Obama extends sanctions against N. Korea
U.S. President Barack Obama on Monday extended economic sanctions against North Korea for another year amid lingering tension over the North’s nuclear and missile programs.
In a statement to Congress, Obama said the extension is aimed at dealing with North Korea’s “unusual and extraordinary threat to the national security and foreign policy of the United States constituted by the existence and risk of proliferation of weapons-usable fissile material on the Korean Peninsula.”
Obama calls son of WB chief on Father’s Day
U.S. President Barack Obama personally called the older son of Jim Yong Kim, who will lead the World Bank next month, to apologize to him for making his family move from Massachusetts to Washington D.C. for his father’s work, news reports said.
On Father’s Day on Sunday, Obama called Kim’s son and said, “Thank you. I owe you,” according to Yonhap News.
My North Korean Magical Mystery Tour: How I Joined The Circus
I take a picture of my North Korean visa. I’ve been warned that the authorities will confiscate it upon arrival. My passport will not be stamped either. I can take in my computer, but J., our guide, has informed me that, if asked, I should assure the authorities that “no, my Mac Book Pro does not have Internet capabilities.” Turning on my computer in the hotel that first night in Pyongyang, I glance fearfully at the Wi-Fi bars. I’m not sure what I would do if I actually had a signal.
Nominee Withdraws Bid to Be Iraq Envoy
Wall Street Journal
President Barack Obama’s choice to serve as U.S. ambassador to Iraq withdrew his nomination following the disclosure of romantic emails the diplomat exchanged with a Wall Street Journal reporter [Gina Chon], officials said Monday.
Korean American liquor store owners feel targeted by city
Baltimore Sun (Md.)
City health and planning officials want to strip 128 liquor stores of their licenses — about a third of those licensed in Baltimore — because, they say, the stores are linked to higher rates of violent criminal activity. They cite studies done by Johns Hopkins University researchers that found more violence in areas immediately surrounding the stores.
About 90 percent of the liquor stores in Baltimore are owned by Korean-Americans, according to city estimates, and some community members believe the city is unfairly targeting Korean-owned businesses.
Frankford liquor store owner sentenced to prison for tax evasion
The owner of a Frankford liquor store was sentenced Monday to 18 months in prison and six months of subsequent home detention for tax evasion after he understated the store’s earnings by more than $1.5 million and structured bank deposits specifically to avoid IRS inquiries, according to prosecutors.
Chung K. Choi, 47, of Woodbine, the owner of Frankford Garden Liquors in the 5400 block of Sinclair Lane, filed corporate tax returns from 2006 to 2009 that understated earnings at the store by $1,572,162, according to Maryland U.S. AttorneyRod J. Rosenstein.
Suicides, Arrests Show Trouble at Korean Savings Banks
Bloomberg Business Week
So far, regulators have closed Korea’s 20 weakest banks. Prosecutors have uncovered illicit lending and lax oversight, leading to indictments of nearly 200 people and at least two jail sentences. Four bank executives have committed suicide, according to police. More than 88,000 depositors and bondholders, many of them retirees, saw 1 trillion won ($857 million) of their savings in excess of insured levels vanish.
Hatfield Township man sent to prison for three crimes
John Yoon, 20, of the first block of Whitemarsh Lane, admitted last week to committing all three crimes.
Montgomery County Judge William R. Carpenter, accepting a negotiated plea, sentenced Yoon to a combined 11½ to 23 months in the county prison. After he completes his parole time, he also will have to serve an additional four-year probation sentence.
Boat skipper tells court he wasn’t drunk
Sydney Morning Herald (Australia)
Dong Suk Kim, an 18-year-old South Korean national, died after he was hit by the boat off Athol Bay near Mosman.
Huynh, the boat’s skipper, has pleaded not guilty to charges of negligence causing death and operating a vessel with a low-range blood-alcohol level.
Can Korea ever accept homosexuals?
Homosexuality has long been taboo in Korean society. The traditional Confucian emphasis on familial bonds led homosexuality to be regarded as detrimental to the societal order, as defined by the philosophy’s five categories of social relationship. In the 1980s, homosexuals were widely feared as AIDS carriers.
Today, many Koreans continue to see the sexual orientation as deviant or symptomatic of mental illness. Some even question its very existence: A pastor last month claimed on national television that the country was free of homosexuality. With such perceptions to contend with, many gay men and women hide their identity from colleagues, friends and family.
Revealed: The must-have Korean travel item
According to the daily, the cute little soju boxes, called “pack soju,” are taking off as “must-have travel items” for Koreans going abroad.
The reasons cited by the report are: first, they are easy to pack; second, their innocuous packaging makes them easy to slip past customs; and they also allow people to drink in public places abroad, again due to the fact that they do not look like alcohol, the paper said.
Finally, soju is expensive abroad, and Koreans apparently can’t bear to be parted from their signature drink for the length of their travels.
Really? Ginseng Can Help Relieve Fatigue
New York Times
Known for its bitter taste and potent effects, ginseng has for ages had a reputation as a natural energy booster.
Now there is some evidence that ginseng’s claim to fight fatigue may be deserved. In a small number of independent studies, researchers have found that ginseng extracts seem to help combat cancer-related fatigue, one of the most common side effects of chemotherapy and other treatments. The fatigue can be so severe that patients often call it paralyzing, and there are few options for alleviating it.
Scientists unlock Asiatic pear genome
An international team has sequenced the genome of the Asiatic pear, a species native to China.
My Interview With Artist Young Sam Kim
When observing a work of art, the mind naturally tends to piece a narrative together, not only from the associations it brings to the work, but from the work itself (as it inevitably does while viewing Kim’s artwork). After my interview with Kim I realized that even the the most creative mind’s conjecture could not breach the depth of Kim’s commentary of “A World in the City.” And through a little knowledge of the artist himself, the layers of his work deepen to a whole other dimension: Kim is hearing and vocally impaired.
Indians outslug Reds 10-9
AP via Yahoo Sports
Shin-Soo Choo hit a solo shot in the first inning and later doubled as the Cleveland Indians edged the Cincinnati Reds 10-9.