Monday, October 07, 2002

US representative James Kelly has wrapped up his trip to Pyongyang and it looks like everything went smoothly with nothing of substance actually being achieved. But questions remain "why was the press conference cancelled in both Seoul and Tokyo?" No reporters were allowed to travel with the delegation into North Korea and now they aren't even allowed to question those that went. A little fishy it smells.

Also, after much pessimism on my part, Kim Suk-soo has been approved. So South Korea now has a Prime Minister to see things through until the mid-December presidential elections. I like the commentary that the GDP was worried that a third rejection might be bad for them image....implying that it was not that he was suitable for the job either but just that the whole rejection thing was getting tired. Good to see the democratic process functioning for the good of the people.

And in the human interest section of this blog...I was reading an article in the Financial Times about Koreans subject to relocation under Stalin in Russia. I wanted to include the article but couldn't find it on the website...(I read the article in the actual real paper) but I found this article from Hankuk University of Foreign Studies which also addresses the topic. I don't claim to know much of this side of Korean history but its a curious feature of Korean history which, as far as I know, has not been widely researched or investigated. But its interesting to note that during Stalin's reign it was not just a matter of Russians against their own people but many other races and people were affected and killed in Russia during this period. Russia does not imbibe images of multiculturalism but its always timely to remind ourselves that no country is without other races and people dwelling in its borders and through this inevitably their story and history becomes mingled with the country's history.

Currently reading:

"Hell" by Yasutaka Tsutsui