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AUSTRALIA: The High Price of Cheap Labor

JAMES ROYCE WRITES — A bad day of surfing might be better than a good day of working, but Australian surf wear brand Rip Curl is experiencing neither of these pleasures after admitting to using factories in North Korea, where work conditions are reminiscent of slave labor, to create the company’s 2015 winter apparel line. […]

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SOUTH KOREA: Northern Neighbors Don’t Appreciate K-Pop

SABRINA VERDUZCO WRITES – When that uptight next-door-neighbor yells at you about your music, sometimes the solution is to turn it up. South Korea took this advice to heart in response to North Korea’s most recent hydrogen bomb stunt in early January, countering the North’s explosive behavior by blasting K-pop on the loudspeakers. Although scientists […]

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NORTH KOREA: MISSILE SUCCESS, DIPLOMATIC FAILURE

WRITES STEPHEN NOERPER OF THE KOREA SOCIETY — A month and a day after conducting its fourth nuclear test, North Korea launched a multi-stage rocket carrying a 440-pound satellite. The launch of the Taepodong missile defied a United Nations ban, once again placing North Korea in direct defiance of international norms. The UN decried the […]

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SOUTH KOREA: How ‘Democratic’ Is It, Really?

SABRINA VERDUZCO WRITES – On Nov. 3rd, the South Korean government made the controversial, yet entirely legal decision to rewrite history textbooks.  Many scholars and political opponents of the Park administration immediately condemned this move. Two weeks later, 70,000 protesters congregated in Seoul in an attempt to confront the South Korean government’s move to censor middle and high school […]

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NORTH KOREA: Blocking the Doors of Perception

RYAN LIPPERT WRITES – When the state controls the media, what viewers get out of each story depends heavily on whether they live in the country or not. There is no better example of this than North Korea. Earlier this month, North Korea celebrated the 70th  anniversary of the ruling Korean Workers’ Party’s creation. Festivities included […]

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SOUTH KOREA: Double Diplomatic Parking with Obama

SABRINA VERDUZCO WRITES – The United States and South Korea displayed a new desire to cement a lasting relationship between the two countries on October 16.  Obama and South Korean President Park Geun-Hye demonstrated an eagerness to strengthen the US-South Korea alliance on October 16. In a statement from the White House, the talks were intended […]

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NORTH KOREA: A New Hope for Refugees

RYAN LIPPERT WRITES – How is it that a North Korean refugee, who just five years ago did not know what the Internet was, is now learning how to code? Thanks to a new partnership between Coding Dojo and Link (Liberty in North Korea), there is renewed hope that North Korean refugees will get the […]

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SOUTH KOREA: Is Blood Thicker than North-South Relations?

SABRINA VERDUZCO WRITES – In recent months, relations between North and South Korea have consisted of artillery fire exchanges and confrontations. Tension has abated to a certain extent since then – thanks to Red Cross officials that no doubt mediated the talks from both sides of the North-South spectrum. As a result, the two countries […]

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NORTH KOREA: Business as Usual in the Hermit Kingdom

RYAN LIPPERT WRITES – In early September, as if the international community needed to be reminded about the alleged capabilities of the North Korean armed forces, the country said that it was prepared to carry out a nuclear attack against (big shocker) the United States and “other hostile forces” for pursuing an overly aggressive foreign […]

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NORTH KOREA: Pesticide Plant or Weapons Warehouse?

RYAN LIPPERT WRITES – Last month, a “biological weapons expert” known only as Lee allegedly defected from his native North Korea to Finland. Yonhap News states that he “held a data storage device with 15 gigabytes of information on human experiments” which may prove the existence of North Korea’s alleged human experimentation programs. However, nobody […]

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NORTH KOREA: Kumdang-2 Cures Everything That Ails Ya

RYAN LIPPERT WRITES – Is impotence keeping you down? Tired of having bad skin? Suffering from cancer, Ebola, AIDS, MERS, or almost any other scary, life-threatening disease? If you answered “yes” to any of these questions and are able to visit North Korea, you may want to ask your physician about Kumdang-2. Kumdang-2 is a […]

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NORTH KOREA: The Fire They Don’t Want You to Know About

RYAN LIPPERT WRITES– If a hotel in Pyongyang catches fire and the media doesn’t mention it, does it still burn? Of course it does! Last Thursday, the Koryo Hotel, one of the tallest and best-known buildings in North Korea’s capital, caught fire. In a city populated by approximately 3.2 million people, you would expect to […]

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NORTH KOREA: Can’t Read Kim’s Poker Face

RYAN LIPPERT WRITES – Look out, Lady Gaga! Kim Jong-un’s poker face may be harder to read than your own. As debates over the actual extent of North Korea’s nuclear capabilities continue, Kim Jong-un asserts that his regime has advanced their nuclear weapons technology. The North Korean government has even provided pictures of their latest […]

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NORTH KOREA: Ain’t No Mountain High Enough

RYAN LIPPERT WRITES- Only in North Korea would a national leader claim to have climbed the highest mountain in the country, take a picture (in which he looks neither tired nor properly equipped to accomplish such a task), and then describe such an accomplishment as if he just had a profound religious experience. Could this […]

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