South Korean President Park Geun-hye accepted the resignation of her press secretary, the “latest humiliation” in a rocky first few months for the nation’s first female president.
Lee Nam-ki was not involved in the sexual assault scandal surrounding former presidential spokesman Yoon Chang-jung, who is being investigated for allegedly touching the buttocks of a young female Korean American intern during Park’s recent visit to the United States. However, as Lee was Yoon’s direct superior, he had offered to resign due to the major distraction to what had been deemed a successful diplomatic trip.
South Korea is not conducting its own investigation of the incident as it awaits the completion of an investigation by Washington, D.C., police, according to the Wall Street Journal. Continue Reading »
A set of photos released by North Korea’s state-run media shows Kim Jong-un touring a camp for children, who are so moved by the leader’s visit they are emotionally overcome.
Kim reportedly visited Myohyangsan Children’s Camp in North Phyongan Province with his wife, Ri Sol-ju, last Sunday, according to the Korean Central News Agency.
Construction of the camp, the KCNA reported, fulfilled the “lifelong desire of the great Generalissimos Kim Il Sung and Kim Jong Il who did everything for the children as their tender-hearted father all their lives.” Continue Reading »
After 3 years, Korean-American still fighting espionage charges in the US
The ongoing controversy in the US over the seizure of Associated Press phone records by federal prosecutors is drawing renewed attention to the 2010 prosecution of Stephen Jin-woo Kim for violating the Espionage Act.
Evidence confirming that US investigators examined the phone records of a Fox News reporter who was in contact with Kim suggests that the recent press freedom violations were not the first.
Kim, a 46-year-old former North Korean nuclear expert with the US Department of State, is still locked in a solitary legal battle with federal prosecutors
How the World’s Dullest Story Became the Target of a Massive Leak Investigation
The Justice Department immediately launched a leak investigation, which culminated in charges against Rosen’s source, Stephen Jin-Woo Kim, an analyst at the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory who had been detailed to the State Department. As part of this investigation, DOJ tracked Rosen’s movements and subpoenaed his phone records.
North Korean Leader Sends Envoy to China
New York Times
The North Korean leader, Kim Jong-un, sent his first special envoy to China on Wednesday amid signs that Mr. Kim’s government was trying to mend strained ties with Beijing and seeking breaches in the tightening ring of economic and diplomatic pressure over its nuclear weapons development.
The envoy, Vice Marshal Choe Ryong-hae, who serves as director of the general political bureau of the North Korean People’s Army, met in Beijing with Wang Jiarui, the head of the international department of the Chinese Communist Party, said Xinhua, China’s state-run news agency, in a report that gave no details of the talks.
His trip is North Korea’s first serious dabbling in diplomacy after months of bellicose pronouncements, including threats to launch nuclear strikes at the United States and its allies. It also comes as Japanese officials set off fears of a policy discord with allies by signaling a willingness to open a greater dialogue, including possible summit talks, with North Korea.
Second Democrat considers 2014 run for 5th District
New Jersey Herald
A second Democrat is emerging as a possible challenger to Republican Congressman Scott Garrett of Wantage.
Roy Cho, 32, of Hackensack, filed a statement of candidacy with the Federal Election Commission, a step also taken by former Congressman Andrew Maguire, as he considers getting into the race.
“I’m exploring this right now very seriously, considering it. I want to see where the fundraising is taking me,” Cho, who works as a corporate attorney in Manhattan with one of the world’s largest law firms, said in an interview Tuesday.
Janice Min: The Hollywood Reporter’s Editor
You can divide the timeline of L.A.’s venerable industry rag The Hollywood Reporter into two distinct epochs: pre– and post–Janice Min. The Reporter pre-Min was a dry, highly specialized daily that was being read by fewer and fewer people. In the 2½ post-Min years, it has evolved into a slick, glossy, thoroughly modern magazine-style weekly. “The only thing we kept was the name,” Min says.
She was helming Us Weekly when Prometheus Global Media then-CEO Richard Beckman reached out to her about revamping The Hollywood Reporter, which he’d recently purchased. She was intrigued. “Creating something is interesting,” she says. “You can focus-group it to death. Or you can deliver things to people they didn’t even know they needed or wanted.”
She saw in her head how it might work. Min wanted stronger graphics. She wanted to break news, “not just cut and paste press releases into another form of paper.” She wanted a fun, smart and informed publication about how entertainment is made in America.
Wolfgang Puck, David Chang and Roy Choi Team Up For Chefs Dinner at Hotel Bel-Air
We contacted Roy Choi about the dinner, who had this to say: “Dave is a friend and a mentor even though the f-cker is younger than me. Wolf you just can’t say no to. He told me, not asked me.”
Kimchi- from Seoul to Chicago’s bellyQ
ABC News Chicago
Chef Bill Kim draws on his heritage to make homemade kimchi at bellyQ in Chicago’s West Loop.
Chefs can use spices and herbs to help add flavor to dishes and butter or cream to add richness. To add a note of salty, briny, spiciness, they often turn to kimchi, which is beloved in Korea.
ABC7′s Hungry Hound discovered how kimchi is made in Seoul, then found a chef in Chicago who puts his own spin on it.
Rookie K-Pop Boys B.A.P. Add Manhattan Stop to U.S. Tour
Rookie boy band B.A.P.’s concert in New York on Friday went off with a bang and an ocean of glow sticks, with fans lining up early just to catch a glimpse of the six-member boy group.
The band, which only debuted a year ago, began their U.S. tour on May 7 in Los Angeles and followed up with concerts at San Francisco and Washington D.C. Tickets for the latest gig at the Best Buy Theater were all gone within 10 minutes of being made available.
American held in North Korea had pledged to ‘collapse’ country with prayer
Earlier this month, North Korean state media finally revealed the country’s case against an American citizen named Kenneth Bae, who had been detained there since November. They listed three accusations: that he had smuggled in a critical documentary film, that he had plotted to bring the government’s downfall through something called “Operation Jericho” and, oddly, that he had “infiltrated” dozens of students into a hotel in the North Korean city of Rason to establish a base of anti-regime activity.
The charges sounded peculiar, even absurd, perhaps reflecting North Korea’s paranoia about religion in general and Christian missionaries in particular. But it turns out that, whatever actually happened after Bae crossed the border into North Korea last fall, he had pledged earlier to do something very much along the lines of Pyongyang’s accusations.
Most Koreans Believe Park’s U.S. Visit Was Beneficial
More than six out of 10 Koreans felt that President Park Geun-hye’s visit to the U.S. earlier this month was good for Korea, but a scandal involving her spokesman during the trip dampened sentiment.
Gallup Korea polled 1,003 adults from May 13 to 15, after the president returned from her six-day U.S. trip on May 10. It found that her approval rating soared to 56 percent during the trip but immediately fell to 51 percent when the molestation scandal broke.
Disapproval of Park rose from 17 to 27 percent over the same period.
School Officials Address ‘Sea of Japan’ Naming Controversy
Patch.com (Fort Lee, N.J.)
Don’t expect the textbooks in Fort Lee schools to refer to the body of water between Japan, Korea and China as “The East Sea” anytime soon. But if the apparently problematic name emerges in classrooms, there will be active discussion on whether it’s “The Sea of Japan” or “The East Sea,” school officials said Monday night.
The Korean-American Association of New Jersey recently presented a petition with 1,500 signatures favoring the name change in the three towns, including Fort Lee.
The body of water has been referred to as “The Sea of Japan” since the 20th century (when Japan took over Korea), but had been known as “The East Sea” in prior centuries, the Korean-American group said. The International Hydrographic Organization, which is responsible for naming rights of water across the globe, has rejected the use of “East Sea”.
World Bank’s Kim Says Universal Health Coverage Can End Poverty
World Bank President Jim Yong Kim said universal health insurance coverage in all countries can help achieve a goal of ending extreme poverty by 2030.
“Every country in the world can improve the performance of its health system in the three dimensions of universal coverage: access, quality and affordability,” Kim said in a speech in Geneva at the World Health Assembly, the annual meeting of the World Health Organization’s top decision-making group. “In all cases, countries need to tie their plans to tough, relevant metrics. All of us together must prevent ‘universal coverage’ from ending up as a toothless slogan.”
Asian American Week 2013: Lower East Side Organization Leads Effort To Help Distressed Asian Americans
A grassroots organization on the Lower East Side is working hard to reduce the high rate of suicide in the Asian American community, and for the first time in years, they believe they are making progress due to the highly publicized suicide of soldier Danny Chen. NY1′s Cheryl Wills filed the following report as part of NY1′s Asian American Heritage Week.
Sentencing Tues. in Biloxi prostitution case
AP via San Francisco Chronicle
A Korean man is scheduled for sentencing Tuesday after pleading guilty to harboring women who were in the country illegally for prostitution.
Moonseop Kim has been in custody since his arrest Sept. 30. He was denied bond in October, when an agent testified Kim had overstayed his visa and was in the country illegally.
He faced counts including conspiracy and harboring of women for financial gain and immoral purposes. He pleaded guilty in March to transporting women who were in the country illegally for financial gain in connection with a sex trafficking operation.
Son Ho Young’s Girlfriend Discovered Dead in His Car
It has been reported that Son Ho Young‘s girlfriend was discovered dead in his car. She has reportedly ended her own life.
The Gangnam police station commented on May 22, “A used briquet, an empty bottle of sleeping pills and a suicide note was discovered in the car,” and “We assume that this is a suicide.” It has been reported that the suicide note contained information about the deceased’s debts and other self-pessimistic messages.
Son Ho Young’s reps reported on May 22, “On May 21, Son Ho Young was in the Gangnam Police Station from 10PM to 12AM to be investigated. Before he received a call from the police, he did not know about this at all.”
Cannes: Park Chan-wook’s ‘Sympathy For Mr. Vengeance’ Getting Remake
Silver Reel and Lotus Entertainment have partnered with di Bonaventura Pictures and CJ Entertainment for an English-language remake of Sympathy For Mr. Vengeance. The script is written by Broken City scribe Brian Tucker, based on the first film in Park Chan-wook‘s Vengeance Trilogy.
The film centers on two men who are bound by their common sense of loss and headed on a collision course of revenge. The other installments in that trilogy are Oldboy and Lady Vengeance. A remake of Oldboy will be released in October by FilmDistrict, directed by Spike Lee and starring Samuel L. Jackson, Josh Brolin and Sharlto Copley.
Psy Becomes First Korean Singer to Win Billboard Music Award
Psy has become the first Korean singer to walk away with a trophy from the Billboard Music Awards.
He received the Top Streaming Song (Video) award for “Gangnam Style,” the most-viewed music video on YouTube, at a ceremony held at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas on Sunday.
Interview: Producer Kyu Lee on Bringing Psy and ‘Korean Wave’ of Pop Culture to US
Kyu Lee grabbed attention last year for teaming up with Justin Bieber’s manager Scooter Braun to bring Psy stateside, touching off the “Gangnam Style” phenomenon. Known in the media industry as “Q,” he connects A-list Korean stars and directors to the U.S., helping to bring Hallyu (the “Korean wave”) to a wider audience.
Born in Seoul, South Korea, Kyu immigrated to the U.S. at the age of two. He began his entertainment career with a ten-year stint at Sony Pictures Entertainment (SPE), where he rose to Executive Assistant to both the Vice Chairman of SPE and Chairman of Columbia Pictures Motion Picture Group. Kyu is also the founder and CEO of Kino 33 Entertainment.
Ken Jeong bares his soul – and body – in ‘Hangover 3′
MetroWest Daily News
Though he stole all audience attention away from every other actor in his brief scene as Dr. Kuni in “Knocked Up,” no one was ready for Ken Jeong’s intro in “The Hangover.” He leaped out of a car trunk, wearing only black socks, and proceeded to beat the tar out of Bradley Cooper, Ed Helms and Zach Galifianakis with a tire iron. That’s right, wearing only black socks. His Mr. Chow eventually became an important character in that film and its sequel. In “The Hangover Part III,” Chow, naked again, of course, is quite often the center of attention. The doctor-turned-actor, who is also a regular on the TV show “Community,” chatted recently in Las Vegas.
Why do you like to be naked onscreen so much?
Chow originally had clothes on in the first one. It was my idea to have him be naked. I was really nervous, asking [director] Todd Phillips if it was OK, that it would be funny to do it naked. And Todd said, “You don’t have to tell me twice.” He immediately gave me a nudity waiver to sign because he didn’t want me to change my mind. I just wanted to service that script. I’ve got nothing to brag about. I wasn’t trying to show off. It was a character choice, not a personal choice. I’m a happily married father of twin 5-year-old girls. I don’t even like to take off my shirt at the beach. I’m really shy. I’m not an exhibitionist. I’m very demure about my body. But an actor acts, that’s why I do what I do. You’ve gotta make fearless choices to be an actor. Otherwise everyone would do it.
Shin-Soo Choo Could Be Good Mets Pickup as Free Agent
New York Times
The first batter to face the winless Marcum could be a big part of the Mets’ future.
He was Shin-Soo Choo, the Reds’ center fielder, and if the Mets really want to contend sometime soon, they should make a strong attempt to sign him as a free agent after the season.
“He’s the big reason why we are where we are right now,” said Brandon Phillips of the Reds, who hold the second-best record in the National League. “Playing against him when he was with the Indians, I always told everybody he’s one of the best all-around players in baseball — underrated. Right now he’s just being himself. It’s a blessing to have him over here.”
Korean high school pitcher averaging 139 pitches per game
Lee Su-min, a 17-year-old pitcher for Daegu Sangwon High School in South Korea, has thrown 974 pitches in seven appearances this season, six starts and one relief outing. He’s thrown a complete game in every start. In his most recent start, Lee threw a whopping 178 pitches in 9 2/3 innings.
Now, obviously with this kind of workload, there’s a reason the coach is doing it. Lee is a stud. He has a 0.44 ERA with 88 strikeouts in 62 1/3 innings this season. And due to the circumstances, both Lee and his coach believe the workload is acceptable.
“Since we’re playing only on weekends, we get about five days off in between games,” Lee said (Yonhap News Agency). “On my off days, I work with professional trainers at a rehab hospital (in Daegu), doing some strengthening exercises and getting massages. I am not pitching on consecutive days, and so it’s OK.”
U.S. Women’s Open golf champion Na Yeon Choi up to the challenge of defending title at Sebonack
New York Daily News
Sebonack, a Jack Nicklaus/Tom Doak design, will provide a different challenge than Black Wolf Run, where Choi was the only player last year to break par for the week thanks mostly to a 7-under par 65 she shot to set the course record Saturday.
How Not to Promote Korean Food
Wall Street Journal
K-Pop videos, high-end restaurants, bizarre food health studies and other wacky ideas to promote Korean food have been criticized as a waste of taxpayer’s money by the South Korean National Assembly budget office.
A total of 21.9 billion won ($19.7 million) was spent on the “Globalization of Hansik,” or Korean cuisine, last year as part of a marketing campaign that budget office analyst Cho Yong-hee called a “waste of time, manpower and organization.”
The budget office’s report criticized the government for “inefficiency occurred by similar and overlapping programs” by a range of government agencies.
Roy Choi Being “Straight Up” About Chinatown
Listening to Roy Choi talk about his new neighbors in Chinatown is like listening to a boy talk about his favorite schoolyard pals. In this little vid from The Hundreds, Choi goes into the kitchens at Hop Woo, where he introduces the chef as the “master of balls,” and checks out Phoenix Bakery for the buttery almond cookies. He calls Hoan Kiem “the most gangsta” place in Chinatown, and Pho 97, “the OG OG pho spot in LA.”
A Korean American couple in Southern California was arrested after police stumbled upon a marijuana growing operation worth an estimated $1 million.
Cops were responding to a tip about a burglary in the tony coastal suburb of Rancho Palos Verdes, an affluent community that doesn’t see a lot of crime.
They didn’t catch the burglar but discovered a large-scale indoor marijuana farm operated by Tom Kim, 37, and his common-law wife Molly Hwang, 45. Continue Reading »