On behalf of Migukistanis everywhere, we thank you for not defacing our national monuments

A young Korean couple—exchange students, reportedly—have been fined almost US$30,000 for defacing the El Morro National Monument in New Mexico.

Naughty, naughty, naughty.

From the Las Cruces Sun-Times:

According to court filings, on Oct. 13, 2011, NPS employees at the El Morro National Monument discovered two names — “Super Duper Dana” and “Gabriel” — illegally carved into the sandstone cliffs of Inscription Rock, the monument’s most prominent historical feature which includes engravings dating back to 1758. After ascertaining that the monument register for Oct. 13, 2011, included an entry by a visitor who identified herself as Dana Choi from South Korea, a NPS ranger initiated an investigation. Through Facebook, the NPS ranger was able to identify the defendants, who subsequently were arrested on Dec. 2, 2011, based on a criminal complaint.
The monument’s most significant feature is Inscription Rock, a soft sandstone monolith, rising 200 feet above the valley floor, on which are carved hundreds of inscriptions from early travelers. The monument also includes pre-Columbian petroglyphs and Pueblo Indian ruins.

The Chosun Ilbo report says the couple claimed in court that because to their poor English, they misread the “no graffiti” sign as meaning they may, in fact, carve into the rock.

Hey, could happen to anyone.

The Chosun also noted that not only was the story receiving interest in America, but also in Japan. For what it’s worth, I wouldn’t have heard of it if it weren’t the fourth-most looked-at story on the Chosun Ilbo’s website.

  • bumfromkorea

    Reminded me of this.

  • JG29A

    I just had an image of Seoul Tower in a couple centuries —

    “Absolutely no defacing the landmark’s twentieth and twenty-first century locks with any twenty-third century locks!”

  • jk6411


    OMG.. That was epic.

  • bumfromkorea

    I’m a huge fan of the artist.

  • http://throughwhiteyseyes.blogspot.com whitey

    I’ve always disliked the defacing of rock formations in China with slogans. Even worse is the desecration in North Korea with paeans to one dear leader or another.

    Sorry to see these young knuckleheads following the tradition.

  • chanceencounter

    While on the topic of American national.. erm.. monuments being defaced by Koreans…


  • austin

    When I went to the Angkor temples, I found some temples had been defaced with Roman alphabet engravings (could be anyone) and Hangul (couldn’t be anyone)

  • http://dok.do/4aVK41 Year of the Dragon

    The Angkor World Heritage area gets up to 20,000 visitors trampling all over it per day.

    I don’t know what Cambodia does with all the tourist dollars, because it is Australia who is always giving them money to protect the Angkor temples – http://tiny.cc/1lkvbw

  • SomeguyinKorea

    Some Koreans really are “leaving their mark” everywhere they go. It only takes one for a horde of like-minded ones to deface an historical site. I’ve seen evidence of this phenomenon in my travels in Asia and Europe. It’s apparently become such a problem in Vancouver, where many Koreans go to study English, that a public library put up a sign in Korean asking people to stop.

    Why would someone do such a thing? Jealousy and insecurity, I’d surmise.

  • cm

    Their faces have been revealed. Lot of nasty netizen comments about them for making all of Koreans look stupid. And nobody believes their weak excuse. I worry about these two once they get back to Korea and the online mob gets at them.

  • http://gypsyscholarship.blogspot.com/ jefferyhodges

    What gives pre-Columbians the right to deface our National Monuments?! Just because they’re deceased, they think they can get away with everything!

    Jeffery Hodges

    * * *

  • numberoneoppa

    To be fair, it’s called inscription rock.

  • Granfalloon

    Ironically, the lack of graffiti on buildings is something I like about Korea.

  • CactusMcHarris


    Yes, and their English was good enough to get that one? It has nothing to do with them being Korean, and everything to do with being young putzes.

    OTOH, the word for graffiti in Korean does translate to ‘pleasure writing’.

  • CactusMcHarris

    #14 continuum ad nauseum,

    And I meant the translation from Hanja.

  • jk6411

    I’m a huge fan of the artist.

    Now I’m a fan too!
    Thanks, man. Really needed the laughs.

    (still chuckling)

  • aaronm

    One only need take a trip to the Great Wall of China and take note of the inglorious script covering it to know this is somewhat of a national pastime for the Sons of Han when abroad. Maybe someone would be justified tattooing the word “poof” on the faces of Super Junior when they come visiting by way of reciprocation.

  • fanwarrior

    I’ve thought about this a bit, but I find the tone of the headline to be a bit on the smug side.
    As if there is something to actually be smug about.
    In the same vein Korean’s would probably thank you not to rape their 17 year old students at knife point and burn them with lighters.
    But then perhaps americans could thank them not to come to their schools, go crazy and shoot a bunch of people
    and Koreans could then in turn thank them not to mow down middle school girls

  • http://rjkoehler.com Robert Koehler

    Smugness and snark are the tools of the blogger’s trade, my friend. If you think that was smug, check out some of the quality headlines from my “Stupid Foreigners Tricks” archive:


  • YangachiBastardo

    Maybe someone would be justified tattooing the word “poof” on the faces of Super Junior when they come visiting by way of reciprocation

    NO I need their smug, pretty faces intact, at least for a while (business reasons)


    You know an Irish guy who teaches rugby in Taiwan ? (bro of a dude i know)

  • aaronm

    You know an Irish guy who teaches rugby in Taiwan ? (bro of a dude i know)

    Naah, been a while since I rode the rugby development junket in Asia, been a humble risk management analyst for the last four years. Although, chances are I’d know someone who knows him, its a tight community. Hope you and the kid are well mate, always appreciate your commentary here.

  • http://www.xanga.com/wangkon936 WangKon936

    Sorry, I couldn’t resist, but no one here mentioned the greatest defacing of a Native American monument:


  • fanwarrior

    #19 I see snark, but nothing on the same level of smugness as is used here.

  • YangachiBastardo

    aaron: thanks man and same with me and your comments ! Kid and i are great, i got a really good job and he’s doin’ great in school, i can’t believe he’s almost a teen ARGGHHHHHH !!! So how’s life with 2 little tyrants in the house ? One day i’ll come down to Indonesia i have the feeling i’d really like the place.

    Completely OT: Raid Redemption is a fuckin’ fantastic flick !

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