When Kim Jong-Il died Saturday he was on a train finishing up one of his frequent "field guidance tours," which are famous on the internet for the surreal photos they produced of Kim looking at everyday objects. Here are photos taken during the last stop on Kim's last tour, about two days before his death.
Kim Jong-il, the fearsome, furtive, and fashion-forward leader of North Korea, is dead at age 69. This according to a weeping announcer on a "special broadcast" delivered on North Korean television on Monday. The Dear Leader was on a train traveling through Pyongyang during a "field guidance tour" at the time.
A big, tentative congrats to North Korea, whose infamous Ryugyong Hotel (aka the "Hotel of Doom") is slated to open its doors in April 2012—only 24 years after its groundbreaking, and just in time for the 100th birthday celebration of O.G. Most Glorious Leader on High Kim Il-sung. Sadly, he won't be doing the ribbon-cutting because he died in 1994. But his ghost is expected to haunt and place bugs in some of the rooms.
The Mangyongbong, a ferry that was previously used to shuttle passengers between North Korea and Japan, is now North Korea's hot new tourist vessel. Yesterday was the Mangyongbong's maiden voyage as a pleasure craft, embarking on a tour of the country's eastern coastline, and North Korea's official KCNA has the details:
Despite threats from the U.S. State Department last summer that Kim Jong-il would no longer be able to buy jet skis and Iranian caviar, he's still shelling out millions of dollars on everything from Rolex watches to Gucci handbags for his top officials and he's even having McDonald's delivered by airplane from China, according to the Korea Herald.