By Douglas Holtz-Eakin
The young drop coverage to avoid higher premiums
Independent voices from the TWT Communities
North Korea's young new leader, Kim Jong-un, has instituted a novel method of executing military officers — mortar firing squad, South Korea's leading daily newspaper reported Tuesday.
Observers trying to divine the real power behind the new leader of North Korea's totalitarian regime are resorting to an old Cold War technique called "Kremlinology."
There is no sure path for the transition of power in nuclear-armed North Korea, even as its citizens mourn the death of longtime dictator Kim Jong-il and praise the rise of his hand-picked successor, Kim Jong-un, regional analysts say.
Questions abound about whether North Korean dictator Kim Jong-il's 28-year-old son is fully empowered to take control of the totalitarian, nuclear-armed regime in the wake of Mr. Kim's death.
Seoul's special election for mayor on Wednesday yielded a resounding defeat for the conservative ruling party's candidate in a political contest widely seen as a harbinger for parliamentary elections in April and the presidential race in December 2012.
"In recent years, South Korea media and authorities have been far more skeptical of the weird and wonderful stories coming out of North Korea, such as cannibalism," said Michael Breen, a biographer of Kim Jong-il.