There may not be much freedom in the totalitarian Communist dictatorship of North Korea, but they have one freedom that most in the United States don't -- the freedom to openly buy and smoke marijuana.
Cannabis, or "ip tambae" ("leaf tobacco"), is reportedly grown openly on the roadsides and smoked on the streets of Pyongyang, reports Brian Ashcraft at Kotaku. But local North Korean tourist guides normally won't let Western tourists see that side of Korean culture.
Freelance writer Darmon Richter recently wrote on The Bohemian Blog about his experiences buying and smoking weed in North Korea earlier this year. Cannabis is used by the working class there both for its medicinal effects and to unwind and relax.
Richter was able, with the help of a North Korean intelligence officer, to get into a food market at which locals shop, but where visitors aren't allowed. "We were just walking past the tobacco sellers when we spotted another stall ahead, piled high with mounds of green rather than brown plant matter," Richter writes. "It turned out to be exactly what we first suspected: a veritable mountain of marijuana."
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