Tuesday’s Link Attack: Korea Scraps Whaling Plans, K-Pop, Hello Kitty Spa
Author: Crystal Kim
Posted: July 17th, 2012
Filed Under: BLOG
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North Korea promotes military official to key rank after removing army chief

North Korea said Tuesday that it had promoted a little-known general to a key military rank, a day after it announced that it had relieved its army chief of all his government posts.

The secretive state’s top two military commissions have decided to give the title of vice marshal to Hyon Yong Chol, according to a report by the state-run Korean Central News Agency (KCNA).

North Korea Unlikely to Put on Friendlier Face After General’s Removal
Wall Street Journal

Experts in Japan say the implications of the removal of a high-ranking North Korean general are difficult to interpret, but it could indicate the regime is heading into a period of instability, while its new leader, Kim Jong Eun, tries to strengthen his grip on the military.

What it doesn’t suggest is that the regime will relax its hard-line foreign policy, and could actually take a tougher stance to the outside world.

North Korea’s Kim Jong Un seems to tighten grip
Los Angeles Times

Seven months after taking power in one of the world’s most-closed societies, youthful Kim Jong Un appears to be consolidating his grip on North Korea, whose only two previous leaders were his late father and grandfather. At the same time, he appears to be putting his own, less hermetic, stamp on the nation’s culture.

Answers to bigger questions — whether to expect any meaningful change in North Korea’s relations with the outside world or its ability to feed and clothe its own people — remain far from clear.

With surging numbers, Asian-Americans look for congressional gains

Three times as many Asian-Americans have been running for Congress in 2012 than in the past two elections, a nonpartisan political group says, and it’s a development that portends greater changes in demographic trends and reflects the recent political awakening of a minority group long confined to the margins of American society.

“It’s extremely exciting,” says Gloria Chan, president and CEO of the Asian Pacific Institute for Congressional Studies. “We could really stand to gain seats and affect the balance of power in Congress.”

CHP: Freeway chase starts after cellphone violation
Orange County Register

A 42-year-old man was arrested Sunday after he led the California Highway Patrol on a chase after an officer tried to pull him over for a cellphone violation, authorities said.

Young Kim, of Chino Hills, was arrested on suspicion of felony evading, driving under the influence and felony DUI, according to a CHP news release.

Pol’s sex ads rub DA wrong way
New York Post

Queens Assembly candidate Myungsuk Lee, whose Korean-language newspaper runs ads from “massage parlors,” some of which also peddle prostitution, could be in some legal trouble.

Queens DA Richard Brown says he’s meeting with his vice squad “on this matter” after The Post yesterday exposed the ads and the massage parlors.

Offices for Lee’s newspaper, the Korean American Times, and his campaign are located in the same building where several of the massage parlors that advertise in his pages are based — and where a Post reporter was solicited for sex when he paid for a massage last week.

South Korea decides to scrap research whaling plans, yielding to vocal criticism
Washington Post

A South Korean official says the government has decided to scrap a much-criticized plan to hunt whales for scientific research.

The presidential Blue House official said the president and prime minister made the decision at a meeting Tuesday. The official declined to be identified because it had not yet been announced formally.

South Korea’s announcement earlier this month that it would allow research whaling drew protests from non-whaling nations and environmentalists. The critics suspected the plan was a cover for commercial whaling.

Asian ‘Jersey Shore’ strips group of ‘model minority’ label [VIDEO]
Daily Caller

Coined as “Jersey Shore for Asians,” the show is drawing negative criticism for its focus on the cast’s heavy drinking, frequent partying, and blown-up drama.

The eight Asian American cast members, however, represent the young members of the community more realistically and in a way the public is not used to seeing, say creators of the series.

Eugene Choi, co-creator and producer of the show [and intermittent KoreAm employee], said that the show is depicting a portion of Asian Americans who are underrepresented in the entertainment industry.

On Campus: New dean of UW School of Human Ecology named
Wall Street Journal

UW officials announced last week that University of Arizona professor and director Soyeon Shim has been selected as the new dean of the School of Human Ecology.

Shim started as a faculty member at Arizona in 1990 and served as director of the university’s Norton School of Family and Consumer Sciences and as an associate dean for the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences.

She earned a doctorate in human ecology from the University of Tennessee-Knoxville and holds master’s and bachelor’s degrees in human ecology from Yonsei University in Seoul, Korea.

Far East movement, in the West
Asia One (Singapore)

A common complaint among actors was that Asians were often cast as the subservient, submissive ones. Or they were relegated to being, well, gongfu masters, a la Bruce Lee and Jackie Chan.

Today, Asians are regularly added to the mix in TV series and movies – on telly, for instance, they appear in a whole gamut of roles, ranging from Glee hottie Harry Shum Jr to C. S. Lee, who is excellent as the creepy intellectual Vince Masuka on Dexter; and Kal Penn and Charlyne Yi, doctors in the now-defunct series House.

And Asian celebrities my paper spoke to say that, increasingly, they are spotting greater opportunities in theWest.

Replay overturns Choo’s leadoff homer

Indians leadoff hitter Shin-Soo Choo hit a ball off Rays pitcher Alex Cobb to deep center field in the first inning that was originally called a home run during Monday’s 3-2 win for Cleveland at Tropicana Field. After a quick replay review, the umpires ruled that the ball had hit padding just below the yellow line, changing the call to a double.

Choo would score later in the inning on a passed ball that got by catcher Jose Molina with two outs to give Cleveland a 1-0 lead.

Cafe Livre Morphs Into Spanish Fly Gastropub in Koreatown
Los Angeles Times

Café Livre, the popular bistro in Culver City, closed its doors July 1. Two days later, executive chef Farid Zadi and his wife, director of operations Susan Park, reappeared at the Spanish Fly, a new gastropub in Koreatown.

Partnering with owners Gene and David Park, they’re revamping the menu of what briefly was the Green Bee Restaurant and Bar.

Move Over Bieber — Korean Pop Music Goes Global

With their synthesized bubble-gum pop sound, flashy outfits and video art, K-pop groups such as Girls’ Generation, Big Bang and 2NE1 are carefully-selected, slickly-produced acts that can feature as many as 17 members.

These “manufactured” girl and boy bands are creating a frenzy among their young fans by selling out concerts within minutes worldwide, breaking through billboard music charts and even being featured on postage stamps in Korea.

The industry’s revenues hit about $3.4 billion in 2011, according to the Korea Creative Content Agency (KOCCA), a government group that promotes the country’s cultural initiatives. K-pop’s exports also rose to $180 million last year — jumping 112 percent compared to 2010. Exports have been growing on an average annual rate of nearly 80 percent since 2007.

U.S. soccer player proud of Korean heritage
Korea Herald

Twenty-nine-year-old Riley is proud of his mother being Korean. His dream is to play in Korea, her native land, and, needless to say, live there with her as well.

The right full back was born in 1982 in Colorado Springs, Colorado to a Korean mother and an American father. After they divorced when he was one, he was raised by his single mother in the U.S. His mother lives in Denver, Colorado, working as a hotel housekeeper.

Where to Stay in Seoul for Less than $50 USD a Night

If you’re traveling to Korea and wondering where to stay in Seoul, finding an affordable place to stay might be difficult. But it shouldn’t be! Korea has tons of places to stay that are very budget friendly. All the locals know what’s up, and lucky for you we’ll let you in on the know! Here’s a number of accommodations that will fit pretty much anyone’s budget.

Tate’s Tanks Take To Task Sung Hwan Kim
Artlyst (London)

The Korean performance artist Sung Hwan Kim is the first artist to be commissioned for an installation in ‘The Tanks’, Tate Modern’s new galleries permanently dedicated to performance and film. The exhibition is supported by Sotheby’s and is unveiled from 18 July to 28 October.

Kim is known for his interdisciplinary work, incorporating installation, video, performance, music, light and drawing. He interweaves personal history, fantasy, rumour, politics and culture to create a work that responds to the unique architecture of The Tanks.

Kim’s unique way of story-telling plunges visitors into a fantastical world of optical illusions and doubling of imagery that draws on a rich history of performance and film, as he collects and collages encounters, sounds, sculptures and images from his changing homes of Seoul, Amsterdam and New York.

At last: World’s first Hello Kitty Beauty Spa

Hello Kitty Beauty Spa, located at Town Center Jumeirah, is also the first character-branded spa in the Middle East, according to Sharaf Retail, which runs the Hello Kitty spa.

The service aims for the high-spending “Queens” who want to bring along their “Princesses” (as the beauty spa terms its clients) to enjoy “posh pampering” services.

“We’re all about sugar and spice and everything incredibly nice,” gushes the spa’s website. As well as the cutest, it may be the pinkest beauty spa in the world.

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