North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un has come out in support of Scottish independence. With the vote just days away and the “yes” and “no” camps in a near statistical dead heat, the public endorsement might be just enough to give one side an edge, although it’s not clear which side.
A message of peace from a rogue state to a new state.
Kim Jong Un is supportive of the independence movement, according to sources in Pyongyang and Japan. Choe Kwan-il is the managing editor for the Choson Sinbo newspaper. The Tokyo-based publication is made by the General Association of Korean Residents (GAKR), a pro-north Korean group with close ties to the North. Mr. Kwan-il explained the position saying,
“I believe that every person has the right to be a member of an independent nation, to have sovereignty, to live in peace and to enjoy equality. And I believe that a majority of Scots feel the same and will vote for independence.”
Nevertheless, the dictator has some ulterior motives for Scottish Independence.
He needs a steady source of liquor, and he’s willing to trade with the new Scottish state if given the chance. As the Choson Sinbo newspaper said,
“I believe independence will be positive as it will encourage personal exchanges and provide both countries with business chances. North Korea is rich in natural resources and we like the taste of Scotch whisky, so we can be beneficial to each other.”
That might be a deal too good for Scotland to pass up. Kim Jong Un bought over $32 million dollars worth of alcohol in 2013. In exchange for that amount of Scottish Scotch, Scotland could get a lot of ferrous metals after independence.
Of course, the endorsement might do more damage than anything else. Few countries have good relations with the belligerent North Korea. China remains its largest trading partner and ally but relations have become frayed, according to some sources. Otherwise, the Emir of Qatar sent a happy anniversary message to Kim Jong Un in celebration of Korean independence, but that may have just been good manners.
In the end, it’s important to remember that there are some reportedly unpopular characters against Scottish Independence as well. Piers Morgan tweeted,
OK, Scotland, you’ve had your fun. Now just quietly vote ‘NO’ and we’ll say no more about it.
— Piers Morgan (@piersmorgan) August 8, 2014
Naturally, the talk show host and Kim Jong Un are not comparable. Although, strangely enough, Kim’s message on Scottish independence seemed far less patronizing and arrogant, and that was from a dictator.
[Image Credit: Smooth_O/Wikimedia Commons]