This is a report on a visit of one of our collective members to Seoul and the surrounding countryside over New Year 1976. It reveals both the dark and the light sides of the current situation in south Korea, showing the effect of government policy on the farms, but also the way in which a gathering number of villages (though still a tiny minority) are taking steps to protect themselves and create some degree of autonomy.
The fire and the agony of Kim Chi Ha's verses are rooted in Korea's long and tragic history. Kim, one of Park Chung Hee's most dangerous critics, was born on February 4, 1941, in Mokpo, Cholla province, for centuries the scene of resistance to overbearing govts. While a student he spent two years -wandering" in the countryside to avoid the clampdown of 1961. Later he was tortured and imprisoned for joining the student movement against normalization of Japan-south Korea relations in 1964-65.
Thanks to the brave struggle of less than 200 hundred workers at south Korea 's largest daily, the human rights movement broke free of the regime's tight grip on the media to reach a nationwide audience for the first time in years. What were the workers after? Was this a case of "workers' control" or simply another free speech movement? How and why were they defeated? The first of two parts.
We hope this issue will give an idea of the bum trip being laid upon the people of South Korea. South Korea has become the whore of the pimp Park Chung Hee, a psychopathic dictator who -once earned a living as an officer in the Japanese Imperial Army, putting down his own countrymen. Like the Korean women shangaied into prostitution in the name of "export tourism," the Park govt has leased he country out to Japan and the U.S. for protection.
Issue No. 4 of the Japanese journal Libero International. The exact date of publication is unknown, but presumed to be in 1976.
CIRA-Nippon, founded in 1973, is a federation of autonomous libertarian groups, including Section for International Correspondence (SIC), a small group of comrades living in the Osaka-Kobe area. The SIC works as the communication link between domestic anarchist groups associated with CIRA-Nippon, and various groups outside Japan.
The following letter was sent to us by Mit-Teilung (London), in whose No. 22 (October '75) issue it appeared. Our reply doesn't represent our last word on the subject (especially on "Nationalism," about which we'll be writing more later.) We hope that readers (G. J. included) will send us their comments and criticism.