The possibility of revolt seems slim to me. The right psychological soup was engineered out. It’s not sufficient to be poor, unfortunate. You must also feel a tad emboldened and see possibility. It’s when there is great wealth alongside great poverty that revolts can happen. Outside of the military and the party leadership, there simply isn’t wealth in North Korea. What there is isn’t the capitalistic kind where, when you see it, you get the crazy idea that you might be able to do it, too. Where people are powerful and motivated to find a better world, they don’t stay and oppose a police state that can destroy their whole family without blinking an eye, they leave to South Korea. Could the well-meaning (or half-well-meaning, the milder cult they belong to promising celestial reward) rescuers be defusing any hope of uprising?
Part of the problem is their dear leader isn’t the one in charge, or at least, he’s just one axis in the balance of power. Unless we talk directly to their military, we can be guaranteed that no concession is really meant. They know that we prosperous nations have so much to lose. I’m not afraid of Iran, Pakistan or China. These nations would suffer from a war with us and have bright futures ahead of them, even if the path there is rocky. I wouldn’t support a war with any of these nations either. No regime change. Something must be done, however, about North Korea. The countries don’t even have to unite but some basic civil liberties must be held sacrosanct. How to defuse this bomb? How to minimize misery and wrongful death in a peninsula where one leader thinks he is God and the other thinks he’s ordained by God?