Heavy diet debilitates Korean leader
North Korean dictator Kim Jong-un’s love of fine wines, spirits and rich food has apparently made him so fat he has fractured his ankles.
The “beloved leader” of the world’s most secretive state has not been seen in public for some time but recent reports seem to suggest he is recovering from ankle surgery having first sprained and then fractured his ankles when he left the former injury untreated.
He was last seen in public on 3 September walking with a pronounced limp but has disappeared from view since then.
A South Korean newspaper, Chosun Ilbo, reported that he picked up the injury “during a gruelling tour of military bases and factories in Cuban heels” (his father, Kim Jong-il, famously wore platform shoes to make him look taller).
Kim has been photographed at a variety of state banquets during his leadership drinking wine and spirits, a trait perhaps inherited from his father. He is also reported to be a heavy smoker and loves Swiss cheese – a taste he picked up while studying in Switzerland.
He has noticeably put on weight since he took charge of the country in December 2011. Another speculation is that he has gout.
Kim Jong-un is known, like his father and grand-father, to have a love of the finer things in life, particularly food and drink. All male members of the Kim family are also known to suffer from high blood pressure and are at high risk from diabetes – illnesses not helped by their lavish diets.
Kim Jong-il is reputed to have spent around £700,000 a year on Hennessy Cognac to sate his thirst for it, while there was a noticeable jump in the country’s Champagne imports in the year Kim came to power following the sudden death of his father in 2011.
Imports of alcohol have apparently doubled to £20 million under Kim Jong-un (along with a rise in other imported luxury goods and pets) in a bid to curry favour with some of the country’s top officials.
Although the leadership of North Korea often appears so odd as to be eccentric rather than threatening, other reports highlight the ruthless, paranoid and dangerous person the “great leader” can be – particularly when alcohol is involved as well.
There have also been unconfirmed reports that Kim was “very drunk” when he ordered the executions of two of his uncle’s aides. He later executed his uncle on the suspicion he was plotting a coup.
It was also reported that during a 100 day mourning period for his father in 2012, an official was caught drinking wine – prohibited for the duration of the mourning period – and Kim had him executed with a mortar round.
With hard factual news so difficult to come by concerning the situation in North Korea, rumours are circulating that Kim may have even been deposed or that his sister, KimYo-Jong, has taken charge while he is hospitalised.