By Dr. Kiyul Chung – Editor in Chief, The 4Th Media
Emergency Report: The Entry to Jeju Island by 3 American members of “Veterans for Peace” on March 15th were denied, detained & forcibly deported by S. Korean authorities.
Check the VfP’s official press release for their Public Protest against South Korea’s pro-US, authoritarian, dictatorial and facist Lee regime in Seoul; “U.S VETS REFUSED ENTRY INTO SOUTH KOREA: Protest Friday at South Korean Consulate in New York” http://www.4thmedia.org/2012/03/16/u-s-vets-refused-entry-into-south-korea-protest-friday-at-south-korean-consulate-in-new-york/
As well-known already in the region and some other parts of the world as well, from the very beginning of the idea to contstruct a naval base in Korea as another US naval base which is only about 200 miles away from China’s southeastern areas, the Jeju Naval Base has not been a Korea-US issue only.
Instead it’s been precisely the issue of Northeast Asian region since China is automatically drawn into this geopolitically and militarily intertwined issue in terms of further intensified militarization of both Korean Peninsula and Northeast Asia region, particularly in the context of “America’s strategic naval base as a direct military threat to China.”
However, in fact, the Construction of Another US Naval Base in Jeju Island, Korea is not only regional but also global military and power struggle issues as well.
For there are four major global powers like US, China, Russia, Japan, of course, both Koreas in the region, too, whose national security and geopolitical interests are automatically intertwined each other in the issue of Jeju US military base.
By the way, many Koreans already call the Jeju Naval Base ”Another US Naval Base.” They also call it now, therefore, the “US Pirate Base” as well.
According to not a small number of South Korean (both some conservative and most progressive) media outlets, the “thoroughly pro-US, pro-Japan to the bone” (a direct quote from President Lee’s own older brother who’s been the most powerful political figure last 4 years in Korean politics) Lee regime seems to mark “the unprecedented, therefore, probably the worst case of extreme flunkeyism” in the entire Korean history of a half a millenium.
As a result, due to his unimaginably disastrous and ruinous 4 years of most corrupted power, not only the whole-Korean peninsula but also China and the whole Northeast Asian region have been continually and forcibly thrown into a constant state of further intensified military tensions.
It’s been no wonder why, during the most shameful and tragic presidency in modern Korean history, the entire South Korean society has been extremely torn apart into many different pieces with unbelievable degrees of social, cultural, economic, political, ideological and religious division most Koreans might have never experienced before.
Neither have the North-South relations last 4 years during his blindly antagonistic, destructive and reactionary policy toward the other half of Korean peninsula gone into the endless collisions repeatedly over and over and over again.
By the way President Lee’s not been ”flunkey” only!
But, as the absolute majority Korean population have courageously challenged, condemned and denounced his pernicious rule, he’s been also “the most horrendous antinational traitor.”
Also, even if he’s been talking about the “green movement” all the time, he’s been however destructively “anti-The Nature,” too, including the destruction of one of the most beautiful spots in Korean peninsula, the Jeju Island which “contains the natural World Heritage Site, Jeju Volcanic Island and Lava Tubes.” (Wikipedia)
However, the Jeju Island is not only a precious natural treasure in Korea but also it’s a UNESCO-designated World Heritage Site as well.
The immediate area where ”Another US Military Naval Base” is going to be constructed has “three UNESCO World Natural Heritage sites and nine UNESCO Geo-Parks” also. The park is also a “UNESCO-designated Global Biosphere Reserve.”
In addition to that UNESCO background in terms of its preciousness, uniqueness, and irreplaceable worth as human natural resource, the Jeju Island has been also called as “The Island of World Peace” as well. On January 27, 2005, South Korean government under the Lee’s predecessor late President Roh Moohyun “designated Jeju Island as the Island of World Peace based on Article 12 of the Special Act for the Jeju Free International City” (http://www.peace.jeju.kr/eng/html/sub1/sub1.htm).
That island of world peace is now about to be turned completely upside down as another warmongering, aggressive and strategic US military naval base which clearly aims its already “publicly and repeatedly pronounced prime target,” China.
After four years in power, Lee’s political catch phrase of that so-called green movement has been turned out to be a series of flat lies.
For example, from the very inception of one of the most deceptive and destructive but extremely lucrative business idea for his corrupted cronies, the so-called ”Saving 4 Rivers Project” has been also adamantly opposed by a great majority Korean population.
One of the grandest projects of this scale which has taken already more than 12 trillion worth of national resources is well-known for the astronomically multiplying wealth, at the expense of The Mother Nature, of his own family members, his hometown (“Young-Po”) businesses, particularly his highschool, called “Dongji Sanggo”-graduate “construction businesses.”
Last 4 years, it’s been a so much divisive issue for South Korean society. As a result, this project, from the very beginning of its inception, has earned not any genuine sense of respects or supports.
Instead it’s earned harsh critiques, condemnations and strong oppositions from all walks of life.
Even globally-recognized and broardly respected foreign natural scientists, specialists and experts even from German government on the river questions have voluntarily visited those “dying 4 rivers” in Korea.
Eventually, therefore, his project has earned a very cynical but tragic nickname, ”The 4 Rivers Destructin Project” or “The Killing 4 Rivers Project.”
Lee’s very much confrontational, antagonistic “anti-North” policy as known the so-called “absorption policy” like the case of Germany is considered by most “the worst in Korea’s division history.”
However, this isn’t a news anymore. It’s also well known for those torturous four years.
His notoriously well-known ultraright Christian fundamentalist ideology, just like the G. W. Bush, seems to have made him so blind ideologically, i.e., anti-communism in general, anti-north in particular.
That could be why his logic is terribly illogical first and foremost. Therefore his talking style is completely out of touch thereby horribly arbitrary again just like that of the W Bush.
It’s been like a daily torture for many Koreans to see him on TV, internet and newspapers. His hate-filled or hatemongering anti-North mentality in particular, “the red complex” in general goes beyond imagination.
As we’ve seen last four years, his blindly pro-US but anti-North and now even seemingly anti-China mentality seems to have made him even more deeply troublesome throughout the whole region.
Now it seems he stands high not only in Korea as “the worst troublemaker,” but also in the NEA region as ”Regional Troublemaker.”
By earning that shameful and disgraceful nickname, it’s like he’s put his own fellow Koreans from all walks of life relentlessly down to the ground so much.
He himself is such a tragic failure. He’s been such a misfortune for the whole Koreans in north, south and overseas.
Many have argued, however, his anti-China rethoric is essentially due to his politically embattled upcoming battle: the April General Election.
A politically new factor here in terms of Northeast Asian regional politics is the sitting South Korean president Lee, however, probably for the first time, has even used the China [anti-communism] Card for the purpose of his own political survival first and then for his faithful service of the US’ national interests.
To many, he often looks like he even doesn’t mind or care about the nation he supposed to serve and work with the regional friends, i.e., his immediate neighbors such as China and Russia which nations he supposed to relate well with good wills based upon those universally-upheld principles of “non-interference in other’s internal affairs, mutual respect, peaceful coexistence and co-prosperity.
However, as well-known now, the reality last four years has been both unbelievably and unimaginably the complete opposite.
According to South Korean media reports from all political ends including even some diehard conservatives, he seems acting as if he’s been trying to throw both the whole nation and the region into a nonstop whirlwind situation.
This tragic situation, of course, has been constantly accompanied by multiple crises both for the Korean peninsula and the whole region. Why?
Many have persuasively argued through which he’s been attempting to possibly get away from his insurmountable corruption, embazzelment, tax evasion charges and other numerous still legally-pending cases such as the most infamous “BBK” scandal with more than ten some other financial and legal scandals on the question.
As also well-known, he even seems to have dared to put the whole nation into a full scale war with the North.
In this deadly serious and most dangerous business, he seems doesn’t even mind to revive such a dangerous moment as he and the US both instigated at the end of 2010 when both sides of Korea physically exchanged live artillary fires.
As well-known, too, it was, after the semi-ending of Korean War in July 1953, for the first time the both sides physically engaged in a “limited war.”
It’s not a news anymore the worst pro-US flunkey Lee regime has continued to allow and join the US-led ongoing military drills on Korean soil, sea and sky all year round.
However, it’s been also not a news anymore the major and key characteristics of those US-led military drills have been intentionally aggressive and provocative against DPRK either.
Again, as many South Korean scholars and experts pointedly argue, these dangerous war games are undoubtedly intended to first divert people’s attentions from his numerous criminal scandals and thereby to survive from the embattled upcoming elections both in April and December.
However, many also argue Lee in fact doesn’t have any choice of his own in regard to the military issues on his own soil/land where he is supposed to be the “commander in chief” which is only in dream but not in reality.
This sort of argument, too, does have large supports as well in Korean politics.
After all, no matter how flunkey, cunning, vicious he’s been, it seems there has never been such a, as many claim, “insane” politician/personality in Korea’s division history to use both North and China Cards simultaneously for his own political survival.
Unbelievable and unimaginable!
<In Part II, the portions of VI, VII, VIII, IX, and X will be posted on March 17.>
Dr. Kiyul Chung, Editor in Chief at The 4th Media, is a Visiting Professor at School of Journalism and Communication, Tsinghua University, Beijing, China.
The New York Times, Island’s Naval Base Stirs Opposition in South Korea: http://www.nytimes.com/2011/08/19/world/asia/19base.html?pagewanted=all
“U.S VETS REFUSED ENTRY INTO SOUTH KOREA: Protest Friday at South Korean Consulate in New York”: http://www.4thmedia.org/2012/03/16/u-s-vets-refused-entry-into-south-korea-protest-friday-at-south-korean-consulate-in-new-york/
S. Brian Willson: A US Vet Writes to South Korean Ambassador to US Naval Military Base in Jeju Island: http://www.4thmedia.org/2012/03/14/a-us-vet-writes-to-south-korean-ambassador-to-us-naval-military-base-in-jeju-island/
Robert Redford: The Battle for Jeju Island: How the Arms Race is Threatening a Korean Paradise: http://www.4thmedia.org/2012/02/03/the-battle-for-jeju-island-how-the-arms-race-is-threatening-a-korean-paradise/