The Great Successor: The Divinely Perfect Destiny of Brilliant Comrade Kim Jong Un

The Great Successor: The Divinely Perfect Destiny of Brilliant Comrade Kim Jong Un

by Anna Fifield

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Overview

The behind-the-scenes story of the rise and reign of the world's strangest and most elusive tyrant, Kim Jong Un, by the journalist with the best connections and insights into the bizarrely dangerous world of North Korea.
Since his birth in 1984, Kim Jong Un has been swaddled in myth and propaganda, from the plainly silly—he could supposedly drive a car at the age of three—to the grimly bloody stories of family members who perished at his command.

Anna Fifield reconstructs Kim's past and present with exclusive access to sources near him and brings her unique understanding to explain the dynastic mission of the Kim family in North Korea. The archaic notion of despotic family rule matches the almost medieval hardship the country has suffered under the Kims. Few people thought that a young, untested, unhealthy, Swiss-educated basketball fanatic could hold together a country that should have fallen apart years ago. But Kim Jong Un has not just survived, he has thrived, abetted by the approval of Donald Trump and diplomacy's weirdest bromance.

Skeptical yet insightful, Fifield creates a captivating portrait of the oddest and most secretive political regime in the world—one that is isolated yet internationally relevant, bankrupt yet in possession of nuclear weapons—and its ruler, the self-proclaimed Beloved and Respected Leader, Kim Jong Un.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781541742482
Publisher: PublicAffairs
Publication date: 06/11/2019
Pages: 336
Sales rank: 28,280
Product dimensions: 6.30(w) x 9.30(h) x 1.30(d)

About the Author

Anna Fifield is the Beijing bureau chief for The Washington Post. She previously covered Japan and the Koreas for the Post, and was the Seoul correspondent for the Financial Times. She has reported from more than 20 countries and has visited North Korea a dozen times, becoming one of the most authoritative journalists on this impenetrable country. She was a Nieman journalism fellow at Harvard University, studying how change happens in closed societies. In 2018, she received the Shorenstein Journalism Award from Stanford University for her outstanding reporting on Asia.

Table of Contents

Author's Note xv

Map of Korean Peninsula xvi

Kim Family Tree xvii

Prologue 1

Part 1 The Apprenticeship

1 The Beginning 11

2 Living with the Imperialists 32

3 Anonymous in Switzerland 46

4 Dictatorship 101 63

Part 2 The Consolidation

5 A Third Kim at the Helm 83

6 No More Belt Tightening 96

7 Better to Be Feared than Loved 112

8 Goodbye, Uncle 129

9 The Elites of Pyonghattan 142

10 Millennial and Modernity 157

11 Playing Ball with the "Jackals" 171

Part 3 The Confidence

12 Party Time 187

13 The Unwanted Brother 203

14 The Treasured Sword 223

15 The Charm Offensive 241

16 Talking with the "Jackals" 258

Epilogue 275

Acknowledgments 283

Notes 289

Index 301

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