Last September, after visiting the DPRK for their 60th Anniversary extravaganza, I made a covert landing on DPRK soil from the Chinese side of the Yalu River.
We were outside Dandong, on the Yalu. We boarded a rickety, old Chinese tour boat for a short ride to view the Great Wall from the river.
The photos look very far away because I had to take them from seat level. We were told not to take photos. I have authority issues….
In both the photos below you will see a DPRK border soldier. He clearly was not supervised very often. He was shirtless, and appeared very hungry.
We actaully landed on DPRK soil. The soldier boarded the small vessel and looked us over. He was interested in making this transaction as quick as possible.
We gave him a carton of Chinese cigarettes, and some yuan. He smiled, shook our hands and jumped off the boat. We shoved off and went about our tour.
In this photo we are approaching the DPRK shoreline. You can see the soldier in the left – middle of the photo.
In this photo he is crouching down, preparing to grab hold of our small boat as it approached the shore.
Each time you interact with someone from there, and they realize we aren’t the monsters they’ve been taught; you are changing a mindset. Diplomacy one person at a time…