Showing posts with label Korea Peninsula. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Korea Peninsula. Show all posts

February 14, 2018

First Openly Gay Skater to Win The Olympics Gold, 'Eric Redford'

 Canadian figure skater Eric Radford has said he "might explode with pride", after becoming the first openly gay male Winter Olympics champion. 
Radford took gold at the Pyeongchang Games in the team figure skating event, alongside his partner Meagan Duhamel.
The pair performed a beautiful routine set to Adele's Hometown Glory.
US skater Adam Rippon, the first openly gay athlete to reach the US Winter Olympics team, won bronze in the same event at the Gangneung Ice Arena.
He skated to Coldplay's O, and Arrival of the Birds by Cinematic Orchestra.
The team figure skating, which debuted four years ago, sees each nation compete in the men's, women's, pairs', and ice dance disciplines. The team with most points overall takes the gold medal.
They join openly bisexual Dutch speed skater Ireen Wust - her nation's most successful Olympian with 10 medals, including golds from four consecutive Games.
The Canadian skating team pose with their gold medalsAfter his win, Radford, 33, wrote on Twitter: "This is amazing! I literally feel like I might explode with pride."

Image copyrighImage cap

 Gold medalists (L-R) Patrick Chan, Gabrielle Daleman, Kaetlyn Osmond, 
Meagan Duhamel, Eric Radford, Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir of Team Canada
Later, he tweeted a smiling picture with Rippon, adding the hashtag "#outandproud".
Fellow Canadian medallist and LGBT advocate Mark Tewksbury, who won a swimming gold in 1992, sent his congratulations. 
"FINALLY in 2018 an openly gay man is on top of the podium," he said. "No more isolation for LGBT sport men!!"
"It's fantastic," said Angela Ruggiero, the head of the International Olympics Committee's Athletes Commission. "[He's] paving the way to send a really positive message globally to say that everyone should be accepted and that everyone should be able to compete at the Olympic Games." 
Decades before Radford and Rippon, gay British skater John Curry won a figure skating gold at the 1976 Winter Olympics in Innsbruck. He had not made his sexuality public, but was outed by a German newspaper shortly afterwards. 
During the 2010 Olympics, Dutch Wust was not happy when her sexuality became an Olympic story. She said in an interview at the time that no one would ask her athletic male counterpart, Dutch medallist Sven Kramer about his relationship, "so why would you ask me"? 
Some on Twitter questioned why it made a difference if Radford was gay or straight. 
"Why does his sexuality matter? He is an athlete that won a medal," one observer wrote.
Another replied: "It matters to people legitimately afraid of losing jobs or getting abused if they are open about being gay. When someone can reach the top of their field without hiding, that gives hope."  

Absolutely incredible to see two proud gay men excelling at what they do best. Keep it up boys! You are amazing role models for our community. ❤️🏳️‍πŸŒˆπŸ‡¨πŸ‡¦πŸ‡ΊπŸ‡Έ@Rad85E @Adaripp 

October 8, 2017

For This Korean American The Coming Out Was Very Tough

Twenty-nine years ago, on the anniversary of the National March on Washington for Lesbian and Gay Rights, Coming Out Day was first observed. Coming out still matters and supporting people during this often difficult time is more important than ever. This week, we share stories about the coming out experience alongside Rudy’s Barbershop. The brand has been a firm supporter of the LGBTQ community and has partnered with the It Gets Better Project, a cause they have rallied around for years.
 I had just finished marching in New York’s Pride Parade with my queer Korean drumming group. We marched down Fifth Avenue for hours, taking up space and making noise in ways that Asians in America are often expected not to do. It was an ecstatic experience.
Afterward, we took a sweaty group photo and I posted it on Instagram with the caption, “my badass queer Korean drumming family.”
Soon after that, my mom texted my sister a screenshot of the photo, asking her (in Korean), “Your brother’s not gay, is he?”
My sister then messaged me and asked, “What do you want me to say?”
 My mom and dad moved to America in the 70s, and their English is pretty good. But “queer” is definitely a term they didn’t pick up during the decades they spent running their own business, making sure my sister and I were fed and shuttling us between after-school activities. So I didn’t think twice when I wrote that caption.
“Your brother’s not gay, is he?”
But, alas, technology. When you put “queer” into Google Translate, a Korean phrase comes up that literally means “same-sex love.” A pretty clear alarm bell for any parent, if you ask me. 
And so began the process that I had dreaded for years, and that I still hadn’t figured out a way to navigate. I felt a familiar tornado of anxiety and stress churn in my stomach. I felt it every time I started thinking about what would happen if I came out as queer to my Korean immigrant parents. Would I still be able to visit home during the holidays? Would they try to come in between my sister and me? Would they ever talk to me again? 
America taught me to value my independence. It taught me to be self-sufficient, to be my own best advocate, to never settle for less. That’s how a lot of my white gay friends came out: They took a brave step toward full self-actualization, by choosing to put themselves first and to impose their truths on their family, so that they could be queer AF and still go home for Thanksgiving.
My parents taught me about family duty and obligation.
I admired them for it. But it just wasn’t relevant to my family. 
My parents taught me about family duty and obligation. They taught me about swallowing down the pain to enable your kids and grandkids to live better than you did; about being halfway around the world from extended family; and about standing up for your dignity on a daily basis. 
For us queer kids of immigrants, the feelings of guilt are real. The deeply entrenched sense of obligation is real. The exhausting toll all of this takes on our mental health is real. 
Coming out is not just about us, as individuals; it’s about the repercussions that it might have within our immigrant communities and across generations of family spread across the globe. It’s about wanting to honor the sacrifices of our parents, who survived in a country that was not built for them and that continues to see them as foreigners, all just to give us more opportunities.
 But in the moment that my sister messaged me, I did what came to me instinctively, as a journalist: I started writing. I had avoided instigating the conversation for years. But since my mom was asking the question, I felt I had no choice. 
I knew my Korean wasn’t good enough for me to communicate everything I needed to over the phone or in person. And I knew that if I came out in English, the power dynamic would be reversed, and my parents would feel helpless and lost. 
And so I wrote a letter to my parents explaining what it meant for me to be gay. My hope was to fill in the gaps of her knowledge and push back against some of the opinions I knew she held after decades of going to a Korean Catholic church in my hometown just outside Chicago. I asked some friends — including Clara Yoon, a proud and affirming Korean mother of a bisexual, transgender son — to help translate the letter into Korean. Then I emailed it to my parents. 
In that moment when I hit send, the knots in my stomach suddenly disappeared: I finally felt free. For the first time in my adult life, I had nothing to hide from my parents. I was fortunate enough to be financially independent from them. It felt less important to me how they reacted, and more urgent for me to get on with building my life. 
Here’s the letter I wrote: 
My mom refused to read the letter. I think, in her gut, she knew what she would find inside, and she didn’t want to put herself through that. But it’s okay. I realize now that I wrote the letter mostly for myself, to affirm my queerness: I wanted to find a tangible way to share more of who I was in Korean — a language and a culture that have always been my main point of connection to my family and to my ancestors, while at the same time being the biggest barrier in getting to know my parents better and connecting with them emotionally. I found comfort in knowing that there were Korean words and phrases, references and metaphors, slang and idioms that could tell the story of what it means for me to be a queer Korean American. I feel affirmed by that language of queerness, even if it’s something my parents will never be able to fully embrace. 
It’s only been a couple of months. I haven’t talked to my mom since I came out, but my dad seems to be taking it better. (He actually did read the letter.) I usually talk with him about once a week — random chit chat about the weather, about how work is going and, noticeably, an avoidance of the subject of whether I’m dating anyone at the moment. 
Through it all, I will keep on drumming. I will keep marching, taking up space, shouting and standing up for my community, because that’s what we need to do to survive in a country where, at times, it feels like all the queers are white and all the Asians are straight
I’m still figuring things out. Along the way, I’ve been documenting the stories of our community. For National Coming Out Day this year, I made a short film collecting the stories of queer and trans Asians in America, asking them what they would say to their parents about their lives, if they could speak the same language fluently.  
To my extended, chosen family: You are not alone. There are queer and trans people who look like you, who speak 1.5 languages like you do, who feel stuck between two countries and cultures and are trying to figure out how being LGBTQ fits into all of that. There are immigrant parents who love their queer and trans children. And there is a community out there that loves all of who you are, unconditionally. 
You are not alone. 
The National Queer Asian Pacific Islander Alliance (NQAPIA) is a federation of nearly 50 LGBTQ Asian Pacific Islander groups around the U.S. You can poke around the website to find your local queer Asian group:
NQAPIA hosts conferences, summits, leadership trainings, and healing spaces for us; and our local groups get together to share food and drink, to stand up for our queer immigrant community members, and to support one another as friends and chosen family. 
There’s also a series of short videos and Q&A fact-sheets translated into more than a dozen Asian languages:
Here in New York, we have a PFLAG group specifically for Asian and Pacific Islander families. We have a monthly afternoon gathering for family members and LGBTQ people to gather and share stories, hug, drink tea, and laugh together.
Reach out to any of these groups, even if they’re not near your home: Chances are, we’ll know of someone near you who can be a resource by phone, via Facebook, or by e-mail.
Finally, for the LGBTQ Koreans out there: We’re currently planning the inaugural National Conference for LGBTQ people of Korean descent. We’re looking for more volunteers, and you can get in touch with us here!

by    | 

September 28, 2014

Was the Leader Poisoned? Listen to it in Korean Music { The Poisoning of Kim Jong Kook)

poison (intoxication) - kim jong kook

The little Grandeur Dictator of SKorea has Unspecified Health Problem

The brain? That is an easy one. With his bloat belly may his kidneys or Liver..he loves American booze. Let’s hope he doesn’t suffer much and goes to meet his dad asap.
North Korean leader Kim Jong-un (C) reacting as he visits the North Korean People's Army Breeding Station No. 621Kim Jong-un has been visibly limping in recent months 
North Korean leader Kim Jong-un has an unspecified medical problem, state media report, after he failed to appear at a key political event.
A report on state television said on Thursday that Mr Kim, 31, was in an "uncomfortable physical condition" but gave no details.
Earlier, the leader was absent from a session of the Supreme People's Assembly - North Korea's legislature.
Mr Kim has not been seen in public for more than three weeks.
His non-appearance at the SPA - to which he was elected in March with 100% of the vote - on Thursday prompted renewed speculation about the leader's whereabouts.
The report on state-run Central Television later in the day showed footage of the leader limping during one of his regular inspection tours back in July.
Kim made his last public appearance on 3 September, when he attended a concert given by the Moranbong Band - an all-girl musical troupe reputedly hand-picked by the leader himself.
State newspaper Rodong Sinmun showed Mr Kim sitting in comfortable front-row seats, alongside his wife Ri Sol-ju.
Previous appearances, the usual diet of factory and military unit inspections, show a clearly overweight Mr Kim walking with a limp and wearing generously cut trousers, possibly to disguise his walking difficulties.
South Korean newspaper Joongang Daily supports the leg injury theory, and suggests that his disappearance may be due to an injury picked up during some sort of sporting activity.
 It is known that Mr Kim is a lover of horse riding and is keen on watching basketball and football.
An anonymous source - said to be "familiar with North Korea affairs" - quoted by the South Korean news agency Yonhap, said he understood Mr Kim was "suffering from gout, along with hyperuricemia, hyperlipidemia, obesity, diabetes and high blood pressure".
The agency said some people attribute the deterioration in Mr Kim's health to frequent drinking and overeating.
But its source said gout runs in Mr Kim's family, with his grandfather Kim II-sung, his father Kim Jong-il and his elder brother Kim Jong-nam all suffering from the disease.
Chosun Ilbo suggests that he simply might be on holiday, but notes that army politburo head Hwang Pyong-so, Mr Kim's constant shadow on inspection visits, has also disappeared from view.
It is not the first time that the North Korean leader has failed to appear in public for an extended period. In March 2012, he spent 21 days out of the public eye; in June of the same year it was 24 days; and in January 2013 it was 18 days.
Despite the lack of recent footage of Kim Jong-un, he has not entirely disappeared from televisions tuned to Central Television.
Viewers get a daily dose of archive footage of months-old inspection visits along with an enthusiastic voice-over, usually in the hour leading up to the main evening news.
BBC Monitoring reports and analyses news from TV, radio, web and print media around the world.  

December 14, 2013

More Purges Expected from Kim Jon Un in North Korea

dekKorean Central News Agency / Korea News Service / AP
He looks so happy. No more uncle to compete with. He lost respect for his uncles’ advise and probably it was a long time ago.
When big events happen in a country, like executing the no. 2 man something follows. Only two choices for secretive country such
as North Korea. It will either become more bellicose or it will try to improve it’s world image by doing something  not crazy, like
its always expected from such a place.
Adam Gonzalez


 (PYONGYANG) The execution of North Korean leader Kim Jong Uns uncle brought a swift and violent end to a man long considered the countrys second-most powerful. But while Jang Song Thaek is now gone, the fallout from his bloody purge is not over.
In a stunning reversal of the popular image of Jang as a mentor and father figure guiding young Kim Jong Un as he consolidated power, North Korea's state-run media on Friday announced he had been executed and portrayed him as a morally corrupt traitor who saw the death of Kim's father, Kim Jong Il, in December 2011 as an opportunity to make his own power play.
  Experts who study the authoritarian country, which closely guards its internal workings from both outsiders and citizens, were divided on whether the sudden turn of events reflected turmoil within the highest levels of power or signaled that Kim Jong Un was consolidating his power in a decisive show of strength. Either way, the purge is an unsettling development for a world that is already wary of Kim's unpredictability amid North Korea's attempts to develop nuclear weapons.
"If he has to go as high as purging and then executing Jang, it tells you that everything's not normal," said Victor Cha, a former senior White House adviser on Asia.
The first appearance of the new narrative came out just days ago, when North Korea accused Jang, 67, of corruption, womanizing, gambling and taking drugs. It said he had been eliminated from all his posts.
Friday's allegations heaped on claims that he tried "to overthrow the state by all sorts of intrigues and despicable methods with a wild ambition to grab the supreme power of our party and state." "He dared not raise his head when Kim Il Sung and Kim Jong Il were alive," it said, referring to the country's first leader and his son.
But after Kim Jong Il's death, it claimed, Jang saw his chance to challenge Kim Jong Un and realise his "long-cherished goal, greed for power."
The purge also could spread and bring down more people, Cha said. "When you take out Jang, you're not taking out just one person - you're taking out scores if not hundreds of other people in the system. It's got to have some ripple effect." South Korean intelligence officials say two of Jang's closest aides have already been executed last month.
Narushige Michishita, a security expert at the National Graduate Institute for Policy Studies in Tokyo, suggested that Jang's removal shows "that Kim Jong Un has the guts to hold onto power, and this might have shown his will to power, his willingness to get rid of anything that stands in his way."
One of the biggest opportunities for the world to see what may happen next will come on Dec 17, which is the second anniversary of Kim Jong Il's death. North Korea watchers will be closely following whether Jang's wife, Kim Kyong Hui, the younger sister of Kim Jong Il, and other figures are present in the official ceremonies marking the day.
News of Jang Song Thaek's execution was trumpeted across the nation by North Korea's state media - with unusually vitriolic outbursts on TV, radio and in the main newspaper - as a triumph of Kim Jong Un and the ruling party over a traitor "worse than a dog" who was bent on overthrowing the government.
Pyongyang residents crowded around newspapers posted at the capital's main subway station to read the story. State media said Jang was tried for treason by a special military tribunal and executed on Thursday.
"He's like an enemy who dares to be crazy enough to take over power from our party and our leader," said Pak Chang Gil, echoing the media's official line. "He got what he deserved." That's a long way from the popular perception that "Uncle Jang" was nurturing his nephew as a regent appointed by Kim Jong Il. Jang was seen prominently by Kim Jong Un's side as he walked by his father's hearse during his 2011 funeral. He was also a fixture at the new leader's side as he toured the country.
The KCNA report was unusually specific in its accusations. In particular, it criticised Jang for not rising and applauding his nephew's appointment to a senior position because Jang "thought that if Kim Jong Un's base and system for leading the army were consolidated, this would lay a stumbling block in the way of grabbing the power." It stressed repeatedly that Jang had tried to assemble a faction of his own, suggesting the purging process could still be playing out.
Jang's death could herald a "reign of terror," including more purges, said Lim Eul Chul, a North Korea expert at South Korea's Kyungnam University.
Another question mark is how the purge will impact North Korea's relationship with its only major ally, China. Jang had been seen as the leading supporter of Chinese-style economic reforms and an important link between Pyongyang and Beijing. China has called Jang's execution a domestic issue and has avoided further public comment.
North Korea has recently turned to attempts at diplomacy with South Korea and the United States. But tensions have remained high since Pyongyang's threats in March and April, which included warnings that it would restart nuclear bomb fuel production.
Another resident in Pyongyang, Ri Chol Ho, said he did not believe Jang alone was deserving of the harshest punishment.
"For this group of traitors who were going to destroy our single-hearted unity, execution is too lenient," he said. “They should be torn up and thrown into the rubbish bin of history."

December 13, 2013

Unkie in North Korea Faced the Firing Squad

A South Korean man watches TV news about the alleged dismissal of Jang Song-Thaek, North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un's uncle, at a railway station in Seoul on December 3, 2013
Photo by Jung Yeon-Je/AFP/Getty Images

When an uncle becomes more than an uncle, it’s got to go.  This unckie had a lot of say on the past North Korea’s actions.  He got executed according to the untruthful North Korea Media, because he was a womanizer, a drunk gambler and thus deserter in their revolution. Actually all the Dictators of North korea have beeb just that, womanizer, rapist of  any woman or man they want. There are only a few reasons why the no.2 man of this country would be killed along with all his body guards and close friends. 
One is that he was too powerful and baby face thought he had too much. May be he remembered how many times unkie had slopped’m in the back of the head when he was growing up. Actually I make light of this situation because you can’t get sad or hopeful with this guy’s death.  A killer just as bad as his nephew.
May be the nephew wants to be his own man which in case one most wonder doesn’t he have the power to be his own man already?  Obviously not, the kid is felling insecure. In a decade or so Im  sure he will get to know whether this action was smart or it was just igniting of a match where there was none burning. 
Adam Gonzalez, Publisher

The following post is from  on
North Korea state media announced Thursday that Kim Jong Un's uncle—a man who was once considered to be the second most powerful official in the Hermit Kingdon—has been executed for attempting to overthrow the government.
The news came as something of a surprise given Jang Song Thaek's previous role within the government, where he was believed to have helped Kim Jong Un consolidate power after the death of his father two years ago. Still, there had been rumblings of palace trouble, with recent reports suggesting that Jang Song Thaek had already been ousted from his position within Kim Jong Un's inner circle.
The official announcement came via the official North Korean English-language news site, KCNA, which—in its typically superlative-heavy and bombastic fashion—branded Jang Song Thaek everything from a "traitor for all ages" to "despicable human scum" to "worse than a dog." Here's a snippet from the KCNA report:
The accused is a traitor to the nation for all ages who perpetrated anti-party, counter-revolutionary factional acts in a bid to overthrow the leadership of our party and state and the socialist system. ...
He held higher posts than before and received deeper trust from supreme leader Kim Jong Un, in particular. The political trust and benevolence shown by the peerlessly great men of Mt. Paektu were something he hardly deserved. It is an elementary obligation of a human being to repay trust with sense of obligation and benevolence with loyalty.
However, despicable human scum Jang, who was worse than a dog, perpetrated thrice-cursed acts of treachery in betrayal of such profound trust and warmest paternal love shown by the party and the leader for him. From long ago, Jang had a dirty political ambition. He dared not raise his head when Kim Il Sung and Kim Jong Il were alive. But, reading their faces, Jang had an axe to grind and involved himself in double-dealing. He began revealing his true colors, thinking that it was just the time for him to realize his wild ambition in the period of historic turn when the generation of the revolution was replaced.

According to the Associated Press, Jang Song Thaek’s ouster and unconfirmed execution has some analysts fearing that the purge could create dangerous instability within Kim Jong Un’s already unpredictable government.


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