“The Kim family has a high tolerance for other people’s pain,” was arguably one of the most memorable comments during Jung Pak’s wide-ranging program on North Korea on September 27 at The Antlers at Vail. It was a program that was at times alarming, such as learning that North Korea has large amounts of uranium, to absurd: The admission that Dennis Rodman remains a primary source for information about Kim and his family.
Kim came across as an established and cunning young dictator who let nothing get in his way of solidifying his control over North Korea—not even family. In his short time in power he has elevated the stature of his tiny kingdom far beyond what his father and grandfather were able to achieve during their time in power. He was able to secure one-one-one visits with the leaders of South Korea, China, and the United States in a short period of time and largely on his terms thanks to his nascent nuclear arsenal.
The Vail Symposium continues its geopolitical series during our winter season with an in-depth look focusing on Asia on January 23-24, 2019.