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NORTH KOREA FOOD AID: INTERNATIONAL FOOD AID TO NORTH KOREA

PROFILE: FOOD AID OPTION FOR NORTH KOREA


North Korea is already one the the world's largest recipients of international food aid, receiving enough to feed 8 million of its 24 million people. Unfortunately, that food isn't reaching those who need it, who will continue to starve, even to death, no matter how much aid is given.

Why won't they receive it?

Kim Jong Il classified the North Koreans into three segments - "loyal", "wavering" and "hostile" - and doled out privileges, including the right to eat, according to their perceived loyalty to him. In 1996, Kim declared that he is willing to let the latter two-thirds starve to death and rebuild the country with just the "loyal" third.

Instead of being distributed directly by international food aid organizations to the starving, the food aid must be given to the North Korea's government, which then must be trusted to distribute it to the starving, most of whom are in the "wavering" and "hostile" segments.

In reality, most of the food aid goes to feed Kim's army and the other members of the "loyal" segment. Even when the food aid is distributed to the other two segments in front of inspectors from the international aid groups, soldiers return and take the food back after the inspectors have left.

Kim Jong Il determined that nuclear weapons will serve him more than the "wavering" or "hostile" people, and decided to feed just the "loyal" class, leaving the rest to somehow fend for themselves.

Given that only 18% of North Korea's land is arable, North Korea has always imported food. When food aid is given, the North Korean regime reduces the amount of paid food imports accordingly and spends the extra money on arms. If the food aid plus the domestic production exceeds what he needs to feed the loyal segment, the surplus is exported to generate more cash to fund its arms programs. Therefore, increasing the food aid to North Korea isn't a solution either.

What then is the solution?

At its roots, the conflict is spiritual so the solution will also be spiritual. North Korea will be won not by food or arms, but by the spiritual power of Jesus Christ and His Gospel.