[KS] anti-Americanism in ROK

David McCann dmccann at fas.harvard.edu
Tue Jan 28 09:32:14 EST 2003

Not as someone living in the ROK, but as an attendee at a recent conference
at the East West Center, University of Hawaii, where the demonstrations
were a frequent topic, I would note that a number of scholars at the
conference, Korean and American, urged that a distinction be drawn between
"anti-American" (ban-mi) and critical of American policies (bi-mi).
Because the demonstrations are reported as if they were anti-American, they
cause anxiety among those thinking of travelling to Seoul, or huffy
suggestions that, "if they're against us over there, maybe we should just
leave," as Victor Cha observed of several then-recent op ed pieces.   But
in fact the demonstrations are an expression of engagement with such issues
as concerns regarding North Korea, or dissatisfaction with the outcome of
the trial of the miltary personnel whose vehicle killed the two Korean
girls.. .; in other words, specific, understandable, and not threatening

David McCann

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