North Korea’s enigmatic and bizarre “Supreme Leader” Kim Jong-Il has died of “physical fatigue” while riding a train, North Korean news agencies report. Kim was riding a train around 8:30 a.m. Saturday when he suffered a “severe myocardial infarction along with a heart attack.”
State officials announced a period of mourning that will last until December 29. The Supreme Leader’s funeral will take place December 28.
North Korea suffered from crippling famine and nonexistent economic development. For reminders about the brutality and suffering under Kim Jong-Il look no further than:
- This photo gallery from Foreign Policy
- This photo gallery from The Atlantic
- This documentary on National Geographic
- Another rare report from inside North Korea
- Wolf Blitzer’s report from North Korea (with Bill Richardson)
Political control now passes to Kim Jong-Il’s son, Kim Jong-un. The New York Times profiled Kim Jong-Il’s third son earlier this fall. He apparently loves NBA basketball and attended school in Europe. Live coverage of Kim’s death here.