- South Korea announces it will send troops to Afghanistan to protect its civilian aid workers (BBC, NYT, AP via WaPo, Korea Herald, Joongang Daily); Washington says it welcomes plans (Yonhap, Korea Times)
- Justice Ministry says South Korea likely to permit dual citizenship starting next year (Korea Times)
- Seventy-six-year-old man is South Korea's thirty-fifth death from H1N1 "swine flu" (Yonhap)
- US Trade Representative Ron Kirk is expected to outline Obama administration review of US-ROK free-trade agreement next week (Reuters)
- American academics and formal officials who met with North Korean envoy Ri Gun say Pyongyang appears to be more open to resuming six-party talks on North Korean denuclearization (Reuters); Ri Gun calls meetings "useful dialogue" (Yonhap)
- South Korean industrial output rebounds to busiest level in 18 months (Forbes, Bloomberg, Korea Times)
- Christian Science Monitor report says critics of North Korean regime claim that photos released of Kim Jong-il are of a body double (links here)
- South Korean spy chief says Seoul has concluded that Pyongyang's communications ministry was behind cyber attacks against ROK and US sites in July (links here)
- Samsung Electronics third-quarter profit more than triples from a year ago to $3.14 billion (Bloomberg, WSJ, AP via WaPo)
- Knowledge Economy Minister Choi Kyounghwan warns Seoul's carbon plan would cost jobs and reduce competitiveness (Korea Herald)
- The picture at right really happened. I'm not kidding. On live TV. It's not some Halloween gag inserted in lieu of my usual Jon Stewart-esque headline at the bottom of each Korea New Links post. Really happened. Myopic former president misread the teleprompter; it said to kiss the baby. What a tragedy. White babies are hard to come by (SF Weekly)
Saturday, October 31, 2009
Korea news links for October 31, 2009: Over there! Over there! Send the word! Send the word! That the ROKs are comin' and it will all be over 오버데어!
With all the hemming and hawing about sending actual soldiers to Afghanistan instead of just vulnerable aid workers who would have to be protected by someone else (imagine, thanks to a group of missionaries in 2007, that South Koreans wandering that central Asian country in cartoon form, as walking dollar signs in front of caricatures of bearded men in turbans drooling at the sight), you'd be surprised that the actual announcement got as much media play as it did. But the 300 or so combat troops who will go to Afghanistan are front-page news in a big way.