Kim Jong-nam: Image of Nice Guy Created by Media
On the late night of February 17, the following day of the Kim Jong-il’s birthday, there was a call from a reporting partner of ASIAPRESS at Dandong City in China. He is a businessman and Chinese Korean.
He said in half-tipsy voice that he would put a person from that side (North Korea) on the phone. A male, seemingly drunken as well, was on the phone with Pyongyang dialect. He explained that they were drinking after a banquet to celebrate Kim Jong-il’s birthday.
He was asked whether they feel strain in North Korea due to the Kim Jong-nam incident. He answered: “Isn’t he that kind of person hanging around women here and there even in overseas during that harsh period of 90s (the famine period)? Isn’t it nice to see one of that family members vanished.” The businessman in trading business from Pyongyang uttered acute condemnation, probably due to his drunkenness. He didn’t criticize the incident any more. It shows how the people of North Korea see Kim Jong-nam and his family.
Even if the killing of Kim Jong-nam was absolutely a huge international incident, the media go too far. Right after the breaking news on the night of 14th, TVs and newspapers use too much time and sections on the news.
Everyday new figures appeared. North Korean embassy and the Malaysian authority lashed back. North Koreans were identified as the suspects. VX, a deadly poisonous material for chemical weapon was used. It is much like a serial suspense drama. News flash is the pattern that the television boasts.
Related article: Interview with Two North Koreans: Shock and Horror on Assassination of Kim Jong-nam
It is believed that why the incident has drawn so much attention in Japan is because the character of Kim Jong-nam was made as he had often appeared on media. His presence at Akasaka and Shinbashi for drink. “Enlightened Figure” who shed tears because of concern for his people’ lives while criticizing hereditary politics. He showed unexpected aspect as the eldest son of ex-supreme leader of the most reclusive state. The image of Kim Jong-nam in Japan was completed as easy-going and man of common sense with intellect and gentleness. Some even idolized him as “Our Jong-nam.”