Seoul to Mark 3rd Anniversary of Cheonan Sinking
President Park Geun-hye is to preside on Tuesday over a ceremony at the National Cemetery in Daejeon marking the sinking of the Navy corvette Cheonan in 2010.
It will be attended by the families of 46 South Korean sailors who died in the attack, as well as the widow of Navy Warrant Officer Han Joo-ho, who drowned during the search for survivors.
Park hopes to send a strong warning to North Korea against further provocations.
Behind the veil: A rare look at life in North Korea
Olaf Schuelke is a self-taught Germany documentary photographer based in Singapore. These are his images and observations formed during a tour of North Korea in 2012. You can see more photos of Schuelke’s North Korea trip on his website.
The Lonely Days of President Park Geun-hye
President Park Geun-hye usually arrives at her office in Cheong Wa Dae between 9 and 10 a.m. from her sleeping quarters in the compound three to four minutes by car.
Unless she has official appointments elsewhere, the only trips she makes are from her quarters to her office and back. She is said to be an early riser, getting up at around 4:30 a.m. for the past 15 years. Aides say the routine has not changed since she moved into Cheong Wa Dae.
She begins her day reading various reports from Cabinet members and surfs the Internet. She also makes a point of reading critical online posts.
As the eldest daughter of former President Park Chung-hee, she served as the de facto first lady after her mother was assassinated in 1974. In those days, she would have breakfast with her father. Now, she has breakfast alone.
Editorial: Get to the bottom of Kenneth Bae’s detention in North Korea
DON’T forget about Kenneth Bae. North Korean officials arrested the Lynnwood man last November, reportedly after he led tourists into the reclusive country.
Four months later, he remains in custody.
The U.S. State Department, which does not have an official presence in Pyongyang, is mum on the topic of Bae’s status and health. Members of Washington state’s congressional delegation also are hesitant to speak.
Asian Americans attack cultural labels at summit on stereotypes
Los Angeles Times
More than 200 participants gathered in Little Tokyo on Saturday to talk – and tweet – candidly about persistent negative images damaging to their ethnic group, especially when it comes to family, education, politics and news coverage.
Participants converged on Little Tokyo for “Beyond the Bad and the Ugly,” the first ever summit on Asian American stereotypes. Some sported buttons with labels touting them as thugs, geeks, players and FOBs, or “fresh off the boat.”
“Don’t be afraid,” a moderator urged at the start, and participants didn’t hold back, attacking offensive stereotypes of some members of their ethnic group that ranged from sexless nerds to predatory temptresses.
Kim Jang-hoon Plans Center for ‘Comfort Women’ in New Jersey
Singer Kim Jang-hoon will build a center in New Jersey dedicated to raising awareness of women forced into sexual slavery by the Japanese Imperial Army during World War II. He revealed the plan on his Me2day account on Friday, adding the hope that the move will have a nationwide impact there.
Jamie Chung discusses new flick ‘Eden’ and role on JJ Abrams pilot ‘Believe’ filming in New York
New York Daily News
Jamie Chung remembers vividly the dreaded call a few years ago when her strict Korean mother discovered her deepest secret:
That her little girl was actually a professional actress on “Days of Our Lives.”
“I got a call from my mom one day and she said, ‘Are you on a soap opera?’ So and so’s mom ‘told me you were on a soap opera,’ ” Chung told the Daily News, able to laugh at it now.
Freedom’s Daniel Dae Kim narrates “Linsanity”
The Morning Call (Allentown, Pa.)
Freedom grad Daniel Dae Kim and star of CBS’ reboot of “Hawaii Five-0″ is the narrator for “Linsanity,” the documentary about basketball sensation Jeremy Lin and his rise from obscurity to the covers of Time Magazine and Sports Illustrated to become one of the best known Asian American stars since Bruce Lee.
Although as a high school and college athlete, Lin impressed coaches with his ability, he was never offered any athletic scholarships and was undrafted out of college. But when he joined the New York Knicks as a backup,other player’s injuries gave him the chance to play and the rest is history. Lin scored more points in his first five NBA starts than any other player in the modern era.
K-Pop Fans Raise Hell After Popular Videos Get Blocked on YouTube
What do K-pop fans and the state of Texas have in common? Answer: It’s never a good idea to mess with either.
Early Sunday morning (March 24), it appeared videos by K-pop entertainment agency, Cube Entertainment, were being blocked for international fans. Cube Entertainment (home to popular artists like 4minute, B2ST, G.NA and HyunA) is one of the few Korean agencies who work with a major U.S.-based label distributor. Universal Music Korea helps distribute Cube Entertainment, a rare partnership in a market where most entertainment entities have the means to distribute themselves or use domestic options like the much-used major South Korean record label, LOEN Entertainment.
Yet, when international fans were being blocked from watching music videos of their favorite artists there was online pandemonium.
New York City’s 8 Best Korean Restaurants
With the opening of the massive Barn Joo and the critical success of Hanjan, Korean cuisine is having a moment in New York City. These new joints elevate the fare and should attract a new wave of curious diners, but will their innovative takes be enough to rank them among the city’s best? Korea Town might be a small series of blocks, but it’s still pretty crowded. Click through the slideshow to see which joints are tops according to our 2013 New York City Restaurants guide, and let us know your favorite in the comments.
Amid increased North Korean aggression in recent weeks, the United States said it signed an agreement with South Korea to back the nation “in countering North Korean provocations,” the New York Times reports.
The agreement has been in the works for more than two years and comes as a direct result of the 2010 shelling of the border island Yeonpyeong, which ended in the death of four South Koreans and a great deal of property damage. At the time, it was one of the most aggressive acts from the North against the South in two decades.
Despite reports of the nation-to-nation deal, the extent or reach of the agreement was not disclosed. The United States has agreed to back the South Korean government against “local” attacks from the North but terms of the deal are unclear. Continue Reading »
Photo via Yonhap News
Computer networks at three major South Korean broadcast companies and three banks were interrupted on Wednesday, the New York Times reports.
The incident was immediately suspected to be perpetrated by North Korea despite a lack of substantial evidence. However, government and military personnel were hesitant to point fingers so early in investigations.
According to news reports, the hacking does not appear to be severe but did interrupt business activities. Continue Reading »
In Latest Insult, North Korea Targets South Korean Leader’s Dress
New York Times
North Korea issued a direct personal attack on the South’s new president for the first time since her inauguration two weeks ago, saying on Wednesday that her “venomous swish of skirt” was to blame for rising tensions on the Korean Peninsula.
The insult directed at President Park Geun-hye, the first woman to hold the office, added a curious sartorial element to the verbal barrage North Korea has been mounting since the United States and the South began a joint military exercise on March 1, followed by a new round of sanctions imposed by the United Nations Security Council.
“This frenzy kicked up by the South Korean warmongers is in no way irrelevant, with the venomous swish of skirt made by the one who again occupies” the presidential Blue House, the North’s Ministry of the People’s Armed Forces said in a statement, referring to Ms. Park. She returned to the residence as president on Feb. 25, about 33 years after her father, the former President Park Chung-hee, was assassinated.
The Koreas: To a war footing
NORTH KOREAN invective has always been colourful. But the old threats to turn Seoul into a bulbada—“sea of fire”—suddenly look bland compared with the new rhetoric. Having peered out through binoculars at the South Korean border island of Baengnyeong on March 11th, the North’s supreme leader, Kim Jong Un, was quoted as telling his troops to “break the waists of the crazy enemies” and “cut their windpipes”, to show them “what real war is like”. Baengnyeong is home to almost 5,000 civilians, as well as South Korean military units, which makes the bluster more alarming. Mr Kim went so far as to point out priority targets, including radar posts and rocket sites, said KCNA, the North Korean news agency.
South Korea Struggles To Rein in Bullying, Student Suicides
Wall Street Journal
While Pyongyang has been lambasting Seoul over the past week or so, South Korea has been grappling with a different, yet equally persistent kind of bullying problem on its home turf: school violence and suicides.
On Monday, a 13- year-old boy killed himself by jumping from his apartment in the southern city of Kyungsan. His suicide came exactly a week after a 12-year-old girl in Busan jumped to her death on the first day of school, leaving a suicide note saying “I am sorry. I am worried that I will become the odd one out again.”
The boy, surnamed Choi, also left a suicide note. The handwritten note begins “I will now tell you why I will die. Dear policemen, I will share my story here of how I’ve been bullied so far.” He named five students who he said had been harassing him since 2011. He said he had endured years of physical and verbal violence, humiliation and extortion in and out of school.
Six Words: Ask Who I Am, Not What
Jessica Hong is a 29-year-old reservationist living in New Orleans. She is originally from Seattle and she heard about The Race Card Project via comedian W. Kamau Bell on Twitter. As a Korean-American, Hong is constantly asked about her heritage and those queries became the basis for her six words: “Ask who I am, not what.”
Police probe American TV personality for allegedly smoking marijuana
Police said Wednesday that they have questioned an American female TV personality for allegedly smoking marijuana, a crime punishable by up to one year in prison under South Korean law.
Bianca Mobley, who gained popularity in South Korea after starring in a TV show featuring foreign women living here, was suspected of smoking marijuana between October and late November last year, said an officer at the Seoul Metropolitan Police Agency.
‘Community’ scene-stealer to guest star on ‘Sullivan & Son’
TBS comedy Sullivan & Son is about to get Chang-ed!
EW has learned exclusively that Community fan-fave Ken Jeong is set to appear in a second-season episode of S&S, set to air in the summer.
He will play Jason, Steve’s (Steve Byrne) doctor brother-in-law whose workaholic ways are putting strain on his marriage to Steve’s sister, Susan (Vivan Bang). So Susan enlists Steve’s help in getting Jason to unwind, but the plan backfires when Jason begins to reject his old life entirely.
SXSW Music: Korean Pop With Its Own Special f(x)
New York Times
But along came f(x), a five-woman group from South Korea — four of them under 21 — that is a female “idol band” from the artificial world of K-pop. On the model of American boy bands like ‘N Sync, idol bands are assembled, trained, choreographed and supplied with material by their management companies.
F(x) is reportedly one of the more daring idol bands; one of the five’s costumes was a modified T-shirt from the horror-punk band the Misfits. The group has song titles like “Hot Summer,” “Danger” and “Electric Shock,” which were all part of the group’s brief set, sung (in Korean, with English refrains) to prerecorded tracks that closely followed American and European electropop.
CAAMFest 2013 Reviews: Lee Isaac Chung’s Abigail Harm
Lee Isaac Chung’s surreal fable Abigail Harm follows the eponymous character (Amanda Plummer of Pulp Fiction fame), a reader to the blind who is struggling to deal with her father’s declining health. Fascinated by the Korean folktale of the woodcutter and the nymph, Abigail is suddenly visited by a mysterious, injured man (veteran character actor Will Patton) in her New York City apartment. For her generosity in aiding him, he rewards her by showing her a location where she can find an otherworldly being (Tetsuo Kuramochi) to love her. The film has minimal dialogue, so those expecting a traditional narrative should be forewarned. However, viewers who want a more conceptual film-going experience will enjoy the abstract re-telling of the Korean folktale and its exploration of accepting and releasing love.
Top Chef Winner Kristen Kish Hosts Pop-up Dinners
Top Chef winner winner Kristen Kish of Stir will present a series of pop-up dinners this spring, starting on Monday, March 25 at The Butcher Shop (617-423-4800). The menus are comprised of her winning competition dishes such as cured scallop crudo; délice de Bourgogne tortellini en brood; and fennel pollen olive oil cake with Meyer lemon olive oil glaze and candied fennel, among other dishes. What’s more, Kish will talk about how she came up with the dishes in the heat of the moment during the competition.
‘The Queen’ is back: Kim returns to worlds
AP via Yahoo Sports
Kim Yu-na’s performances in Vancouver were so majestic it seemed unlikely anyone could ever come that close to perfection again.
“The Queen” sure wants to try.
The Olympic gold medalist returns to major competition for the first time in two years at this week’s World Figure Skating Championships, and she looked so sharp in practices Monday and Tuesday it was as if she had never been away.
A 22-year-old Korean American K-pop singer was arrested by police in Seoul for selling marijuana, according to news reports.
Daniel Chae of boy group DMTN, formerly known as Dalmatian, was booked on Tuesday at the Seoul Metropolitan Police Agency on suspicion of selling pot to acquaintances on numerous occasions between September and December, according to Yonhap News.
A statement issued by the singer’s record label acknowledged that Chae distributed the drug but denied that he ever smoked it, according to allkpop.
“At first, the prosecutors suspected him of smoking it himself and ran a drug test on his hair and urine,” the statement read. “However, all his tests came back negative. He was acquitted on the charge that he smoked marijuana, and was investigated for the other charges.” Continue Reading »