Daily Update – August 10

South Korea

Politics – The United States deployed 3 B-2 stealth bombers to Guam as a response to the recent missile launches.  The bombers will conduct regional and local shorties.  Adm. Cecil D. Haney commented that the deployment helps to stregthen the US commitment to regional security.  Other leaders in the military have commented the deployment also assits to provide an effective detterent force in the region.

Culture – South Korean netizens are in uproar at a North Face world jakcet which was released in 2014.  The netizen citied in the article posted a picture of the jacket with the nomer “Sea of Japan” for the body of water between Korea and Japan.  Koreans refer to this body of water as the East Sea, and the name has been a very heated debate between the two countries for years.  The netizen who posted the picture also said that Koreans should boycott Northface because of the print.  Northface is an American company.

North Korea

On July 15, a little after midnight, a North Korean short wave radio station started to broadcast a numbers broadcast for the first time in several years.  An article published on 38North yesterday examines the broadcast and the implications it has on the Korean peninsula.  North Korean spies, as well as their South Korean counterparts, relied on numbers broadcasts to get information about an assignment, but North Korea’s station has been unused for 16 years, leaving many to speculate the reason for the restart.  The most credible theory is that North Korea is looking to stir up confusion in South Korea.  South Korea has also been using a numbers broadcast to comunicate with spies in North Korea.

North Korean defectors are facing a tougher challenge in China, with Chinese border security stepping up its patrols in the border region.  However, more citizens are also reporting North Koreans who cross the Tumen River, which is also helping increase the number of North Koreans repatriated to North Korea from the border region.  The reason for more indvidual reportings is a rise in monetary incentive, with those reporting North Koreans recieving 1,000 RMB and capturing a live North Korean is rewarded with 2,000 RMB.  Chin ahas also stepped up its fines for assisting North Koreans, as well as smuggling goods across the border.

 

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