Occidentalism
Duc, sequere, aut de via decede!

No Rice for Hungry, but Cash for Nukes?

October 17th, 2006 . by Gerry-Bevers

In the above cartoon, Bush, Roh, and Japan’s Prime Minister Abe stand holding a barbell. On one end of the barbell it reads “Economic Sanctions” and on the other end it reads “Maritime Inspections.” Even though Roh is only pretending to support the weight, he says, “All together, boys. Lift!”

I think that cartoon explains very well what is happening in South Korea right now. Since the United Nations Security Council unanimously condemned North Korea’s nuclear bomb test, South Korea has had no choice but to also condemn it, yet it seems obvious to me that South Korea’s heart is not into it.

One day after North Korea’s nuclear bomb test, South Korean President Roh Moo-hyun described the test as “intolerable,” but since then his administration has done nothing but tolerate it. South Korea continues to give money to Kim Jong-il through its investment projects in North Korea.

The Roh administration and the majority “Uri” Party do not want to give up the North-South Gaesong Industrial Complex project or the Mount Geumgang Tourism project in North Korea even though it is almost certain that the money North Korea earns from those projects is either directly or indirectly supporting North Korea’s nuclear weapons program. Even after North Korea’s nuclear bomb explosion, the Uri Party still refers to that money as a “peace expense.” How are nuclear bombs peaceful?

After North Korea’s missle tests in July, South Korea stopped rice and fertilizer shipments to North Korea as “punishment,” but continued the cash money projects at Gaesong and Geumgang. In other words, South Korea stopped feeding North Korea’s hungry, but continued to send money to its regime. That tells me that it is not humanitarian interests that drive South Korea’s North Korean policy.

According to this Dong-A Ilbo article, South Korea is violating a 2003 ROK-US agreement by continuing its economic cooperation with North Korea after the north’s nuclear bomb test. Here is the statement from the agreement:

“The humanitarian assistance toward the North is not to be politically aligned but to encourage mutual efforts to intensify transparency in providing the aid, while the economic cooperation between the two Koreas is to be determined considering the North’s nuclear development.”

In an article entitled, “From Sunshine to sunset,” Aidian Foster-Carter, over at the Asia Times, also talks about the problem. And Robert Koehler, over at The Marmot’s Hole, puts in his two cents with “Mutual burdens? What mutual burdens?”

It seems clear to me that South Korea must discontinue its Gaesong and Geumgang projects in North Korea.

Another Cartoon Link


10 Responses to “No Rice for Hungry, but Cash for Nukes?”

  1. comment number 1 by: KidfromOhio

    I understand the BS and a LOT of Koreans feel the same way – the day before NK tested the nukes if I would have asked my buddies about unification, a lot of my friends would have still said –

    ” our dream is unification ” but the moment after their nuclear bomb testing….people laugh at you when you say something naive…such as

    “at the end we’re both brothers…don’t worry about NK they’re not gunna bomb us.”

    people will tell you on the internet – “waitress, please give this man 2 servings of common sense.”

    and yes, people are furious over Noh’s dumb policies, Roh’s approval rate makes Bush look like Reagan. He’s been crumbling…well, ever since he’s been elected, so there’s that to ya.

    You’re dern right – we need to stop those policies – please understand that even though one should never negotiate with terrorists, when they’re your brother ( NK under the pre-nuke situation) the policies crumble.

    But now? I can’t friggin wait til US bombs NK ( hell, why am I joining the armed forces this winter?). I just don’t want to see ROK in trouble…..that’s all I’m asking. As much bullsXXX goes on ( so there’s blogs like this to reduce the blog – thank you – as a Korean american….and someone will say I’m a ‘jap’…lol. ) in Korea, it’s home. And whoever destroys home is an enemy, and the Korean gov. needs to realize that.

  2. comment number 2 by: YoungRocco

    Mr. Bevers:

    Long time no see. How are you doing? I hope this post finds you in the best of spirits.

    It seems clear to me that South Korea must discontinue its Gaesong and Geumgang projects in North Korea.

    Yeah, I agree. A crying shame. If any component of engagement should be put to an end, it has to be these two projects. The Roh Administration constantly plays up the need to use carrots and not just sticks in its relations with North Korea, however,carrots are only effective when you demonstrate that you are willing to take them away if need be.

    Yep. Geumgang and Kaesong need to go.

    Shoot, they’re not even profitable.

    Here is a pretty good link on the AsiaTimes website that this discusses this issue in a little more detail:

    Reference: http://www.atimes.com/atimes/Korea/HJ18Dg01.html

  3. comment number 3 by: Gerry-Bevers

    Rocco,

    Thanks for the link to the Asia Times article.

  4. comment number 4 by: ponta

    A nice post.
    Gerry wrote

    After North Korea’s missle tests in July, South Korea stopped rice and fertilizer shipments to North Korea as “punishment,” but continued the cash money projects at Gaesong and Geumgang. In other words, South Korea stopped feeding North Korea’s hungry, but continued to send money to its regime.

    To the point.
    KidfromOhio wrote

    …….so there’s blogs like this to reduce the blog – thank you – as a Korean american….and….and someone will say I’m a ‘jap’…lol.

    Hmmm
    YoungRocco wrote

    Yep. Geumgang and Kaesong need to go.

    Are you “jap”?

  5. comment number 5 by: tomato

    I’m not convinced about the view that the “Sunshine Policy” stems from SK regime’s desire to preserve her statehood from calamity that may result from the NK state collapsing. Rather, Roh’s regime seems to be based on ethno-centric ideologies extending beyond statehood.

    The most ethnicly pure regime on the Korean penninsula happens to be NK, as it not only cleansed all elements of Japanese rule, but also purged elements that were pro-Chinese and pro-Soviet. SK is doing the cleansing right now by creating a “pro-Japanese name list” and confiscating assets held by the “descendants of pro-Japanese” (it’s unbelievable that a country who fancies herself as a western-style democracy can engage in such witch-hunting activities). The anti-US sentiment also seems to be based on ethno-centric ideas. Probably, the current SK regime and those who support it won’t mind unification by NK.

    Let’s see what happens.

  6. comment number 6 by: Two Cents

    I rather think the present state is more like Roh hanging onto the bar and lifting his foot off the ground, addiing more weight for the US and Japan to heave.

  7. comment number 7 by: polysics

    those silly coreans. why must they make us look like fools. they are indeed the arabs of asia.

  8. comment number 8 by: GarlicBreath

    America is a nation of fools. They take in 2 million koreans. Do the Koreans assimilate in their community. NO! Contribute to the beatiful land? NO.

    They spend their efforts on reviving old hatreds like this:
    http://www.govtrack.us/congress/billtext.xpd?bill=hr109-759

    I can’t blame congress for responding to the pressure of the lobbists, but it shows you that Koreans are intent on reviving old ethnic hatred.

  9. comment number 9 by: ponta

    They spend their efforts on reviving old hatreds like this:
    http://www.govtrack.us/congress/billtext.xpd?bill=hr109-759

    I don’t know their motivation but the resolution seems to be based on ignorance.

    Whereas the “comfort women” tragedy was one of the largest cases of human trafficking in the 20th century

    False; the population of prostitute in Korea who are either abducted and lured into sexual servitude is much larger than the Korean prostitutes during WWⅡ

    Whereas the enslavement of comfort women was officially  commissioned and orchestrated by the Government of Japan to include gang rape, forced abortions, sexual violence, human trafficking, and numerous other crimes against humanity;

    False there is no document that indicate the Government orchestrated gang rape, forced abortions, sexual violence, human trafficking. It is Korea after WWⅡ that is infamous for human trafficking.

    Whereas the comfort women included girls as young as 13
    years of age and women separated from their own children

    Those were women who were mobilized to work for factory. I have not seen any evidences that children were forced to become comfort women
    except the case there the woman who said she was forced to work at the
    place there was no comfort station said she was forced to work as a comfort station.

    Whereas the comfort women were either abducted from their
    homes or lured into sexual servitude under false pretenses

    The government was regulating the illegal activity of the pimps, there is a record of it, that means that Korean pimps as well as Japanese pimps might have used illegal methods.

    Whereas many comfort women were eventually killed or driv- en to commit suicide when the hostilities ceased;

    There are a hundred or so comfort women who spoke out as the former comfort women. I know they said they suffered but I have never heard that they committed suicide and I know the comfort women who complained the way Korean government and Korean association for comfort women treated them.

    Whereas the use of “comfort women” is considered a current

    Yes Korean government should admit that they were involved in maintaining comfort station after WWⅡ  just as Japanese government admitted.

    Whereas the Government of Japan did not fully disclose these
    war crimes during negotiations for reparations with its former enemies and occupied countries;

    This is the most hypocritical statement. Korean government and people knew it was brothels as seen where military goes , like American town in Korea.
    I don’t care whatever resolution the US congress may pass, but it should be
    based on the facts.
    And Japanese government should disclose all the facts about comfort women and explain it to the world, so that people know the truth mentioned above.
    It was Kouno, a Japanese politician, who compromised to Korea with regards to this issue. Look at the consequence. Japanesee government should know better when dealing with Korean government.

    (sorry for the comment off the topic)

  10. comment number 10 by: KidfromOhio

    I’m not a ‘jap’ – korean american, american korean whichever way you wanna put it. All I’m saying is, if you have a thin face, don’t use internet. And if you think it’s false, research, and tell him. I’m not mad at this site, b/c I don’t feel defeated, nor attacked, I feel informed because of this site.

    Anyways, I’m not a japanese kid – A full blooded Korean who goes to a military school. (as funny as that might sound. have a good night.)