Mother of U.S. Citizen Held in North Korea Wraps Up Visit
Wall Street Journal
The mother of Kenneth Bae, the U.S. citizen being detained in North Korea, finished a five-day visit to Pyongyang on Tuesday, but came away with little clarity on when her son might be freed.
In a statement released by the family, Myunghee Bae said that she was able to visit Mr. Bae three times during her stay, and that her son’s health had improved.
But she said the visit also made her “more anxious than ever to bring him home,” pleading with the U.S. authorities to “do everything in their power” to get her son out of North Korea.
Mrs. Bae’s visit comes just weeks ahead of the one-year mark of her son’s detention in the North. Mr. Bae, a tour guide and Christian missionary, was arrested last November near the China-North Korea border and sentenced to 15 years of hard labor.
Damage from N.K. cyber attacks estimated at 860 bln won: lawmaker
The total damage from North Korea’s cyber attacks on South Korea’s computer systems is estimated at more than 860 billion won (US$805 million) between 2009 and 2013, a lawmaker said Tuesday, citing government data.
According to the data submitted by the defense ministry’s cyber warfare headquarters, the North’s latest attacks on March 20 and June 25 caused the most damage at 800 billion won, followed by the distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attack on July 7, 2009, at 50 billion won, and the March 4 DDoS attack in 2011 at 10 billion won, Rep. Chung Hee-soo of the ruling Saenuri Party said.
A DDoS attack swamps selected sites with traffic by seeking simultaneous access via virus-infected “zombie” computers.
North Korea’s cyber attacks have often targeted the websites of South Korean government offices, including the presidential office and the prime minister’s office, as well as local banks and media outlets.
Putting North Korea Aid Efforts on the Map
Wall Street Journal
North Korea has cultivated a reputation as one of the most impenetrable countries in the world.
So you might be surprised to learn just how many outside non-profits, charities and businesses have set up shop in the country formally known as the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea.
It certainly came as a surprise to Jiehae Blackman, who set out two years ago to keep track of all the foreign humanitarian, development, educational and business groups operating in North Korea.
Korean Jailed in Iran for Spying
An Iranian court sentenced a Korean to seven years in prison for taking photos of security facilities. The Iranian government notified the Korean Foreign Ministry two months after the arrest.
Democratic Party lawmaker Park Byeong-seog on Monday said the 44-year-old man identified as Kim was arrested in October last year and sentenced to seven years in jail in September this year.
He was found guilty of spying on security facilities by taking photos of police stations, foreign embassies, military facilities, and border signs with the alleged purpose of delivering them to a foreign government. The court did not specify which foreign government he spied for.
South Korea starts new tourism police unit
Stars and Stripes
A new tourism police unit will begin patrolling areas of Seoul that are popular with foreigners on Wednesday, including the Itaewon entertainment district adjacent to U.S. Army Garrison Yongsan.
The new unit is meant to deter common crimes against foreigners, such as overcharging by merchants and taxi drivers, and help tourists who believe they have been victimized, according to the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism, which launched the initiative.
“We’re not trying to monitor tourists,” said An Sinyoung, director of the ministry’s tourism promotion team. “We’re just trying to provide more service and more convenience for them.”
The unit is also meant to help improve South Korea’s image and prevent visitors from returning to their home countries with stories about being mistreated in Seoul, he said.
Pregnant Soldier’s Death Spurs Debate on Women in Military
Wall Street Journal
The death earlier this year of a pregnant soldier has highlighted the working conditions of women in South Korea’s military and triggered changes designed to support an increasing number of women joining the armed forces.
In January, Lieutenant Lee Shin-ae was seven months pregnant while working in an office at a base in Gangwon Province, which borders North Korea.
One day, Lt. Lee started to show abnormal symptoms, including vomiting. She fainted after she finished work. She was unable to receive immediate treatment because of a lack of nearby medical facilities and was taken to the nearest hospital, two hours away by car.
The next day, she died of a brain hemorrhage after having a caesarean section to save her baby.
The Trials and Rewards of a Simultaneous Translator
Chon Hee-kyung’s life changed dramatically when her family emigrated to the U.S. when she was 11 years old. After graduating from high school, she came back to Korea to study mathematics at Korea University but gradually lost interest in the subject and tried to find something that she could enjoy.
That is when she hit on the profession of interpreter. It seemed an ideal job for her as she spoke English and enjoyed meeting people.
She then studied at Hankuk University of Foreign Studies’ Graduate School of Interpretation and Translation. Now a freelance interpreter, she mainly offers services as a simultaneous translator for conferences and other events.
‘The Walking Dead’: Steven Yeun explains why season 4 is…’beautiful’?
The Walking Dead returned on Sunday. And not only is it the first episode of season 4, but it will also mark the first episode of the Scott M. Gimple era. Gimple, a writer on the past two seasons of the AMC drama, replaces Glen Mazzara as showrunner. Mazzara, of course, himself replaced original showrunner Frank Darbaont. So there has been quite a bit of replacing going on. It’s kind of like a semi-famous Minneapolis punk band or a goofy Keanu Reeves movie.
So what will the new season feel like under Gimple? Well, star Steven Yeun, who plays Glenn, has a word you might not expect to describe it. “This season is very beautiful,” said Yeun when he stopped by the Entertainment Weekly Radio (SiriusXM, channel 105) studio this week. Come again? Beautiful? Yep. Yeun went on to tell Jenna Morasca and me how the emphasis on character development and story will lead to some truly touching moments. Of course, those moments are just designed to crush us that much more when horrible things start happening to the characters we love the most. I know, diabolical.
Hometown Hero: Korean American businessman honors vets
As a child growing up in Seoul 57 years ago, Sunny K. Park remembers having little to eat and learning his first word in English — “gimme” — which he uttered to every American soldier he saw.
“We were hungry,” says Park, 71. “We chased the GIs, hoping somebody would throw us a Hershey bar.”
At age 31, he moved to the U.S., and has built a financial empire in the Atlanta area, recently achieving one of his lifetime goals — paying — not just making — a million dollars in federal income taxes.
Another goal he’s been keeping — doing all he can to honor Americans who went to South Korea in the 1950-53 period who “saved my country and made the impossible possible.”
In Bhutan, a Bid to Turn Basketball From a Royal Sport to a National One
New York Times
With just seconds left in the game, the queen of Bhutan went to the hole like a hungry snow leopard pouncing on a mountain goat, taking two dribbles and three long strides before putting up a royal layup.
Yes, your majesty!
Queen Jetsun Pema Wangchuck’s final basket was just one of 17 she made in a friendly game of basketball last month with nine other women. Basketball may be a street game in the United States, but it is the game of kings and queens in Bhutan.
JD’s Boiling Pot: Cajun seafood in Fort Lee
How it started: When the owners of JD’s Steak Pit were looking for a new concept to try in their second-floor banquet room, they decided to go with a West Coast dining trend that is little known in North Jersey: Cajun-style seafood boils.
For Mother’s Day last year, the Korean-American family-owned restaurant offered on the Steak Pit menu a Cajun crab boil, which was a hit, especially with Fort Lee’s seafood-loving Asian community.
* L.A. trend: Cajun crab boils are very popular in L.A.’s Asian-American foodie scene. “A friend of ours told us it’s huge in L.A.,” says Sarah Lim, whose family owns JD’s Steak Pit and Boiling Pot.
* What to expect: This is eat-with-your-hands don’t-be-timid kind of dining. Tables are covered in sheets of brown paper, and diners are served a large, clear plastic bag filled with boiled crawfish, shrimp, snow crab legs, mussels, plus corn-on-the-cob, potato, and andouille sausage, marinated in a homemade hot Cajun broth.
Cho presses Japan over sex slavery
Cho Yoon-seon, Minister of Gender Equality and Family, returned to Seoul on Sunday after wrapping up her five-day visit to the United States for the United Nations General Assembly Third Committee meeting.
During her visit, the minister called on the international community to act to resolve the decades-old issue of sex slaves during World War II.
On Saturday, Cho visited the “comfort women” monument set up in Bergen County, New Jersey to honor hundreds of thousands of wartime victims who were forced into sex slavery by the Imperial Japanese Army during the war.
S. Korea raises “comfort women” issue at U.N. human rights panel
Yonhap News via GlobalPost
South Korea’s gender equality and family minister on Friday raised the issue of women brought into sexual slavery for the Japanese military during World War II at the human rights panel of the U.N. General Assembly.
Although Cho Yoon Sun, the minister, did not specifically name Japan, she called on “the responsible government” to apologize and take responsible measures in her speech at the Third Committee, which oversees social and humanitarian affairs.
With the advancement of women on the committee’s agenda, the South Korean minister, speaking in English, devoted a substantial portion of her address to “the issue of the comfort women.”
Tabloids brimming with anti-Korea diatribes
For 11 consecutive days from the start of this month, every front page of the Yukan Fuji, a nationally circulated evening tabloid published by the Sankei Shimbun, was embellished with at least one negative reference to South Korea. Some headline excerpts:
•“S. Korea blasts into 20-year-long economic panic. President Park strays from her public commitment. Samsung shares plunge again.” (Oct. 1)
•“S. Korea’s President Park makes self-destructive remark in diplomacy with Japan.” (Oct. 2)
•“S. Korea’s President Park accelerates (her) tyrannical rule.” (Oct. 3)
•“List of toxic foods produced in S. Korea — insecticide found in ‘fresh cucumbers’ ” (Oct. 4).
•“Anti-Japanese radiation propaganda boomerangs on S. Korea’s own marine products industries.” (Oct. 5)
•“Kara breakup drama; final curtain goes down on the Hanryu boom” (Oct. 6)
And so on.
Int’l sex trafficking – Korea’s open secret
By the time Lee, a 30-year-old Korean sex worker in Melbourne, called for help in 2010, she’d been forced into prostitution in two foreign countries and piled up a huge amount of debt.
She says loan sharks, bar managers and even clothing shop owners in Busan conspired to induce her to borrow $20,000. They sent her to brothels in Japan and Australia, where she was forced to have sex with up to 10 clients a day.
Hong, a 26-year-old North Korean defector, thought she would be working in a karaoke bar singing with customers and borrowed $6,000 for a broker to arrange a working holiday visa and for travel expenses last year.
Fond Recollections of Dictators, Colored Later by the Lessons of History
New York Times
MONICA MACÍAS calls herself the daughter of dictators. Two of them.
Her father was Francisco Macías Nguema, the first president of Equatorial Guinea, whose rule was marked by the execution of thousands. But the man who became her guardian, and father figure, was even more infamous: Kim Il-sung, the founder of North Korea and creator of a real-life Orwellian dystopia of gulags and near-total information control.
Ms. Macías landed in Mr. Kim’s care when her father asked Mr. Kim to oversee three of his children’s educations. Like many in the cold war-era third world, the African leader looked up to Mr. Kim. Soon after, Mr. Macías was overthrown and executed, but Mr. Kim fulfilled the promise, educating the children at some of the North’s best schools.
S. Korean gov’t doing poor job of managing N. Korean defectors: lawmaker
Yonhap News via GlobalPost
South Korea is not keeping proper tabs on North Korean escapees, a local lawmaker said Monday, fueling criticism that policymakers are not interested in properly caring for these marginalized citizens.
Rep. Kim Sung-gon, of the main opposition Democratic Party, said as of this May 25,560 North Korean defectors have arrived in the country. The lawmaker said in a report released ahead of the unification ministry’s parliamentary audit set for Tuesday, that of all defectors Seoul was aware of the whereabouts of 23,075 of them, with there also being discrepancies in the information held by different agencies.
Kenneth Bae’s mother thanks N.K. for allowing meeting with son: report
The mother of an American man jailed in North Korea for unspecified anti-government crimes has expressed her gratitude to the North Korean government for allowing her to meet her son in Pyongyang, a news report said Saturday.
Kenneth Bae, a 45-year-old Korean-American known as a Christian missionary, was arrested in North Korea last November on charges of unspecified anti-government activities. In April, he was sentenced to 15 years of hard labor.
THE BOSS: You’d Better Have a Plan
New York Times
MY parents emigrated from South Korea to the United States when my father enrolled in graduate school here for a Ph.D. in physical chemistry. My mother makes the woman who wrote “Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother” look like a kitten. She had strong ideas on how to raise children and pushed my older sister, Lydia, and me.
Lydia and I learned to play piano, violin and guitar and took tennis, swimming and ice-skating lessons. If I got a 100 on a test, my mother wanted to know why I hadn’t gotten extra credit. Her teachings have been helpful in my professional life.
My father gave me math and science lessons. When I was about 4, he bought an early computer and wrote basic scripts for me to type so I’d feel I had programmed it myself. I’d watch my dad go to work every day and decided I wanted a job. After seeing him get his shoes shined, I pitched the idea that I should do it, and he agreed. I was probably terrible at it, which meant he put up with badly shined shoes. Later, his approach to any problem I had was to suggest I think about it differently. I’ve heard his voice when facing challenges.
Victim snaps pictures of crook in attempted robbery
Just a few snaps of a camera phone made a big difference in cracking an attempted robbery case. A suspect has been arrested for trying to rob Clarksville military supply store Army Town at gunpoint. The victim was able to get valuable clues to police when he shared pictures of the crook in his getaway vehicle.
Adam Yoon, of Clarksville, said a man in a mask burst into his Tiny Town Road business last week and pointed a gun at him.
“He aimed the gun at me and said, ‘Give me the money!’” said Yoon.
Yoon said he turned around and bolted out the back of the store with the masked man chasing behind him.
Google Jousts With Wired South Korea Over Quirky Internet Rules
New York Times
South Korea is one of the world’s most digitally advanced countries. It has ubiquitous broadband, running at speeds that many Americans can only envy. Its Internet is also one of the most quirky in the world.
A curfew restricts school-age children from playing online games at night; adults wanting to do so need to provide their resident registration numbers to prove that they are of age.
Until last year, commenters on the Web were legally required to use their real names. A simple Web search in Korean can be a fruitless experience, because the operators of many sites, including some government ministries, bar search engines from indexing their pages.
Punk Band No Brain Sign Deal with Famous U.S. Producer
No Brain, a Korean punk rock band that emerged from Seoul’s hip Hongik University area, have signed a recording contract with world renowned record producer Seymour Stein.
“No Brain [are] unique in performance. I think they have universal appeal,” said Stein, who serves a vice president of Warner Bros. Records and co-founder of Sire Records. He made the comments on Friday while delivering a lecture at MU:CON Seoul 2013, a world music market hosted by the Korea Creative Contents Agency.
The recording will take place in Los Angeles, he added.
IU Went on a Shocking Diet to Prepare for Her Comeback
IU revealed the shocking diet she underwent in order to prepare for her current comeback.
On October 12, KBS‘s “Entertainment Weekly” aired a special interview with IU through the program’s corner “Guerrilla Date.” The singer confirmed that she gained a lot of weight while filming KBS’s drama “You’re the Best, Lee Soon-shin.” IU also stated that she was most concerned with her weight as she prepared for her comeback.
Korean Franchises, Food Makers Expand in U.S.
Korean bakery franchises, coffee chains and food manufacturers are expanding their outlets in the U.S.
Paris Baguette on Sunday opened a four-story outlet in Manhattan’s Times Square, the second one in New York City after one in Koreatown in mid-town Manhattan. Next month, the bakery franchise plans to open two more, in mid-town and on the Upper West Side.
Caffé Bene has eight outlets in the U.S., including one in Times Square which opened in February 2012 and another near the Fashion Institute of Technology that opened in July this year.
Down 0-2 in NLCS, Dodgers place their fate in Hyun-Jin Ryu’s hands
Los Angeles Times
For the Dodgers to advance to the World Series, they’ll have to do to the St. Louis Cardinals what the Cardinals did to them.
“We have to beat their ace,” Adrian Gonzalez said. “It’s that simple.”
So, come Monday at Dodger Stadium in Game 3 of the National League Championship Series, Hyun-Jin Ryu will be asked to replicate the performances of Cardinals starters Joe Kelly and Michael Wacha in the first two games of the series.
Kelly kept up with Zack Greinke in Game 1 to set the stage for the Cardinals’ 13-inning, 3-2 walk-off victory. Wacha blanked the Dodgers for 6 2/3 innings in Game 2, allowing the Cardinals to beat Clayton Kershaw, 1-0.
Former NFL star Hines Ward completes triathlon
Former Pittsburgh Steelers star Hines Ward added a new title to his resume Saturday. Not content with the titles of football and dancing star, Ward now is an Ironman.
The two-time Super Bowl winner finished one of the world’s most challenging triathlon courses in 13 hours, 8 minutes and 15 seconds.
Ward was the 1,680th athlete to cross the finish line after a 2.4-mile ocean swim, a 112-mile bike ride and a full 26.2-mile marathon. He swam a 1:20:01, biked a 06:21:12 and finished off with a 5:12:56 run.
Pitcher Yoon Suk-min leaves for U.S. in hopes of starting gig in MLB
Former MVP-winning pitcher Yoon Suk-min left for the United States on Monday in pursuit of his first Major League Baseball (MLB) contract, saying he would like to earn a starting job.
The 27-year-old right-hander for the Kia Tigers in the Korea Baseball Organization (KBO) said he plans to stay in the U.S. for about three weeks to discuss future options with his agent, Scott Boras, and also to go through his offseason training program.
With nine KBO seasons under his belt, Yoon, who has bounced between the rotation and the bullpen throughout his career, is eligible for free agency this winter.
Don’t Go Pro, Lydia Ko
Amateur sensation Lydia Ko is turning pro and has asked the LPGA Tour to waive its age limit.
The 16-year-old from New Zealand already is a two-time winner on the LPGA Tour — both wins at the Canadian Women’s Open — and last year became the youngest winner in LPGA history. She also contended at the Evian Championship last month in the year’s fifth and final major championship.
The LPGA Tour confirmed that it received a petition from Ko asking that it waive its minimum age requirement of 18.
How ‘hanbok’ is influencing biggest fashion names
Compared with the Japanese kimono and Chinese cheongsam, Korea’s traditional dress — known as hanbok, and worn by women and men — has remained under the international fashion radar.
So much so that when Lee Young Hee, among South Korea’s most renowned hanbok designers, showed her collection in Paris for the first time in 1993, most of the fashion press alluded to her silhouettes as “kimonos” — to the horror of both the designer herself and everyone back in Seoul.
Why Koreatown Is L.A.’s Hottest Neighborhood
Conde Nast Traveler
Nobody walks in L.A.” So sings the one-hit wonder band Missing Persons, but they clearly never hung out in L.A.’s Koreatown. The three-square-mile district just west of downtown has recently exploded into a hub for creative types and a magnet for hipsters—and it’s actually pedestrian-friendly. Come November, the cool quotient goes up again with the opening of The Line hotel (from the team behind Manhattan’s NoMad), which brings the city’s best Korean-American tastemakers together to create the nabe’s next hot spot. The Line (213-381-7411; doubles from $240) will feature two restaurants (both helmed by Korean BBQ master Roy Choi), a swank retro-themed lounge from L.A. bar scene VIPs the Houston Brothers, as well as an outpost of local design shop Poketo from Angie Myung. But the hotel isn’t the only place these folks are making waves; they’re the force behind K-Town’s rise in general. That’s why we tapped them, along with another trendsetter, LACMA curator Christine Y. Kim, to share their personal picks for the area’s musts:
Frugal Find: Isaan Station in Koreatown
Los Angeles Magazine
Like its spicy grilled meats and tonsil-searing salads, the cuisine of Isaan, in northeastern Thailand, has caught fire in L.A. The eight-month-old Isaan Station, located in Koreatown’s neon-lit nightlife zone, puts a stylized spin on the region’s street food scene. Thai hip-hop blares and campy vintage radios decorate the walls, but the kitchen stays true to Isaan’s rustic classics. Goong chae nam pla is shrimp sashimi bathed in chili and garlic, sliced beef nahm dtok nue, or waterfall beef salad, arrives gritty with crushed roasted chilies, and a cockle salad unites shaved lemongrass and volcanic prik kee noo peppers.
The mother of the Kenneth Bae, the Korean American missionary detained in North Korea for the past 11 months, visited her son in the hospital after arriving in Pyongyang today.
During his imprisonment, Bae has been suffering from health problems including diabetes, kidney stones, a fatty liver and back pain. He was moved to a hospital two months ago because of his deteriorating health.
Myunghee Bae, the mother of the 48-year-old, was granted a five-day trip into the isolated country after pleading with the North Korean government to see her son. According to Kenneth’s sister, Terri Chung, the family arranged the trip through the assistance of a Swedish ambassador. Continue Reading »
South Korea Says North Restarted Nuclear Reactor
New York Times
South Korea’s main intelligence agency confirmed on Tuesday that North Korea has restarted a Soviet-era nuclear reactor that has been used to obtain plutonium for bombs, according to South Korean legislators.
Nuclear experts in the United States, including at the U.S.-Korea Institute at Johns Hopkins University, reported last month that satellite photographs indicated that North Korea had restarted the five-megawatt reactor at its main nuclear complex in Yongbyon, north of Pyongyang, the capital.
Two lawmakers — Cho Won-jin from the governing party and Jung Cheong-rae from the opposition — told reporters at a joint news briefing on Tuesday that Nam Jae-joon, the director of the National Intelligence Service of South Korea, confirmed the restart during a closed parliamentary session. The two lawmakers were designated by their parties to relay the news to reporters.
Hungry and isolated, North Korea courting luxury travelers
Los Angeles Times
With the exception of eccentric former NBA star Dennis Rodman, there are probably few people on the planet who have North Korean spas and sports centers on their list of things to see before they die.
The Hermit Kingdom has in recent years built a half dozen luxury hotels, where a single night in a deluxe room would cost the average North Korean worker more than 80% of his annual income. Pyongyang has also opened a mountain retreat for South Koreans’ occasionally permitted family reunion visits and a beach resort at a secluded bay at Wonsan, late “Dear Leader” Kim Jong Il’s favorite vacation spot.
Now comes word that shock brigades of soldiers have been deployed to finish a lavish ski resort at Masik Pass by Thursday — not that there will be any snowpack yet, or ski lifts, for that matter. The full-scale rush, which has builder-conscripts lugging concrete blocks on their backs up the denuded slopes, is aimed at having the resort ready to coincide with the 68th anniversary of the founding of the Korean Workers’ Party.
East Sea in Virginia gubernatorial race
An unusual issue has cropped up in the gubernatorial race of the U.S. state of Virginia — what to call the body of water between Korea and Japan.
Terry McAuliffe, a Democratic candidate, on Monday threw his weight behind a grass-roots campaign to have the name “East Sea” used in the textbooks of public schools in the state just south of Washington, D.C.
“The body of water known, alternately, as the East Sea or the Sea of Japan, should be properly labeled with both names,” McAuliffe told reporters after a meeting with the Voice of Korean Americans (VoKA). VoKA was launched in January to promote the use of “the East Sea.”
Korean Air in Dallas Emergency Landing
A Korean Air passenger plane was forced to make an emergency landing at Dallas-Fort Worth Airport on Sunday due to engine trouble.
The Boeing 777 took off from Dallas at 11:35 a.m. and headed toward Korea carrying 223 passengers. When it reached an altitude of around 760 m around 30 minutes later, a warning light appeared in the cockpit showing a problem with the engine on the left wing.
The pilot followed procedure and attempted an emergency landing at Dallas after shutting off the problematic engine.
Up to 6 bikers involved in beating of SUV driver, court papers say
Los Angeles Times
As many as six motorcyclists were involved in the beating of an SUV driver following a wild chase along the west side of Manhattan, according to charges filed when a new suspect was arraigned on Tuesday.
Craig Wright, 29, of Brooklyn, was arraigned on charges including gang assault, assault and unlawful imprisonment and held in lieu of a $150,000 bail bond. He is the fourth motorcyclist to be charged in the attack and the third to be accused of dragging the driver, Alexian Lien, out of his SUV and beating him. Wright is scheduled to return to court on Friday to allow time for the grand jury to look at the charges.
On Sept. 29, Lien, his wife and their 2-year-old child were in a black Range Rover traveling on a west side highway when a motorcyclist slowed down and came in contact with the vehicle. The group slowed down and then Lien sped up the highway with the bikers in pursuit. The SUV ran over at least one motorcyclist, who was injured, according a video of the incident shot by another motorcyclist.
New York man killed in I-395 crash in Waterford
The Day (Connecticut)
Police said a Brooklyn, N.Y., man was killed Sunday night in a three-car accident on Interstate 395 south near Exit 77.
Police said Calvin Kim, 44, was traveling south on I-395 when his BMW 328 struck a deer and became disabled in the left lane. Police said Kim did not have his hazard lights turned on.
A second vehicle driven by Michael Pinkerton of Waterford stopped in the left lane 50 feet south of where Kim’s car was stopped. Police said Pinkerton exited his car, walked towards Kim and told him to turn his hazard lights on so that oncoming vehicles could see the car.
Police said that Kim, who was not in his car, returned to his vehicle and opened the driver’s side door and reached inside to turn on the lights.
51-year-old knives teenager for smoking
A 51-year-old self-employed man was detained by police Tuesday for stabbing a teenager who was smoking.
According to the Songpa Police Station in southern Seoul, the man named Seo stabbed the 17-year-old boy in the abdomen on the street with a 22-centimeter-long knife, Monday, after spotting the teenager smoking near his home.
The man then chased the boy who was running away but lost him, according to the police. The schoolboy reported the attack and was hospitalized. Officers then apprehended Seo upon receiving the report.
Walking Dead’s Steven Yeun Talks Glenn’s New Role, Governor Vendetta and ‘Eating S#%&’!
While you were counting down the days (minutes, seconds) until the fourth season premiere of The Walking Dead (Sunday at 9/8c on AMC), we were grilling Steven Yeun, who plays newly minted badass Glenn.
We would’ve been happy if he’d dropped a teaser or two, but instead, the actor not only revealed the significance of the episode’s title (“30 Days Without an Accident”), he also offered updates on his post-apocalyptic counterpart’s relationship with fiancée Maggie and hunger for revenge against the Governor, and hinted at how his new role in the group would impact his penchant for “eating s–t.” (In short, not a lot.)
Drunken Tiger, Yoon Mi Rae & Bizzy Find ‘The Cure’: Exclusive Video Interview
Hip-hop power couple Drunken Tiger and Yoon Mi Rae are perhaps the most respected rap artists in Korea today. The couple revolutionized the Korean music industry through their cultivation of the then-nascent hip-hop genre in Korea during the 1990s and early 2000s. Years later, with longtime collaborator and talented rapper Bizzy by their side, their lives and careers have only gained more momentum.
The trio started 2013 off with a bang, releasing a project single entitled, “Sweet Dreams,” (which peaked at No. 13 on the K-Pop Hot 100 in January, 2013) under the group name MFBTY, an acronym that stands for “My Fans Better Than Yours.” The group also contributed to the expansion, and validation, of Korean hip-hop at MIDEM in France, one of the world’s largest music festivals.
Months later, the trio is back at it again, continuing their story through the mini-single “The Cure,” the first album of three released from the group’s upcoming “trilogy” project. The title track, which peaked at No. 6, is an inspirational song dedicated to Tiger’s father, who is currently battling cancer. He and Bizzy stridently rap encouraging words, while Yoon Mi Rae mellows things down with her warm vocals.
VIFF 2013: 9 Muses of Star Empire director exposes K-Pop’s dark side
FROM GIRLS GENERATION to Super Junior, everyone wants a piece of the beats-and-ballad-driven, glamour-obsessed multibillion dollar industry of South Korea, otherwise known as K-Pop. With thousands of dollars invested in each act, however, expectations run extreme.
And it’s upon the shoulders of the young, still-developing talent that the pressure falls.
Lee Harkjoon’s no-holds-barred documentary 9 Muses of Star Empire exposes K-Pop girl- and boy-bands as literal sweat-shops. Focussing on 9 Muses, members are shown being run through exhaustive choreography training and constantly berated by emotionally abusive management. There are plenty of tears, rampant depression, and team-destroying internal competition. Almost every member expresses the desire to leave the group and go solo. Morale is virtually nonexistent.
K-pop singer Rain to hold concert tour of 4 Japanese cities
South Korean pop icon Rain will hold a concert tour in four Japanese cities next month, his management agency said Tuesday.
The “2013 Rain Zepp Tour: Story of Rain” will begin with performances in Nagoya on Nov. 14-15 and will also take him to Fukuoka on Nov. 17-18 and Osaka on Nov. 20-21 before his shows in Tokyo on Nov. 25-28, according to Cube DC.
“Visitors will be able to see the brilliant history of Rain who marks the 11th anniversary of his debut this year in the shows,” the company said in a release.
Have I ever got an Izakaya for Kou!
First off, I’m sure many of you are scratching your head with a “say what?” expression, so if you haven’t had the pleasure of dining in an Izakaya, here’s the breakdown.
What is an Izakaya (pronounced ee-ZAH-ka-ya)?
Think Japanese gastropub crossed with a creative tapas bar generating a high-octane party vibe, which equals the perfect place for hanging out with your friends. The name literally means “stay sake shop” so grab a seat (or one of the four private tatami rooms) and plan on staying for a while.
The brand spanking new Izakaya Hashiburo Kou is located on the corner of Fillmore & Geary. Only a block from the Kabuki, it’s perfect for après-film.
Previously, this was a nondescript, cavernous Korean restaurant. Nine months of tasteful tender loving care has led to the birth of one hip, zen-like, bring-the-outdoors-in (complete with a living plant wall and reclaimed wood) baby. Love the long counter seating where you can watch Chef Nick and the team in action.
Food Truck Pioneer Battles Food Deserts With High Cuisine
What do restaurant chefs dream of? Most would be satisfied with a great review, a full house every night, maybe a restaurant or three of their own, a television show.
Not Roy Choi.
Choi has cut his own unconventional path to fame and success in the restaurant world, as his forthcoming book, L.A. Son: My Life, My City, My Food, shows. Out Nov. 5, it’s a memoir and collection of recipes documenting Choi’s transformation from drug addict and gambler to one of Los Angeles’ most admired and charismatic civic leaders, one who is raising the bar on what it means for chefs to serve and feed their communities.
Chef Roy Choi, founder of Kogi BBQ in Los Angeles, says the world’s top chefs need to reach out to people in their communities who can’t afford their restaurants but can appreciate delicious food.
About five years ago, Choi got inspired by the Latin American food trucks of Los Angeles and decided to put his own spin on them, tapping his Korean roots and his training at the Culinary Institute of America.
Signs Suggest North Korea Has Restarted Nuclear Reactor
New York Times
North Korea’s main nuclear complex was discharging hot wastewater in a further sign that the country has restarted a Soviet-era nuclear reactor there that it had used to obtain plutonium fuel for atomic bombs, an American research institute said on Thursday.
Using commercial satellite imagery, the U.S.-Korea Institute at Johns Hopkins University has been monitoring the nuclear complex in Yongbyon, north of Pyongyang, the North Korean capital. Last month, it reported that satellite images from late August showed steam emerging from a generator building adjacent to the five-megawatt reactor, which it said suggested that North Korea was following through on its vow to restart it.
The restarting of the reactor means that the country can produce weapons fuel again. Until the reactor was shut down in 2007 in a short-lived nuclear disarmament deal with Washington, its spent fuel had been the source of plutonium fuel for the North, which conducted three underground nuclear tests between 2006 and last February. North Korea has also said it is running a uranium enrichment program that can provide it with another type of bomb fuel: highly enriched uranium.
The Venerable Jaseung has, of late, become good at saying sorry. When eight senior monks were caught smoking and boozing over a game of high-stakes poker in a hotel room last year, the leader (pictured) of the Jogye order, South Korea’s biggest Buddhist sect, led the 108-bow repentance. Many thought he should resign. He assured them he would not run for election again. But on September 16th, he belatedly entered the race—and swiftly apologised for doing so.
He joins four others in a bid to win an election on October 10th to lead 24 chief monks and 10m faithful, and manage 2,500 temples, an annual budget of 33 billion won ($30m) and millions more in property—including lucrative cultural monuments and tracts of land leased to the government as national parks. The Venerable Boseon, Venerable Jaseung’s main rival, says the gambling binge proves the order needs “a complete makeover”. Monks, he says, should return to meditation, and tougher penalties should be meted out for mischief.
‘We were placed in grave danger by a mob of reckless and violent motorcyclists’: wife of SUV driver attacked by bikers in upper Manhattan
New York Daily News
The wife of a man who was attacked after a hell-on-wheels chase through upper Manhattan released a statement on Thursday, saying that they were trying to escape a mad mob of motorcyclists when they struck a biker and fled.
Alexian Lien, 33, was beaten and slashed by the bikers in front of his wife, Rosalyn Ng, and their 2-year-old daughter after a terrifying 4-mile chase that erupted after a fender bender on the Henry Hudson Parkway on Sunday.
Ng — in her first public words since the harrowing attack — said there was no way to avoid the riders who interrupted what was supposed to be a pleasant afternoon with their family.
Jesuit volunteer dies on bike ride
Spokesman-Review (Spokane, Wash.)
Eunjey Cho, 25, had traveled the world before he arrived in Spokane as a volunteer for Jesuit Volunteer Corps Northwest in 2012. After serving here for a year, he set out on a fundraising bicycle journey across the country together with his friend and fellow Jesuit volunteer, John McGuin.
They named their journey “Spoke to Coaaaaaaaast!!” on the FirstGiving donation website and set a goal of raising $2,400 before reaching Cho’s hometown of Princeton, N.J.
Cho never made it home.
He was hit by a car Sept. 18 while riding his bike just outside Grand Junction, Colo., and died at a nearby hospital.
South Korean students are ditching US schools for Made-in-China degrees
In yet another blow to the US export machine, China may be trumping America in its offerings of college education for foreigners.
According to new data from South Korea’s ministry of education, South Korean students who have long been attracted to universities in the US are opting Chinese universities instead. The reason? China is undercutting US educators on price and offers the opportunity to learn Mandarin, now a coveted job skill.
The country has long been a major exporter of students, second only to China and India. Like China and India, the top destination for Koreans has been the US and other English-speaking countries. (An overseas degree is considered an advantage in South Korea’s extremely competitive job market.) But over the past few years, the number of Korean students studying in China has been rising faster than the rate of those going to the US. According to the government data, the number of Korean students studying in China more than tripled between 2001 and 2012, to 62,855, compared to 73,351 Korean students in the US, which was only a 50% increase over the same period.
Busan: Asia’s Stars, Industry Giants Gather for Festival Opening Gala
Some of the biggest names in Asian cinema gathered here on Thursday evening for the launch of the region’s biggest film festival, which kicked off with the world premiere of Bhutanese musical drama Vara: A Blessing.
Box office revenues are booming in Asia, and the region’s premier film event, which takes over the city’s Haeundae beachfront, is attracting more attention than ever this year.
“I’d like to welcome film fans from Busan and cineasts from near and far to the festival,” said Busan mayor and Busan International Film Festival chairman Hur Nam-sik. “The festival has established itself as a global event thanks to your passionate support. We are happy to present quality works in return.”
Kim Jee-Woon Directing Ed Brubaker’s ‘Coward’ (EXCLUSIVE)
Korean director Kim Jee-woon is turning to crime, coming on board to helm the movie adaptation of Ed Brubaker’s “Coward.”
The attachment comes on the eve of the premiere of Kim’s latest film, “The X,” at the Busan Intl. Film Festival. His best-known Korean titles are “I Saw the Devil” and “A Bittersweet Life”; he made his English-language debut earlier this year on Arnold Schwarzenegger actioner “The Last Stand.”
Jamie Patricof and Lynette Howell of Electric City Entertainment are producing. Nick Meyer’s Sierra/Affinity is attached to finance the project and handle international sales.
Postmortem on Cincinnati Reds’ season: Shin-Soo Choo’s future among hot topics after Reds’ loss
Shin-Soo Choo has no doubt the Reds will be back in the playoffs, but he doesn’t know if he will be with them.
Choo scored both runs in the Reds’ 6-2 wild-card game loss to the Pirates on Tuesday, homering in what may have been his final at-bat in a Reds uniform.
Choo said he certainly wanted more, hoped for more and thought the Reds had a chance to do more than play a single postseason game.
Inbee Park seeks to regain winning form at inaugural Reignwood Classic in Beijing
South Korea’s Inbee Park will seek to regain her dominant form with a strong showing at the inaugural Reignwood LPGA Classic in Beijing.
Park, the world No. 1, is being joined by third-ranked American Stacy Lewis at the tournament, which begins Thursday.
Park swept the first three major championships of the season, and has added three other U.S. LPGA Tour wins this year.
Faded Dreams of Riches Drive Pursuit of a Celebrated Fungus
New York Times
The dusty white pickup truck rolled to a stop on the edge of the Oregon woods, where a father-and-son team of mushroom buyers, the Souvannasays, had set up their tent and scale. “Five,” John Souvannasay said before the driver could even open his mouth. With a resigned nod, the man shoved the gear knob into park.
Some commercial hubs obsess over the price of stock shares, or real estate, or in centuries past, tulip bulbs. This dot of a town in south central Oregon, population 135, briefly flowers each fall into a global capital of the wild mushroom trade, with all eyes fixed on a commodity that few Americans have tasted, or perhaps even heard of: the matsutake.
South Korea Is Finally Getting a Robot Theme Park
Disneyland? Meh. Universal Studios? Been there, done that. Robot Land? Now, we’re talking.
For years now, there has been talk in South Korea about a robot theme park. Construction was supposed to start in 2009, but it never happened. (Heck, several years ago, I spent some time in South Korea talking to researchers about it for a magazine article.) There was a website and lots of talk, but construction never started. Until now.
Recently, the park held a groundbreaking ceremony to mark the start of construction. That means Robot Land is really happening. Or rather, building Robot Land is really happening! Above, you can see an image from the ceremony.
Newborn White Lion Cubs In South Korea
Voice of America
Officials at South Korea’s Everland zoo park displayed for the first time Tuesday two rare newborn white lions in the city of Yongin.
White lions are a rare color mutation, with only about 300 specimens left in the world.
The two newborns have brought the total number of white lions at the Samsung Everland’s ecological safari “Lost Valley” park to eight.