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North Korea has banned Hollywood movies in the country and has warned that if a child or parent will watch western films then, s/he will be sent to jail. The restriction has been put up to intensify its western media crackdown.
Hollywood movies banned in North Korea
The Kim Jung Un-led government has declared, parents of children watching foreign films will be sent to labour camps for six months and children will serve five years in jail to compensate for not complying with the order. Earlier parents were granted an apology with a ‘serious warning’. But now, the authorities have become stricter with their punishment.
The reason behind the stringent enunciation, as per the government, is their belief that the process of attaining knowledge begins at home, with parents playing the role of a tutor. And, if parents do not educate their children and allow them to get influenced by capitalism and begin to dance and sing, then, children will become anti-socialists.
The government wishes to separate anything that is or appears to be ‘South Korean’, from North Korea. The feeling of animosity against the ‘other (South) Korea’ is so much that two minors distributing and watching South Korean movies were killed by the authorities.
Last month, the government had ordered that whosoever will be found watching porn will be shot dead as again, the administration felt watching ‘impure cultural content’ will deviate the country from the Communist ideology.
People say Pyongyang’s regime can be undermined if the citizens of the country get exposed to different values and aspirations found in other nations. They even fear movies like Titanic can prove to be precarious.
Censorship on Media in the nation
It is because films are otherworldly and reflect what is happening in society. It gives wings to our thought process and we start asking questions especially, the ones seeking to find the ‘why’ of a certain subject in society. However, the North Korean government does not have answers to the raised why’s. Therefore, it censors media that are apparently ‘foreign’. This stands in stark contrast with North Korean leader Kim II Sung who believed, “Cinema is the most important of all arts”.
When we see Censorship in North Korea, we realise, it is not new. The censorship here is considered to be the most extreme in the world. Consequently, North Korea appears at 180th position, the bottom of Reporters Without Borders’ 2022 Press Freedom Index. The country is among the Top 5 countries in the world that have the least amount of media freedom.
The radio and television that are brought into the homes of North Korea are set up in such a way that it receives only the government frequencies. The limitation is utterly strict as every television in the country is monitored throughout the year to make sure that nothing on the television, that is against the government, appears on screens. Furthermore, songs heard in the Kim-led nation are scrutinised in a way that only the melodies lauding communism are played on the radio or television.
These severe measures corrode the purpose of the media. With such restrictions that are imposed on the means used for disseminating information, North Korea is living isolated from the rest of the world.
The prime question that stands in front of us is, “Will North Korea ever move away from the dark?”