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article imageKim Jung-ll lived the high life, while his people starved

By Joan Firstenberg     Dec 19, 2011 in World
Pyongyang - North Korea's just deceased leader, Kim Jung-II loved basketball, Hennessy, his platform shoes and Elizabeth Taylor. But as a dictator, he starved his subjects, silenced any dissent and held the world hostage with nuclear threats.
North Korea's Kim Jung-II was just 5-foot-3-inches tall, but to enhance his public image, he wore lifts in his shoes and a massive pompadour on his head. Privately he lived lavishly on his personal weird terms.
The Atlantic Wire reports that for his dining pleasure, Kim shipped in first-class chefs so that he could sample the world's finest cuisines. He was fond of sushi and shark's fin soup, a controversial delicacy in North Korea. He did this while his people dined on scraps they found in the streets or in the garbage. The beloved dictator is also known to have fed his dogs very well, better than his people.
Kim Jong-Il developed a taste for fine alcohol by keeping a "royal wine cellar," of over 10,000 bottles and reportedly spent up to $720,000 a year just on Hennessey cognac. This, while the average North Korean earns about $900 a year.
Terrified of flying, Kim traveled within his country in an armored train, reportedly supplied regularly with fresh lobster.
The New York Daily News reports that the dictator was not only fond of movies, he owned 20,000 of them. He was especially fond of the James Bond series and Rambo, and anything--anything starring the late Liz Taylor. He also liked touring his country to monitor its progress, looking at paintings, produce, factories, tractors, tunnels, computers and more. He must have come to the conclusion that North Korea's film industry wasn't good.
So to remedy this, Kim kidnapped a top South Korean director and his actress wife to make movies in the North. The couple later escaped during a business trip to Vienna.
Kim loved a good game of roundball or basketball. His favorite player, of course, Michael Jordan. When then-Secretary of State Madeleine Albright visited the country during the Clinton administration, she brought him a ball signed by number 23.
He was a big fan of golf. North Korean state-run media reported in 1994 that The Dear Leader shot a 38-under par on 18 holes, including 11 holes in one.
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