Thursday, September 30, 2004
Here is an excerpt from that first article:
TOKYO -- South Korean officials said Thursday they were investigating reports that the woman considered to be North Korean leader Kim Jong Il's most influential wife has died after a long battle with breast cancer.
"The United States is making desperate efforts to bring down the dignified socialist system in the DPRK by use of double-dealing tactics of dialogue and military option. "
Another article references a release calling for both North and South to unite against the U.S.
"To this end, it is necessary for the north and the south to get united and cooperate with each other to foil the U.S. attempt to launch a new war of aggression. They should fulfill their responsibility and role in the struggle to protect the destiny of the nation as they are responsible for the peace, security and reunification of the Korean peninsula and wage a coordinated struggle against the U.S. and war. It is also necessary to take a fixed stand and will to trust the nation and depend on its strength in this struggle. The U.S. does not wish the peace and reunification of Korea. So it does not care whether the Korean nation remains divided for an indefinite period or whether the peninsula suffers a nuclear calamity, only seeking to meet its own interests as an aggressor. It is a daydream to harbor any illusion about the U.S. or calculate that the nation can avoid the danger of war and ensure economic stability when it depends on the U.S. The Koreans in the north and the south and abroad should struggle with transparent spirit of national independence that they have to avoid the daily increasing danger of war by their concerted efforts."
While the anti-American sentiment is surely nothing new, is the paranoia justified? Do the U.S.'s recent actions in Iraq imply that the DPRK is the next target of the American military scope? DPRK propaganda certainly gives that conclusion.
Wednesday, September 29, 2004
just one more thing to add to the ever growing list of North Korean topics. One of the refugees says "We have nothing to eat in North Korea," she said. "Life is very hard. We all want to go to South Korea." The story goes on to mention that in the long run, they will probably end up in South Korea. According to what was discussed in class, we have a country that has nuclear capabilities and now humanitarian issues. When are we (the international community) going to do something about it?
Tuesday, September 28, 2004
Monday, September 27, 2004
In a general sense, I find it interesting to explore the historical perspectives given off by the KCNA articles. We can probably assume that if this is the only source of news for the North Korean people, then they probably have an identical mindset.
Sunday, September 26, 2004
North Korea initially projected that a six-party meeting would take place in early November, yet after South Korea’s nuclear weapons testing was disclosed, North Korea refused any talks until the US stopped its “hostile policy based on double standards” toward North Korea.
What does everyone think? Is North Korea justified in its refusal to negotiate over its nuclear weapons program?
Friday, September 24, 2004
While Japan’s Prime Minister says there is little chance this will occur, the article does in fact mention the incident in 1998 when North Korea fired a missile over Japan.
What does everyone think? Did North Korea sincerely plan on testing its missile or was it just a rumor? If it was true, do you think they would actually test it? It seems to me that it would be absurd to test a missile, especially during a time when North Korea is under careful surveillance.
What I find most effective in the movie is the director’s ability to essentially draw the audience into experiencing the Korean War. Historical facts alone at times fail to do so, but Tae Guk Gi effectively emphasized the gravity and dire consequences of a war.
Should anyone be interested in watching Tae Guk Gi, you can visit the official website of the movie and take a look at the some clips.
Thursday, September 23, 2004
The Ambassador himself was very well-spoken. More importantly, he covered a lot of issues pertaining to South Korea and addressed them clearly and well. The official topic of the speech was the Korea-US Alliance, and Han spent a lot of time covering this subject. He said that he feels the Alliance between the US and Korea is strong and growing stronger. He closed his speech by saying he remained "bullish" about our alliance. He spoke about the US plan to withdraw troops from Korea as well as the Republic of Korea's decision to keep troops in Iraq despite Iraqi insurgents' threats.
Han also spent a lot of time devoted to discussing the North Korean "situation." He mentioned that the DPRK does indeed have Nodong missiles; these missiles have the potential range to hit Japan if the North Koreans so desired. He argued that because the US is hostile toward the DPRK because of its nuclear policy, the DPRK is unwilling to engage in multi-party talks, which would hopefully solve the quagmire. And if North Korea won't participate, of course, such discussions are for naught.
Abassador Han also touched upon Sino-Korean relations, especially those between China and North Korea. He concluded that China is pretty sympathetic with Pyongyang but also wants to participate in the multi-party talks regarding the nuclear program.
Besides the dean of the Elliot School and the university president, there were a number of other interesting guests in the room. Asking questions to the ambassador after his speech were both a Belarussian diplomat and a Defense Department analyst. Well-regarded and -respected North Korean History Professor Kirk Larsen also attended the forum. I didn't notice anyone else from our class, though.
I'm not sure if my earlier short posting actually counts as a posting, but I think we can agree that we can combine the two to create a SUPER-posting.
The previous day, a suspiciously well-written polemic blast at Wang's article was posted on the S&M website; it was entitled "Some of our Intellectual Elites Advocate Selling North Korea Down the River" . It said the United States is China's traditional enemy, North Korea is China's friend, and anyone that suggests otherwise is "even more corrupt that the Qing government of over a century ago".
The second article (from the Washington Post) adds some more detail to the controversy and hints that the offending journal may be closed down for good.
Thanks to Matt for the links. Happy reading!
For those of you that will be attending, have fun!
Be sure to discuss the issued raised by HAN Sung Joo on the blog.
Is anyone else from the class going to this event tonight?
Of course, I will be sure to post another entry detailing what will have been talked about tonight.
This man has appeared in anti-American propaganda movies. His trial, though it will have little bearing on international relations, will be high-profile.
The United States and Japan have detected signs that North Korea is preparing to launch a ballistic missile with a range capable of hitting almost all of Japan, Japanese government sources said on Thursday.Some serious developmetns here with our relations to North Korea, especially when the deadlock seems to be a move that will last at least until after the US Election.
Tokyo and Washington had detected the signs after analyzing data from reconnaissance satellites and radio traffic, the government sources said.
North Korean military vehicles, soldiers and possibly missile engineers were converging on several Rodong missile bases in the northeastern part of the isolated communist state, they said.
The signs were first detected on Tuesday, the sources said.
"At this stage we don't think North Korea's missile launch is imminent," one source told Reuters on condition of anonymity. "But we still don't know whether North Korea is serious about missile launches."
Wednesday, September 22, 2004
Dan Rather Statement after backing the authenticity for nearly 2 weeks.
Last week, amid increasing questions about the authenticity of documents used in support of a "60 Minutes Wednesday" story about President Bush's time in the Texas Air National Guard, CBS News vowed to re-examine the documents in question-and their source-vigorously. And we promised that we would let the American public know what this examination turned up, whatever the outcome. Now, after extensive additional interviews, I no longer have the confidence in these documents that would allow us to continue vouching for them journalistically. I find we have been misled on the key question of how our source for the documents came into possession of these papers. That, combined with some of the questions that have been raised in public and in the press, leads me to a point where-if I knew then what I know now-I would not have gone ahead with the story as it was aired, and I certainly would not have used the documents in question. But we did use the documents. We made a mistake in judgment, and for that I am sorry. It was an error that was made, however, in good faith and in the spirit of trying to carry on a CBS News tradition of investigative reporting without fear or favoritism.Please know that nothing is more important to us than people's trust in our ability and our commitment to report fairly and truthfully.
What do you guys think. Is this enough to save Rather or should action be taken against him and the network...If anyone read the Post article a couple days ago wth pictures of an authentic document and the one issued by CBS, a fourth grader could tell one was a piece of junk.
So let me know what ya'll think.
I don't think there are any Korean restaurants in Washington DC but there are a few outside the city.
Two sample recipes:
Barbequed beef--Barbequed beef ("pulgoki") is the one of the most popular dishes in Korea, and also Westerners are pleased with the taste. "pulgoki" literary means "fire beef", but it is called generally called "korean barbecue". Thin, tender slices of beef are marinated in a sauce and cooked over a hot charcoal grill at table.
Rice Beef Noddle Soup--"Sollongtang" is rice beef noodle soup seasoned with sesame seeds, salt, pepper, scallions, and sesame oil. It is served with rice as the main meal and is accompanied by side dishes and a radish "kimchi" called "kaktugi."
P.S. If you go through those sites, you will be hungry...... :)
While academics can take a step back, examine the facts, and scoff at fiction, do films like this promote misplaced fear among the general public? Or do most people not think or care about it?
Tuesday, September 21, 2004
Monday, September 20, 2004
Sunday, September 19, 2004
Saturday, September 18, 2004
When Britain's minister challenged his North Korean counterparts, they laughed off terrible torture allegations, but they did concede that forced labour is an integral part of what they call "rehabilitation".
Friday, September 17, 2004
Thursday, September 16, 2004
I do remember watching a documentary on the North Korean prison camps and how one generation's persecution led to the subsequent persecution of two generations following the first in order to completely 'wipe out' the ‘rebels.’ While these stories and other related accounts do indeed stem from facts and truths, I am a bit hesitant to deem these arguments as being completely valid.
Well, my question is, has anyone else heard about the escape in the papers recently? While the horror stories about the torture camps and experiment labs are not new, I do not believe they have ever been completely addressed. It would be interesting to see if anyone has or finds any articles pertaining to the information above.
from CNN, South Korean hydroelectric experts have doubts that the DPRK was telling the truth about the explosion last week. If it wasn't a hydroelectric plant, than the DPRK is hiding something, which is sure to add fuel to the fire of those who view the DPRK as a grave threat to international security.
I'm not trying to say the DPRK is or is not a threat, but how the next few months unfold should be interesting for the discussion of international diplomacy.
EDIT (9/17): Just an update to this story, which seems to get weirder by the day. South Korea now says there never was an explosion, the strange clouds were probably natural, and that the whole story was due to faulty intelligence. Read about it here.
Let us hope that any future "intelligence failures" regarding the DPRK won't seem so innocent. It seems that many people (myself included) were quick to jump to conclusions. It will probably be weeks before we know what really happened, if we ever find out at all, given the DPRK's secrecy.
Strikes me as childish that everytime North Korea to face up to some sort of scrutiny they duck away as it approaches.
North Korea "...can never sit at the table to negotiate its nuclear weapon program unless truth about the secret nuclear experiments in South Korea is fully probed."
In response to criticism of Bush's policy towards North Korea I'd like to distinguish one common theme prevalent in both Bush's and North Korea's foreign policy, they both are never wrong and its always someone elses fault (in this case, South Korea)
As John Kerry said recently, "His is the Excuse Presidency: Never wrong, Never Responsible, Never to Blame."
Wednesday, September 15, 2004
In Tuesday's class we discussed the "
The reason this article I feel is so pressing is a hallmark of the Bush plan to deal with
The author also brings up points of juiche, the idea of self-reliance that we discussed.
So all things considered, is the view of opening
If you browse the site, you can find the military capabilities of other countries. Enjoy.
I came across an article that responded to Kerry's sharp attack on Bush. According to this article, while many may argue that the Bush administration does not have a foreign policy, internationalizing the issue alone is a policy in itself because doing so facilitates involvement from neighboring countries in bringing “stability to the region.”
What does everyone think about the two arguments?
For more information, please read the article below.
It's ironic that after all the mumbo-jumbo predictions of catastrophe that have been floating around since 9/11, the one time the government couldn't have been handed a more perfect compliance package is ignored.What are they going to do now without Kobe?
Completely and utterly ignored.
Granted, yesterday North Korean officials tied the explosion to a controlled demolition of a hydroelectric project. But so what? The press has never been gun-shy about running with unfounded accusations (Iraq having WMDs being one of those pesky year-long snafus), and this is one that has plausible deniability written all over it. The lack of comment from the North Korean government for four days only heightened the mystery and intrigue that newscasts love to lead with.
That the United States casually brushed aside early reports of the nuclear test only underscores how much of a ruse the "war on terror" really is. (Well, that, and Bush admitting the war on terror can't be won. Boffo.)
After all, if American intelligence points to North Korea's legitimacy as a nuclear power, why all the condemnation of Iran's program, which is further behind in development and is committed to building civilian power plants, not weapons?
Iran is hounded daily in the press as a threat to world peace. Congressmen and senators seek to impose sanctions against the need to provide power to the people of Iran. All of this without any verifiable weapons program in operation. On the other hand, North Korea has threatened to nuke the U.S. if it's attacked. And for four days in September, that threat was very real.
Tuesday, September 14, 2004
Chosun Ilbo ("NORTH KOREA TRUMPETS KOGURYO'S 'INDEPENDENCE'", 2004-09-14) reported that the DPRK's state-run Korea Central Broadcasting reported Tuesday that, "Koguryo firmly adhered to its national independence in foreign relations, and it resolutely crushed any attempt to violate that independence... Koguryo was not a large country's ethnic minority administration, regional administration, or tributary state, but a bold, independent nation." This seems to be indirect criticism of PRC distortions of Koguryo history, in which the PRC has claimed that Koguryo was no more than a regional administrative division of the PRC. The broadcaster also said, "Koguryo was well known as dignified strong country because it consistently stuck to its independence seemingly unfamiliar with subservience... In particular, its use of its own chronological era system and independent foreign policy were proof positive of its independence."
The Associated Press ("N. KOREA: U.S. WAGING CULTURAL INVASION", 2004-09-14) reported that the DPRK on Tuesday accused the US of sending midget radios and "impure" publications into the country to destroy the isolated communist state with "rotten imperialist reactionary culture." The DPRK government has reportedly tightened surveillance in recent months, out of fear that some of its hunger-stricken people were receiving smuggled tiny transistor radios capable of receiving outside news. Some US-based Korean groups seeking democratic change in the DPRK have attempted to send small radios carried by balloons into the DPRK. "The US imperialists are now bent on their moves to send midget radios and TV sets into (the DPRK) in an effort to break up the single-hearted unity there and degenerate and disintegrate it from within," the official newspaper Rodong Sinmun said. "Out of the same motive, the US imperialists are trying to send impure publications."plus ca change ...
Monday, September 13, 2004
The fire on Thursday occurred near a site where North Korea bases some of its long-range missiles. Because Thursday was a national holiday in North Korea, there was initial speculation that an explosion might have been deliberately set off to make a political statement of defiance.
But there were no signs of radiation, American intelligence officials say. And it was the site of the blast that made American officials suspect that it was an accident: there is a widespread assumption that North Korea would not demonstrate whatever nuclear capacity they have near the Chinese border, where it could irradiate the country that North Korea depends on for food and fuel.
This explosion also seems to have stirred quite a bit of controversy, as Kerry blames Bush for allowing the North Korean crisis to blow out of proportion by investing too many resources in the war with Iraq. As a result, America must deal with North Korea’s deliberate threats, which according to Kerry is a “sign of failed diplomacy.” Further information can be found in the link below.
The Korea Herald tells us exactly how busy North Korea has been recently with visitors. I'd write more, but I have an 8am class...
Sunday, September 12, 2004
Here's an interesting site that gives a good overview of the approximate strength and capabilities of the North Korean army. It describes how North Korea is upgrading its dated weaponry and also predicts how North Korea would conduct an invasion of the South. I had thought that the strength of the North Korean army lay primarily in the numbers but this site contends that the North Korean army is steadily becoming more advanced and capable. Apparently, North Korea has one the largest contingents of Special Forces of any country, with somewhere between 60,000 and 100,000 soldiers. When you go the link, click on the "The Army" link and then read from there to the end of the article. Anyway, check it out if you are interested:
Whether the recent explosions resulted from a nuclear test, or a freak accident, they have managed to reprise the question of how the United States should deal with North Korea's nuclear ambitions.
Hard-liners in the Pentagon and the vice president's office have largely opposed making concessions of any kind in negotiations, and Vice President Dick Cheney has warned that "time is not on our side" to deal with the question. The State Department has pressed the case for negotiation, and for offering the North a face-saving way out. While the State Department has won the argument in recent times, how to deal with the North is a constant battle inside the administration.
Saturday, September 11, 2004
http://www.nytimes.com/2004/09/12/international/asia/12nuke.html?hp just copy and paste. What do you guys think about this?
I just wanted to let you know that you can get regular updates on your email from CNN.com if you go to the site and sign up. Go to John's most recent post and click on the hyperlink...there will be a box on the right hand side of that article where you can sign up for it. See you Tuesday!
Apparantly, there is a rift between the US and Japan because the US wants to see Jenkins punished, and the Japanese want to see him reunited with his family (his wife was kidnapped years earlier to teach Japanese to North Korean spies, but returned to Japan a few years ago).
And this caught my eye: "Speculation has focused on a possible pre-trial deal in which he would plead guilty to one or more charges but offer to tell the U.S. military what he knows about North Korea in exchange for a punishment lighter than the maximum of life in prison."
***EDITED***That link doesn't seem to be working, so here is the complete text of the article:
Accused U.S. Deserter Jenkins Surrenders in Japan
By George Nishiyama
CAMP ZAMA, Japan (Reuters) - U.S. Army Sergeant Charles Jenkins gave himself up to American military authorities Saturday to face charges that he deserted to communist North Korea four decades ago while on patrol in South Korea.
His surrender, at a U.S. army base in Japan, marks the end of a bizarre Cold War odyssey and is a big step toward resolving a diplomatic headache for the United States and close ally Japan. Jenkins, looking solemn and wearing a suit and tie, gave a long salute as he was received by Lt. Colonel Paul Nigara at Camp Zama, the U.S. Army's headquarters in Japan west of the capital.
"Sir, I'm Sgt Jenkins, and I'm reporting," he said.
Unlike some accused deserters thought to be at risk of trying to flee, Jenkins, 64, was not handcuffed or put into leg irons, partly out of sensitivity to sympathy in Japan for his Japanese wife, Hitomi Soga.
"I can assure you that you and your family will be treated with dignity and respect at all times," said Nigara, Provost Marshal for U.S. Army Japan.
Video footage provided by the army showed that Jenkins later changed into a short-sleeved army uniform and signed some paperwork for standard in-processing back on to active duty while his military defense counsel, Capt. James Culp, looked on.
Washington says Jenkins, a native of Rich Square, North Carolina, slipped into North Korea one cold January night in 1965 while leading a patrol near the Demilitarized Zone separating the two Koreas. It says he later joined Pyongyang's propaganda machine, appearing in an anti-American film as a sinister spy.
Jenkins met Soga in North Korea after she was kidnapped by its agents in 1978 to help teach spies to speak Japanese. The couple have two North Korean-born daughters, aged 21 and 19.
"I hope we four can go to Sado Island and live together as soon as possible," Soga told reporters early on Saturday, referring to the small north Japanese island that is her home.
Soga, almost 20 years Jenkins' junior, was allowed to return to Japan two years ago with four other abductees, but had to leave her family behind.
Jenkins arrived in Tokyo for medical care in July after Japan arranged for the family to be reunited in Jakarta.
Since then, Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi has had to balance the U.S. desire to see Jenkins face court martial with Japanese public sympathy for his wife.
"We hope that this will be resolved taking into account the situation in which Mr Jenkins and his family have been placed," a Japanese government official said, adding that Tokyo could not interfere in the legal procedures Jenkins faces.
Jenkins, who lied about his age to enlist at 15, said in a recent interview with the Far Eastern Economic Review that he had wanted to turn himself in to "clear my conscience."
Jenkins, who is charged with desertion, aiding the enemy, encouraging disloyalty and soliciting other service members to desert, has several legal options.
Speculation has focused on a possible pre-trial deal in which he would plead guilty to one or more charges but offer to tell the U.S. military what he knows about North Korea in exchange for a punishment lighter than the maximum of life in prison.
President Bush is said to be reluctant to give Jenkins special treatment while American troops are fighting in Iraq and ahead of November's presidential election.
But Koizumi, who backed the U.S.-led war in Iraq and sent non-combat troops there in the face of public hostility, wants Soga and her family to be able to live together in her homeland.
The army said Jenkins would be supplied with whatever he needs to resume active duty, including a haircut and a uniform.
His family would be treated like other soldiers' dependants and were expected to be housed on the military base.
Known as "Super" to his family, the jug-eared Jenkins left school early and washed cars at a Ford dealership before lying about his age to enlist in the National Guard when he was 15.
He later joined the army.
Soga was one of five Japanese abductees who returned home in 2002 after more than a quarter of a century in reclusive North Korea. Her poise and a penchant for poetic expressions have won the hearts of many Japanese.
Friday, September 10, 2004
Thursday, September 09, 2004
Between 1968 and 1988, males between the ages of eighteen and forty were eligible for defense call-up duty; there was no clear policy on the age at which a recruit was eligible for retirement. In January 1988, a new policy was instituted that reduced the age-group of the male population subject to service in the reserves: only males who had been drafted for service between the ages of nineteen and thirty-four were required to serve in the reserves. The period of service was limited to between six and eight years, depending on the individual's age at conscription.If anyone can locate more up-to-date information, please let us know.
In 1990 there were 1,240,000 men in the reserves: 1,100,000 in the army; 60,000 in the marines; 55,000 in the air force; and 25,000 in the navy.
I saw a documentary several months ago on the Discovery channel concerning “famine gripped North Korea”. After searching through the Discovery channel website, I came across the documentary that I had watched on television: “Children of the Secret State.” Should anyone have access to the Discovery Times channel, I recommend that you watch the documentary. Apparently, a link to the specific site that lists all the showtimes does not work, so I have inserted a link to the Discovery channel. Simply type in "North Korea" under SEARCH and the showtimes will appear.
Wednesday, September 08, 2004
Here is an interesting link about Korean Air Flight 7, which was shot down by Soviet fighters in the 1983. It still hasn't been determined what exactly happened, but a number of conspiracy theories have appeared, such as:
The most interesting 'off course' theory is that the flight was part of a deliberate US intelligence gathering effort. The theories claiming KAL-007 did not crash relate to a number of issues. It is claimed to be unlikely that a single missile would knock a 747 out of the air, the loss of a single engine is not catastrophic for such a craft. Reports of the crash put the time from missile strike to sea impact at around twelve minutes, which is high for an uncontrolled descent. The crew aboard the airliner never announced a mayday despite there being two further communications from the 747. The amount of material recovered from the accident compares unfavourably with other crashes of roughly equal magnitude as does the type of material retrieved. That only two bodies were recovered, relatively intact, is also surprisingly low. All searches, either by the Soviets, Japanese or Americans were ended in early November, 1983.
The 'no crash' theorists do not go to explain why the plane was off-course, or why the Soviets would want to hold onto 260 or so airline passengers, except through the far-fetched claim that they were targeting a single passenger and felt it was necessary to keep all of the other people in captivity to conceal this.
I read another conspiracy a few months ago that the Soviets were testing a new system that day; the path of the plane took it near a major Soviet submarine base. Some feel that the pilots were on a CIA spy mission when it was shot down.
This article is interesting because, if the contents are indeed true, it shows the North Korean government committing the very crimes that Bush set out to punish Sadaam Hussein's Iraq for.
Interesting post at The Shape of Days about Py’ôngyang's biggest incomplete construction project: the Ryugyông Hotel.
I'm no expert on North Korean psychology, but it seems to me that there's only one plausible answer: Building the Ryugyong was a matter of national pride. The North Korean government put the Ryugyong on city maps before ground was even broken; they even put it on a stamp. The Ryugyong was to be a monument to the North Korean virtue of juche, or self-reliance.
The same sense of pride that drove them to build the Ryugyong has driven the North Koreans to an almost pathological level of denial about the building. It's no longer on the city's maps. Guides claim not to know where it is. No one speaks of it. This state of affairs is made all the more surreal by the fact that the almost incomprehensibly massive Ryugyong is visible from every part of Pyongyang. It hangs over the horizon, never far out of sight. The ultimate expression of the idea of the elephant in the corner.
Spot the hotel that isn't really there
It looks as if S. Korea may have had a bit of a nuclear program themselves. It hasn't been really decided if it was accidental or intentional. Regardless, this will probably change the political atmosphere in the region very quickly.
Thought this was an interesting article on how the North Korean government continues to censor the availability of ideas and communication within its country and the world. This truly attests to North Korea's belief that its nation should be completely issolated from the world around them. Interesting read.
Tuesday, September 07, 2004
As for myself, I practice the Korean martial art of Taekwon-Do. I have been a student since I was seven years old, and currently I hold a III degree black belt and have traveled as far as Australia to compete. The founder of Taekwon-Do was General Choi Hong-Hi (1918-2002), a Korean who, while in the South Korean army scientifically developed the uniquely Korean art from Karate and ancient Korean fighting traditions.
I know a little bit about him and life in Korea from his autobiography. Choi was born in what is now North Korea, but like most others, considered himself to be a member of a homogenous culture undivided by politics. In late 1944, Choi was one of the leaders of a group of 3,000 conscripted student soldiers in Pyongyang who planned to desert their garrison and meet Kim Il-Sung’s opposition forces near Paektu-san. His group was caught, and as one of the ringleaders, the Japanese sentenced him to death. Luckily, Soviet forces liberated the prison where he was held literally days before his scheduled execution.
Though he was a founding member and a general in the South Korean army for decades, through a whole tangle of politics (which I will spare boring you with) he, and his organization, the International Taekwon-Do Federation, eventually affiliated themselves with North Korea. I have had the opportunity to train under him twice at seminars in Denver, and I’m probably one of a select group in the U.S. who’ve actually shaken the hand of a North Korean.
In TKD, we perform "patterns," sometimes called "forms," basically solo practice routines, and they all carry Korean names from history. Some of these include Tan’gun, Hwarang, and Juche (created to appease the DPRK). Some might find it interesting to read some of the pattern histories, which can be found at this link: http://www.itf-information.com/patterns.htm, though I am sure the spellings are not up to date.
Even though I really didn’t know that much before this class, it’s still interesting for me to read the texts and online histories and recognize certain names and places. I’ve developed a strong interest in Korean language and history that is sure to influence my course selection for the future.
Here is my reason. Why did everybody else take this class?
Not surprisngly, the US, South Korea, European Union, and Japan have decided to, for the second year, suspend construction on the Nuclear plant that was being built as part of the Agreeded Framework of 1994. Retuers posted the story, it may be read here.
Quoting unidentified Japanese government sources, the Yomiuri said the United States had wanted to scrap the project entirely, but gave in to persuasion from South Korea and Japan to leave room to resume construction.
South Korea and Japan have covered 90 percent of the $1.5 billion construction costs so far.
More than 100 workers are still maintaining the site of the two partially built reactors.
KEDO suspended construction work on the light-water reactors for an initial one year last December, after the United States said in October 2002 that North Korea had admitted working on a secret uranium-enrichment project.
And around we go.
Monday, September 06, 2004
Saturday, September 04, 2004
I was referred to the following website by a close friend and found it to be quite interesting and informative. Those unfamiliar with North Korea’s history will find this information useful in particular. Simply click on the link below and view the bullets under GALLERY & GRAPHICS. Enjoy!