National Geographic : 2008 Jun
PH OTO J O URNAL I YANNIS KONTOS There's precious little traffic to direct in Pyongyang, yet this policewoman stands ready, just in case. While bicyclists and buses drift along the city's broad boulevards, a rush-hour bustle of happy workers on their way to farm and factory remains a communist daydream. As the billboard says: "Communism forever in life or death!" The "Great Leader," Kim IISung, died in 1994, yet he lives on-waving from this mural in Pyongyang and looming as North Korea's constitutionally enshrined "eternal president." Even the calendar here-pegged not to Christ's birth, but to Kim's, in 1912-is about self-glorification. I've traveled the globe, but North Korea is a whole different world.