News on Korea
Few people are aware that before taking out its nuclear card, North Korea had approached the United States in earnest. As Communism crumbled and the Soviet Union established diplomatic relations with North Korea’s southern counterpart, the country’s leaders couldn’t but feel insecure. In an attempt to gain recognition as an independent state, North Korea signed a basic North-South agreement and a denuclearization agreement preventing the development of nuclear weapons in the Korean Peninsula, and even joined the United Nations, all by 1991.
A democracy is founded upon the consent and power of the people. Its fundamental compact is the constitution which establishes the rules and government that shape and determine the lives of its people. Yet, rarely is a constitution drawn up by them or with their consultation. Rather, it is done by a political regime mediating the interests of the ruling class. The world’s first completely written constitution was established in 1789. To “protect the minority of the opulent against the majority,” it created the United States Senate.
Sept. 2, 1945 two weeks after Korea’s independence from Japan, the US Military’s General Order Number One officially divided Korea. Then, the division was cemented by war. Since then, Korea’s democracy and self-determination have been thrown off. To regain our self-determination, to shake off the chains on our democracy, we need reunification.
On July 11, 2017, 122 (63 percent) of United Nations member countries ratified the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons. Thus, the majority of the world’s people called for denuclearization of the world to finally achieve peace and justice. At its adoption, all in the conference hall gave a standing ovation. National delegates and civil society representatives hugged and congratulated each other for the 72-year anti-nuclear campaign begun by the Hibakusha - survivors of the atomic bombs - had born fruit.
After the election, the political winds changed on the Shin Kori 5 and 6 nuclear reactors’ issue. President Moon shifted from “abandon the project” to “let’s have a public discussion.” With the setback in President Moon’s campaign promise, some argued that civil society should not participate in the process. However, we took part in the discussion because it held significance as the first energy policy decided by the people, and since persuading fellow citizens could be the shortcut to a nuclear-free Korea.
“Venezuela is important not only for what [the Bolivarian Revolution] has done for the Venezuelan people but also what it's done for Latin America, the Caribbean and the world in facilitating another way to exist without the United States,” reflected a grassroots organizer at a gathering with the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela’s Consul General Antonio Cordero in San Francisco early October.
For twenty-three years, KEEP has immersed Korean diaspora into Korea’s social movements and struggles on a nearly two week trip. Adoptees, multiracial, Korean-born, he, she, they, 1.5, 2nd generation - a broad and diverse swath of Korea’s diaspora was back to share and to fight alongside Korea’s social movements. The International Strategy Center had the great pleasure of coordinating site visits (including our own) and post-program trips.
The International Strategy Center is launching a Venezuela Solidarity campaign to dispel the mainstream media’s blackout and misinformation about Venezuela’s Revolutionary process. As part of this campaign, we are doing a series of articles exploring Venezuela’s current situation and the mainstream media’s coverage of it.
Many Korean proponents of the country’s free trade agreement (FTA) with the United States believe it will boost our economy by spurring consumer demand for imported goods through lower prices and increasing exports to one of the largest markets in the world.
Do you really think it’s possible to manipulate the election process in Venezuela?
Together we can cool the planet!
'Facing the Anthropocene', talk and book launch by Ian Angus
Marta Harnecker presents a talk on Strategies for Social Change
Viva Venezuela: Fighting for Socialism (full documentary)