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Alright alright, let's be negative about korea then.
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The Lemon



Joined: 11 Jan 2003

PostPosted: Mon Apr 28, 2003 4:08 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The subway incident was a mass-murder portayed by the local media as an accident (guy was mentally-ill and didn't know what he was doing, etc.).

The USFK incident was an accident portayed by the local media as a murder.

The deaths of the two girls got 8 months of repeated coverage, which was undoubtably linked to the presidential elections, and tensions with North Korea (which fanned the flames through their Hanchonryon southern branch office). The girls bodies were shown repeatedly on the news, on posters, and in magazines. The faces of the girls became as famous as Jang Na-ra's on the soju posters.

The subway incident was big news for about two weeks. Local university student activists put up "remember the Taegu dead" banners in early March. Two months after the deaths of 200 people, it's ancient history.

Shameful.
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narsty dog



Joined: 29 Jan 2003

PostPosted: Mon Apr 28, 2003 4:09 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

not being in korea i dont know the mood on this one. But i d have expected the korea media , especially the ohnynews brigade etc. to have blamed SARS on the americans . The fact it s not in korea suggests the koreans have inside knowledge on it actually. Yeah along with the US military, and the koreans were first on the moon you know , and had the first dog in space. Oh did you know England has four seasons cos it stole one from korea ... they used to have five, and the world has 5 oceans ............zzzzzzzzzz
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indiercj



Joined: 30 Jan 2003
Location: Seoul

PostPosted: Mon Apr 28, 2003 4:13 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Point taken narsty. Koreans were obviously over reacting on the death of the two school girls though i still can understand why no one is punished. But i did not know that it was such a pain in the.... Compaired to what i've been through in France i thought you foreign teachers were having an 'Ok time' in this miserable piece of earth. Wink
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narsty dog



Joined: 29 Jan 2003

PostPosted: Mon Apr 28, 2003 4:17 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

the fact is it s understandable in one way to see why the girl's deaths purchased more attantion than the daegu subway incident. No-one likes soldiers- no-one likes foreign soldiers on their patch either, see N.ireland- the Brits went there in -67 to portect the catholics initially...how things have changed.

BUT, and it s a big but.....IF you start any reading of any text from a nationalist viewpoint, then the army deaths are read as 'an affront to national pride' exactly the type of stuff said at the time and reported in the press. the subway incident is more blurred - it s a domestic matter , and koreans are already well aware of the failings of their country, bridges collapsing, dept. stores., the fire in Incheon at the norae bang, the kids dying in Choll nam do , etc. So, they read this matter as part shame, part cock-up . There's no group mentality / national pride / us and them to defend / stir up , so it s forgotten.

As long as the stating point - nationalism as the defining aspect of one spersonality remains as the main player in the korean pyschee, all the following texts are read the same way.
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narsty dog



Joined: 29 Jan 2003

PostPosted: Mon Apr 28, 2003 4:27 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

well , i understand what you are saying indiercj. I m not a foreign teacher , but as this board suggest 'some' are having an Ok time . But as a white person in Korea , i would say that the problem isnt blantant racism 24/7 , thats not what i m complaining about . no doubt in france you had some bad experience standing out from the majority of white people. france has a strong nationalist party too, lead by Le Pen and a lot of racial issues - but , in Korea what i find soul destroying is coming up again and again and people with attitudes that are always steeped in 'korea is right' 'foreign conspiracy theory is THE TRUTH' .....you arent like that , and many koreans arent BUT..........

It s the 'one incident-away from general public hatred of anyone who 'looks' american ' scenario that makes me , and many foreigners feel uncomfortable from what i read in the papers, talking to people in Seoul, that gets me . Something as ridiculous as the Ohno thing seems to take a hold in Korea , whereas in other countries it d blow over. Its this inferiority/ hang up / neurosis with the USA that does my head in - like nothing can compared unless its the "US and Korea". apart from being boring , i ve never been to the US , just like good old Roh Mu hyon , and more importantly IT S JUST NOT MY FIGHT . Smile
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Dan



Joined: 16 Jan 2003
Location: Sunny Glendale, CA

PostPosted: Mon Apr 28, 2003 5:00 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

the korean resentment toward the US was boiling up for a while and the two girls dying was the flashpoint.

however, in the same context, if canadians built military bases around the US and some of their soldiers killed 2 school girls, i think the reaction would be largely similar.
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Cedar



Joined: 11 Mar 2003
Location: In front of my computer, again.

PostPosted: Mon Apr 28, 2003 5:31 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Freaking Koreans! I hate the way they understand my cultural differences and help me through the things I can't figure out for myself. The way my secretary leaps onto the internet to research the schedule for a festival I've casually mentioned attending just makes me boil. Would they stop be so damn well meaning and helpful already? It's getting on my nerves!
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Len8



Joined: 12 Feb 2003
Location: Kyungju

PostPosted: Mon Apr 28, 2003 6:53 am    Post subject: Alright alright, let's be negative about korea then. Reply with quote

The legal system here needs to be cleaned up badly. I find it incredible that any graduate with any major can study for two years, take the Korean bar exam, and then become a prosecutor which I think is the equivalent of a circuit court judge in the U.S. A judge in any western country has to come up through the ranks after formally qualifiying as a lawyer. He has to prove himself, and is judged on the merits of his performance, before he can even be considered as a candidate for a judicial position. In Korea the prosecutors don't even have to demenstrate an ounce of integrity in order to get an appointment. All they have to do is pass the bloody exam. Now you might get a few sneaking through who do have the fortitude, and the guts to do what they think is morally right, but only a few.
As we saw with the Roh mu Hyun's
appointmen of the lady prosecutor to overhaul the system, the young prosecutors rather than worrying about what is due process of law were more concerned about keeping their jobs like spoilt little mamas boys.boys

Korea also needs an anti trust law to break up the power of the chaebals. Standard Oil of New Jersy for example was broken up into several smaller groups, one of which is now Exon in a court case the likes of which I'm sure would be well supported by many prominent Koreans.
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chi-chi



Joined: 15 Jan 2003

PostPosted: Mon Apr 28, 2003 7:10 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

mods you may delete

Last edited by chi-chi on Sat Jul 30, 2005 7:26 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Igen_Weir



Joined: 09 Feb 2003

PostPosted: Mon Apr 28, 2003 9:14 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Bad things:

Because of the general lack of screening and qualifications and the even lower attempts by the Korean Gov't to catch people working illegally, Korea seems to attract a large number of foreign freaks and creeps.
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The King of Kwangju



Joined: 10 Feb 2003
Location: New York City

PostPosted: Mon Apr 28, 2003 10:02 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

chi-chi wrote:
Let's just say that I saw enough hurting animals, handicapped people, women, foreign workers and children to need a break for the time being.


As a guy who lived in K btwn 1996-01, rereading these messages brings back memories of my own ire.

The only thing I can add - and I mean this in the best possible way - is that Korea looks great from a distance.
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kylehawkins2000



Joined: 08 Apr 2003

PostPosted: Mon Apr 28, 2003 11:31 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm really not down with the butt-poking thing. I think I could really do without that....

You know ....feeling a little jab as you're bent over helping little MinJu with ther homework, just to turn around and see some little kid with a big grin from ear to ear with his hands folded together in a little gun shape....

On questioning some Korean coworkers about this I got the response "Becuase it's funny and it feels good". LOL.....never will forget that one!
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jaderedux



Joined: 10 Jan 2003
Location: Lurking outside Seoul

PostPosted: Mon Apr 28, 2003 1:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
however, in the same context, if canadians built military bases around the US and some of their soldiers killed 2 school girls, i think the reaction would be largely similar.


Not too long ago one of our closest allies, the Israli Army accidently killed a peace protester. In Isreal. What happened. The body was brought back to America and the family took care of it.

Were there massive I hate Jew and Isreal rallies...nope. Now I agree this is a little different but it does show that reactions can be different.

Don't want to get in a long protracted conversation about the tragic death of those girls just pointing out reactions in similar situations are different.

Jade
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narsty dog



Joined: 29 Jan 2003

PostPosted: Mon Apr 28, 2003 4:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

If Koreans want to be angry about incident anyway I agree with them, why shouldn' they be . BUT Dan says ' the korean resentment was boiling for a long time' ... thats from a korean american . What exactly was the resentment boiling from ?
there's a term in English called 'having your cake and eating it '. I dont like the US govt. , nor my own , especially Blair - but I do see that in the nasty world of nation states, you pays your money and takes your choice of friends.
with the koreans it s like theres no in between. they'll never vote in party to get rid of the US presence, but they ll put up silly signs and winge and moan and stereotype everyone connected with amercians every time something happens they dont like.


So what was the resentment boiling from ? I felt resentment from Koreans for just being in their country a lot of the time. the first year anmd half i didnt really notice it, but then , spoke more korean, got ripped off more.....
Maybe I m paranoid. Whatever anyone says about korea , it s a place where the majority of the male population resent any Korean dating a korean woman . If I see a white woman with a black or Chinese guy in the street , what do I care ?
Is the 'Korean resentment' something that whites need to pay for ?
You know there' s cut off point where people or nations need to stop blaming everyone else for all their problems and move on. I just dont get it how the Korean media, parents and education system can keep churning out these 'Western conspiracy theory' politically illiterate halfwits that the BBC and other western media outlets praised during the decemvber campaign as being the netizens par exemplar of democracy a fine expample for the West , LOL.


What makes me laugh is how Koreans cant really tell soldiers from the ESL teaching crowd/ other foreigners. I mean they 've only been there for 50 years !!!!!! They seem to have no sensitivity to any foreigners in their mist- i mean korea s like the end of the world like Chile , who goes there ???? I was surprised . I thought foreigners who went there with an interest in the country and language like myself, and other travellers/ teachers etc. would be treated well by the locals. But it seems as if theres always an impending breakout of violence and nervous energy any time a foreigner is around....... In '96 , i took this as new found democracy and lack of exposure. In 2002 i realised after the ohno stuff, that the xenophobia i first felt was always under the surface, was ready to break out like big rash , and then it did.
The girls deaths were horrible. Maybe the Koreans felt a just amount of anger. But the anger seems to come not from a wish for justice but rather a xenophobic hatred and mistrust of foreigners. I dont trust the US government either - but if I had them in my country in such numbers I might vote for party that get rid of most of them - is that happening in Korea? NO.
You can blame , history or whatever, but at the end of the day Koreans need to take stock of themsleves, ( A RARE EVENT IN KOREA) and be a little more self- effacing . Unlikely.
And for those that dislike what i write- read again - I didnt say , they shpuld become western, i didnt say they should bend over backwards for foreigners, i said they need to become more self-effacing, get a sense of humour and laugh at themsleves once in a while.
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The Lemon



Joined: 11 Jan 2003

PostPosted: Mon Apr 28, 2003 4:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
But it seems as if theres always an impending breakout of violence and nervous energy any time a foreigner is around


I first came here in 1996 as well. Except in very rare cases, I haven't felt this at all. "Always" and "any time" overstate the reality of the situation.

I've never felt threatened here. Annoyed, yes. Threatened, no.
And I live in Cholla-do!
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