Pulling Back The Curtain on Kim Jong Il's Many Myrmidons

Kim Jong Il runs the show in North Korea, but like any self-respecting Bond villain, he does so with the help of a coterie of rubber-stamping yes men. Indeed, politically connected women are few in the Hermit Kingdom. At least that's how it appears in a leadership chart produced by the Director of National Intelligence's Open Source Center. The chart, though unclassified, was not meant for public release, but was obtained by Steve Aftergood at the Federation of American Scientists' Project on Government Secrecy. One of the more interesting things about the chart, aside from its gender inequality, is that fact that none of the Worker's Party's Central Control Committee members are pictured. Add to that the ominous red borders around government officials who "neither appeared in nor been mentioned by name in North Korean media throughout 2008." Where they are (and whether they may have run afoul of the Leader) is a big unknown. The leadership family tree compliments a January 2009 chart explaining the supposed power structure of the North Korean regime.