North Korea’s crackpot dictator Kim Jong-un has banned his people from using sarcasm in their everyday conversations in a fresh crackdown on criticism of his leadership.
Mass meetings organized by government officials have been used to issue a chilling warning that ironic statements “will not be forgiven”.
Oppressed and starving workers have been told satire directed towards the regime or indirect criticism hidden behind humor will be seen as “hostile actions”.
Among the phrases outlawed by Kim are ‘This is all America’s fault’ – a jibe at the paranoid regime’s obsession with blaming the USA for its own failings.
A source in the northern Jagang province near the Chinese border told Radio Free Asia: “One state security official personally organized a meeting to alert local residents to potential ‘hostile actions’ by internal rebellious elements.