Photo Illustration by Thomas Levinson/The Daily Beast/Getty/Reuters
Russia is still reeling from Western sanctions, Ukrainian resistance against its invasion and Moscow’s pronounced lack of allies. During last week’s broadcast of the show “Full Contact,” State TV host Vladimir Solovyov, one of the most prominent mouthpieces for Putin’s regime, grimly acknowledged that Russia has only two allies: Iran and North Korea.
While Kim Jong Un is touring the land, state-controlled media is currently working to convince everyday Russians that instead of looking to the West, they should start emulating North Korea. During Thursday’s broadcast of The Evening With Vladimir Solovyov, Sergey Mikheyev described Kim Jong Un as “a dude with a square head,” whose superpower is being unpredictable. He argued that the people of North Korea are impervious to Western pressure because of their spartan lifestyle.
Mikheyev said, “Yes, life in North Korea is no picnic. But it isn’t as bad as Americans portray it… American sanctions are scary only to those who have been on their hook to begin with! Those who have bank accounts over there, parallel lives [in the West], etc. What can you forbid to North Koreans? To drink Coca-Cola? They don’t have it anyway! To watch Hollywood movies? They don’t have them anyway! You’ll turn off their Internet? They don’t have it anyway! You won’t import IPhones? They don’t have them anyway! You will forbid them to travel to Europe and America? They aren’t traveling anyway! There is no way to get to them.”