Friday’s Link Attack: OC Bank Robbery, North Korea, Singer John Park
Y. Peter Kang
Author: Y. Peter Kang
Posted: March 2nd, 2012
Filed Under: BLOG
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Bank gunman shot; manager escapes harm
Orange Country Register

Police shot and injured a gunman who held a bank manager hostage Thursday afternoon after a failed robbery attempt, authorities said.An hours-long standoff ended when SWAT officers about 3 p.m. exchanged gunfire with the man outside of Saehan Bank.Police said the man suspected of holding the bank manager hostage was struck by gunfire, while three SWAT officers suffered minor injuries.The female bank manager, who was near the gunman when shots were fired, was escorted to safety, authorities said.

Dallas Korean, black groups make peace, but protest at store continues
Dallas Morning News (Subscription Required)

Korean-American and African-American groups held a news conference Thursday to preach reconciliation after three months of protests against a Korean-owned convenience store in predominantly black South Dallas.

NK, US Sell Their Deal Differently
Wall Street Journal

In the annals of U.S.-North Korea relations, Wednesday’s announcement of a kind of deal in which the North promises to behave nicely and the U.S. promises to provide nutritional goods for a year appears to be one of the sunnier moments.

But U.S. officials were cautious about not over-hyping it and pointed out that North Korea promised nothing it couldn’t reverse or walk away from. North Korea said nothing more about the deal after its initial statement.

Not surprisingly, the two countries emphasized different issues when they announced the arrangement.

N. Korea finds a purpose for small group of ‘friends’
Washington Post

As North Korea tells it, Kim Jong Il has grieving friends all across the world. There are mourners for the late leader in Mongolia and broken hearts in Bangladesh. The Ugandans laid wreaths before Kim’s portrait. The Brits sent flowers for Kim’s posthumous 70th birthday bash.

These friends are mentioned almost daily in articles published by North Korea’s state-run media, as if to tell people that the outside world misses Kim — and supports his son and heir — with every bit the fervor that people inside the country are expected to.

10 NK Deaths in Yeonpyeong Response
Daily NK

Approximately 40 North Koreans were reportedly injured by the South Korean artillery response to North Korea’s shelling of Yeonpyeong Island, according to an inside source cited by Radio Free Asia today.

The source from South Hwanghae Province reportedly told Radio Free Asia, “I heard from this battalion commander that 10 North Korean soldiers were killed and 30 wounded in the 2010 Battle of Yeonpyeong Island. He said he personally witnessed the bodies and injured soldiers being taken to Pyongyang No.11 Hospital by military vehicle.”

“After the Yeonpyeong Island shelling the North Korean military got scared of facing high-tech weapons and stopped wanting to fight the South Chosun military,” the source said. “The North Korean authorities boast every day that they want to go to war, but the soldier’s fighting spirit is extremely weak.”

A look at North Korea’s relations and tensions
AP via Google News

The United States and North Korea have announced a nuclear-disarmament-for-aid deal after their first nuclear talks since the death of Kim Jong Il. Here’s a timeline of some key developments of North-South tensions in Korean history:

— Sept. 9, 1948: Kim Il Sung establishes the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea in the northern half of the Korean peninsula.

— June 25, 1950: North Korea invades the South, beginning the Korean War. United States backs South Korea, while China and the Soviet Union provide support to the North….

Faith leaders tout citizen outreach to DPRK

Korean faith leaders arrived in Washington to promote citizen engagement with North Korea, which has agreed to suspend its nuclear activities.

Venerable Young Dam of the Jogye Order, Korea’s largest Buddhist group, led a multi-faith delegation to North Korea in September, the first visit approved by the South Korean government since the 2010 shelling of Yeonpyeong Island by Pyongyang.

The Rev. George Rhee, a Christian minister, runs the Love North Korean Children, a U.K. charity. Since 2001 he has set up bakeries in North Korea that feed 9,000 children daily with plans to expand into 26 cities.

Lee Urges Japan Over ‘Comfort Women’
Chosun Ilbo

President Lee Myung-bak has again called on the Japanese government to take steps to tackle compensation for so-called comfort women who were pressed into sexual slavery during World War II.

In a speech marking the 93rd anniversary of the March 1 Independence Movement, Lee stressed that in order for the two countries to work together as genuine partners, Tokyo must have the courage and wisdom to face the historical truth. The apology and compensation for comfort women are “a humanitarian matter that must be resolved more urgently than any other pending issue,” he said.

Jonathan Gold’s 60 Korean Dishes Every Angeleno Should Know
LA Weekly

I arbitrarily capped the number of dishes in this guide at 60, but it is clear that the number could just as well be 160 — the more I learn about Korean cooking in Los Angeles, the less I feel I know. The basic unit of consumption may still be all-you-can-eat barbecue meals, a phenomenon not covered in depth here, but the energy is clearly elsewhere. And I am already mourning the omission of Ham Hung’s naengmyun with skate, Young Dong’s sullongtong with tongue, Nakzi Village’s stir-fried octopus, chicken wings at the Prince, the spicy fried rice made from the nuclear-hardened remains of Ttu Rak’s galbi jjim — and, really, any serious pancake. Do not hesitate to tell us about your favorite bindaedduk.

Man accused of embezzling millions returned to South Korea
Los Angeles Times

Federal immigration officials Thursday turned over a Korean national accused of embezzling millions from real estate investors in his home country, officials said.

Doo Young Choi, 58, was flown from Los Angeles to South Korea, escorted by officers from U.S. Immigrations and Customs Enforcement and the Korean National Police Agency.

Choi was charged in May with collecting the equivalent of $6 million from investors for a luxury high-rise that was never built, immigration officials said.

At long last, Michelle Rhee’s funders revealed

Walking Rorschach test Michelle Rhee is back in the headlines this week, put there by a reporter who found a crack in the infamous wall shrouding the funding sources for her national education-reform lobbying powerhouse StudentsFirst.

Whatever you thought of Rhee five minutes ago, prepare to have it confirmed. Her multi-million-dollar backers include top donors to the campaigns of both Barack Obama and Mitt Romney, as well as foundations that back charter school proliferation, so-called parent-trigger laws and public-sector union reform.

Forgotten literary pioneer decades ahead of his time
Yonhap News

Kim’s career writing in English began in 1957 and spanned nearly four decades. He published one book of folk tales, six novels, dozens of short stories, two essays, one television show and one movie (in Korea). He was published in The New Yorker, Atlantic Monthly, Harper’s Bazaar, Mademoiselle, and the Hudson Review among other magazines, had a book of short stories published, and was anthologized several times.

Kim wrote amusing stories for juveniles and penetrating and multi-layered works for adults. His influence went beyond the works he wrote; he also profoundly affected other authors. American poet Robert Bly once commented on Kim’s advice, saying, “I’ve been grateful for (it) for years.”

Yet, today, when we think of successful Korean authors in English, Kim Yong-ik’s name rarely comes up.

Hines Ward deserves to make Hall of Fame

Whether Ward ever sees his bust immortalized in Canton is up for debate. He is certainly far from a slam dunk to get voted into the Hall of Fame, and the odds are currently against him from getting inducted. But he deserves to be there.

Ward should get in for his productivity. He is one of eight players in NFL history to reach 1,000 career receptions.

Ward should get in for his consistency. He averaged 85.6 catches during a nine-year period (2001-09).

Ward should get in for his toughness. He is the one wide receiver who will be remembered as much for his bone-jarring hits as his clutch catches.

Samuel Park’s ‘This Burns My Heart’ was inspired by his mother: New in Paperback
Cleveland Plain Dealer

Park’s nuanced writing evokes unsettled, postwar South Korea quite well, but his portrayal of the complex, infuriating Soo-Ja is timeless. The writer has said this novel was inspired by a marriage proposal his mother received the day before she wed another.

John Park ‘knocks’ on the door of success
Yahoo! Ok Pop

Korean-American singer John Park, best known in Korea for his third-place finish in the popular singing competition “Superstar K2″ and as a shortlisted “American Idol” contestant, has released his debut album “Knock” last February 22.
John Park’s debut was met with critical and peer acclaim, hailing the unique adult contemporary sound the artist offers. In fact, within the week of its release, John Park’s “Knock” has been praised by K-Pop luminaries like Girls’ Generation’s Yoona, veteran Korean singer Lyn, and respected musician Jung Jae Hyung, who all tweeted about the quality of the songs on “Knock.”

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