South Korea Shows Military Muscle in Sparring With North
New York Times
South Korea flexed its military muscle on Thursday by staging large military drills and disclosing a new cruise missile capable of hitting any target in North Korea, as the North became increasingly candid about its intentions to build intercontinental ballistic missiles tipped with nuclear warheads.
“We no longer hide but publicly declare: If the imperialists have nuclear weapons, we must have them, and if they have intercontinental ballistic missiles, we must have them, too,” the North’s state-run Rodong Sinmun newspaper, the most authoritative mouthpiece for the North’s leadership, said in a commentary published on Thursday. “Anger seeks weapons.”
“Imperialist” is the word North Korea uses to refer to the United States.
S. Korea readies military after N. Korea nuclear test
South Korea carried out large-scale military drills throughout the country Thursday in a show of force in response to the recent nuclear test by North Korea who has threatened to enforce stronger measures if necessary.
Following Tuesday’s atomic test, South Korea and U.S. forces have stepped up surveillance, mobilized aircraft and readied facilities to collect air samples from the test site to determine the fission materials of the atomic blast.
After intelligence and military officials in Seoul raised the possibility of additional tests by North Korea in the next couple days, several military maneuvers took place across the country.
N.Korea ‘Has 100 Mobile Missile Launch Platforms’
North Korea has about 100 mobile launch platforms for ballistic missiles, which could pose the biggest threat to South Korea if the regime succeeds in miniaturizing nuclear warheads.
It would be hard to detect these heavy trucks and strike them because they keep moving around.
A government source in Seoul on Wednesday said South Korean and U.S. intelligence agencies believe that the North has some 100 of these platforms for medium-range ballistic missiles such as the Scud and Rodong, which have all of South Korea within range.
Englewood based Korean organization joins other groups to help out after Hurricane Sandy
Northern Valley Suburbanite (N.J.) via northjersey.com
Lee’s situation was one of many stories of loss within the Korean community during Hurricane Sandy. In order to help such families, the Korean American Sandy Relief Committee of New Jersey was created as a collaborative effort between six different Korean-American organizations to help those affected by the storm.
“We had some families who experienced real grief,” said Prisca Leigh, deputy executive director of Korean Community Center, in Englewood.
To commend the effort, charitable organization The Robin Hood Foundation gave the Korean American Sandy Relief Committee a $75,000 grant to aid in its effort to provide Korean-Americans with help. The organization, which currently has helped approximately 500 families, has set a target of helping more than 1,000 families, said Kyunghee Choi, chairperson of the Korean American Sandy Relief Committee.
SungEun Grace Lee, 28, at Center of Right-to-Die Case, Succumbs
New York Times
SungEun Grace Lee, who was at the center of a struggle pitting her right to die against her family’s wish to keep her alive, died on Sunday, according to her family. She was 28.
Last fall, Ms. Lee’s relatives posted a video of her, paralyzed from the neck down by a brainstem tumor, on YouTube. They wanted to gain public support for their battle to prevent her from being removed from life support, an act they saw as a violation of their evangelical Christian faith.
Ms. Lee lived five months longer than she would have had her family not gone to court to keep her alive, one of her brothers, Paul Lee, said.
Driver who hit, killed bicyclist in Rancho Santa Fe sentenced to two years in prison
KFMB (San Diego, Calif.)
A two-year prison term was handed down Wednesday for a motorist who struck a bicyclist and left him to die along a Rancho Santa Fe road.
Jin Hyuk Byun, 20, pleaded guilty in October to felony hit-and-run causing death. He was sentenced by Vista Superior Court Judge K. Michael Kirkman.
The defendant was behind the wheel of a black 2008 Chevrolet Avalanche that struck 18-year-old Angel Bojorquez sometime after 1 a.m. last July 6.
Transit groper sent packing back to South Korea
The Province (Vancouver, BC, Canada)
A transit groper has been deported to South Korea after he was caught in the act aboard the 99 B-Line.
On Jan. 15, Transit Police received a report from a commuter who saw a man inappropriately touching women on the busy Broadway route. Two plainclothes officers were immediately dispatched to the bus. They saw the man commit the offence in front of them.
The man was arrested, but was evasive and gave police a fake name. Immigration officers were called in and were able to ID the man as Seung Woo Min, 49. Min was found to have been illegally living in Vancouver since 1995. He was deported Feb. 7 to South Korea, where he was wanted on multiple warrants, including fraud and embezzlement of almost $200,000.
At Montclair State, Iraq veteran speaks out against ‘Don’t ask don’t tell’
Passaic Valley Today (N.J.) via northjersey.com
Last year, Feb. 7 took on new significance at Montclair State University when a note that said “fags will die on 2/7″ was found on the door of a women’s bathroom there.
As a result, the university dubbed that date a “Day of Unity” and students rallied against discrimination. This year, they held their second annual Day of Unity, during which Daniel Choi, a former lieutenant in the U.S. Army Infantry, who is now a gay rights advocate, spoke about his experience being gay in the military.
In South Korea, Valentine’s Day is all about the men
Unlike most harried men in many other countries around this time each year, Korean men don’t have to worry about shopping for jewelry or flowers or writing nice cards to give to their significant other on February 14.
Instead, for South Koreans Valentine’s Day is when women shower men with chocolates. It’s also just one romantic day in a whole series of calendar-dictated romantic days.
Next up is March 14. Known as White Day, on this occasion men gift women with candy. Fact: Chupa Chups is the most sold candy.
K-Pop Star Ailee Comes Home to America, Hints at New Music
To say Ailee had a big debut would be an understatement. The solo female star made her K-pop debut last February and has already racked up three K-Pop Hot 100 Top 3 singles — including last week’s No. 1 “Shower of Tears” with BAE CHI GI — as well as the MAMA Award (Korea’s Grammy equivalent) for Best New Female Artist. Ailee’s impressive start also got some stateside recognition–during Grammy week of all times.
Last month, Billboard broke the news that Ailee — Denver-born and raised in New Jersey — would be a guest of honor at Mnet America’s first annual Pre-GRAMMY Party on Feb. 7. Thursday night she was awarded the Mnet America Rising Star Award based on her accomplishments from her first year. “I didn’t expect any of this to happen so fast,” the K-pop star tells Billboard with a laugh. “Everything feels like a dream I’m just really happy and excited.”
Q&A with Margaret Cho
Margaret Cho’s mom is almost as famous as Margaret Cho. Since Cho started doing standup comedy more than 20 years ago, the Bay Area comedian’s impression of her mother has been a highlight of her set. So it seems inevitable the actress/musician/author/ comedian would put together a show called Mother. She brings the show, the latest in a long line of Cho extravaganzas that includes I’m the One That I Want and Assassin to the Vancouver Comedy and Arts Festival.
Q How do you prepare for a performance?
A I like to have quiet, just in general. I love to read or make my own notes, in silence. That is a great motivator for me – silence. I feel I can fill the space better with my own noise/music.
Son Heung-min First Korean in AP Soccer Rankings
Hamburg SV striker Son Heung-min became the first Korean soccer player to be named in the Associated Press Global Soccer Rankings.
In this week’s AP top 10, Son ranked seventh behind Cristiano Ronaldo (Real Madrid), Andres Iniesta (FC Barcelona), Gareth Bale (Tottenham), Lionel Messi (FC Barcelona), David Alaba (Bayern Munich) and Robin van Persie (Manchester United).
Veteran wants to put the ‘Wi’ in winner at Riviera
Los Angeles Times
Charlie Wi has had enough of being a bridesmaid. He wants to get the toast, not give it, at the big banquet.
It’s not that he hasn’t had success on the American pro golf tour. This is his eighth season and his bank account shows $9.1 million for his efforts. It is hard to feel sorry for anybody in that situation, but as Wi points out, “We play out here to win.”
Wi has won nine tournaments, eight in Asia and one in Europe. In the good ol’ USA, he has been second five times. Very good and also very frustrating. Even on the second-tier Nationwide Tour, now the web.com circuit, he never won.