Friday, October 30, 2009

Korea news links for October 30, 2009: I spy for the KJI

There are those of us who think — and really, there's no paranoia here — that Pyongyang does actively support a fifth column of infiltrators in academia, progressive movements, maybe even some conservative groups, etc., aimed at undermining support for... well, everything that Pyongyang doesn't like. And today we have Exhibit A, with the arrest of one "Professor Lee." Now it's not clear that Professor Lee was indoctrinating his students, but he is accused of passing military secrets to the North. Think how badly it would suck to find out your prof was a spy. You'd have to go back and re-examine a lot of what you learned, that's for sure.

  1. South Korean lecturer named Lee arrested and charged with spying for North Korea after passing military secrets (BBC, AFP)
  2. Despite informal meetings between US diplomats and North Korean envoy Ri Gun, US State Department says no plans have emerged for high-level bilateral talks (Reuters); Daily Yomiuri claims US envoy Stephen Bosworth will probably visit Pyongyang in November (Bloomberg, Korea Herald)
  3. Education Ministry says local officials will decide whether to close schools in response to H1N1 outbreaks (Joongang Daily)
  4. IMF revises outlook for Korean economy from 1% contraction to 1% growth in 2009 (Joongang Daily)
  5. ROK Constitutional Court says media reform bills railroaded through by ruling Hannara Party are valid despite procedural violations (Yonhap, Korea Herald, Joongang Daily); court also says hagwon curfew rule is constitutional (Korea Times)
  6. ROK Foreign Minister Yu Myunghwan calls on National Assembly leaders to support Afghan aid package (Xinhua); Defense Minister warns South Korean troops may have to fight Taliban (Yonhap)
  7. Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention say speedy medical treatment is key in fighting H1N1 infection (Yonhap)
  8. South Korea's humanitarian aid offering this week was only one-tenth what Pyongyang had asked for (AFP)
  9. Chinese President Hu Jintao invites North Korean leader Kim Jong-il to visit Beijing (Reuters via WaPo, Yonhap)
  10. DPRK newspapers call for improving inter-Korean relations (Xinhua)
  11. Samsung Engineering wins $1.2 billion contract to build fertilizer plant in United Arab Emirates (Reuters)
  12. Citing new intepretations of Sharia law, religious leaders in Waziristan order the deportation of all gay donkeys (Reuters)

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