KPV Machine Gun – The Most Efficient Execution Tool Since the Guillotine

Kim Jong-un is an old school maniacal despot. They just don’t make them like him anymore.
The quad ZPU-4 anti-aircraft gun is one of Kim’s favorite execution tools.

Kim Jong-un was born in either 1982 or 1983. He stands five foot seven and weighs 290 pounds. At about thirty-six years old he is rumored to suffer from diabetes, hypertension, and gout. The supreme leader of North Korea is both a heavy cigarette smoker and a megalomaniacal psychopath. He commands the 4th largest military on the planet.

I hate to descend into sophomoric anthropomorphism just to make fun of the guy, but he makes it so darn easy. Kim’s haircut makes him look like an obese hirsute mushroom.

Kim Jong-un’s extraordinary haircut has a name. They call it “Ambition.”

Kim’s grandfather, Kim Il-sung, was apparently an exceptionally gifted infant who was purportedly both ambulating and orating soon after leaving the delivery room.

Kim Jong-un’s grandfather, Kim Il-sung, founded the modern North Korean communist state. Kim Il-sung’s official state biography says his birth was heralded by portents in the heavens. It also claims that he began walking at three weeks of age and started speaking three weeks after that. Wow.

Kim Jong-un’s dad was also said to be a musical savant. Apparently, his operatic efforts eclipsed lesser works like Mozart’s Idomeneo and Don Giovanni. All that and still such a snappy dresser.

Kim Jong-un’s father Kim Jong-il purportedly authored 1,500 books in three years while simultaneously composing six full operas. Giuseppe Verdi was not nearly so productive. According to his biography, Kim’s operas were the best in the history of music.

I always figured Satan invented the hamburger considering its more tantalizing attributes. The North Koreans claim it was actually Kim Jong-un’s remarkably constipated dad.

Kim Jong-il also supposedly invented the hamburger. He called it the “double bread with meat.” According to official press releases Kim Jong-il did not defecate and could control the weather with his mood.

It’s a good thing Kim Jong-il wasn’t born in America. Otherwise, Tiger Woods might have ended up being just some normal guy.

Kim Jong-un’s dad only played golf once, but state media reported that he had an exceptionally good day on the links. He reportedly shot 38 under par (25 strokes better than the standing world record) and landed a breathtaking eleven holes-in-one in that single game. Had I done that well I suppose I might have quit while I was ahead, too.

Any guy who could safely operate an automobile while most of the rest of us were struggling to master the flush toilet likely deserves his own nuclear arsenal.

Kim Jong-un purportedly began driving at age three and won his first yacht race at nine. He covertly attended a Swiss boarding school under the guise of being a wealthy businessman’s son. He was reportedly shy and quiet but a good friend with little interest in geopolitics. This remarkable prodigy currently commands 4,100 tanks, 500 combat vessels, and 730 tactical aircraft along with an estimated thirty to sixty operational nuclear warheads. His military still employs ZM-87 blinding lasers in contravention of UN protocol.

Don’t let the benevolent rotund Santa-like demeanor fool you, Kim Jong-un is a total nut job.

Someone who clearly believed himself a god sired this odd fat little man. As is so often the case, the nut doesn’t fall far from the tree.

Crime and Punishment in the World of Kim Jong-un

Despite his obvious enthusiasm for wholesome American stuff like fast food, Kim Jong-un also likes to shred his enemies with crew-served weapons.

Since taking power following the death of his chronically constipated father in 2011 Kim Jong-un has executed around 340 people. The insular nature of his regime makes reliable information difficult to obtain. There was a rumor that he had executed a family member by stripping him naked and feeding him to ravenous dogs. This report has since been discredited. Apparently, he killed this uncle by strapping the poor man to a post and then chewing him to pieces with an antiaircraft gun. Of all the many-splendored ways to off another human being, fast-firing antiaircraft weapons seem undeniably novel.

Kim Jong-un’s ex-uncle Jang Song-thaek is shown here on the left along with Naguib Sawaris and, on the right, Kim Jong-il. Kim is rocking his classic signature American old person clothing ensemble.

The list of the condemned is indeed prodigious. Kim’s late uncle Jang Song-thaek was ganked for the catchall “Treachery.” For good measure, Kim Jong-un had his children, grandchildren, and sundry close relatives murdered as well.

Little makes a good public execution into a great public execution faster than a flamethrower.

O Sang-hon, the North Korean deputy security minister of the Ministry of People’s Security got sideways with Kim by supporting Kim’s uncle Jang Song-thaek. For this bit of poor judgment Kim had the man publically barbecued with a flamethrower.

In America making homemade porn movies just gets you some particularly repugnant diseases. In North Korea, the health risks are markedly greater.

Eleven members of a North Korean dance troupe were accused of producing a pornographic video. For their sins Kim had them secured downrange from crew-served automatic weapons and publically shot to pieces. The grand finale purportedly involved running over what remained of the eleven corpses with tracked armored vehicles until they literally became one with the earth.

Fraternal relationships are always complicated. Things are made all the more difficult when dad is a bloodthirsty dictator with a god complex who doesn’t poop. This is Kim Jong-un’s unfortunate older brother Kim Jong-nam.

Kim’s older brother Kim Jong-nam was originally the heir-apparent to his freak show of a dad. However, the elder Kim embarrassed his country in 2001 when he tried and failed to smuggle himself into Japan on a false passport to sample Tokyo Disneyland. After 2003 Kim Jong-nam lived in exile, sporadically condemning the government of his rotund sadist baby brother.

Kim Jong-un’s elder brother Kim Jong-nam died in a puddle of drool after being poisoned with VX nerve agent in a Malaysian airport.

In February of 2017 four North Korean assassins convinced Siti Aisyah of Indonesia and Doan Thi Huong of Vietnam that they were part of a TV prank. The hapless women subsequently smeared Kin Jong-nam’s face with VX nerve agent in the Kuala Lumpur airport. The elder Kim died in short order, and the four North Korean killers escaped back to Pyongyang.

Somnolence—The North Korean Unforgiveable Sin

Hyon Yong-chul was the second most powerful guy in North Korea until he fell asleep in a staff meeting.

In early April of 2015, Hyon Yong-chol was busy serving as North Korea’s Defense Minister, a position that made him the second most powerful man in the country. Before the month was out he was accused of a crime of lese-majeste. This French term literally translates, “to do wrong to majesty.” The formal infraction was “Failed to Carry Out Kim’s Instructions.”

Here we see Hyon on the left earning the death penalty. Imagine what might have happened to the guy had he cheated on his taxes or shoplifted gum.

He actually just fell asleep while Kim was speaking.

Let that be a lesson to you young people. Staying up too late binge-watching Netflix on a school night is very bad for you.

Apparently, Hyon’s inattention offended Kim in a serious way. Kim had Hyon taken to a military school outside Pyongyang and tied to a post. He then had the school’s students and staff mustered out on the firing range to spectate. Once the several hundred spectators were arrayed properly Kim gave the order and the fire from multiple antiaircraft weapons turned Hyon’s body into bloody goo.

The Guns

The ZPU-4 is a ubiquitous low-tech close-range antiaircraft system that enjoys widespread distribution throughout the former Soviet sphere of influence.

The consensus was that the tools used in these executions were likely quad-mount ZPU-4 antiaircraft weapons. These systems incorporate four different KPV (Krupnokalibernly Pulemyot Vladimirova) heavy machineguns firing a 14.5x114mm rounds at 600 rpm. To put that in perspective the .50-caliber cartridge fired by John Moses Browning’s M2 Heavy Barrel machinegun is 12.7x99mm. The KPV round carries roughly twice the muzzle energy of that fired by the American M2. The four gun ZPU-4 quad mount puts out an aggregate 2,400 rounds per minute.

Against modern airborne threats, the ZPU-4 is fairly obsolete and ineffective. The system’s true strength is as an antipersonnel weapon at modest ranges.

Development of the ZPU-4 began in the Soviet Union in 1945. The gun system entered service in 1949. The mount carries 1,200 linked rounds for each gun. The travel weight of the system on its wheeled mount is 3,990 pounds. The gun system is designed for close-in air defense against low-flying aircraft. The KPV has a maximum effective range of 3km horizontally and 2km vertically while remaining lethal out to 8km.

The 14.5mm KPV is a turret-mounted weapon on Warsaw Pact-era AFVs like this BTR-60.

In addition to towed antiaircraft mounts, the Soviets used the KPV on armored vehicles and naval patrol boats. In its vehicular configuration the gun has a shortened receiver, a heavier barrel jacket, and a longer fifty-round belt. The standard belt holds forty rounds. This gun is designated the KPVT or tankoviy (tank) version.

Mounting up a pair of KPVs in the back of your favorite Toyota farm truck turns the vehicle into a ubiquitous technical. A colleague who flew A10s in the first Gulf War tells me they brew up nicely when sprinkled with 30mm depleted uranium projectiles.

One of the more common applications of the KPV today is in dual mounts in the backs of civilian pickups. These vehicles are universally referred to as technicals. They are relatively inexpensive and highly mobile, making them the preferred weapons of terrorist and unconventional forces in many of your less well-funded war zones. A brace of KPV’s firing from the back of a pickup truck offers the modern sawed-off warlord with a great deal more downrange horsepower than might be afforded by man-portable weapons alone.


Kim Jong-un may look like just another fun-loving man of the earth farmer. His megalomaniacal proclivities, however, make the man much more complicated.

It is easy to look down our long Roman noses at Kim given his many manifest psychotic eccentricities and wax judgmental over his choice of tools for executions of state. However, such events were spectator sports around the globe well into the 20th century even in our own refined democratic culture. In 1903 a convicted murderer was hanged on the courthouse square in my placid little Southern town. Back then you could be accused, tried, sentenced, and executed at the county level. Oxford, Mississippi, sported a population of around 800 souls at the time, yet some 8,000 showed up from the surrounding environs to gawk.

Death by anti-aircraft gun might indeed be preferable to Old Sparky here. I’ve actually sat in one of these before. It wasn’t terribly comfortable.

Execution at point-blank range by a weapon system firing forty 60-gram high-velocity projectiles per second is likely a pretty placid way to go. I think given the choice I might choose obliteration by ZPU-4 over hanging or electrocution. It shouldn’t hurt long.

Under any other circumstance, this goofy rascal would just be some harmless fat guy with a weakness for ice cream and karaoke. Hand him the literal power over life and death, however, and it inevitably brings out his dark side.

North Korea is a monarchy by another name. While the less enlightened members of American society seem yet again to be swooning over the siren’s song of socialism, Kim Jong-un stands as another monotonous example of the inevitable end state of centralized power. Leftists think the reason communism has devolved into butchery every single time it has ever been tried is simply that those who attempted to craft this week’s workers’ utopia just didn’t do it correctly.

Despotic dictators share certain predictable common characteristics. Kim Jong-un is what we call down here in the Deep South a “Genuine Piece of Work.”

A 2007 psychiatric study of Adolf Hitler, Saddam Hussein, and Kim Jong-il found that all three men likely suffered from some toxic combination of the “Big Six” personality disorders. These included sadistic, antisocial, paranoid, narcissistic, schizoid, and schizotypal elements. In Kim Jong-un, we see a self-destructive yet unimposing soul raised by a lunatic and then granted unfettered power. In that context the remarkable creativity he exhibits when neutralizing threats to his sovereignty seems not terribly surprising.

Kim Jong-un is an undeniably curious figure.
The cult of personality that orbits around the sundry North Korean dictators is a tough thing for free people to comprehend. 

KPV Heavy Machine Gun

Caliber 14.5x114mm
Weight 108.3 lbs
Length 78 inches
Barrel Length 53 inches
Action Short Recoil
Rate of Fire 600 rpm
Feed System Belt

About the author: Will Dabbs was born and raised in the Mississippi Delta, having been immersed in hunting and the outdoors since his earliest recollections. He holds a degree in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Mississippi and is the product of a traditional American nuclear family. Where most normal American kids get drunk to celebrate their 21st birthday, Will bought his first two machineguns. Will served eight years as an Army Aviator and accumulated more than 1,100 flight hours piloting CH47D, UH1H, OH58A/C, and AH1S helicopters. He is scuba qualified, has parachuted out of perfectly good airplanes at 3 o’clock in the morning, and has summited Mt. McKinley, Alaska–the highest point in North America–six times (at the controls of a helicopter, which is the only way sensible folk climb mountains). For reasons that seemed sagacious at the time he ultimately left the Army as a Major to pursue medical school. Dr. Dabbs has for the last dozen years owned the Urgent Care Clinic of Oxford, Mississippi. He also serves as the plant physician for the sprawling Winchester ammunition plant in that same delightful little Southern town. Will is a founding partner of Advanced Tactical Ordnance LLC, a licensed 07/02 firearms manufacturer and has written for the gun press for a quarter century. He writes solely to support a shooting habit that is as insensate as it is insatiable. Will has been married to his high school sweetheart for more than thirty years and has taught his Young Married Sunday School class for more than a decade. He and his wife currently have three adult children and a most thoroughly worthless farm dog named Dog.

{ 25 comments… add one }
  • Phillip Davis July 26, 2019, 9:06 am

    Conservative writer Bre Payton slammed President Trump’s comments about falling “in love” with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un on Monday, citing Pyongyang’s human rights record.

    “I’ve long been disturbed with Donald Trump’s treatment towards the North Korean brutal dictator that we have,”

  • Stevie July 25, 2019, 6:05 pm

    “The cult of personality that orbits around the sundry North Korean dictators is a tough thing for free people to comprehend. ”

    Oh, I don’t know about that. Seems like most Trump supporters would get it.

  • Peter Brown July 24, 2019, 12:21 pm

    The proof is evident that it’s a troll,a demorat lackey.

  • Ej harbet July 23, 2019, 12:01 pm

    Read somewhere he’s also a fan of pre registering a mortar on a spot and staking a victim to be obliterated by a single round.
    My dad killed and bled to make his nation die before it began but our stupid leaders didn’t allow this.

    They are the most guilty

  • Evan July 22, 2019, 4:42 pm

    Pictures get hung. Men get hanged.

  • Patrick McWilliams July 22, 2019, 4:12 pm

    As a connoisseur of music, I’d like to know where I can hear one of the Great Leader’s symphonies. I’ve heard the Hallelujah Chorus and the Ode to Joy. It thrills me to think there is a composition somewhere even greater than those. To paraphrase my late mother, If I knew he was coming I’d bake him a cake, or force a Christian to bake one. Then I’d lock the bathroom door. He doesn’t have to use it, after all.

  • Norm Fishler July 22, 2019, 3:21 pm

    Great job Dr. Dabbs You’ve filled in a number of blanks quite nicely. Keep ’em comin’.

  • Carl ERIC von Kleist July 22, 2019, 2:22 pm

    He’s a close personal friend of Donald Trump, who trusts him and admires him.

    • Adam Jeppson July 22, 2019, 7:38 pm

      Proof? Troll.

  • Ti July 22, 2019, 12:06 pm

    Man that was informative.

    30mm DU on a technical vehicle via A-10 would be a sight to see.

  • Luis Bonilla July 22, 2019, 11:24 am

    This seems to be out of the ordinary for photo’s to be shown of The horror country that is North Korea . It only shows how this so called leader makes Hitler look like a baby . The difference is Hitler killed 6 million and Kim Jon keeps millions of the lesser humans as he sees them in poverty and hungry . His idea of justice is use an anti-aircraft machine gun on prisoners .As a execution weapon . It and anyone who follows a monster like him are no more deserving than to be executed in the same manner

  • Mike in a Truck July 22, 2019, 11:22 am

    My team and I had gotten put into the “sand pile prone” by a couple of ZPU’s firing from bulldozed revetments “hull down” with only thire tubes exposed. Not funny being fired upon by 14.5mm ( actually canon). But go ahead and laugh. Thank God an Apache showed up to settle their hash.

  • OldGuy July 22, 2019, 11:13 am

    Can coronary artery disease or colon cancer be far behind?

    • RICK October 13, 2020, 9:45 pm

      We can only hope. Just gotta watch out for the sister then…

  • D.J. July 22, 2019, 10:43 am

    Once again , proof that communists behave universally
    the same . Despite nationality , continent of origin , or even
    point in time of history .
    It is hard to fathom why some people in our great Nation ,
    desire the same form of government here .

    • RICK October 13, 2020, 9:46 pm

      FREE STUFF!!!!!

  • Ron July 22, 2019, 9:31 am

    IT`s time to get rid of the devil army. What are we waiting on?

  • Jerry S. July 22, 2019, 9:11 am

    Perhaps we should all be praying for early onset diabetes and renal failure to bless Kim???

  • Link Lackluster July 22, 2019, 8:33 am

    Don’t be deceived. Kim Il-Sung wasn’t constipated. He had no need for a butthole because he was perfectly efficient. Form followed function. Also, Old Sparky wasn’t designed for the sitter’s comfort. The comfort was all ours as we watched a bad guy get zapped like the societal bug he was. Zzzzzzzap! You are gone. Ahh, comfort.

  • Dan July 22, 2019, 7:47 am

    The 2 best parts of this article:
    “Leftists think the reason communism has devolved into butchery every single time it has ever been tried is simply that those who attempted to craft this week’s workers’ utopia just didn’t do it correctly.”

    Yes indeed, and it reminds me of that famous saying that insanity is doing the same thing again, but expecting a different result…

    “A 2007 psychiatric study of Adolf Hitler, Saddam Hussein, and Kim Jong-il found that all three men likely suffered from some toxic combination of the “Big Six” personality disorders.”

    Apparently many politicians also suffer from some toxic combination of mental disorders.
    Politics attracts the mentally ill, so it is not a coincidence.
    It also looks like most or all of his followers also suffer from mental disorders…

  • john PIMLEY July 22, 2019, 7:42 am

    Thanks for the article sir. I like Oxfords Square Books downtown!

  • BILL BRONAUGH July 22, 2019, 7:18 am

    NK is a black site for our clowns, you know, like Yemen, Syria, Iran and others. They’re the ones doing all the stuff you attribute to rocket man. Have you not been paying attention? Have you not gotten wise to the ways of the clowns in America? NK is the nuke threat, Afghanistan is their opium/money, Yemen and Syria is their army recruiting grounds. Come on man, get woke.


    • Christopher Browne July 22, 2019, 8:48 am

      What the heck does “Woke” mean?

      • Christopher H Allen July 22, 2019, 4:46 pm

        It means to have one’s eyes open to the true path! An epiphany if you will. Usually, but not exclusively, limited to someone who has come to the realization that Liberal Progressivism is the one true path to enlightenment. Then they tell everyone that they have tried the kool-aid and are now “woke.”

        • Ej harbet July 23, 2019, 12:11 pm

          Basically the kind of people I’d pull the kpv trigger on myself.
          But the same round also works in the ptrd single shot anti tank rifle and one to the torso would be just as lethal and less messy.

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