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Monday, May 31, 2010

Questions about Cheonan Sinking Part II 天安艦沈没事件の疑問 パート2

See HERE for the previous post of the list of material available in English on the questions about the sinking of the South Korean warship Cheonan, and letters by a civil society group in Korea and a Presbyterian Church in Korea.

(Added June 1)
******A Bloomberg news reports polls says one out of four South Koreans don't believe the report of the multinational investiation team, and there seems to be great generational (perhaps digital) divides.

South Korea Faces Domestic Skeptics Over Evidence Against North
http://www.businessweek.com/news/2010-05-29/south-korea-faces-domestic-skeptics-over-evidence-against-north.html

(Added May 31)
******Finally, we have another Japanese voice about this issue. Yoichi Shimatsu, former editor of the Japan Times and an environmental consultant and a commentator on Asian affairs for CCTV-9 Dialogue, suspects an American "rising mine" from the USNS Salvor, which "happened to be yet right near Byeongyang Island at the time of the Cheonan sinking and far from its home base, Pearl Harbor."

Did an American mine sink South Korean Ship?
http://newamericamedia.org/2010/05/did-an-american-mine-sink-the-south-korean-ship.php

****** The ABC news quoted in the above article is:
http://abcnews.go.com/International/diver-dies-reach-navy-shipwreck/story?id=10237619&page=2

The article refers to the "four US Navy ships that happened to be there to participate in the Foal Eagle Exerciise," one of which was USNS Salvor, and regarding the cause of the incident, "consensus among military analysts is this seems unlikely as the type of torpedo that the North Korean navy possesses could not have been used in waters only 82-feet deep. Their submarines would find it difficult to operate under normal conditions in such shallow water and near impossible in these severe currents."

******RT interview with journalist Wayne Madson, an investigative journalist based in Washington, D.C.

"Was the destruction of the South Korean warship Cheonan a provocation? Can it be compared to the Gulf of Tonkin? RT contributor Wayne Madsen says that the sinking of the warship was really intended to convince Japan not to move US forces off Okinawa as well as divert the attention of Americans from the dire economic situation at home. "

See the 6-minute YouTube video:
http://www.youtube.com/user/RTAmerica#p/u/4/7VL5ps5zTTg

****** Author Kim Myong Chol raised quetions on his May 4 article in Asia Times,

Pyongyang sees US role in Cheonan sinking
http://www.atimes.com/atimes/Korea/LE05Dg01.html

and in May 26 follow-up article, he challenges the finding of the "international investigation team," or a all-U.S.-allies team of experts from South Korea, U.S., Australia, Sweden and Canada, also citing CBS news reporting Sweden was a reluctant partner in blaming North Korea.

South Korea in the line of friendly fire
http://www.atimes.com/atimes/Korea/LE26Dg01.html

****** As quoted in the above article, Financial Times on May 19 reported South Korean's mistrust of its own government's handling of the incident and suspicion of possible cover-up.

The loss of the warship has also exposed South Koreans’ mistrust of whatever the government says and a historic sense of fraternity with the North, feelings that can override strategic dangers.

“The government seems to be hiding something. If not, why did it take so long to announce the conclusion?” said Bae Sung-hoon, a 37-year-old office worker.

Large public demonstrations are predominantly drummed up by the political left, which is instinctively sceptical of the government of President Lee Myung-bak.

Pyongyang has denied involvement. Polls indicating whether South Koreans believe that North Korea was responsible for the warship’s sinking diverge from 40 per cent to 80 per cent.

Many ordinary South Koreans say that their government is merely seeking a convenient scapegoat for what was a mistake on the part of the South’s navy, or what was a “friendly fire” incident involving the US military.

(You need to register to access Financial Times articles.)
http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/a4d5c560-6307-11df-8b4a-00144feab49a.html

******* Hankyoreh reports that China "had proposed to the U.S. to conduct a joint investigation with the participation of the UN Command, China and North Korea."

China proposes UN Military Armistice Commission convene for reinvestigation into Cheonan
http://english.hani.co.kr/arti/english_edition/e_national/423148.html

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