Little by little, the Democratic People's Republic of North Korea is opening its borders to outsiders. Just two years after Current TV journalists Laura Ling and Euna Lee had been sentenced to 12 years hard labor for unknowingly crossing into North Korean territory, the communist country is starting to allow western news organizations to set up shop. Last month, Kim Jong Il's regime granted Reuters permission to set up a satellite dish there, and two weeks before that, the Associated Press announced that it would open a bureau in Pyongyang. Perhaps in response to the recently leaked footage of starving children, the country's government seems especially interested in helping people visualize North Korea. The AP's Seoul bureau chief Jean H. Lee certainly accomplished this on a government-endorsed and government-guided photo tour earlier this year.
Alan Taylor has collected the best of Lee's photos over at The Atlantic's In Focus blog--click through to view the full set.