I would not be surprised at all if this mask was intended by the North Koreans to look a little like Kim Il-sung just to stick it to South Korea’s conservatives who have been critical of the Kim regime’s participation in the Winter Olympics:
The unification ministry on Sunday denied a local news report that the image of North Korea’s late founding leader Kim Il-sung appeared on the mask worn by North Korean cheerleaders during an ice hockey match involving the unified team of the two Koreas.
The female cheerleaders, dressed in red, put the masks on while rooting for the women’s ice hockey team comprising athletes from the South and the North as the team played its first match Saturday against Switzerland during the PyeongChang Winter Olympics.
The mask bore the image of a man, and a local media outlet reported that it was an image of the North’s revered founder when he was young. That report sparked criticism that the North was using the Olympic event for propaganda purposes.
But the South’s unification ministry said the report was based on an incorrect assumption.
“After checking with a North Korean official at the scene, it has been confirmed that there was no such meaning whatsoever, as assumed in the report,” the ministry said in a release, adding that the North Korean official also confirmed it was impossible to use an image of the North’s founding leader in such a way.
Officials said it was just an image of a good-looking man and the mask was worn when the cheerleaders sang a North Korean song, “Whistle,” whose lyrics are about a man’s unrequited love for a female neighbor. [Yonhap]
You can read more at the link, but the left in South Korea is claiming this is all fake news drummed up by South Korea’s conservatives. Here is a picture of the young Kim Il-sung, I will let readers be the judge if it was a young Kim Il-sung mask or not. Here is a picture of a young Kim Il-sung (center) with his wife Kim Jong-suk (right), and his son Kim Jong-il (left):