North Korean Military Secrets (02:33)
Kim Jong Un's regime is a byproduct of the Cold War. In 2014, confidential files were leaked to Japanese experts in Taiwan, who confirm authentic material.
Unprecedented Intelligence Leak (02:32)
Secret files contain Kim's orders and mission updates. U.S. intelligence expert Roger Cavazos and former KGB associate Georgi Torolaya agree their size and scope are unmatched.
Analyzing North Korean Military Secrets (02:42)
Confidential files including military official lists and facility blueprints were created between 2010 and 2013, when Kim was consolidating his power. Takashi Sakai, Masayuki Suzuki, and Cavazos determine that one person named "YmlF" managed them.
Unit 235 (03:03)
Confidential files were created by a Third Army Corps unit located in Nampo and commanding 12,000 soldiers. Former officer Che Hyong Jung says their Iron Wall mission is to protect Pyongyang from U.S. attack with conventional operations.
Iron Wall Operation (06:13)
The North Korean defense mission operates from Socheongdo and Ocheongdo islands. Soldiers would hide in a tunnel to engage U.S. enemies at close range. Knowing they would be overpowered, commanders would give them hallucination inducing drugs to mask fear.
Army Malnourishment (04:40)
Confidential reports reveal North Korea's military is involved in drug trafficking and food shortage related crimes. Former officer Chon Minu describes struggling to survive on corn meal and pickles. Soldiers steal civilian food and sell pilfered gas and army items.
Unrealistic Food Shortage Solution (01:54)
Kim ordered military personnel to supply their own food by growing beans and raising goats. An anonymous officer says his unit never received seeds.
Anticipating a Military Coup (05:01)
Confidential files reveal the military was becoming a risk to Kim. A map of military bases and anti-artillery gun ranges shows Kim's sense of crisis. He ordered the State Security Department to establish a reporting system informing him of all military activity.
Military Purge (03:44)
Che explains the procedure for public trials used to show power and establish fear. Execution victims included top generals and officials. Learn about General Chief Of Staff Ri Yong Ho's fate. Torolaya compares Kim's strategy to Stalin's consolidation of power.
Foreign Data Infiltration (05:12)
The National Endowment for Democracy supports efforts to influence dictatorships. Confidential files reveal information from other countries influencing Kim's military, such as a video of Muammar Gaddafi's death. Thousands of military personnel were charged with watching media distributed in black markets.
Claiming Nuclear Status (04:33)
Cavazos suspects "YlmF" was involved in leaking confidential files, including information on a new military cyber unit. In 2016, Pyongyang increased acts of provocation, including possible hydrogen bomb testing. Russian nuclear experts believed it was propaganda.
Nuclear Development Rationale (02:18)
Confidential files show Kim wanted to boost defense capabilities and stabilize domestic governance while cutting military costs and expanding the economy. South Korean National Defense Vice Minister Baek Seung-joo says North Korea believes becoming a nuclear nation will ensure its survival.
Signs of Change (02:48)
"YmlF" included a message to his family showing he was risking his life to leak confidential military files. The documents suggest Kim's regime is vulnerable, despite the image it presents to the outside world.
Credits: Inside the "Kimdom": North Korea Exposed (00:0-531)
Credits: Inside the "Kimdom": North Korea Exposed
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