Friday, March 26, 2010

Daily Kor for March 26, 2010

There's a lot of North Korea news today. Bipolar as ever, the regime is demanding tourists come. Demanding! Frankly, I prefer the self-loathing approach of South Korea's KNTO, which comes out with a mixture of "come see the best stuff ever" and seminars glumly asking Westerners, "Why don't you come? What did I do wrong?" 

Frankly, South Korea needs less of that introspective stuff, which they should hand off to North Korea, which could do with a little more of it. I mean, come on, "You'd better come or else!", while being the kind of tourism slogan one would expect from a murderous regime like Kim Jong-il's, is really not very effective.

Meanwhile, there seems to be a lot of people in Washington and Geneva talking about the impending collapse of the North. Oh, and beef. Despite the candlelight vigilantes' best efforts, South Koreans are eating that stuff up. One more sign that the vocal fringe in South Korea so rarely represents the thoughts and aspirations of the general public.
  1. UN Human Rights Council slams North Korea on abuses (Reuters)
  2. Pyongyang blasts US-led plans to look into contingency scenarios in North Korea, warning of "unprecedented nuclear strikes" against anyone trying to overthrow the DPRK regime (Yonhap)
    • Speaking to a US House committee, USFK commander warns of sudden regime collapse in Pyongyang and recommends urgent preparations for such an event (Chosun Ilbo)
  3. Pyongyang threatens to take "extraordinary measures" if cross-DMZ tourism is not resumed within one week (Yonhap)
  4. US beef imports soar in first two months of 2010, up 57 percent in January and February from a year earlier to 13,800 tons (Yonhap)
  5. Senior Hannara Party lawmaker urges Seoul and Washington to begin talks on delaying wartime operational control of ROK military (Yonhap)
  6. LG announces plans to sell 1 million 3D television units this year to gain 25 percent market share (Reuters)
  7. Nuclear plant producer KOPEC, an arm of KEPCO, receives $569 billion subcontract for UAE nuclear plants (Reuters)
  8. South Korea's economy grew at 0.2 percent in the fourth quarter of 2009, as previously thought, but private consumption was stronger than earlier thought (Reuters via CNBC)
    • Bank of Korea says economic growth expected to pick up in first quarter of 2010 (Yonhap)
  9. Despite failing ratings, North Korean surreality program "Leader Knows Best" renewed for another season (Yonhap)


  1. Since comments are closed for the relevant entry:

    I wanted to just register my wholehearted agreement with your response to Ms. Ling.

    And I will reiterate this proverb ad infinitum: "The road to hell is paved with good intentions."

    And that's probably being generous regarding "intentions."

  2. Re: bipolar North Koreans

    Not that I'm in the habit of defending the North Koreans, but that particular accusation could be leveled at Koreans in general, not just the northerners. Just ask anyone who has married a Korean. ;-)

    As for the threats coming from the North's tourist industry, just think of the slogans that could be generated!

    "Visit Kumgang Mountain! Or we'll turn your capital city in a sea of fire!"

    "Kaesong City! The Perfect Getaway for Political Imbeciles!"


Share your thoughts, but please be kind and respectful. My mom reads this blog.