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15-11-2015, 06:45 AM #1
South Korean Police Murdered Protesters With Water Cannon!!
This occurred yesterday, while the whole world's attention had been drawn to Paris.
Source to be available later. I recall that I watched the video posted on Twitter this morning.
(Edit: Found it, the Twitter link:
The theme of the demonstration was a pretty "boring" one: protest against the orientation of government policy towards plutocrats' interest, uneven income and wealth distribution, and therefore the President responsible should step down.
South Korea Riot Police is well-known for its brutality. Yet, this is the first time a supposingly non-lateral weapon was employed to purposefully murdering people. Yes, I am saying "Purposefully". Don't give me an innocent look and claim one does not know that water cannon can kill in such close range.
This is no involuntary man slaughter. This, is homicide.
Next time I suggest you roll them over directly with the water cannon cars, save all the PR trouble, you murderers. I think in Battlefield, roadkill gives you bonus scores?
Last edited by squirrel; 15-11-2015 at 06:49 AM.
15-11-2015, 11:12 AM #2
Were lives threatened when the water cannon was deployed? If not this was manslaughter at the very least. Too often the police are private armies for businesses first and guardians for the population second. In the UK if your house is robbed you can wait days for a non emergency visit from police, but shops can get police response in minutes for shoplifters.
15-11-2015, 12:11 PM #3
15-11-2015, 12:17 PM #4
They might have a better chance to get the shoplifter because of witnesses/camera feeds to find/specific stolen goods....or even murderers since the body needs to be hidden but we are likely talking a few days of attention and then it's all about luck.
15-11-2015, 12:28 PM #5
If I had cameras in my home the police would be no more attentive, they protect business because the government has mandated that as the priority because protecting business is protecting tax revenue. Protecting personal property is just just isn't profitable, unless the people are especially wealthy and they can invest in your political campaigns.
Last edited by Heliocentric; 15-11-2015 at 05:15 PM.
15-11-2015, 12:55 PM #6
You guys up there can be so cynic about cops:p but yeah
15-11-2015, 01:01 PM #7
According to various news outlets, noone was killed, let alone murdered, during the protests, although the condition of the severely injured 69-year old man seems to still be critical.
Another report by the BBC which doesn't mention the case of Mr. Nam-gi though:
A 69-year-old farmer, Baek Nam-gi, remained unconscious at a hospital after he fell and injured his head as police doused him with water cannons near City Hall, said Cho Byung-ok, secretary general of the Korea Peasants League.
Video footage showed Baek lying motionless as other demonstrators struggled to drag him away and police continued to fire water cannons from atop police buses.
Forum janitor in training.
15-11-2015, 05:17 PM #8
Oh, it's just police brutality then, that makes it so much better.
15-11-2015, 05:25 PM #9
Don't be silly, my post didn't imply that at all. But "South Korean Police Show Excessive Degree of Brutality Against Protesters" wouldn't sound as fun as "Murder Cop Rage" though, eh?Forum janitor in training.
15-11-2015, 08:10 PM #10
Last edited by Lethe; 15-11-2015 at 10:37 PM."I still havenít forgiven C. S. Lewis for going on all those long walks with J. R. R. Tolkien -- and failing to strangle him." (Clive James)
15-11-2015, 08:12 PM #11
15-11-2015, 08:32 PM #12
More significantly, in terms of both policies and key people administering them, there was very little disruption in South Korea from the Japanese occupation to after it. Both saw the general populace (mostly rural peasants under the thumb of large landholders) as a threat to be contained. This is why democracy was impossible in South Korea, just as it was in South Vietnam and other places threatened by "the communist menace": a democratic vote in the early years of South Korea's existence would probably have resulted in a communist government and re-unification with the North. Therefore the iron heel of military dictatorship and the liberal application of all the terroristic tools of the now largely US-funded police state, were necessary.
Last edited by Lethe; 16-11-2015 at 04:35 AM."I still havenít forgiven C. S. Lewis for going on all those long walks with J. R. R. Tolkien -- and failing to strangle him." (Clive James)
15-11-2015, 08:56 PM #13
Of course it is impossible to tell an account of contemporary Korea in its North and South aspects without reference to the division that was imposed upon Korea by the Soviets and Americans after WW2. I think the most important aspect is to simply acknowledge that fact and give it its true weight. Korea was one nation with common language, culture and history, that was divided, and kept divided, by outsiders.
That is not to say that, absent great-power interference, Korea in the years after the Japanese withdrawal would've been peaceful. Most probably there would've been a civil war and the communists would probably have won as they were certainly far more popular, and they were most powerful in the most important parts of the country, i.e. the North. Prior to the Korean War (and even for some time afterwards) the North was the more developed half of the country, although the massive allied bombing campaign during the Korean War did much to narrow the gap. One can draw parallels with the American civil war and its North-South divide, both structurally and in terms of its outcome: a civil war in which the wealthier and more industrialised North probably would've have won, as a result of which a single nation would've endured, as it did after the US civil war. The intervention of the United States (in turn partly a response to the fact that the Soviets were coming) prevented such a bloody resolution and divided a nation which remains divided to this day.
The Korean War itself is another element sorely in need of conceptual revision. The evil and aggressive North attacked the innocent and peaceful South, goes the standard narrative. Note that this narrative already relies on acknowledging the legitimacy of that then novel and unprecedented North/South distinction, and neither Korea did. Leaders and general sentiment in both the North and South quite reasonably saw the division as both temporary and intolerable, and themselves as representatives of the true Korea and the other as a grotesque imposter to be banished from history, preferably sooner rather than later. It was the North which crossed the border in force and triggered the Korean War, but the years prior to that had seen any number of raids, sabre ratling, etc. from the South against the North, at the behest of a South Korean leadership that, no less than that in the North, was itching for war.
Both the North and South Korean leaderships looked for assistance and approval from their respective benefactors in the Soviet Union, newly communist China, and the United States. In both the North and South, each sought from their respective benefactors a "green light" to attempt reunification and promises of assistance to that end. All three benefactors were less than enthusiastic about the idea, and exercised a restraining influence on the Korean leaderships for several years. The dual benefactor structure of the North Korean leadership is, under one narrative, what eventually broke the deadlock. The North Korean leadership finally obtained something less than an unqualified "no" from Stalin and Mao (with each referencing the uncertain position and commitment of the other) and the North Korean leadership chose to take that as a green light, in turn taking the initiative and power away from PRC/SU and all but compelling them to assist lest an even worse outcome (i.e. the triumph of the South) eventuate.
I am most familiar with this narrative of the outbreak of the war because it is a classic case study in centre-periphery relations, where the intuition that great powers hold the cards and dictate events according to their interests is undermined by examining the potential of local or peripheral actors (to whom the great powers are tied) to shape events, prompting or compelling the central/great powers to courses of action that they might not otherwise have taken or indeed previously envisioned. And of course this field is very relevant to the world today, where you have great powers like Russia and NATO, with smaller nations like the Baltic states and Ukraine caught between them, or in East/South-East Asia where you have small nations like the Philippines between larger nations such as the US and China.
Last edited by Lethe; 16-11-2015 at 04:51 AM."I still havenít forgiven C. S. Lewis for going on all those long walks with J. R. R. Tolkien -- and failing to strangle him." (Clive James)
15-11-2015, 10:14 PM #14
And as Faulkner wrote, "the past isn't over. It isn't even past."
Some interesting morsels to think about:
The current President of South Korea, Park Guen-hye, is the daughter of the military dictator Park Chung-hee. Starting in 2017, all South Korean schools will be required to use history textbooks written by the government. I leave the interpretation of these facts to the reader.
South Korea has one of the lowest birthrates in the world, lower even than mainland China. Why is this notable? Because South Korea was essentially a testing laboratory for western population control efforts. Even before Paul Ehrlich's 'Population Bomb', western strategists had become obsessed with population control. Too many people produced poverty, which produced communism, which had to be stopped. Needless to say, behind this neat theory was more than a little of the now unspeakable (in this post-Nazi world) fear of the yellow and brown tides coming to wash away the white races. Where many developing nations were closed to the west, or highly suspicious of help from the former colonial powers, or otherwise just too-inconveniently-democratic-and-respectful-of-human-rights, South Korea was the perfect petri dish for western population control policy. The elites running South Korea were both dependent on US support and wanted to bring the peasants under control as much as the US itself did, and under the military dictatorship there were none of those pesky human rights to worry about. And so US-funded and US-equipped ROK military units fanned out across the country, sterilising anyone who "volunteered" in exchange for meagre cash payment. Needless to say, many of those subjected to sterilisation were not actually volunteers, and many went unpaid as military units rushed to meet quotas. But at least they didn't go down the route of communist China and its anti-freedom one-child policy!
Outside the Islamic and Jewish worlds and the United States, South Korea is one of the few nations where circumcision is almost universally practiced, despite being unheard of there 70 years ago, and in North Korea today. How did this shift occur? Mostly cross-pollination from the US military, which was instrumental in normalising the practice throughout the United States itself. It's one of those random factoids that suggests the kind of deep and unhealthy relationship that existed (and to a certain extent still exists) between the US military, the South Korean elite, and their relation with the Korean people (and the US military and its relationship with the American people for that matter).
I am sure you would've heard of the animosity between both North and South Korea and Japan. The standard explanation for the South Korean side of this animosity is that South Koreans justifiably resent the former Japanese occupation and Japan's unwillingness to acknowledge its history. This is certainly true, but it is an incomplete truth that conceals more than it reveals. The reason why South Korea cannot let go of anti-Japanese antagonism (as the US would sorely like it to) is because such antagonism plays a key role in the legitimising narrative of the South Korean nation. Despite all the censorship and repression, the South Korean people are not stupid. They know of their history and the narrative, promulgated eagerly by the North, that the South is the nation built by those who collaborated first with the Japanese against their own people, and then with the United States against their own people. North Korea claims that it, not the South, is the true representative of the Korean people -- the Minjok -- and this narrative has considerable emotional appeal. The North's claim to be the true Korea is bolstered by the fact that an awful lot of the history and mythology that defines the Korean nation, such as Mount Dokdo, the ostensible birthplace of the Korean people -- history of which the South Korean people are very conscious and proud -- lies in the North, such that it is more or less impossible to contemplate Korean culture and history without simultaneously recognising an affinity with the North. Put all this together, and what you get is a nation that requires legitimisation in the eyes of its own people, and animosity towards Japan plays a key role in achieving that. By demonstrating hostility towards Japan, the South Korean elite seeks to undermine the claim that SK is the nation built by and for collaborators -- by traitors to the Minjok. This is why South Korea cannot simply "let it go" as the US would so dearly like it to in order to forge a more cohesive anti-China front. For both North and South Korea, anti-Japanese sentiment is a major element in the ideological, intellectual, and emotional war for custodianship of the Minjok -- and the cost of losing that war is the very legitimacy of the nation.
Last edited by Lethe; 16-11-2015 at 05:02 AM.
15-11-2015, 11:01 PM #15
Was hoping for links, but you certainly delivered, hmm.. So cold war dominoes.
16-11-2015, 12:09 AM #16
Most of the current reading that I do on Korea is in the field of international relations. Robert Kelly is a great voice out there. Here is an article of his fleshing out the role of anti-Japanese sentiment in South Korea's legitimacy competition with the North, and here is his blog.
One of the most fascinating things about Korea in IR terms isn't the noise, but the silence. By "noise" I am referring to the news we hear and receive from the mainstream western media (which, on the subjects of foreign policy and international relations, largely originates from western governments) and the ideas and assumptions that underlie that news. There is a lot of silence when it comes to South Korea, and much of that is because the noise (news) that could be heard is difficult to process according to the received narrative whereby Japan and South Korea are part of a more-or-less virtuous and united west while China and North Korea are part of a more-or-less evil and united other.
For example, a couple of months ago China held a grand military parade celebrating the 70th anniversary of its victory over Japan. This received some limited news coverage in the west, mostly addressed to the angle of China flexing its muscles and showing off its latest toys. What received far less coverage were the seating arrangements. There is of course great symbolism in which nations attend such functions, at what level they are represented, and where they are seated. At the parade, to the right of President Xi Jinping sat Russian President Vladimir Putin; to the left sat Xi Jinping's wife, Peng Liyuan. But who was to the left of her, as the #2 guest of honour? Based on the subject of this post I'm sure you can guess: it was South Korean President Park Guen-hye. North Korea's Kim Jong-un wasn't even there. That alone tells you a lot about China's current relations with both North and South Korea.
Last edited by Lethe; 16-11-2015 at 05:07 AM.
16-11-2015, 12:38 AM #17
IIRC Peppermint Candy covers a few relevant things.
edit: there's also another film I liked, about an almost Durrenmatt-ian (is that a word?) serial killer case, plus police brutality, but I can't for the life of me manage to piece together the title again.
16-11-2015, 02:06 AM #18
- Join Date
- Jun 2011
That was very interesting to read. Thank you Lethe.I wrote a fantasy novel, called Lavender! Perhaps you'd like to read it.
Yesterday, 01:39 AM #19
Two recent articles from The Diplomat that caught my eye, the first related directly to this thread and the second to more recent discussion:
South Korean President Compares Protesters to ISIS
“Given that the extremists of the Islamic State (IS) group hide their faces, we should ban demonstrators from wearing masks in the future,” Park is reported to have told a Cabinet meeting.
Alluding to the recent terrorist attacks in Paris, Park warned of the risk of protests being infiltrated by “terrorist elements,” reported the AFP.
The Declining Power of Inter-Korean Reunions
Over the last few years, the Asan Institute for Policy Studies has released a number of public opinion surveys containing valuable and instructive data. A public opinion report released earlier this year, entitled “South Korean Attitudes toward North Korea and Reunification,” underscores the widening generation gap on North Korea. Between 2010 and 2014, data show that among all age cohorts, “interest in reunification” is lowest among those in their 20s, for every year.
Furthermore, among all cohorts who cite ethnicity as a “reason for necessity of reunification,” those in their 20s polled the lowest. In a country where an ethno-cultural affinity has long been the bedrock of unification support, this decline cannot be overstated.
As additional data show, when asked if they consider North Korea “one of us” or an “enemy,” South Koreans in their 20s were least likely to answer “one of us” and the most likely to answer “enemy.” Interestingly, this makes the 20s age cohort similar to the 60s age cohort – the group in South Korea understood to be the most conservative. The fundamental difference between the two groups being that one strongly supports unification while the other does not.
Yesterday, 01:53 AM #20
While the comparison of local protestors with IS terrorists sounds pretty bonkers to me, a ban on wearing masks during protests does not, probably because this ruling is common practice in parts of the EU including Germany, Austria and Switzerland.Forum janitor in training.