global News Canada, ABC News Australia, WION India and BBC World News.