What the North finally did: North Korea has accepted an offer of food aid from South Korea, officials in Seoul have announced. The offer of 10,000 tonnes of food was made in October, but no response has been given until now.
Reality Check: The amount of food on offer is relatively insignificant, says the BBC's John Sudworth in Seoul, but its acceptance may be another sign that Pyongyang is looking to improve relations with the South.
Sad fact #1: The country has been reliant on foreign aid to feed its people since a devastating famine killed hundreds of thousands of people in the 1990s.
Sad Fact #2: The UN World Food Programme said last September that one-third of North Korean women and young children were malnourished and predicted a shortfall of almost 1.8 million tonnes of food in 2009.
My grandmother knew very little about international relations. She would, however, say that hunger makes a good sauce.
What a delight it would be to see North Korea take it's place in a modern world. Imagine where we could go with the countries and societies delayed by unfortunate political and religious conditions pulling with us.
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