North Koreans attend a rally in support of North Korean leader Kim Jong-un's order to put its missile units on standby in preparation for a possible war against the U.S. and South Korea, in PyongyangNorth Korea for years has confounded the world with its head-scratching diplomacy, but the rogue nation has appeared to reach a new low: Incredibly racist news reports on the country’s state-run media refer to President Obama as a “wicked black monkey,” among other epithets.

In addition, the media outlet KCNA has referred to South Korean President Park Geun-hye as an “indecent philistine and vile prostitute serving the U.S.”

While it isn’t unusual for the country’s state-run media to post vitriolic rhetoric, these latest are unusual in their crudeness and offensiveness.

The worst piece, published in Korean on May 2 and caught by a blog called One Free Korea, has the headline, “Divine punishment to the world’s one and only delinquent Obama.” The story repeatedly refers to the leader of the free world as a monkey.

“You can also tell this by his appearance and behavior, and while it may be because he is a crossbreed, one cannot help thinking the more one sees him that he has escaped from a monkey’s body,” it stated.

“It would be better for him to live with other monkeys at a wild animal park in Africa … and licking bread crumbs thrown by onlookers,” worker Kang Hyok at Chollima Steel Complex was quoted as saying.

Marie Harf, a State Department spokeswoman, yesterday called the report “offensive and ridiculous and absurd.”

“I don’t know how many words I can use up here to describe the rhetoric … It’s disgusting,” she told reporters at the Foreign Press Center in Washington.

In the view of Yoo Ho-yeol, professor of North Korea studies at Korea University in South Korea, what North Korea is doing is garnering attention by publishing such comments through its state-run news agency. He added that it tries to distance the government from the remarks by attributing them to a citizen.

“If it was to publish such a report in the voice of the authorities it would entrap them, whereas reporting the story under some ordinary citizen’s name will give them leeway,” Yoo said, according to the Associated Press.

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