North Korea’s Kim Jong-un wears several “hats”—or holds several positions of authority—that enable him to command the challenging, albeit ruthless, issues that come with being a totalitarian dictator, analyst Robert Collins writes:
Each hat serves Kim in a specific manner that enables him to maintain his grip on power, policy, and decisions, however stable or unstable his power consolidation may be. The following are Kim’s specific “hats,” each with powers based in the party charter of the Korean Workers’ Party (KWP), state authority, including the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) Constitution, or political ideology….
Though it may be the least known title understood by the Western world, there is no title more effective at imprinting upon the North Korean populace the supreme leadership other than the title “suryong,” Collins adds. However, respect for Kim as the suryong has proven to be far less than that of his father and grandfather. If there is a weakness within the leadership identification system, one has to look no further than that.