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Well, I hope for the head of the NK chief propaganda minister that the grand divine dictator's internet does not break down with all the traffic from Hacker News..

"Kim Jong Un, Chairman of the Workers' Party of Korea, Chairman of the State Affairs Commission of the DPRK and Supreme Commander of the Korean People's Army, visited the Sohae Space Centre to inspect the ground jet test of a new type high-power engine of a carrier rocket for the geo-stationary satellite."

It sounds really hilarious, but it reminds me of the soviet era in the Warsaw Pact member states. Poor citizens. We are so lucky to have a degree of control over our supreme leadership..

It should remind you of that, since that's basically what they are. They're on the wrong side of Russia to be in the Warsaw Pact, but they follow the same basic model as other Soviet puppets, except for the part where they succumbed to revolution in the 90s.

NK is not a Russian puppet, it's a Chinese puppet. (And it's a puppet gone rogue like Chucky.)

They are now, but they were aligned with the Soviets until there stopped being Soviets. Naturally they sought out a new patron after that.

Not quite. The SU started rolling back its support for NK in 1985, four years before the SU fell. In fact, it seems probable to me that NK didn't fall along with the rest of the SU precisely because of this.

But the point I was really trying to make is that calling NK anyone's puppet is not really accurate, and arguably never was. They are certainly dependent on China nowadays, but it is far from clear who is pulling whose strings.

They definitely don't seem to be now. I'm pretty sure China doesn't want them lighting off nuclear bombs, but doesn't know how to get them to stop.

In any case, "puppet" was incidental to my comment, and I'm happy to let that go. My main point was that they were set up very similarly to the Warsaw Pact countries, so the similarity in language is entirely expected.

> but doesn't know how to get them to stop.[1]

[1] That is, without having a humanitarian crisis and state with nuclear explosives (and might have viable nuclear warheads) in civil war on their back doorstep.

I can see both sides to the dispute over how to handle DPRK. If Mexico got very politically unstable and started making nuclear explosions and likely had a missle-portable warhead, the U.S. would get touchy if China started proposing actions that could easily touch off a Mexican civil war. In hindsight, I hope they realize that they should have pushed the DPRK harder earlier and run a higher risk of a civil war in the pre-nuclear-explosive DPRK in exchange for heading off warhead development.

Agreed, it's a huge mess and I see no good way to clean it up. We should probably just rip the band-aid off ASAP and get it over with. I think the non-nuclear window of opportunity is still open there. They have weapons, but I don't think they yet have the means to deliver them. In any case, I doubt anyone is willing to do that, and I can't blame them at all. The other hope would be that somehow either the regime becomes less crazy on their own (like China did) or a successful revolution happens without spilling outside the country too much. Neither possibility seems likely.

On the other hand, I remember how the Soviet Union seemed like it was here forever, right up until it wasn't. That didn't turn out great, but it stayed contained and nobody got nuked.

China is effectively NK's designated driver, at this point.

China's interests are preventing NK from getting too far out of hand and China ends up flooded with millions of NK refugees.

Just asking to nail down definition of "puppet": is SK a US puppet?

A puppet state is one that is set up to look like an independent state but is in fact entirely de facto controlled by (i.e. cannot do anything without the approval of) another state. Iran between 1953 and 1979 was a U.S. puppet. Syria seems to be on the road to becoming a Russian puppet. SK is not a US puppet, and NK is not really a Chinese puppet either (that's what I meant by the "Chucky" comment).

It has generally become unfashionable to have puppet states nowadays. They're too hard to maintain.

> Iran between 1953 and 1979 was a U.S. puppet.

Are you repeating n-th hand propaganda? I kind of don't blame you since Google refuses to dig up the story of "Soviet-Iranian Agreement of Cooperation" of 1966. This agreement was reached because the West refused to support Iran's industrialization program under the Shah, so the "puppet" went ahead and reached an agreement with USSR.

Intelligence Memorandum, CIA, June 1967: https://www.cia.gov/library/readingroom/docs/DOC_0000381440....

> Are you repeating n-th hand propaganda?

Quite possible. The document you cite was news to me. Maybe there has never been an actual U.S. puppet state, I don't know.

Wikipedia lists the Republic of Texas as one, and South Vietnam as a potential one. Assassinating an uncooperative leader while a bunch of American soldiers were in the country certainly seems like the sort of thing that would happen in a puppet state, anyway.

> The document you cite was news to me.

"There is a deeply disturbing trend in the world of ever increased deference to power. The free press is ..."

I respectfully suggest to you that this is no "trend".

I think the argument could be made that the Philippines were a US puppet state at certain points in their history

I'm actually am having trouble accessing any of these NK sites at the moment. Verified that several sites are down at isitdownrightnow as well.

Could be many things, of course. But if Hacker News traffic is enough to overload an entire country's Internet...

It's hitting the Reddit frontpage as well, so yeah.

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