Myanmar beauty queen wants an apology, soldiers face murder charges and N. Korean car culture

– May Myat Noe, the dethroned Burmese beauty queen accused of running off from Korea with a $100,000 tiara, says she will give back her crown… IF the organizers offer her an apology:

She told reporters she was forced to lie about her age and organisers had demanded that she have “head-to-toe” plastic surgery.

She also denied claims that she had run off with the crown, saying she had boarded the plane for Myanmar without realising she had been dethroned.

Over at the Korea Observer, Kim Tae-hoon talked with May Myat Noe, but perhaps more interestingly, he also tried to visit the organizers’ office… with interesting results.

– I suppose it’s nice that lawmakers have each other’s backs.

– The four soldiers accused of, well, beating a fellow soldier to death are now being charged with murder. And how’s this for horrible:

Investigators in the Third Army also concluded that so-called crush syndrome and secondary shock from a long period of violence were the main causes of Yoon’s death, citing reviews of medical and autopsy records and consultations with experts.

“Crush syndrome threatened the soldier’s life as muscles were destroyed and blood became toxic due to a beating or a crushing injury,” said Col. Kim Jin-gi, staff judge advocate of the Third Army headquarters. “A secondary shock was from massive blood loss due to injury.”

“In other words, he was beaten to death,” another military official said.

Crush syndrome is usually associated with people who are injured in an earthquake or a collapsed building.

Colonel Kim said the accused soldiers, who had enough medical knowledge as medical officers, were aware of Yoon’s deteriorating physical condition on the day of his final beating but did not stop the brutality.

“Some of the accused were medical students, and they had enough understanding that Yoon could die from continuing beatings and abuse,” he said. “We secured evidence to accuse them with gross negligence.”

I’d write something, but really, I’m speechless.

And in more “Good News from the ROK Military,” the commander of the 1st ROK Army has been sacked for getting sloshed at a time when the military was supposed to be at heightened readiness, and two special forces soldiers died during a harsh training exercise meant to simulate captivity conditions.

– Korean-born Fleur Pellerin is France’s new Minister of Culture.

– North Korea has screwed Volvo out of USD 393 million, reports Jalopnik. But before you feel too bad for the folk involved:

The story goes like this: back in the late 60s/early 70s, North Korea seemed to be making remarkable economic growth and had a lot of potential mineral wealth opportunities. In Sweden, an unusual alliance of socialist groups who wanted the Marxist state recognized and capitalists who wanted to recognize a lot of cash from mining agreed that it would be a great idea to start doing some business with North Korea.

And that was the mistake.

Volvo was one of the first to take advantage of this incredible opportunity, shipping 1000 Volvo 144s to the Hermit Kingdom, along with, presumably, a bill which then-leader Kim Il-Sung promptly got a crack team of highly trained ignorers to forget about.

Let this be a lesson to you.

Anyway, if you haven’t seen it already, check out Jalopnik’s fascinating look at North Korea’s car culture. And according to the Financial Times, at least somebody in North Korea is driving around in a BMW 7 Series.

  • wangkon936

    I think this disaster needs a special name. Can we call it Beautygate?

  • redwhitedude

    Why would Volvo Cars ship cars to NK in the first place? Because it is owned by Geely which as everybody knows is at the cutting edge of Chinese Automotive industry.

    As to this “Beautygate”, looks like some ajossis who want to have their way with this miss, perhaps prove their virility.

  • wangkon936

    re: Fleur Pellerin

    http://www.parismatch.com/Actu/Politique/Fleur-et-Laurent-l-homme-de-l-ombre-et-l-heroine-525184

    Looks like a cute couple. The article translates fairly well via Google Translator.

  • redwhitedude

    As long as her significant other is not Francois Hollande. His former girlfriend has a book published. Don’t want to be anywhere near him.

  • Tapp

    Because releasing pictures of an unconscious 15 year old on an operating table for breast augmentation totally takes away the creepy factor. Every time this guy talks, he sounds more and more predatory.

  • redwhitedude

    But people that young can be talked into doing that. They may not be the most reputable individuals but the pageant organizers could have easily pushed the contestant into doing it. This pageant needs to be cleaned up.

  • Tapp

    Ahh, you misunderstood me. I don’t think it would be difficult at all to talk a 15 year old kid into wanting bigger boobs (or a smaller nose or V-line chin or fewer pimples). I think it’s borderline underage porn to show her under sedation and about to have the augmentation. Does anything this guy has said or done give you the impression that he quit snapping photos once the bandages came off? I question any doctor that would even allow a pageant rep in the room, let alone allowing them to take pictures. The whole thing feels creepy

  • Aja Aja

    This is the first time I’ve ever heard about this beauty pageant or this organization. They sound really shady, they should be investigated and the competition should be examined by the police.

  • mister pizza

    I think he mentioned previously that he was able to procure the breast augmentation for free since he knew the surgeon.

  • mister pizza

    I like it. I think it also points out a lot of the systematic flaws with both pageants and the Korean conception of beauty. Obviously, it’s completely absurd to suggest that a woman who just won a beauty pageant should need any surgery at all. From my experience it’s a pressure women encounter regularly in this society. I hope this becomes less of just a scandal and something that raises a little awareness.

  • SalarymaninSeoul

    I realize that the death penalty isnt used much in Korea, but this was more than just murder, and more even than particularly gruesome murder with torture thrown into it. They killed an ROK soldier and are no different than agents acting on behalf of the DPRK. Surely they can put them to death on relevant charges, can they not? I say hang them or put them in front of a firing squad. They deserve no chance for a life.

  • SalarymaninSeoul

    “Child Sexual Trafficking Gate” is more apt

  • redwhitedude

    I was saying that the this pageant has had dodgy dealings in the past and the way that they do things seems to reinforce things. As to 15 year olds getting breast implants that is her business but the manner in which she was pushed and required to do it is creepy. I think a lot of doctors probably would not push such a young person to do it because their body is still growing. The releasing of pictures which should have been a private matter between the doctor and her is also dodgy. Regardless of who was “right” and “wrong” doesn’t change the fact that the pageant is not reputable regardless whether this girl turns out to be a spoiled brat or not.

  • redwhitedude

    Smells like fishy dealings, just like the prosecutor in that TV personality case Amie(sp??).

  • redwhitedude

    Sounds more like “Child Entrapment gate”.

  • dlbarch

    The best line from that Paris Match article on Mme. Pellerin:

    “J’aurais du mal à être mariée avec quelqu’un de droite.”

    Madame Ministre, you have NO IDEA how lucky you are to have a center-right party like l’Union pour un Mouvement Populaire that has not gone completely to the dogs, as it has in the States.

    Count your blessings.

    DLB

  • wangkon936
  • Alex

    mister pizza, please enlighten me with what the correct conception of beauty is and a flawless pageant system that incorporates that idea of beauty.

  • DC Musicfreak

    ABC Seoul writes a tiara story that doesn’t even ponder the question of whether the organizers were sleazy and at fault. Localization?

  • MikeinGyeonggi

    According to the British contestant from 2011, the organization bribed the police into not helping the contestants when they sought help for being held against their will.

  • RElgin

    It is past time for these grifters to be shut down.
    They give the country a bad reputation.

  • WMunny

    Koreans?

  • redwhitedude

    If I were her the last thing I want to do is associate myself with Hollande’s administration given the tabloid fodder he has become.

  • redwhitedude

    Maybe they got bought off by the pageant organizers.

  • redwhitedude

    Not to mention that the judging was rigged by “favors” of the contestants.

  • WMunny

    Tiaragate?

  • redwhitedude

    Boobgate?

  • wangkon936

    Whoa, settle down there. You don’t wanna burn out like HMart boy… 😉

  • MikeinGyeonggi

    Furthermore, their CO’s need to be punished. Superiors who don’t (or pretend not to) notice when a soldier is being repeatedly tortured by fellow soldiers must be stripped of their command and face criminal charges as well.

  • SalarymaninSeoul

    I agree with that. Heads need to roll, literally and figuratively.

  • Aja Aja

    If I understood this correctly, this was the first time they put in those torture training that are outlined in the US and UK special forces. The training is to toughen up the men mentally for preparations of being captured by the enemy and be tortured. Something must have gone wrong or they didn’t do it right, or they over did the realism in the training.

  • SalarymaninSeoul

    I dont think this was an organized training session. It was just a bunch of sadists having fun. I see the charges carry the possibility of capital punishment. I hope the trial is swift and they die by autumn.

  • DC Musicfreak
  • redwhitedude

    mister pizza’s, conception of beauty involves getting “favors” from these contestants.

  • redwhitedude

    Well there is always I don’t like the selection of potential Korean sugar daddiesgate. 😀

  • redwhitedude

    Not that this contributes to lousy journalistic practice but the level of sympathy she gets is directly proportional on how pretty she is perceived.

  • DC Musicfreak

    A 15-year-old girl from Burma and a group of lying pimps and probable human traffickers? She could have leprosy and I’m still sympathizing with her.

  • redwhitedude

    She’s obviously a upgrade to your girlfriend/mistress.

  • mister pizza

    I think you misunderstood me. There is no “correct” conception of beauty, and the fact that people think there is one is the fundamental problem with pageants. Everyone has different tastes.

    My point was that the manufacturing of beauty, ( seen in advertisements, music videos, whatever) is a practice which runs rampant in Korea and is unhealthy for society. Again, why would a beauty pageant winner feel the need to augment herself further? Plastic surgery exists to remind people that they’re never attractive enough. Oh, and for old men to make money.

  • mister pizza

    yep.

  • DC Musicfreak

    I don’t get you here, red. I’m saying these guys were outed as slime balls years ago and now they pull all this shit. They are not credible at all, and their victims demand sympathy. They should probably be arrested for fraud and human trafficking, and then garroted and left to bleed out among scorpions and rats in a Rangoon prison. ABC should withdraw or correct that story and look into how it was misreported.

  • redwhitedude

    And then brag about his “conquests”.

  • redwhitedude

    It’s established that the pageant side are bunch of slime buckets. We don’t know this girl’s side. She could be a b*tch too. So I’m not in a rush to side with her, not until more info comes out about her. She could be alright individual but I’m not ready to conclude that yet.

  • mister pizza

    hah I like your imagination.

  • DC Musicfreak

    OP: Over at the Korea Observer, Kim Tae-hoon talked with May Myat Noe, but perhaps more interestingly, he also tried to visit the organizers’ office… with interesting results.

  • redwhitedude

    heh I knew you were a sucker for that.

  • MikeinGyeonggi

    I was referring to the soldier who was killed by his fellow soldiers, not the special forces training.

    As for that, they really should have had assistance from more experienced trainers (i.e. US special forces). Very sad indeed.

  • redwhitedude

    Don’t know. That age snafu and deliberate lying about it isn’t good but it isn’t even close to being the worst offense. Why did the pageant organizers not bar her in the first place. They let her compete and when she refused to go by what they wanted they THEN let that out. Sounds like the dodgy dealing part still falls overwhelmingly on the pageant side.

  • Alex

    No misunderstanding at all. Of course you are promoting a “correct” conception of beauty – a everyone has different tastes conception of beauty. A concept of beauty which can be argued as not being a concept of beauty at all.

    But pageants do have to decide and perhaps there is a misunderstanding on my part. If you discredit the pageant process to begin with what does it matter that the girl was asked to augment her breasts by the pageant.

    You seem to be conflating random events to prove a point about Korean conceptions of beauty. And it makes no sense to me.

  • bumfromkorea

    It’s a silver lining that, in spite of the local media swinging between neutral to siding with the pageant, the netizens seem to be overwhelmingly on the side of the 15 year old girl and against the dirtbags with similar records.

    Good point is raised by a netizen: “What the hell kind of a beauty pageant offers plastic surgery as the grand prize? Maybe the pageant should be renamed as ‘Let Me Be the Miss Asia Pacific World’ then.”

  • mister pizza

    First, I’m not promoting anything. Saying beauty is subjective rather than objective is an observation.

    My point is that the pageant culture of competition and comparison is a manifestation of the same thing that exists in society. That pressure to be, and become more, beautiful can be an unhealthy thing. Again, a 16 year old girl does not EVER need breast implants, much less one who is already thought of as beautiful.

    If I think pageants are pointless why does it matter if a girl was asked to augment her breasts by the pageant? Anytime adult men feel they have the right to alter someone’s appearance for their own pleasure it is wrong, as simple as that. It’s something we see and hear about all the time. The fact that this organization felt comfortable enough to treat a girl this way and the nonchalant responses they’ve given to the press speak for themselves.