In North Korea it is not unusual for people to disappear. People were dying by the thousands, maybe millions. But dark rumors were spreading, too horrifying to believe, too persistent to ignore. Fear of cannibalism, like the famine supposedly driving it, spread. People avoided the meat in streetside soup vendors and warned children not to be alone at night. North Korea’s famine may be over, but the stories of desperate men and women, driven so insane by starvation that they consume their own children, have resurfaced. According to Rimjingang’s sources, the famine, like others before it, had led to cannibalism. One man, they said, had been arrested and executed for killing and eating his children. Maybe the stories of cannibalism are nothing more than that; rumors, stories from two decades prior that devolved into folklore. But cannibalism, for all the voyeuristic horror it inspires, is a symptom of something much worse: starvation and social breakdown, the conditions for which remain in North Korea.