Below are night-time views of North and South Korea, showing the south ablaze with lights, while the north is in darkness.
Here’s a shot taken by an astronaut aboard the International Space Station in January 2014:
See the big splash of light in South Korea?
That’s Seoul, the Republic of Korea’s capital.
Above Seoul is South Korea’s curvy borderline, and above that is the darkness that is North Korea, with one bright dot — the capital Pyongyang.
Above North Korea is northeast China, also lit up by lights.
2014 was no different than a nighttime satellite picture of the Korean peninsula taken in 2012:
In 1953, when the armistice ending the Korean War was signed, North and South Korea had similar levels of economic development.
While South Korea has since nurtured high-tech industries and economic growth, North Korea has faced “chronic economic problems” under the repressive Kim dynasty. A widespread famine in the 1990s, exacerbated by the Kim policy of “self reliance” and the closed economy that prevented food imports, killed between half a million and up to 3 million people, according to different estimates.
In 2017, with a gross domestic product estimated at $1.4 trillion by the International Monetary Fund, South Korea is among the dozen most prosperous countries in the world. In contrast, North Korea’s GDP is estimated at around $25 billion. The per-capita GDP of North Korea was $1,013 in 2015, lagging behind even undeveloped countries like Myanmar and Bangladesh.
Source: Live Science