“Systemic flaws and inherent corruption have prevented North Korea from fulfilling the promise of its juche ideology of self-reliance. Following the collapse of its strongest ally, the Soviet Union, these flaws became more apparent. Without Soviet support, corruption – once the fiefdom of the elite – began to filter down to all levels of society. A catastrophic effect of this was the failure of North Korea’s official rationing system. This occurred in 1994 as a result of political instability brought about by President Kim Il-sung’s death, economic free-fall after the disintegration of the Soviet Union, and the consequent breakdown of law and order. The people had depended on the rationing system, and its failure fatally undermined their loyalty to the party.
All North Koreans were divided into classes and granted rations according to their loyalty to the Kim family and the regime. According to their class, people were entitled to receive ‘everyday rations’, ‘three-day rations’, ‘weekly rations’ or ‘monthly rations’. When the government stopped the general distribution of rations in 1994, mass starvation decimated the population. It is widely thought that up to two million – and perhaps more – died in the famine, though there is no way of confirming the number of deaths.”
http://www.asialiteraryreview.com/north-korea-absolute-power-and-absolute-corruption http://newsfeed.time.com/2012/12/06/where-corruption-is-king-2012-rankings/slide/north-korea/ http://www.nknews.org/2013/12/north-korea-is-among-most-corrupt-nations-on-earth-says-ngo/