North Korea: it's not a problem that our country goes dark at night

Picture is often used as a demonstration of the problems in the country — but North Korea says that the "essence of society is not on flashy lights"

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The Independent Online

A photo taken from space and showing a pitch black North Korea next to a brightly lit South Korea is one of the most famous images of the country. And the country’s ruling regime has responded to the picture, hitting out at critics of the state.

An editorial in the state-run newspaper, the Rodong Sinmun, claims that the country is not weakened by its lack of electricity and that other countries could soon find themselves in the same situation.

"They [North Korea’s detractors] clap their hands and get loud over a satellite picture of our city with not much light, but the essence of society is not on flashy lights," the editorial says, according to the Wall Street Journal’s translation. The piece said that given troubles in the US — such as high debt levels and civil disturbances like Occupy Wall Street and protests in Ferguson — it was likely that the country would see the same problems soon.

"An old superpower that is meeting its sunset may put up a face of arrogance but it can’t avoid its dark fate," the editorial says.

North Korea has previously admitted that it has had problems getting enough electricity, with Kim Jong Un telling the nation’s citizens to work hard to restore the country’s electricity in his New Year speech.

The country hit back in a long editorial titled "Right In Front Of Our Eyes". Much of the piece is focused on telling citizens to follow the leadership, and the title is a reference to a supposed quote from Kim Jong Un, who said that "Happiness is right in front of our eyes".

Satellite pictures are often the only way that the rest of the world can get a glimpse at what is happening in the "hermit kingdom".


Pictures have previously shown that huge fires are burning across the country, and that it is working on nuclear reactors.