Spanish Media Blasts Korean Soccer Star Park Chu-young
Author: Steve Han
Posted: March 9th, 2013
Filed Under: BLOG
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South Korean forward Park Chu-young, who plays for Celta Vigo of Spain’s Primera Liga, is facing a storm of criticism from the local media and fans alike.

Park only has three goals and one assist in 20 games this season, falling far below the expectations levied on the 27-year-old when he first joined Celta last summer on a one-year loan deal from Arsenal of the English Premier League.

“[Park's performance] is not enough to explain the poor numbers from a player whose salary is around 3 million euros [approximately $4 million USD],” local daily newspaper Faro de Vigo reported. Continue Reading »

Monday’s Link Attack: North Korea; Park Chu-Young; Shin Soo Choo
Author: Steve Han
Posted: September 24th, 2012
Filed Under: BLOG
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Signs Emerge Of Economic Change In North Korea

An unusual parliamentary meeting is due to open Tuesday in Pyongyang, the capital of North Korea, amid speculation of sweeping changes ahead. In the first such confirmation from within the country, farmers told The Associated Press they would be given more control over their crops under new agricultural rules. Long seen as an economic basket case, North Korea now could be on the cusp of economic change.

Will North Korea Strike Again In NLL Area?
Wall Street Journal

For months, South Korean politicians and spectators have been speculating about what North Korea may do to influence the outcome of the December presidential election. Guesses have ranged from some type of skirmish in Yellow Sea where there’s been action before, to small-scale terrorist-like action by North Korean agents in the country to a surprise summit between Kim Jong Eun and Lee Myung-bak.

Behind North Korea’s propaganda star, a darker story
Washington Post

This summer, a 66-year-old woman surfaced at a news conference in North Korea to tell of her jubilant homecoming after six years in the “miserable” South.

As a private citizen and a defector, the woman, Pak Jong Suk, made for an unlikely national symbol. But she also had the pitch-perfect tale for an authoritarian North Korea straining for new ways to make its people love their leader and stay within the country’s borders.

S.Korea’s Park Apologizes to People Hurt by Father’s Rule

South Korea ruling party presidential nominee Park Geun Hye apologized to the victims of her father Park Chung Hee’s 18-year dictatorship, saying it delayed the country’s democratic development.

“I understand that the end does not justify the means, and this should be a lasting value for democracy,” Park said today at a press conference in Seoul. “I apologize to the families of victims hurt from the dictatorial rule in this regard. I will try my very best to heal those scars.”

Korean-American confirmed by Senate as U.S. arts council member
Yonhap via The Korea Herald

The U.S. Senate has approved President Barack Obama’s nomination of a Korean-American professor to become a member of the National Council on the Arts to review the U.S. government’s policy and funding for cultural and artistic projects.

In May, Obama announced his choice of Emil J. Kang, the executive director for the arts and professor of the practice of music at the University of North Carolina, to be a member of the 14-person council.

Adoption: My parents have moved on but I’m living in the past

HeeRa Heaser was adopted at the age of two into an American family. Reconnecting with her biological parents in South Korea satisfied a yearning for her roots, but it also left many questions unanswered.

“Our life doesn’t begin at an airport,” says HeeRa Heaser, 31, a Korean American adoptee and a PhD student at the University of New South Wales.

Fall TV Lineup: 2 Shows Star Asian-American Women

Indian-American Mindy Kaling has her own show on Fox called The Mindy Project. Chinese-American Lucy Liu is Dr. Watson in a modern Sherlock Holmes story on CBS called Elementary. TV critic Eric Deggans says neither show gives any indication there might be anything culturally Indian or Chinese about their characters.

Super Sub Park Chu-young First Korean to Score in La Liga
Chosun Ilbo

Park Chu-young scored the game winner with an electrifying finish to see new club Celta Vigo down Getafe 2-1 at the club’s Balaidos Stadium in Vigo on Sunday (Korean time).

It was only Park’s second match for the Spanish La Liga outfit, and the first goal ever scored by a Korean in La Liga.

Unlikely Journey Takes Tour Rookie to Playoffs
New York Times

At the turn of the Tour Championship’s first round Thursday, John Huh was even par, seemingly as relaxed as if he were playing with the Cal State Northridge Matadors.

Wait. A problem with Huh’s high school transcript foiled his enrollment, and he never attended college, unlike nearly all the PGA Tour players who attended high school in the United States.

MLB INSIDER: Tribe likely to trade Choo before end of 2013
The Morning Journal

The question isn’t “if” the Indians will trade Shin-Soo Choo, but rather “when?”

The three most likely times are: 1. anytime during the off-season, 2. at the end of spring training next year, or 3, at the July 31 trade deadline next year.

It’s going to happen during one of those three windows, for two reasons: Choo can become a free agent after next season and his agent is Scott Boras. Reason No. 2 guarantees reason No. 1. Boras clients almost always test the free agent market.

Seoul: backwards and forwards in South Korea’s capital
The Telegraph (U.K.)

‘Do you want extra spicy, too spicy or most spicy kimchi?” asks my waiter in response to my request for the quintessential Korean dish. As I look at him in alarm he rolls his eyes and laughs, says “joking” and hands me a roll of lavatory paper to use as napkins.

I can’t help but think he is right to laugh at me. There is so much more to Korea than kimchi, and nowhere is this more obvious than in Seoul. Long underrated and overlooked by tourists in favour of Tokyo and Beijing, in the past few years the capital has been undergoing a renaissance. Old neighbourhoods are being restored and preserved, the populace is becoming less homogenous and initiatives to beautify the city and make it more eco-friendly are under way. With its ancient palaces, world-class museums, non‑stop shopping and esoteric and vibrant markets, Seoul has everything to offer but crowds.

South Korean Soccer Team Snags Bronze Medal, Military Exemption
Author: Chelsea Hawkins
Posted: August 10th, 2012
Filed Under: BLOG
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South Korean team celebrates their win. Photo via Sports World Report.

South Korea is taking home the Olympic bronze medal in soccer after beating Japan, 2-0, on Friday in Cardiff, Wales. The two teams duked it out on the pitch today, but there was more on the line for the South Korean team than eternal athletic glory: mandatory military service exemption.

Jeff Kassouf of NBC reported that if the South Korean team could secure themselves a medal and beat out Japan, all 18 players would be exempt from the nation’s two-year military service requirement. The exemption comes in the wake of Park Chu-young’s recent attempt to side-step his military service by obtaining a visa in Monaco, where he played professionally in France’s top league.

Scandals and controversies aside, with their win, Park and the rest of his teammates are no longer legally required to serve in the military. Now, the young athletes could focus on their sports careers without pause – or, to quote Kassouf: Continue Reading »

Friday’s Link Attack: Korean Adoptees, Comfort Women, Jane Kim
Author: Linda Son
Posted: May 11th, 2012
Filed Under: BLOG
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With her child’s birth, an adoptee discovers a priceless bond
Los Angeles Times

Former KoreAm editor Corina Knoll writes this great first-person piece on her adoptee experience.

Abandoned in Korea and arriving in the U.S. at 2 not knowing how to hug, a mother who had feared that detachment was part of her nature takes joy in her infant son.

A Day For Forgotten Moms of Korean Adoptees
Wall Street Journal

But even less talked about than that goal is the fact that most children put up for adoption are the product of relationships between men and women who don’t marry. And the shame over that is heaped most heavily on the woman carrying the baby.

That’s why, for the second year in a row, several groups that promote the rights and welfare of single moms (unwed, divorced, widowed, you name it) have banded together to declare that Adoption Day also be recognized as Single Mothers’ Day.

North Korean women sold into ‘slavery’ in China
The Christian Science Monitor

“A lot of women come to China not knowing what they are getting into,” says Ms. Kim, who escaped the farmer with her family but was caught by Chinese police and then sent back to North Korea. “Women are secretly sold in China.”

‘Comfort Women’ Controversy Comes to New York
International Herald Tribune via The New York Times

Now, a New York lawmaker’s proposal to memorialize the plight of the women, often called sex slaves, through a monument and a street in a largely Asian neighborhood of New York City, has brought the passions here.

The legislator, Peter A. Koo, a Hong Kong immigrant, and 50 other lawmakers on the New York City Council have been flooded with letters from angry Japanese from around the world.

Congratulations, Supervisor Jane Kim, On Your First Self-Propelled Bike To Work Day

For some San Francisco city officials today was just another beautiful day to ride a bike to work, but for District 6 Supervisor Jane Kim today marked her first solo expedition on Bike to Work Day. City Hall/bike activist watchdogs will remember Supervisor Kim spent the last couple of Bike to Work days looking sharp on the back of a tandem bike. This year, however, Kim finally took off her training wheels for a spin through the city’s bike lanes.

How Live Tweeted Brain Surgery Reached 14.5 Million People

A live tweeted brain surgery this week reached an online audience of more than 14 million people, according to the hospital that used social media to broadcast the operation.

Dr. Kim Dong of Houston’s Memorial Hermann hospital system performed a brain tumor resection surgery on a 21-year-old patient Wednesday morning.

Robert Irvine Marries Professional Wrestler

On Thursday, “Restaurant: Impossible host Irvine,” 46, wed professional wrestler Gail Kim, 35, in Napa Valley, Calif.

Kim is the reigning titleholder of the TNA (Total Nonstop Action) Women’s Knockout Championship. Also a former WWE Women’s champion, she once wrestled under the ring name “La Felina.” The couple met on the set of Irvine’s show, “Dinner: Impossible.”

Actor Lee Byung Hun confirmed for a role in upcoming Hollywood film, ‘Red 2′

After Bruce Willis sang the praises of Lee Byung Hun for his work on G.I. Joe 2, it seems they will be working together once again. Actor Lee Byung Hun who plays the role of Storm Shadow in the Hollywood blockbuster G.I. Joe series has also been cast in ‘Red 2‘.

Super cars and avatars: Seoul’s mind-blowing future technology museum

Launched in 2008, is the future technology museum run by SK Telecom, Korea’s largest telecommunications provider.

The interactive tour offers a fascinating glimpse into the lifestyle of the future, and how technological advances will impact the experiences of driving, shopping and home life.

Park Chu-young Tipped to Serve as Olympic Captain
Chosun Ilbo

National team captain Park Chu-young has struggled this season as a benchwarmer for English Premier League outfit Arsenal following his summer transfer there, but he may have a shot at redemption by leading Korea’s Olympic team at the London Games.

Hurdle tosses BP to former Steeler Ward

The guy pitching batting practice early Thursday in PNC Park to Hines Ward, and gregariously enjoying it, was Clint Hurdle. Unlike some others who maybe couldn’t ignore their athletic-challenge DNAs against the recently retired NFL and Steelers great, the Bucs manager figured he’d be good for teeing up some cookies.

LAAPFF ’12: Can an Asian Fetish Lead to True Love?
Hyphen Magazine

At its core, Seeking Asian Female is a thoroughly entertaining relationship story (dare I say romantic comedy?), and left me with a few takeaway questions to chew on. If it works out for Steven and Sandy, does that validate his means of finding her? If yellow fever at its base is about sexualized stereotypes, domination, and power, how do you pass judgment when the beholder gets to know the object of desire in a genuine way, and starts to see her with depth and agency? Who am I to judge what someone’s dream girl looks or acts like? Are Steven’s online dating tactics so much worse than how my friends filter through OK Cupid? The film does not put its stake in the ground one way or another, but opens up the opportunity for real dialogue around these questions.

Thursday’s Link Attack: Jeremy Lin, Steven Yeun, Alina Cho
Y. Peter Kang
Author: Y. Peter Kang
Posted: February 9th, 2012
Filed Under: BLOG
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Asian Americans energized in seeing Knicks’ Jeremy Lin play
USA Today

“I’m so proud. I don’t care if he is Chinese or Korean. I had to see him … my boyfriend has been talking about him so much.”

— Christine Lee, a Korean American from Baltimore, is only a casual fan but came at the insistence of her boyfriend, Eric Hong, who has been talking about Lin non-stop for several days. Said Hong, an avid basketball player, who says he deals with the perception that Asian American players can’t play, “but like Lin, you play well on the court, respect comes sooner or later.”

Koreatown Roars Against Gerrymander
LA Weekly

At a packed public hearing Feb. 1 at the Wilshire Ebell Theatre, Koreatown residents expressed rage over a proposed Los Angeles City Council “redistricting” plan — an arcane, once-per-decade element of democracy that most people find about as thrilling as school bonds.

Yet something strange began to unfold as Lloyd Lee, a youngish attorney on the board of the Korean American Bar Association, stepped to the mic and announced, “I would like to welcome you to the political awakening of Koreatown. We are not going to be the quiet group anymore that just hands out money without representation!”

South Korea’s Assembly Speaker Resigns Over Bribery Scandal
New York Times

The speaker of South Korea’s National Assembly resigned on Thursday as prosecutors investigated a lawmaker’s accusation that he had tried to obtain the top leadership post in President Lee Myung-bak’s governing party through bribery.

Exclusive Interview with Steven Yeun from ‘The Walking Dead’
CultureMob (blog)

Allie Hanley: From your standpoint as the actor who has now played Glenn for two seasons on AMC’s The Walking Dead, what can you tell us about him?

Steven Yeun: Glenn is a constantly evolving character. He starts from a neutral place with a good set of morals. When you first meet him, he’s still a kid. He hasn’t been jaded yet. He’s excited at the prospect of being able to live… a kind of new existence. He’d rather it not be the Zombie Apocalypse, but if it’s going to be that gig then he sees himself as an opportunity to assert himself and step up to the plate. His character has an arc and an evolution as he grows… he’s effected by what is actually going on, he’s effected by other people, and realizing that he isn’t just some kid that isn’t worth anything, but that he actually has a lot of value. He could very well be the leader.

Alina Cho is making a ‘special’ effort to bring fashion coverage back to hard-news CNN
New York Daily News

CNN has built a worldwide reputation on hard news; however, anchor/correspondent Alina Cho is introducing coverage of style and fashion to the network’s menu, one half-hour special at a time.

Cho is the host of “Fashion: Backstage Pass,” a series of specials she’s done for CNN when not covering major news for the network.

“The one thing that has been really, really great and really heartening for me is that every time I interview a designer, whether it’s Michael Kors or Karl Lagerfeld, they thank me for bringing fashion coverage back to CNN,” she says.

Korean American missionary to sue N. Korea for sexual torture
Yonhap News

Christmas 2009 was the beginning of a hellish nightmare for Korean-American missionary Robert Park, which left indelible scars on his mind.

He walked across the frozen Tumen River into isolated North Korea to draw international attention to its dire human rights situation. The trip created newfound public interest in Park and his campaign, but changed his life forever.

The Christian missionary from Tucson, Arizona, was severely beaten by North Korean soldiers before being taken to Pyongyang, where he said he was subjected to sexual torture and abuse so horrific he begged for death.

“Several North Korean women surrounded me and did the worst thing to me to try to make me commit suicide,” the 31-year-old said in a recent interview with Yonhap News Agency. He claimed the women laughed at him in a brightly illuminated room as they beat his genitals repeatedly with a club to “make me not to have a baby and get married forever.”

Park’s fans cool on Arsenal Korean tour
Korea Times

Korean striker Park Chu-young has been resigned to warming the bench at Arsenal, which are planning a tour through Asia this summer possibly including Seoul. Some fans are expressing skepticism at the English Premier League team’s “commercial” move.

Dream Team Girls Tennis Coach of the Year: Cerritos’ Alvin Kim
Long Beach Press-Telegram (Calif.)

It was a banner season for Cerritos. The Dons dominated play in the Suburban League once again and took the No. 2 seed into the playoffs. When all was said and done, Cerritos had a 21-2 record and was the only area team to advance further than the quarterfinals in the postseason.

So choosing Kim as Dream Team Coach of the Year – for the second consecutive season – wasn’t difficult. Cerritos has improved in the postseason each of the past three seasons and has established itself as a benchmark program in the area.

Josh Kelley – Naleigh Moon

Josh Kelley, the husband of actress Katherine Heigl has a new music video out starring their adopted Korean daughter.

North Korea unveils huge carving for late Kim
AFP via YouTube

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