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NEWS: 1000's of Korean's Protest U.S. Presence - Violent Clashes With Police Ensue

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posted on May, 29 2005 @ 12:26 PM
Thosands of South Korean students clashed with police in a protest against the U.S. military's presence in the country. 12 people were injured and more than 20 students were arrested when the students attempted to enter the American military base at Yongsan and were blocked by security forces. The U.S. currently has 32,500 soldiers stationed in South Korea.
Demonstrators also gathered near the U.S. Embassy in downtown Seoul demanding talks with the ambassador.

Television pictures showed masked protesters repeatedly charging helmeted riot police, who wielded truncheons and carried shields. At one point, students lay in the street outside the base, chanting and clapping.

Such rallies were common in the 1980s and 1990s but have lately given way to peaceful candlelight vigils. There were no exact figures on the number of protesters, although Yonhap said they numbered in the thousands.

Please visit the link provided for the complete story.

This is an interesting turn of events. I always thought that the U.S. presence in South Korea was at least tolerated because of the U.S. role in the war, and the South's tension with the North. It seems that perhaps the Bush administration's talk of pre-emptive nuclear strikes has not gone down well with the South Koreans.

Related News Links:

[edit on 2005/5/29 by wecomeinpeace]

posted on May, 29 2005 @ 01:45 PM
There's a quick and easy response to this problem: Boycott Korean merchandise. I'm due for a new cell phone. This time it won't be an LG.

It is in fact the US presence in Korea that has held off the N. Koreans, maintaining the truce between the two nations. Furthermore, it is N. Korea who has been talking pre-emptive strikes:

Let them all starve.

[edit on 05/5/29 by GradyPhilpott]

posted on May, 29 2005 @ 02:03 PM
SBS and MBC which are South Korean television stations have been airing a number of news articles of the past year or two that basically intimidate that the main reason that the 2 Koreas have not united (under SK rule) is due to the presence of the American Forces.
The American forces that are stationed in SK, are seen to be a deterent to peaceful unification and that the american forces are actually there to create even more tension between the Koreas.

posted on May, 29 2005 @ 02:05 PM
As well, if the US decides to strike North Korea, who do you think will get the brunt of retalitory action?

posted on May, 29 2005 @ 02:08 PM
When I was stationed in Korea, we had protests once a week. Albiet, never that large. The worst I saw it was when a US tank ran over a couple of little girls going to a birthday party. There were riots then. But as for the protesters, are you saying Grady that since we gave South Korea freedom, we should protest when they excercise that freedom? Did US soldiers die so the South Koreans could be free to say only what we want them to say?

posted on May, 29 2005 @ 02:19 PM

Originally posted by GradyPhilpot
Furthermore, it is N. Korea who has been talking pre-emptive strikes:

Let them all starve.

Tsk tsk Grady, you know that was only in response to US threats of a pre-emptive strike. This is from your own link...

"The United States should be aware that the choice of a pre-emptive attack is not only theirs,"

posted on May, 29 2005 @ 06:12 PM
I think we the US should pull out of South Korea. South Korea has about a million man army that has been trained by the US for decades. The
South Korean army should be able to handle its own against North Korea. If they want to protest out presence then let them protect thier own country from North Korea.

posted on May, 29 2005 @ 06:35 PM
I am unsure as to wether these protests actually reflect the majority or a smaller minority - regardless, I think that the US should remove its forces from South Korea (and every other country it occupies)... A friend of mine (from Socialist Alliance) is from South Korea, and we had a HUGE coversation about the relationship NK has with SK ... And she said that the over-all feeling in SK (with regards to NK) is that they talk big and never act... She also feels that the west has trumped North Korea up into something its not...

Wether this is true or not, I will tell you something that CANNOT be disputed:

Do you think NK would be 'dumb' enough to invade SK (wether the US is there or not) - OFCOURSE NOT, we all know that the US is SK's friend and ally, North Korea knows this, and even if SK has NO military of its own, they still wouldn't be dumb enough to invade...

The only reason the US is there, is to maintain its sphere of dominance, it has an airbase there (from which to launch spy planes into China) - It has more than 30,000 troops there, ready to be shipped around the world if 'needed'... etc etc...

If the US withdrew from SK it would be the Americans who would suffer from this (not SK)....

posted on May, 29 2005 @ 06:51 PM
When I was in S Korea the people didnt really have a problem with us....I was only there for about a month at a time and the places I saw were accustomed to Americans, hell where ever we are that's where the money is. So yeah generally the communities around bases are gonna love US presence. But go out a bit, the farther from the bases the more they don't want us there. I say we pull out, pack up and go. They don't want us there, fine.

posted on May, 29 2005 @ 07:38 PM
i seen this on t.v wow.once again another u.s policy creating angry people.u.s should lay off on getting involded in there lives.cant see the point getting people so mad like this.i feel for those who got there heads hit today.all young people too. shame..... shame i turn away.

posted on May, 29 2005 @ 08:00 PM
Wow, I know somebody in Seoul, I hope he's ok.

Anyhow it's sad that this is happening really. From what I've heard from my friend in Seoul it's mostly a matter of the older Koreans who understand why the US is there is dying off. And now the younger generation who doesn't understand is becoming much more vocal. Such a shame. I don't want to launch a preemptive strike on the DPRK but if they cross the line then we'll have to do what we have to do.

posted on May, 29 2005 @ 11:17 PM

Originally posted by flukemol
i seen this on t.v wow.once again another u.s policy creating angry people.u.s should lay off on getting involded in there lives.cant see the point getting people so mad like this.i feel for those who got there heads hit today.all young people too. shame..... shame i turn away.

You should pick up a history book somewhere and learn just what it is you are talking about.

[edit on 05/5/30 by GradyPhilpott]

posted on May, 30 2005 @ 12:45 AM
I personally think our troops should stay on American soil at all times unless we are @ war on foriegn soil. Why have troops in places where they are not needed when it's been said that we are in need of more troops here in our homeland?
Besides like someone else pointed out...once we've done our part in helping, we should then leave the job to those whom have been trained to do that job.
Just my two pennies.

posted on May, 30 2005 @ 01:50 AM
I say TearGas all the Protesters if they get outta control! "CrowedControl" protesters seem like there getting Safisticated in Weaponry hm.....

posted on May, 30 2005 @ 03:29 AM
i have read the history of korea.i must say they should become there own country seems it was held by japan then ussr and u.s split the country up in two.playing out there cold war would be better for this country to join as one again in must be hard to live there and being pulled in 3 or 4 differents other countries policy.i must say the info you gave me really makes me see outside countries tearing korea apart north and south......

posted on May, 30 2005 @ 04:00 AM

Originally posted by GradyPhilpott
You should pick up a history book somewhere and learn just what it is you are talking about.

Ahhh, good ol' US of A.

Following the discovery of North Korean army units posing as civilian refugees, it became the military policy of the US armed forces to shoot at approaching civilian refugees in South Korea. An example of this policy enacted was the massacre of hundreds of mostly women and children civilians at No Gun Ri. Similar massacres took place across South Korea.

Throughout the conflict, the United States maintained a policy of heavy bombing, especially using incendiary weapons, against any and all North Korean settlements. Although images of the civilian victims of the weapon were to be ingrained upon the memory of the world in Vietnam, significantly more napalm was dropped on North Korea, despite the relative short length of the conflict. During the second half of 1950 alone, close to a million gallons of the weapon was used to destroy dozens of settlements in North Korea.

In May and June of 1953, the United States Air Force undertook a mission to destroy several key irrigation and hydroelectric dams, in order to critically hamper agriculture and industry in the North. The Kusǒng, Tǒksan and Pujǒn River dams were all destroyed, severely flooding vast areas of land, drowning thousands and ultimately starving many more.

More than 80% of the industrial and public facilities and transportation works, three-quarters of the government offices, and one-half of the houses were destroyed. Pyongyang (the capital of North Korea) was bombarded with more than one thousand bombs per square kilometre. When the armistice was settled, there were only two buildings left in the city where 400,000 people had lived.

That's even more barbaric than cutting off peoples heads but somehow, people still think of the US military as a force which maintains the moral highground.

posted on May, 30 2005 @ 07:47 AM
GradyPhilpott, the pre-emptive rhetoric coming out of Pyongyang was in direct response to the United States claiming it might pre-emptively strike N.Korea. You've been proven mistaken, accept it.

The S.Korean President, Roh Moo Hyun, was elected back in December 2002 using an anti-US stance. The growing resentment of the United States presence is due to President Bush's stonewall tactics and brinkmanship that he plays on a daily basis with N.Korea. Bush cut off diplomatic contact with the N.Koreas in a quest for "moral clarity" almost at the stage of complete normailization of relations with Washington. He did this because he didnt trust anything Clinton had done, including disarming N.Korea and setting up normal relations.

At the risk of sounding like a broken record, its good ol' Bush's fault once again.

The U.S Army shouldnt pull out of S.Korea, they are there for a good reason. Its Bush that should pull out of the Whitehouse!

Assistant Secretary of State for Asian affairs, James Kelly:
Roh said to us, "I wake up in a sweat every morning, wondering if Bush has done something unilaterally to affect the [Korean] peninsula."

OP/ED: The North Korean Nuclear Confrontation: A History Of Efforts

[edit on 30/5/05 by subz]

posted on May, 30 2005 @ 10:52 AM
So I guess bringing China, Russia, Japan into the talks with North Korea was not a good idea from Bush. I guess everything Bush does is bad and no other president did anything bad with Korea. Not even Clinton moving more troops and equipment into south korea and starting plans for war. Did everyone forget about this, is it only me that sees this or are all of you blinded.

Did everyone forget the Korean war and what it was about! that it did not start out as a dissagreement between the US and North Korea!

We are not there just for a base! we have other bases in that part of the world we dont need one there to reach china or any other threat in that area.

People listen to yourselves, this confrontation between North Korea and the US has been going on for decades... probably longer than most of you have been alive.

do you think it is going to end with diplomacy?
I dont think so...
just look at kim jong il, do you think he is going to give up?
cmon thats a crazy thought....
He is still playing games with the world like his father did too


posted on May, 30 2005 @ 11:47 AM
Targets Of Opportunity

Originally posted by GradyPhilpott
There's a quick and easy response to this problem: Boycott Korean merchandise.

Students don't spontaneously do anything. Someone organized this “demonstration” and targeted the U.S. embassy.

I think we can be reasonably assured that it wasn't the government of South Korea. One would do well to look a little farther north for suspects.

Just look at the “demands” the students were making. Dictated straight out of Pyongyang, verbatim.

Students in the United States protest the U.S. too. Does that mean Americans should boycott U.S. goods?

I understand what it feels like to be sick of being bashed all the time. Believe me, I really do.

I'm an American, myself.

But I urge you to consider the true targets of your ire, and not to play into the hands of our enemies.

North Korea wants to weaken South Korea in every way possible. This is part of their strategy. Should we bite and be their fools?

I assure you, the overwhelming majority of South Koreans are just as pissed about this as we are.

They know damn well what would happen if we abandoned them. We should never forget that.

Know thy true enemy.

posted on May, 30 2005 @ 02:12 PM
Well, it appears this discussion has become distorted by partisanship. This is very interesting indeed but not unusual. Protests like this have been taking place since the 70’s and interestingly enough the article does not give a number of protesters but instead simply says “thousands.” “Thousands” can be 1,500 or it could be 999,000 so the actually number leaves much to the imagination. The most likely number is 2,000-5,000 or so, still a large number but not as large as the article may let the imagination think.

Secondly, I cannot find where Bush or the US for that matter has stated that they may use a preemptive strike against North Korea. That doesn’t mean that it hasn’t happened but I have been unable to find a reference to it being said. The closest I got to actually finding where this was said was within this article in which Bush states, when questioned about North Korea, that “all options are on the table, of course.” Within all options a preemptive strike is definitely included, however he did not say that was the US’s policy either. Mythatsabigprobe stated that the following proved it was said but this statement came from the mouth of the North Korean News agency, which is definitely just spewing propaganda.

"The United States should be aware that the choice of a pre-emptive attack is not only theirs," the North's official news agency quoted the state-run newspaper Minju Joson as saying. "To stand against force with force is our unswerving method of response."
CNN News Link

However I have found an article that states Japan would take a preemptive action against North Korea if it was preparing a ballistic missile attack.

Japan yesterday threatened a pre-emptive strike against North Korea if it judged Pyongyang was preparing a ballistic missile attack.

The declaration by Shigeru Ishiba, the defence minister, deepened a worsening crisis in the region caused by North Korea's resumption of its nuclear programme.

The threat marks a major step away from Japan's post-war "peace constitution," which renounces the right to use force.

"Our nation will use military force as a self-defence measure if North Korea starts to resort to arms against Japan," Mr Ishiba said.

He said that fuelling a missile could be construed as the start of an attack if the missile was known to be aimed at Japan. "It is too late if a missile is flying towards Japan."

Mr Isiba's words were clearly designed to warn North Korea not to repeat its 1993 and 1998 missile tests, which caused widespread indignation in Japan.

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