Pictured above (Google Earth): (L) Kumsong Youth Publishers (금성청년출판사), (R) Pyongyang General Printing Factory (평양종합인쇄공장). According to the Daily NK article below, both factories print calendars in the DPRK.
UPDATE 1 (2012-3-23): The Daily NK updates us on the DPRK’s 2012 calendars:
The slogan on the cover of the calendar has been edited from “The Great Leader President Kim Il-sung will always be with us” to “The Great President Kim Il-sung and the Great Leader Kim Jong-il Will always be with us”
The new calendar marks February 16th (Kim Jong-il’s official birthday) as “The Day of the Shining Star”. This same day is also celebrated as the day Kim Jong-il received the title “generalissimo”.
“The Day of the Sun” (April 15th–Kim Il-sung’s birthday) was always there, however, revised text about other dates has been added.
The May picture comes from the DPRK film Petition. The June image comes from The Blessed Land.
July – October calendar pages
December 17th 2012 commemorates “Juche 100″. December 17th is the day Kim Jong Il passed away.
ORIGINAL POST (2012-1-10): According to the Daily NK:
North Korea has recalled all 2012 calendars because they do not specify the date of Kim Jong Il’s death (December 17th), and is producing new ones.
A Shinuiju source confirmed for Daily NK on the 5th, “Pyongyang Combined [General] Printing and other printers are creating new calendars marking Kim Jong Il’s death.”
“An order was handed down through Party organs, enterprises and people’s units calling for the return of those calendars which had been distributed. Calendars stored by traders who were planning to go and distribute them outside of North Korea are also being recalled,” the source added.
However, most of those calendars which have already been exported, such as the one obtained by Daily NK [see picture here], will continue to circulate.
The absence of the date of death is not the only problem with the new calendar. There are also problematic messages such as ‘We hope for great leader comrade Kim Jong Il’s good health.’ As such, the new calendar will reportedly both include Kim Jong Il’s official date of death and the latest slogan, ‘Great leader comrade Kim Jong Il is with us forever.’
Official North Korean calendars are designed and published by a number of publishing houses including Keumsung Youth Publishing House and Agricultural Publishing Company on the authority of the Party Propaganda and Agitation Department. They are still distributed to all Party organs, enterprises and military bases, although due to economic and production limitations the paper quality has dropped in recent years, and even this measure has not been enough to stop distribution to households breaking down.
On this, one defector from North Hamkyung Province commented, “There are 28 households in a people’s unit, but only 10 calendars were given to us once.”
Other than the official calendar published for distribution, each of the authorized publishers produces a higher quality 7-page calendar for sale in places like the jangmadang. Some high-quality scroll calendars are also produced by People’s Army Publishing House, People’s Safety Ministry, and National Security Agency etc.
An additional point of interest for the reproduced calendars is whether Kim Jong Eun’s birthday (January 8th) will be made prominent. January 8th, 2012 is a Sunday and as such would typically be marked in red anyway, but usually to emphasize special days the numbers are printed in a bigger font.
Read the full story here:
North Korea in Mass Calendar Recall
Park Jun Hyeong