Good day, folks. This is our 6th time of the corner, 'Go by the common sense'.
In this section, we will inspect whether the news from abroad or the Korean news on North Korea are following the common sense and for today, we focus on the news of Landmine blast around DMZ area and hacking incident on a University Hospital with MC Kim Hye-Min(Ms Kim). The details are prepared by Reporter Mun Gyung-Hwan(Mr. Mun).
Ms Kim: Nice to see you here.
Mr. Mun: You too. this is reporter Mun Gyung-Hwan.
Ms Kim: I remember that we have covered this theme several times before. I guess there are something new about this topic.
Mr. Mun: Yes, there are things to be added and revised I've prepared for Today.
The buzz on the asylum of the high ranking members in North Korea: Reversed even by the President
Ms Kim: First, Let's take a look at the purge and asylum topic. It is reported that on a concentrated debate of Reunification Arrangement Committee held on August 10th, President of South Korea, Park Geun-Hye has remarked on the asylum of General Park Seung Won of North Korea. She said that it was mis-information. Only the media is still ladling through that mis-information. They don't correct nor delete the news even though the highest authority acknowledges it.
Mr. Mun: Correct. How great that even our President is backing NK today up! However, there were still the remarks that those rumors are true. Some insist that the high ranking members seek asylum be real.
Ms Kim: Then who have sought that?
Mr. Mun: No one is verified in details. One of the middle-class executive of Workers' Party of Korea has reportedly sought asylum on July to South Korea and the Second representative of North Korea for Defense Ministerial Talks have done so. But these are still not verified correctly.
Ms Kim: That means the news are not verifiable still.
Mr. Mun: Absolutely Not. One of the South Korean Information Authority members acknowledged that nothing has been verified on the case yet and a person from Ministry of Unification added that there are no asylums of high ranking members of North Korea verified. Even Prime Minister Hwang Kyo-Ahn said on August 9th that "There must be special reports to me if there would be the cases like that. But I've not been reported anything so far" To make matter worse, the Government has never held press conferences nor officially opened picture of them. It is only the media that makes the rumors to the extend the accredited news mens to Ministry of Unification worries about. They say that "Those news don't feed the media but they still uses them."
Ms Kim: Strange. I'd reported as big as possible if any of high rankers had sought asylum to South Korea as the case of Hwang Jang-Yeop. Everyone has leapt on the asylum case of the former secretary man. For the Government, who blames North Korean Government for the reign of terror, every report of asylum cases have a decided advantage but their recent attitude is not simply understandable.
Mr. Mun: I agree. That is why the news on asylums of High ranking members of North Korea lack credibility. Jung Sung-Jang, the head of Sejong Institute points out that these kind of news are distorting people's mind toward North Korea and making them think that North Korea is collapsing, which blocks the ideal conversation between North and South Korea. Also, He stressed out that the asylum of Hwang Jang-Yeop didn't result in the country collapse.
The rumors of Purge: Things we can understand better when we understand North Korean Culture
Ms Kim: Except the rumors of Asylum, there still exist the rumors of purges.
Mr. Mun: It is. According to NIS, there have been purges of the general of Ministry of the People's Armed Forces, Hyun Yung-Chul, the Vice minister of the Publicity Department of Unification, Won Dong-Yeon, and the present Prime Minister, Choi Young-geon followed by the 15 high ranking members.
Ms Kim: That is 18 purges in total. But is that verifiable?
Mr. Mun: To verify them, we should check with the report or acquire the inside information of North Korea. But the thing is not even a report has been opened yet. Whole thing is reported by so-called 'Sources of North Korea'.
Ms Kim: I remember that in 2012, North Korea opened the purge case of Jang Sung-Taek. But Except that, nothing is reported by North Korean Government. Why is that?
Mr. Mun: Taking a consideration of South Korean Society where the death penalty is valid, the Government opens the cases of the executions to great effect as they considers them as sounding the alarm on the society. That means it is considered uneffective if they don't which is why North Korean Government does the same. And by here we can find the information around purges or asylums of North Korea lacks credibility by paradox.
Ms Kim: I guess so.
Mr. Mun: And the doubts around the purge of Hyun Young-Chul arouse because he still appears on the North Korean Broadcast.
Ms Kim: Haven't they deleted the past documents of Jang Sung-Taek thoroughly?
Mr. Mun: They have. In North Korea, they delete record of the major criminal such as traitor against the Nation. And In this vein, that Hyun Young-Chul still appears on the broadcast means that there is no reason to purge him.
Ms Kim: It seems wrong that the media brand 'blood bath' or 'terror-reign' on North Korea without any hard evidences. or there might be some reasonable bases uncovered for Intelligence Agency to be broadcasting like that, aren't they? There could be possibilities to close the informations.
Mr. Mun: I guess there are misunderstandings caused by the misconstructions on North Korean Society. Generally, We remind execution or gundown with the word 'purge'. But in fact, the lexical meaning of 'purge' covers from remedy on wrong doing, banishment to execution. 'Purge' doesn't directly mean 'execution'.
Ms Kim: Is that so? I've always taken 'purge' as 'execution'.
Mr. Mun: Though I can't figure out what exactly the word 'purge' means in North Korea, It is true that the labor training for self-restriction and self-reflection is quite common in North Korea. It could be compared to the demotion or appointment transfer of our society. Throwing back our history, we could easily find such example such as the general Lee Sun-Shin from Choseon Dynasty. He had served in a war as a commoner, right? However, the South Korean Media form a hasty conclusion that those people 'must have been' executed only for the absence from the North Korean broadcast during several months. But in fact, they were working somewhere in a plant or a plantation.
Ms Kim: yeah, come to think of the cases of Choi Young-Gun and Won Dong-Yeon, they were just reported to be executed only for the absences from the broadcast.
Mr. Mun: How shame it is. Then how about taking an example of South Korea. It is uncommon to watch the high ranking members such as the minister of Unification in our broadcast and we don't broadcast them as executed only because we can't see them on TV, Do we? Anyway, In North Korea, even if the high ranking members are transferred they are easily ordered to return in from half an year, to even in a month if he/she seems to be penitent for the mistake, which is why we hear the dead people alive!
Ms Kim: That listens.
Mr. Mun: Moreover, the unreleased grounds they insists on are as fickle as reed. Previously, they have opened certain information against strong opposition. For example, they have released crucial information of NIS running the risk of revealing national secrets. And recently again, they have opened every little of the hacking outcomes against North Korea to proof their innocence. But as you can see here, it is totally political.
Ms Kim: It is so. Thank you for the explanation. Now Let's step into the other topic.
The Landmine incident, the Second Cheonan-ship fall?
Mr. Mun: Now, we will take a short look at the Landmine blast and the Hacking incident.
Ms Kim: This is like a reenaction of Cheonan-ship incident. The air is freezing between two nations. South Korea convicts North Korea of the blast while North Korea strongly insists their innocence on it.
Mr. Mun: That's right. There are lot of people who cast doubts about the announcement of Government, especially those who served the military service on the front line based on their own experiences.
Ms Kim: For example?
Mr. Mun: First, the PMD series mine has tremendous destructive power which is 5 to 8 times bigger than that of toe popper because it is anti-personal while the toe popper is to deform the enemy. So unlike toe popper which cuts below the knees PMD mine kills not only the very victim but also the surrounding people.
Ms Kim: Then why install toe popper? Is it to save the explosive?
Mr. Mun: No, It isn't. It's because in modern time war, killing is no more considered to be 'effective'. Deforming the enemies is generally preferred because it gains time as the wounded soldiers are being treated. Even bullets are getting thinner under the same reason.
Ms Kim: I guess the modern war gets much more brutal than any other time. Anyway, I heard that the wounded soldiers from DMZ mine blast were severed their knees by the incident, weren't they?
Mr. Mun: That's right. Isn't it strange that among the total 4 soldiers, only two of them were wounded their legs? I mean, they are typical victims of the toe poppers, not the PMD mines that South Korean government insists on. And speaking of the picture of the scene of the accident, there were no damages on the wire mesh of the scene, which only casts doubts among people. Besides, just a day after the incident, the Minister of Unification of South Korea was to be reported to send a letter to hold high level contacts to North Korea. And last, President Park was visiting at that day the Battle of White Horse on Kang-Won province, the front line of South Korea.
Ms Kim: What a discrepant action. If there would be even 1 percent of the possibility that the incident was committed by North Korea, Government should never visit the front line with president under the strict protect for the president. It, surely, is dangerous to visit the area during the confrontation.
Mr. Mun: It is.
Does the North Korean hacker reveal their IP?
Ms Kim: I think it's reasonable to cast doubts on current events. Now, What's for the last Mr. Mun?
Mr. Mun: The last topic is recent Hacking incident. According to National Police Agency's Cyber security department, North Korea were assumed to prepare the hacking to a University Hospital in Seoul, this August. They say that North Korea has invaded the program to terror computer network.
Ms Kim: Then there must be evidences for their assertion. isn't it?
Mr. Mun: I guess so. National Police Agency points out that the hackers were using Pyong-yang IP for the terror, which is verifed same base ground of the hacking on financial management network of March, 20th in 2013.
Ms Kim: That means that the 'North Korean' hackers were revealing their 'North Korean' IP?
Mr. Mun: It is. However, even if you're not an expert, you could reasonably find the inconsistency of the incident. As I've explained before, hackers never use nor reveal their IP address because it is like the hackers were revealing their identities. It's basic knowledge for every hackers around the world. So when you follow the National Police Agency's assertion, this only means that North Korean hackers are far below the 'toddlers'.
Ms Kim: It sure looks that National Police Agency doesn't read NK today news. At least they might devise another basis for the incident if they would.
Mr. Mun: I know. What is worse is that these kind of actions only lead to a national disgrace. I only hope that these news are never to be reported to the international society.
Ms Kim: I agree. Thank you Mr. Mun for the whole information. Today, we have covered the issues of asylum or purges of high ranking members, the landmine blast in DMZ area and the hacking incidents. Let's wrap things up for today.
Mr. Mun: Good-bye.
Ms Kim: Good-bye.
Translate: Jang Jae-Hee