From the Dong-A Ilbo:
A handmade bomb exploded at a private English academy for elementary students in Daegu. There were no casualties because it happened before the academy opened class for the day. Fliers signed in the name “anti-American, anti-fascist struggle committee” were scattered at the facility.
A loud bang sounded on the third floor at a building in Manchon-dong in Daegu around 7:07 a.m. on Monday. Housed at the building is “American Culture Center (in Korean), or Independent Center for American Studies Daegu’ in English.” A 41-year-old nurse working at a clinic on the ninth floor at the building said, “Smoke came out from downstairs, and papers were seen scattered.”
Doors to the academy and a portion of the lobby were smoked. Five A4-size papers collected from the site had a message reading, “The U.S. committed brutal crimes against the Korean people over the past 100 years. Worse yet, it is moving to cause a nuclear warfare in this country. It is time that we severe malign ties with the U.S. Yankees, you should be ready to leave.” It was signed in the name of anti-American, anti-fascist struggle committee.
The perps apparently believed the hagwon to be an official American cultural center. Clearly not the smartest communists in the world. Or perhaps just desperately nostalgic ones.
Yonhap is reporting there was no bomb, but the two men did light a fire. Daegu’s Finest have also released a photo of the suspects:
(HT to Dan)
Perhaps that apology PSY game last month was more sincere than some thought. Or so the Chosun Ilbo would suggest.
Participating in a New Year’s event at Korea’s UN delegation, PSY reflected on the kerfuffle (see here). When work of his anti-American rap lyrics first broke, he thought about packing his bags. Imagining what would happen if it were belatedly learned that a foreign singer had made sung an anti-Korean song, he thought Americans would never forgive him.
He was surprised by the American response. At first, he took a lot of abuse, but after a few days, comments of support began to appear. He was most surprised by how the White House handled a petition calling for PSY to be dis-invited to a year-end event with President Obama… by deleting the petition and inviting him anyway. He’d expected his invitation to be cancelled. He asked, “If this were Korea, what would have happened?”
And finally, for all those folk who think Gangnam Style is satire—and you know who you are—PSY said it wasn’t. He just did the song to make people laugh in a bad economy.
PS: Anderson Cooper’s weirdest New Year’s moment was, oddly enough, not Kathy Griffin trying to play with his sack, but PSY and MC Hammer. Kathy Griffin apparently had some off-color comments for PSY, too.
Was just scanning the headlines at the Korea Times when this caught my eye:
“Opposition pushes anti-US sentiment as elections near”
Ooo, sexy. The problem is, though, the article doesn’t really talk about “anti-Americanism.”
It’s about the Democratic United Party’s pushing opposition to the KORUS FTA ahead of the election.
One could argue this is hypocritical (it was Roh Moo-hyun who signed the deal in the first place), cynical (I seriously doubt a DUP-led government would annul the agreement) and potentially disastrous (on the off-chance that they ARE serious), but “anti-American”?
Not that I really doubt the DUP’s willingness to cynically play anti-Americanism, but wouldn’t it be best first to let the party actually engage in said anti-Americanism?
From Ye Olde Chosun:
According to the Global Attitudes Project published by U.S. pollster Pew Research last Thursday, 79 percent of Koreans have a favorable view of the U.S., up 1 point year-on-year. By contrast, the disapproval rating was down 1 point to 18 percent. This year’s entire survey covered 24,790 people in 22 countries around the world in April and May.
The U.S. had a mere 46 percent approval in Korea in 2003 and 58 percent in 2007, but it jumped to 70 percent in 2008 after President Lee Myung-bak’s conservative government was inaugurated. But only some 706 Korean adults were interviewed, making for a very high margin of error.
Why do I get the feeling that last poll was taken in November of 2008?
So where was Mikgukland most popular?
The U.S. had the highest approval rating in Kenya at 94 percent, followed by Nigeria (81 percent) and Korea. Kenyans also gave China the highest popularity rating with 86 percent. “But for most of the other 20 countries polled, admiration for America and for China is mutually exclusive,” the Economist weekly said.