Last night, news spread around the globe that North Korean leader Kim Jong-il is dead. The “Supreme Leader,” who has ruled for years with fierce brutality, passed away this weekend from heart failure.
Following the leader’s death, North Koreans participated in a mass mourning of sorts, according to state-run news. In fact, a startling video was released by North Korean media showcasing the intense emotional pain that citizens have purportedly been experiencing in Pyongyang.
Here’s the footage:
Considering the organization and intensity seen in the video and the brutal nature of North Korea’s government, it’s natural to wonder how sincere these lamentations are. Are they being forced? Was this video staged? These are legitimate questions.
Then again, the blind and excessive devotion to Jong-il was documented by journalist Lisa Ling when she made a rare trip into North Korea back in 2009. A National Geographic special hosted by Ling and featuring footage from inside the secretive country corroborates the intense love many felt for the leader. As Ling proclaims in the introduction to the fascinating special, Jong-il ruled as a “god king.”
Watch the documentary, below: