POWER HUNGRY

Kim Jong II in 'Full Control' of N. Korea

White House National Security Adviser James L. Jones appeared on Sunday talk shows and said North Korea's leader Kim Jong II seems “in full control of his government,” despite rumors the contrary. In discussions with President Clinton over the release of two imprisoned journalists, Kim “seemed in control of his faculties” and “sounded very reasoned," Jones said. Kim's reported ill health set off rumors that his youngest son was already appointed as successor. Although President Clinton was able to secure the release of Euna Lee and Laura Ling, little is known about the discussion between the two leaders, although the conversation was “respectful and cordial in tone,” said Jones. When asked if the visit might open up new discussions about North Korea’s disputed nuclear program, Jones said, “Only time will tell.”