Two Koreas' Top Brass Resort to Racist Mudslinging

    May 17, 2006 20:26

    The second day of talks between North and South Korean generals on Wednesday got off on the wrong foot when delegates stooped to mudslinging over the racial purity of Korea. The debate erupted in small talk between the two delegation leaders ahead of discussions that failed to agree on the re-alignment of the maritime border.

    The North's delegation leader Maj. Gen. Kim Yong-chul started off an unfortunate thread by quipping, "Since the climate in the South is warmer, the farmers must be hard at work." His South Korean counterpart Maj. Gen. Han Min-gu of the South replied, "The population of the farming communities is actually falling, and many bachelors from such areas marry women from Mongolia, Vietnam and the Philippines."

    Kim reportedly grimaced and snapped, “Our nation has always considered its pure lineage to be of great importance -- I am concerned that our singularity will disappear.” Instead of contradicting him, the South Korean delegation said such dilution of the bloodline was “but a drop of ink in the Han River,” adding this would cause no problems “if we all live together." But this failed to mollify the North Korean. "Since time immemorial, our nation has been a land of abundant beauty. Not even one drop of ink must be allowed to fall into the Han River,” Kim thundered.

    "Our history shows that we were able to maintain the purity of the Korean race even while living together with the Jurchen and the Manchurians of the region," Han countered. "That may be true,” Kim pressed on, “but from Old Chosun” -- the earliest Korean kingdom that ended in 108 BC and spanned from western Manchuria through the northwestern regions of the Korean Peninsula and according to legend started in 2333 BC ? “through the Middle Ages and the modern era, it is undeniable that we existed as one unified race."

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