Aug 19

South Korean police in gas masks take part in a drill Saturday in Seoul as part of joint U.S.-South Korean military exercises

Kim warns troops to prepare for ‘sacred war’ during US-South Korea exercises (CNN, Aug 18, 2012):

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un told his troops to be vigilant during upcoming training exercises between South Korea and the United States, saying they should be ready to lead a “sacred war,” state media reported Saturday.

Kim’s comments came during a visit on Mu Island with troops who participated in the 2010 shelling of South Korea’s Yeonpyeong Island, an attack that North Korea at the time said South Korea provoked by holding war games off their shared coast.

“He ordered the service persons of the detachment to be vigilant against every move of the enemy and not to miss their gold chance to deal at once deadly counter blows at the enemy, if even a single shell is dropped on the waters or in the area where the sovereignty of (North Korea) is exercised,” the state-run KCNA news agency reported.

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Apr 08

The Hunt For Red Pyongyang: South Korea On Alert For Naval Attack After “Losing” 4 North Korean Subs (ZeroHedge, April 6, 2012):

Just because the imminent launch of a North Korean rocket along a trajectory which will likely force Japan to strike it down, something which Pyongyang said would be equivalent to an act of war, was not enough, it now appears that South Korea has commenced the hunt for Red Pyongyang or four, as it is now “searching for four North Korean submarines that disappeared after leaving their bases on the tense peninsula.” ABC News reports that “A military source quoted in a South Korean newspaper says up to four North Korean submarines slipped out of port in recent days and have so far avoided detection. The source was also quoted as saying that Pyongyang has stepped up submarine infiltration drills as the weather has warmed.” As a result, “Seoul is now on alert for a possible strike against a South Korean naval ship.” This won’t be the first time a North Korean sub is implicated in potential wrongdoing: “The South accuses the North of using a midget submarine to sink the corvette the Cheonan two years ago, which left 46 South Korean sailors dead.”

Just more posturing, Or will Kim Jong Un force the hand of either Seoul or in a few days, Tokyo? From Al Jazeera:

Japan has completed the deployment of a land-based system of interceptor missiles in preparation for a planned North Korean rocket launch later this month.

The exercise was finalised in Okinawa on Thursday, days after a similar deployment was completed on Monday in Naha, the capital of Okinawa prefecture.

The interceptors would be ready to shoot down any parts of the rocket that veer into Japan’s airspace.

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Feb 01

Korean research, a first step toward Dr. Smartphone? (Reuters, Jan 23, 2012):

Tired of long waits at the hospital for medical tests? If Korean researchers have their way, your smartphone could one day eliminate that — and perhaps even tell you that you have cancer.

A team of scientists at Korea Advanced Institute of Science of Technology (KAIST) said in a paper published in Angewandte Chemie, a German science journal, that touch screen technology can be used to detect biomolecular matter, much as is done in medical tests.

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Jan 04

See also:

South Korea: Radioactive Seaweed At 0.76 MicroSieverts/Hour From East Coast

2011 Nov 30th South Korea rain radiation 20 microSv/hr from joytek on Vimeo.


rain sample collected from a car hood in Chuncheon, South Korea on November 30th, 2011. All cars were covered by a powdery substance that fell with the rain.

2011 Nov 30th radioactive rainout in South Korea 16 microSv/hr from joytek on Vimeo.


radioactive rain sample from South Korea, Chuncheon collected from a car hood on November 30th, 2011.

South Korea, Chuncheon, Dec 13, 2011, neighborhood radiation (0.7 microSv/hr +) from joytek on Vimeo.


This is the reading on my street in Chuncheon, South Korea, on December 13th, 2011. The pavement is reading at more than 0.7 microSv/hr while the at chest height the reading is about 0.4.

measuring device: Inspector Alert

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Jan 03

2012 Jan 2nd, South Korea, Seaweed radioactivity test (part 1) from joytek on Vimeo.

Breaking News: 0.76 microSv/h from Seaweed from Korean east coast (Fukushima Diary, Jan. 3, 2012):

On 1/2/2012, they measured 0.76 microSv/h from seaweed, which is from the east coast of Korea.(Unopened)

The background was 0.227 microSv/h. It picked up around by 0.53 microSv/h immediate on the package.

This suggests the sea contamination has spread to not only Pacific ocean but also the Korean / Japanese sea.

Related article

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Dec 05


Hilarious: Ron Paul: ‘Why Do Central Banks Hold Gold?’ Ben Bernanke: ‘Tradition’ (Video)

Bank of Korea Says It Boosted Gold Holdings in Foreign-Exchange Reserves (Bloomberg, Dec 2, 2011):

The Bank of Korea, which controls the world’s eighth-biggest foreign-exchange reserves, boosted gold holdings for the second time this year as investors sought safer assets amid Europe’s debt crisis.

The central bank bought 15 metric tons last month, boosting holdings to 54.4 tons, which is equivalent to 0.7 percent of its total reserves, Lee Jung, head of the investment strategy team at the bank’s Reserve Management Group, told reporters in Seoul.

Central banks are expanding reserves for the first time in a generation as the precious metal is in the 11th year of a bull market. Purchases of as much as 450 tons in 2011 may be repeated next year as Asian nations and emerging economies diversify their reserves, UBS AG said Nov. 30.

“They want to diversify,” Gavin Wendt, the founder and senior resource analyst at Sydney-based Mine Life Pty., said by phone today. Investors and “central banks are pretty nervous about all currencies, not just the U.S. dollar.”

Gold has risen about 23 percent this year, reaching an all- time high of $1,921.15 an ounce on Sept. 6 and beating equities, treasuries and other commodities. The U.S. dollar, which typically moves inversely to bullion, is down about 1 percent this year against a basket of six major (worthless fiat) currencies.

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Dec 03

Lower House committee approves nuke export deals with four nations (Japan Times, Dec. 3, 2011):

While the battle goes on to bring the Fukushima No. 1 plant under control, the government moved a step closer Friday to resuming exports of Japan’s nuclear technology as a Lower House committee approved ratification of accords with four countries.

The Democratic Party of Japan and Liberal Democratic Party both voted in favor of the bilateral agreements with Jordan, Vietnam, South Korea and Russia at the Lower House Foreign Affairs Committee.

The full chamber was to vote on the pacts later Friday, but at the request of opposition parties the action was postponed till Tuesday.

Despite the delay, the treaties are expected to be approved by the Lower House and will likely clear the Upper House before the current Diet session closes Dec. 9.

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Nov 27

Robot guards with sensors to detect abnormal behaviour will soon begin patrolling South Korean prisons to ease the burden on their human counterparts, researchers said on Thursday.

Prison guard robot: Three robots will be tested at a correctional facility in the southeastern city of Pohang next March when development is completed Photo: EPA

‘RoboCop’ guards to patrol South Korean prisons (Telegraph, Nov. 24, 2011):

A group of scientists has developed the robot warders under a one billion won (£546,000) project organised by the Ministry of Knowledge Economy.

The robots – 1.5 metres (five feet) high and running on four wheels – will mostly be used at night.

They can connect prisoners with officers through a remote conversation function, according to a statement from the Asian Forum for Corrections (AFC), a South Korea-based group of researchers in criminality and prison policies.

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Nov 04

Hot spot?

These are hot spots:

Tokyo’s High Radiation Supermarket: It’s Radium Again, Emitting 40 Millisieverts/Hr Radiation

AND NOW: 110 Microsieverts Per Hour Detected At Tokyo Supermarket

Kashiwa Government Insists Being Unable To Handle Radiation Hotspot On Its Own (Daily Yomiuri, Oct. 28, 2011)

80-120 Microsieverts Per Hour in Koriyama City, 60 Km From Fukushima Nuclear Plant

Extremely High Levels Of Radiation Detected At 2 Schools In Chiba Prefecture

Kashiwa City’s Radioactive Dirt: 276,000 Bq/Kg of Cesium!!!!!

Researchers Find 6.15 MILLION Becquerels Per Square Metre In Fukushima City (Over 290,000 People), 4 Times Higher Than Chernobyl Mandatory Evacuation Area

Radiation Hot Spot Detected in South Korean Pavement (VOA News, Nov. 3, 2011):

South Korea’s Institute of Nuclear Safety says it has discovered a patch of pavement in Seoul is emitting radiation at levels 10 times higher than normal.

The government-funded research institute says the radioactive pavement was identified during a field investigation Wednesday in the residential Wolgye-dong neighborhood.

The institute says the pavement is emitting radiation from cesium-137 at 10 times the normal background level. The institute says a more precise reading will be released in “three to five days” after further evaluation, but it stresses that the level detected is not dangerous to humans.

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Sep 21

Probably out of ‘tradition’! ROFL!

Hilarious: Ron Paul: ‘Why Do Central Banks Hold Gold?’ Ben Bernanke: ‘Tradition’

Got PHYSICAL gold (and silver!)?

Gold (and silver!) is money, the real money of the elitists, everything else is just worthless paper.

Protect your assets!

Central Banks Net Buyers of Gold for First Time in 20 Years (Financial Times, Sep. 19 2011):

European central banks have become net buyers of gold for the first time in more than two decades, the latest sign of how the turbulence in the currency and debt markets has revolutionized the bullion market

The purchases are minuscule compared with the size of the global gold market, but highlight a remarkable turnaround from a wave of heavy selling by European central banks.

The role of central banks in the gold market will be a central topic of debate at the annual London Bullion Market Association conference, the largest gathering of the gold industry, in Montreal this week.

The switch from large selling to buying has helped propel the gold price more than 25 percent higher so far this year, hitting a nominal record of $1,920 a troy ounce this month. The shift in Europe comes as central banks in emerging markets are also loading up on gold.

Mexico, Russia, South Korea and Thailand have all made large purchases this year, in a move to reduce their exposure to the dollar. Globally, central banks are set to buy more gold this year than at any time since the collapse of the Bretton Woods system 40 years ago – the last time the value of the dollar was linked to gold.

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Sep 11

US Military Plane Forced Down By North Korean Electronic Attack (AFP,  Sep. 2011):

SEOUL – A US military reconnaissance plane came under electronic attack from North Korea and had to make an emergency landing during a major military exercise in March, a political aide said Friday.

The aide said the plane suffered disturbance to its GPS system due to jamming signals from the North’s southwestern cities of Haeju and Kaesong as it was taking part in the annual US-South Korea drill, Key Resolve.

The incident was disclosed in a report that Seoul’s defense ministry submitted to Ahn Kyu-baek of parliament’s defense committee, the aide to Ahn said.

Spokesmen for the defense ministry and US Forces Korea declined to comment.

Jamming signals — sent at intervals of five to 10 minutes on the afternoon of March 4 — forced the plane to make an emergency landing 45 minutes after it took off, the aide quoted the report as saying.

The signals also affected South Korean naval patrol boats and speedboats, as well as several civilian flights near Seoul’s Gimpo area, according to the report.

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Aug 05

See also:

Swiss National Bank Intervention Epic Fail #2

Global Currency Wars Enter New Stage; Brazil Calls Off Truce, South Korea Reviews “All Possibilities”, Philippines Threatens “Prudential Limits” (Global Economic Analysis, August 04, 2011):

Fighting the Fed has reached a new stage: all out currency wars.

The Fed is desperate to tank the US dollar to stimulate exports and further fuel a stock market that is clearly back in bubble territory. However, central bankers in other countries have had enough.

Japan and Switzerland intervened heavily in the forex markets on Wednesday. Other countries, fed up with Fed policies and a weak dollar now threaten to do the same.

For a recap Wednesday’s intervention news, please see

What’s next is already at hand: Currency Wars Enter ‘New Stage’

“We seem to be entering a new stage of the currency wars where it’s not just the emerging markets that are responding to broad dollar weakness,” said Callum Henderson, global head of currency research at Standard Chartered Plc in Singapore, who has written books on currency markets. “Expect much more intervention in the future and further acrimony in terms of how the U.S. dollar is doing.”

Here are some highlights from the article. Continue reading »

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Jul 28

South Korean scientists create glowing dog: report (Reuters, Jul 27, 2011):

South Korean scientists said on Wednesday they have created a glowing dog using a cloning technique that could help find cures for human diseases such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s, Yonhap news agency reported.

A research team from Seoul National University (SNU) said the genetically modified female beagle, named Tegon and born in 2009, has been found to glow fluorescent green under ultraviolet light if given a doxycycline antibiotic, the report said.

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Jun 16

Added: 16.06.2011

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May 22

I have ‘some’ great difficulty to buy that they have really eaten vegetables and fruits from Fukushima and here is why:

I ate Hu Jintao’s dinner; China’s president, and the rest of the politburo eat only organic food:

A stone’s throw from the Forbidden City and Tiananmen Square is Zhongnanhai, the walled compound where China’s top leaders live.

Each day the finest ingredients from all over China are delivered to the chefs in Zhongnanhai, by the Central State Organ for Special Food Supply.

Hu Jintao, China’s president, and the rest of the politburo get to eat specially-selected organic produce and wash it down with Red Robe tea, which only grows on a couple of bushes in Fujian.

Zhu Yong Lan, the head of the special food supply department, said no pesticides, fertilizers, antibiotics, growth hormones, pollution, artificial additives, preservatives, or genetic modification would ever make its way into the food eaten in Zhongnanhai, a rare feat in a country where the label “organic” is sometimes rather loosely applied.

No one else in China can eat this forbidden food. The only foreigners who taste it are guests at state banquets.

And it really doesn’t matter whether they have eaten Fukushima produce or not, but if you eat it you will suffer greatly from it.

(In the photo, from the left: Fukushima Governor Sato, Japan’s PM Kan, Korean President Lee, and Chinese Premier Wen.)

–  Japan’s PM Kan Forced Chinese and Korean Counterparts to Eat Fukushima Vegetables and Fruits:

It was not enough for Prime Minister Kan to make the Emperor and Empress of Japan visit Fukushima, have them eat Fukushima food and bring some back home as souvenirs for the imperial household that has small children (including the future emperor of Japan).

Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao and Korean President Lee Myung-bak had to go along with Kan, visit Fukushima, and do the obligatory “It’s so delicious it is safe” performance by eating cherries and cucumbers grown in Fukushima to counter “baseless rumors” that the food may be contaminated with radioactive materials. (Radiation is a rumor, and safety is a religion in Japan among TPTB, in case you haven’t noticed.)

They are in Japan for the trilateral summit (which by itself irks a growing number of Japanese, but that will be another post).

From Asahi Shinbun (10:29PM JST 5/21/2011):


On the afternoon of May 11, the three premiers visited one of the evacuation shelters (a large gym run by the prefectural government) in Fukushima City. Prime Minister Kan approached Premier Wen and President Lee and invited them over to the table where the vegetables and fruits produced in Fukushima were displayed. There were asparagus, tomatoes, strawberries. The three sampled cherries and ate cucumbers.


President Lee dedicated flowers and prayed for the earthquake and tsunami victims in Natori City, and said “All citizens of Korea have told me to convey their deep sympathy to the Japanese. The courage and the stoicism of the Japanese people (after the quake/tsunami) has so impressed the world.”

Well, I wish they hadn’t been so orderly and stoic. For their stoicity and perseverance, many of them are still living in shelters, sleeping on a floor of a gym and other cavernous public halls, partitioned by cardboard.

I have nothing more to say about this silly performance by old men eating Fukushima vegetables, other than: “When these people say it’s safe, don’t buy, don’t eat.”

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Apr 07

And again the propaganda kicks in that those radiation levels are minute and safe.

I told you several times before that a radioactive particle inhaled or ingested becomes 1 billion times worse than outside your body.

There are no safe limits!

Yet, nobody seems to care about American schoolchildren:

Radioactive Iodine-131 In Rainwater Near San Francisco 18,100% Above Federal Drinking Water Standard

California: Radioactive Iodine-131 In Rainwater 181 Times Above Drinking Water Standards, Has Also Been Detected In Multiple Milk Samples, While US Gov Has Still Not Published Any Official Data On Japan Disaster

US Government Responds to Fukushima by Trying to Raise Radiation Limits, EPA Pulls 8 Of 18 Radiation Monitors Out Of CA, OR And WA

Citizens arm themselves with umbrellas, raincoats, boots

Parents have their children use umbrellas on their way home from school at Shinyongsan Elementary School, central Seoul, Thursday, amid fear of “radioactive rain.” The authorities said the amount of radioactive material in the rain was negligible.

From parents of kindergartners to office workers, the entire nation was gripped by concerns over “radioactive rain,” Thursday, when traces of radioactive material were detected in rainwater on Jeju Island.

The authorities went all out to allay public fears, but the detection, albeit minuscule, made people nervous as they braced themselves for rainfall nationwide. They went to schools and offices armed with umbrellas, raincoats and boots.

The Korea Institute of Nuclear Safety (KINS) said radioactive iodine and cesium were found in rainwater collected in the early morning at a checkpoint on the island. The concentration level of iodine-131 was 2.02 becquerels per liter (Bq/l), that of cesium-137, 0.538 Bq/l, and that of cesium-134, 0.333 Bq/l.

KINS officials said the levels were too low ― almost negligible ― to pose any serious health risks. “Even if a person drinks 2 liters of such rainwater every day for a year, the exposure concentration level will be 0.037 millisievert (mSv), far lower than the 1 mSv government safety standard,” a KINS official said.

Continue reading »

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Apr 03

Remember when the G7 stepped in to valiantly sell yen when the Japanese currency was threatening to take out all of Wall Street with its hundreds of billions in wrong way carry trades? Well, it seems that today’s bizarre sell off in the dollar was due to that particular plan crashing and burning, with Korea defecting from the pact first, and selling its $7 billion in USD acquired in the process of bailing out Japan. It seems it is fair game to buy the Yen once again. From a trading desk:

USD getting spanked today is Bank of Korea selling $7Bn USD it bought during the coordinated USDJPY intervention, and buying GBP and EUR with it. I can understand why they would get rid of the USD, but why buy GBP and EUR with it???? Either way, goes to show how useful it is to do an intervention, they drop the reserves 2 weeks after… we’ll be back to square 1 in no time if everybody follows suit!

Remember – he who defects first and all that jazz…

(and yes, if $7 billion can move the EURUSD by 180 pips, we dread to see what the actual carry unwind instead of just impairment would look like).

Continue reading »

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Feb 20

Feb. 19 (Bloomberg) — South Korea’s Financial Services Commission suspended the business of four local savings banks for six months from today due to a liquidity crunch.

The four banks are Bohae Mutual Savings & Finance Co. and three subsidiaries of Busan Savings Bank — Jungang Busan Savings Bank, Busan II Savings Bank, and Jeonju Savings Bank, the financial watchdog said in a statement today.

“They have suffered a bank run” after the recent suspension of two other banks, the FSC said in a statement after a meeting at 7:30 a.m. today. “We concluded that they will not be able to meet demand for withdrawals, eventually hurting depositors’ interests and credit order.”

Busan Savings Bank and Daejeon Mutual Savings Bank were ordered to halt operations for six months from Feb. 17 due to soured construction project loans. The commission is tightening scrutiny of smaller mutual savings banks, with a plan to buy as much as 3.5 trillion won ($3.1 billion) worth of deteriorating loans made to builders and developers.

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Feb 20

This doesn’t fit with the current perception that East Asian economies are sturdy from a growth and financial perspective.

South Korea’s JoongAng Daily reports on a crisis among savings banks, and the fears of a run-on-the-banks that engulfs the entire industry.

More than a thousand customers lined up in front of the Busan II Savings Bank located in Busan yesterday as soon as the nation’s financial regulator announced a six-month business suspension of Busan Savings Bank and its affiliate Daejeon Mutual Savings Bank.

The line formed by depositors extended about 100 meters (328 feet) from the door of Busan II Savings Bank. “You won’t be allowed to withdraw your money if you are just standing there without a queue ticket number,” a bank employee told the crowd using a microphone.

The government is doing its best to calm people, but it’s not working:

“I’ve saved 40 million won ($35,810) over my whole life. That money was going to be used for my grandson’s marriage but I cannot trust these people [bank employees] saying that I am guaranteed to get my money back,” said Cho So-young, 79.

All told, five savings banks have been put on watch for inadequate capital. They’re being bailed-out by larger institutions:

The state-run Korea Finance Corporation and four commercial banks – Woori, Kookmin, Shinhan and Hana – have decided to inject 2 trillion won of emergency liquidity into the savings bank sector.

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Feb 18

The videos are a flashback and a must-see.

More about Ron Paul:

YAF Kicks Out Ron Paul

Rep. Ron Paul of Texas Wins CPAC Presidential Straw Poll Again

Rep. Ron Paul: Next US Crash Will Be Comparable To That Of Soviet Union, QE2 Is A ‘Total Failure’ And The Fed Is A ‘Central Planning Cartel’

Ron Paul 2012 – Can you Hear us Now?

Ron Paul: ‘Is the Gold Really There? Who Owns It?’

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Jan 09

South Korea said on Friday it had culled over one million animals, mainly pigs and cattle, to contain foot-and-mouth outbreaks that are threatening to keep pushing up prices of beef and pork in Asia’s No. 4 economy.

South Korea have killed 1.1 million animals or about eight per cent of the total number of pigs and cattle in the country Photo: ALAMY

A net importer of beef, pork and chicken, South Korea is also fighting against rising cases of bird flu.

Hundreds of thousands of authorities have been working day and night to slaughter the animals, and vaccinating more than 1.2 million animals, mostly cattle, the agriculture ministry said in a statement.

The outbreaks since last November have led prices of beef and pork to climb in South Korea and might lead to more imports of beef from the United States, Australia and New Zealand.

“Beef supply is getting instable as slaughter places are shut down and transferring animals are blocked due to foot-and-mouth disease,” a separate statement from the ministry said.

“Beef prices are expected to continue rising through a high-demand season of Chinese New Year holidays,” it added, referring to the country’s biggest holidays from Feb. 2 to 6.

Retail prices of beef and pork on Thursday soared 10 and 11 per cent respectively from Wednesday, the ministry said.

Continue reading »

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Jan 03

South Korea, already battling a serious outbreak of foot-and-mouth disease in livestock, yesterday confirmed an outbreak of bird flu at poultry farms.

The H5N1 avian influenza virus has been detected in ducks in the city of Cheonan, South Chungcheong province, and in chickens in the city of Iksan in North Jeolla province, the Agriculture Ministry said.

It said that in response the authorities have culled affected poultry and quarantined duck and chicken breeding farms in affected areas.

The government has raised the bird flu alert to “caution” from “attention”, while its foot-and-mouth disease alert remained at the highest level, the ministry added. So far, 540,000 pigs, cattle and other livestock have been culled.

South Korea has no human cases of the high-severity bird flu strain. It has had three outbreaks of the virus at poultry farms in the past 10 years, the ministry said.

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Dec 20

Related articles:

North Korea says it will strike South if drill goes ahead (Reuters):

SEOUL/BEIJING (Reuters) – North Korea said on Friday it would strike again at the South if a live-fire drill by Seoul on a disputed island went ahead, with an even stronger response than last month’s shelling that killed four people.

North Korea threatens South with nuclear war (Independent):

North Korea warned today that US-South Korean co-operation could bring nuclear war to the region.

Nuclear War Between Koreas: Brought To You By The US Government

South Korean troops geared up today for artillery drills on a border island shelled by North Korea last month despite Pyongyang’s threat to retaliate again, as Russia and China expressed concerns over rising tensions on the divided peninsula.

The North warned yesterday that it would strike even harder than before if the South went ahead with its planned drills. Four people died last month in the North’s attack on Yeonpyeong Island near the tense sea border.

The US supports South Korea, saying the country has a right to conduct such a military exercise. However, Russia’s Foreign Ministry expressed its “extreme concern” yesterday over the drills and urged South Korea to cancel them to prevent a further escalation of tensions.

China, the North’s key ally, also said it is firmly opposed to any acts that could worsen already-high tensions on the Korean peninsula. “In regard to what could lead to worsening the situation or any escalation of acts of sabotage of regional peace and stability, China is firmly and unambiguously opposed,” Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Jiang Yu said in a statement today.

South Korea’s Joint Chiefs of Staff said today that marines would go ahead with the drills as scheduled and that the military was ready to respond to any possible provocation.

“We have a right to conduct our own military drills,” a Joint Chiefs of Staff officer said.

Continue reading »

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Dec 17

Thousands of South Korean men too busy to date are finding solace in a new piece of technology – an iPhone application that offers lonely souls a virtual girlfriend.

The application – devised by South Korean company Nabix – attracted 80,000 downloads a day during the initial free launch period Photo: GETTY IMAGES

The Honey It’s Me! application enables users to interact with the voice of a twenty-something virtual girlfriend called Mina.

The application allows singletons to receive four video calls from Mina a day as well as a shower of love messages from a selection of 100.

A Korean model posed for the video calls and recorded an array of “girlfriend” comments, which range from “Are you still sleeping? Time for breakfast!” to “Good night, sweet dreams”.

The application – devised by South Korean company Nabix – attracted 80,000 downloads a day during the initial free launch period and currently costs a daily fee of £1.26 ($1.99).

Explaining why he created the device, Kim Yoon-Kak, head of Nabix, said: “I’ve developed this application to console people for their loneliness.” The company is planning to tap into a global market of lonely hearts with new versions to be launched in English, Chinese and Japanese, with an Android version also in the pipelines.

Meanwhile, it appears that the reception of the virtual girlfriend technology in South Korea has been increasingly positive among the numerous men too busy with work to find a real life girlfriend.

One user stated on Twitter: “It’s a blessing for all single men.” Another added: “Mina called me while I was working overtime. This is just great.”

Continue reading »

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Nov 29

North Korea has placed surface-to-surface missiles on launch pads in the Yellow Sea and the reclusive state had moved surface-to-air missiles near frontline areas.

The reports came as the United States and South Korea began joint military exercises in waters west of the Korean Peninsula in the face of opposition by China and threats of “consequences” from Pyongyang.

South Korea also ordered residents of an island shelled by North Korea last Tuesday to evacuate to shelters, according to witnesses.

“They ordered people here to move to shelters saying there is an emergency situation,” the witness said, adding there were no details available.

The North’s official KCNA news agency warned of retaliatory action if its territory is violated.

“We will deliver a brutal military blow on any provocation which violates our territorial waters,” KCNA said.

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Nov 23

N. Korean artillery attack leaves island ablaze

Pyongyang says South fired first during military drills

YTN television said up to 70 houses were on fire on Yeonpyeong, about 75 miles west of the capital Seoul.

SEOUL — Fires were burning out of control Tuesday after a South Korean island was hit by dozens of artillery shells fired by North Korea.

YTN said at least 200 North Korean shells hit Yeonpyeong island. Most of the shells landed on a South Korean military base there.

South Korea returned fire and scrambled F-16 fighter jets, military officials said. At least one South Korean marine was killed and 13 wounded, the military said.

However, North Korea’s state-run KCNA news service said that South Korea fired first, Reuters reported.

The clash came amid South Korean military drills in the area. North Korea’s military had sent a message to South Korea’s armed forces early Tuesday to demand that the drills stop, but the South continued them, according to an official at South Korea’s Joint Chiefs of Staff.

During the drills, South Korean marines on the island shot artillery toward southern waters, away from North Korea, the official said. He spoke on condition of anonymity because of military rules.

The skirmish also follows high tension over North Korea’s claim that it has a new uranium enrichment facility and just over a month after North Korean leader Kim Jong Il unveiled his youngest son Kim Jong Un as his heir apparent.

Continue reading »

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Jul 24

Pyongyang ramps up the tension over this weekend’s joint US-South Korean wargames in the Sea of Japan

South Koreans take a look at the US nuclear-powered aircraft carrier USS George Washington at Busan. the ship is about to take part in large-scale military exercises in the Sea of Japan (AP)

North Korea has threatened to use its “nuclear deterrent” in response to planned military exercises by the US and South Korea this weekend.

The regime promised a “retaliatory sacred war” amid increased tensions on the Korean peninsula over the March sinking of a South Korean navy vessel, which Seoul and Washington blame on Pyongyang.

North Korea’s National Defence Commission (NDC), headed by leader Kim Jong-il, issued the threat today for what it called a second “unpardonable” provocation for again being blamed for the incident in which 46 sailors died.

“The army and people of the [North] will legitimately counter with their powerful nuclear deterrence the largest-ever nuclear war exercises,” the commission said in a statement run on the state-run Korean Central News Agency.

Pyongyang routinely threatens war when its southern neighbour and the US hold joint military exercises. South Korea’s defence ministry said no unusual North Korean military movements were detected.

Operation Invincible Spirit, which begins tomorrow, will involve 8,000 US and South Korean troops, 200 aircraft and 20 ships, including the nuclear-powered aircraft carrier the USS George Washington.

“The more desperately the US imperialists brandish their nukes and the more zealously their lackeys follow them, the more rapidly the [North’s] nuclear deterrence will be bolstered up along the orbit of self-defence and the more remote the prospect for the denuclearisation of the Korean peninsula will be become,” the NDC statement said. Continue reading »

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Jul 13

South Korea has deployed sentry robots capable of detecting and killing intruders along the heavily-fortified border with North Korea, officials said on Tuesday.

North Korean soldiers look across the Demilitarized Zone towards South Korea Photo: EPA

Two robots with surveillance, tracking, firing and voice recognition systems were integrated into a single unit, a defence ministry spokesman said.

The 400 million won (£220,000) unit was installed last month at a guard post in the central section of the Demilitarised Zone which bisects the peninsula, Yonhap news agency said.

It quoted an unidentified military official as saying the ministry would deploy sentry robots along the world’s last Cold War frontier if the test was successful.

The robot uses heat and motion detectors to sense possible threats, and alerts command centres, Yonhap said.

If the command centre operator cannot identify possible intruders through the robot’s audio or video communications system, the operator can order it to fire its gun or 40mm automatic grenade launcher. Continue reading »

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May 28

Recommended reading:

Nuclear War Between Koreas: Brought To You By The US Government

South Korean patrol vessels stage an anti-submarine exercise Thursday off the western coastal town of Taean.

Seoul, South Korea (CNN) — North Korea reacted to a South Korean anti-submarine exercise early Thursday by saying it would meet “confrontation with confrontation” and war with “all-out war,” according to North Korean state-run media.

“Now that the puppet group challenged the DPRK [North Korea] formally and blatantly, the DPRK will react to confrontation with confrontation, and to a war with an all-out war,” according the KCNA news agency.

The news agency referred to South Korean leaders as a “group of traitors” and said they would experience “unheard of disastrous consequences” if they misunderstand North Korea’s will. Continue reading »

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May 26


Kim Jong-Il has put North Korean troops on combat alert and threatened military action if the South trespasses in its waters as global stock markets freak out at the prospect of a war which, if it occurs, can be blamed on the U.S. government’s history of arming the Stalinist dictator with nuclear weapons.

Korean markets plunged 3.3 per cent overnight as investors were spooked at escalating tensions between the two countries following South Korea’s allegation that the North was responsible for the March 26 torpedoing of one of its warships

Kim Jong-il responded to the charge by putting his military on combat alert, telling them to “prepare for war,” and threatening action if South Korea trespasses in its waters off the peninsula’s west coast.

On Monday, President Obama also told the U.S. military to prepare for conflict as it plans to carry out anti-submarine and other naval exercises with South Korea.

As we have documented, North Korea’s nuclear belligerency was almost exclusively a creation of the U.S. government in that they armed the Stalinist state both directly and indirectly through global arms dealers under their control, namely Dr. Abdul Qadeer Khan. While labeling North Korea as part of the “axis of evil,” the U.S. government was enthusiastically funding its nuclear weapons program at every stage.

Both the Clinton and Bush administrations played a key role in helping Kim Jong-Il develop North Korea’s nuclear prowess from the mid 1990’s onwards.

Just as with Saddam Hussein’s chemical and biological weapons program, it was Donald Rumsfeld who played a key role in arming Kim-Jong-Il.

Rumsfeld was man who presided over a $200 million dollar contract to deliver equipment and services to build two light water reactor stations in North Korea in January 2000 when he was an executive director of ABB (Asea Brown Boveri). Wolfram Eberhardt, a spokesman for ABB confirmed that Rumsfeld was at nearly all the board meetings during his involvement with the company. Continue reading »

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