Memorial Hall of Former Dictator Vandalized, Netizens Divided

October 26th marked the 33rd anniversary of the assassination of Park Chung-Hee. The public views of former president Park differ considerably, from a hero who saved the country from starvation to a cruel, pro-Japanese dictator who violated the rights of the Korean people. While his daughter is vying for the presidential seat as one of three prominent candidates, his memorial hall has been vandalized with graffiti by a Korean-American who blamed him for the demolishing of the constitution.

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From Nocut News:

Graffiti in paint on Park Chung-hee Memorial Hall says ‘Constitution Destroyer’

Korean-American in his sixties graffitis monument out of dissatisfaction with the Yushin [Revitalising Reform] Constitution.

Police captured a Korean-American in his sixties who drew graffiti denouncing former president Park Chung-hee, on the external wall of the president’s Memorial Library in Sangam-dong, Seoul.

The Mapo district police booked him (Kim, 67 years old) without detention for property damage.

He is charged for writing ‘Constitution destroyer’ stretching 3~4 meters with a red lacquer spray on the external wall near the entrance to the Memoral Library, around 2:20 PM this day.

He was caught drawing the graffiti by the building’s janitor and then handed over to police. Having finished the primary investigation, the police is considering whether to summon him again on the 26th and carry out further interrogation.

From the investigation it was revealed that he holds American citizenship and immigrated 2 days ago. He allegedly drew the graffiti out of discontent for former president Park’s dictatorship and the Yushin Constitution.

The graffiti was masked with a 6-meter-long covering on that day, a temporary measure by the Memorial Hall.

Comments from Nate:

이병호

My grandparents think Park was the cleanest politician in the world. ㅡㅡ; You’d know if you studied economic history at university that Mr Park asked for money from the IMF more than 10 times over 18 years. The difference between him and Kim Young-sam was just that he hid the fact from the public.. [He was] a pro-Japanese officer, a member of the Worker’s Party within the national army, and a destroyer of the constitution. A dictator who made a coup d’etat and extorted other people’s property. Don’t compare [South Korea during] Park’s 18-year long dictatorship with North Korea, but compare it instead with a fast-growing Japan, Taiwan and Singapore of that time~ Park Chung-hee can’t hold a candle to them. Sangdo people~ stop the Sae-maeul [new community] movement and start the Sae-maeum [new mind] movement.

이경호

As long as they glorify Park, there is no future to the Republic of Korea… A characteristic of dictator-led countries is to present all national achievements as the dictator’s own. Park was an officer in the Japanese army and a member of the Worker’s Party within the Korean army. His coup d’etat, illegal accumulation of wealth, and decadent pleasure-seeking with girls as young as his daughter… He was just a typical dictator…

김시연

If our country becomes subject to enemies, let’s write a pledge of loyalty to the enemy in our blood and volunteer to join the enemy’s army [like Park did]. That would make us heroes in this shit country.

이진덕

Look at the influx of Ilbe scums ke ke ke

성판제

1. Park was an extraordinary dictator who helped the growth of business, especially that of manufacturing business, necessary for a modernized nation. 2. Park’s destruction of constitutional order deserves criticism. 3. Park’s coup d’etat was surely a coup d’etat but at the same time was an unparalleled success as a top-down modernizing revolution.

서영복

Look how the leftist commies are whining out of an inferiority complex. You brainless folk, no matter how much you support Ahn Cheol-soo and Moon Jae-inabolishing the National Security Law and [re-instating] the Sunshine Policy are not jokes!

이재우

He should draw graffiti on the Dai-Jyu [Kim Dae-jung] Convention Center, shouldn’t he, because he’s a traitor of the people to have armed North Korea heavily?

강병만

Wow.. A massive alba turnout early in the morning.. They’ve made it to the three best comments, too, hmm. Yeah…good work worth their pay. Well done, Hannara Party… Fucking bastards.

신병호

Lefties really can’t learn anything. No elderly person of your grandma’s generation with progressive tendencies, however extremely progressive they are, can speak ill of President Park. It’s all due to him that you can use the internet now. You say anyone could be a president at that time and enliven the economy? Then what did Kim Dae-jung and Roh Moo-hyun, who you praise so much, do to the economy?

김민호

The Yushin dictatorship was part of Park’s demerits, so why do they protect it from blame by mentioning his merits? That must be because Park’s supporters like dictatorship. These people must be the commies [the blame is usually in the opposite direction]

이영태

Park started the coup out of respect for the Japanese Taisho soldiers, so why is he buried in the National Cemetery? Just dig up the corpse, behead it and send it to Yasukuni. He’ll go crazy with joy.

이영태

The biggest reason Korea is chained on its way to becoming a developed country comes from Park Chung-hee. The growth policy under the communist dictatorship helped [Korea] escape from hunger in the short run. But a society-wide up-regulation should accompany it in order for the economy to develop to the level of advanced countries. In politics, economy, society and culture, the group that still ties the nation down is none other than the scum who praise Park’s deeds. Tut tut. If you so miss dictatorships, go to North Korea, you conservative scum.

이복희

Gosh there are so many conservative albas, tut tut

박주혁

The conservative supporters in this country would swear to be loyal to the Japanese Emperor and join the Japanese army if Japan invades Korea

김민호

Park really was a destroyer of the constitution. The dictator’s daughter is a powerful presidential candidate in this country – he [the graffiti perpetrator] must have found it so weird and frustrating that he’d do something like that as a US citizenship holder. He made the sufferers of Yushin feel a bit better, so release him with a warning

김정식

You’ve missed out the ‘murderer’ bit… ‘pro-Japanese’ as well… And missed out ‘general manager of the Worker’s Party…’

김종덕

Memorial Hall for shit! The conservative scums made it out of nostalgia, glorifying the dictator. They didn’t mention there that Park wrote with his blood for and entered Japanese military school. They didn’t include his achievements of capturing soldiers who fought for independence from Japan. And his remarkable role of organizing in Korean army the Worker’s Party, originally established by Kim Il Sung. The Memorial Hall is lacking in too much detail to be called a memorial hall so should be demolished.

이천익

The gas cannister granpas might soon crowd around the grave of former president Roh Moo-hyun and drive stakes into it.

김정식

It looks somewhat like a self-injury threat from the Saenuri Party ke ke. Anyway he called a spade a spade

양영훈

Have Ilbe kids all taken time off school? Go to school, kids -_-

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  • Sillian

    This is the graffiti.

    • Janice_Park

      Great! I was looking for that but couldn’t find it anywhere. Can I add this photo in the post?

      • Sillian

        Of course!

  • holdingrabbits

    Looks like most of the comments got it right this time.

    • They certainly did. I find it tremendously dispiriting to hear Koreans – especially younger Koreans – speaking of Park as if he were some sort of saint. He was a dictator in the classical dictator idiom who wrought terrible damage on Korean society whose effects are still felt to this day.

      • Yu Bumsuk

        Like what? Hair got shorter and skirts longer? People could eat rice every day?

        • I was thinking more of the institutionalized militarism, corruption, nationalism, and authoritarianism, along with the complete lack of tolerance for political dissent or difference. But he managed to parlay endless aid cheques and loans and a ready supply of virtual slave labour into something like a functioning economy so we should just forgive him for his heavy-handedness, right?

          • dim mak

            All of those listed are good things except corruption
            Fucking whiteys and their libfaggotry

          • holdingrabbits

            Almost all of those things allow for corruption. Read a book, that is, if your government hasn’t banned them all yet.

          • dim mak

            And what system doesn’t allow for corruption? What a stupid comment

            Notice how the Asians here at least understand the value of people like Park while all the ones whining about human rights or some shit are whites from rich countries? I bet if you lived in some 3rd world shithole your whole life you’d care a whole lot more about money and stability than your modern liberal sensibilities

            Give it a try

          • Notice how the Asian(s) here who are so keen defend Park are not actually the ones who were at the sharp end of his authoritarian rule, but can now happily pontificate about Park’s ‘necessity’, knowing that the most they’ll ever have to do to defend it is spew brainless vitriol and tired cliches against anyone who dares to question the methods of Korea’s forced march to modernity.

          • dim mak

            Yeah, Asians remember our history and give credit where it’s due. Couldn’t say the same about you, huh stephen?

          • What’s your question, exactly? Are you asking whether I remember my own people’s history (whoever they might be)? Or whether I remember Asia’s history? If it is the latter, then a) I don’t think you’re really qualified to speak about the powers of recall of 2 billion people, and b) unless you’re over 60, you personally don’t actually ‘remember’ the period of history that we’re discussing; it’s rather that you’ve been TOLD about it. The difference is paramount.

          • dim mak

            Aw look, the libscum’s out of arguments and splitting hairs instead.

            Here, I’ll make it easy for you. If you think having a soft, divided country torn by partisanship and dissent, one that places its ideologies above national interests, fine. Do it in your own country.

            If people on this side of the planet feel like considering your model, it will be at our behest and nobody elses’. Meanwhile, don’t come halfway around the world and talk like you know what’s best for everyone. Don’t tell people which sacrifices are acceptable and which aren’t. Don’t act like you’re morally superior, because you’re not. Kay?

            PS: Come see our prosperous, authoritarian China. It’s doing alot better than your democracy.

          • You’re a real hoot. Thanks for taking time away from Korean Sentry to share your opinions with us.

          • holdingrabbits

            Actually, it’s not. You are number 2. America is still #1 in terms of economy. If you do think it’s doing a lot better, I invite you to show some sources.

            Again, nationalism is a mental disease.

          • holdingrabbits

            Sure, you’re right. I can’t help though that feel that communism failed in China. Last time I checked, super rich kids crashing their sports cars was not a sign of economic equality or Marxist principles. The fact that your country has millionaire’s while many people in your own country don’t even have a private toilet is a disgrace to communism. The images of wealthy Chinese alongside the impoverished makes it really hard to convince people that communism is a good system (which I really think). Of course, China’s not communist anymore, but man, Mao sure killed a lot of people to pretend to be, somewhere in the park of 70,000,000. That’s more than Hitler and Stalin combined! Let’s not forget those students in Tiananmen. Or wait, do you not believe me because you can’t search for those numbers? See, in your mind, you think killing people to justify a petty political goal is okay. To me, I think that makes you an incredibly unintelligent brainwashed cunt. Would it not just be better for someone to not spend 17 years in prison for throwing eggs at a picture of some dead guy? I guess you see the reasons why that act of disrespect deserves imprisonment, but for me I don’t. Sure China is doing great economically, but it’s at the price of the workers. Do you think that the laborers in China are being fairly compensated or do you think the bosses and officials are? What’s the point of any system that doesn’t reward the backbone of society?

          • I’m not Korean but I support Park Chung Hee. He’s a great leader who transformed south Korea to the wealthy and powerful country it is today. I lived in the Philippines for 10 years and if you’ve take a walk in my shoes, when I was in the Philippines, I’ve lived in terrible third world conditions. The Philippines needs someone like Park Chung Hee. The Philippines had an authoritarian leader but he’s not even close to Park Chung Hee

            I happen to agree with dim mak. Authoritarianism can help a country prosper. That’s how South Korea, Taiwan, and Singapore prospered. Authoritarianism is largely responsible for China’s prosperity. Look at both China and India and you’ll know which country is ahead socially and economically (the answer is China of course). It’s not perfect but it would be helpful in the long run. Once a country prospers, it can then become a healthy and functioning democracy

          • Is China a healthy and functioning democracy? Is it ever likely to be? You ought to be very careful what you wish for, Joseph. Prosperity is not the by-product of authoritarianism.

          • I did not even say China is a healthy and functioning democracy. I’m saying, authoritarianism can work. China is not a healthy and functioning democracy but it has a growing and vibrant economy. Taiwan and south Korea used to have authoritarian governments but once their economy became developed, that’s when they transitioned to a democratic government. Now they have a healthy and functioning democracy

            The only exception is Singapore. Singapore has a developed economy with a very high quality of life (the life expectancy is higher than the US) yet its still an authoritarian country. I strongly disagree with you, authoritarianism can be the by-product of prosperity. Ask Lee Kuan Yew

            Democracy isn’t perfect. It didn’t work in Russia when the Soviet Union collapsed. It didn’t work in mainland China when the Kuomintang overthrew the Qing dynasty. It’s not working right now in the Philippines (corruption is widespread)

            Transforming a third world country to a first world country isn’t easy and Park Chung Hee is a genius for achieving that feat

          • Sorry, but you’re equivocating all over the place there. You don’t get democracy by applying authoritarianism, and neither is it a necessary stage on the way to democracy. It’s like saying that to become healthy, first you need to get cancer. Authoritarianism does nothing to ease corruption; it usually brings structural, institutionalized corruption. Corruption positively thrives under authoritarian rule. The antidote to corruption is social equality, transparency, and strong civic structures, not a top-down power structure that can’t be questioned or held to account.

          • Singapore has an authoritarian government and yet it’s considered one of the least corrupt countries on Earth. Authoritarianism can work. Singapore ranks highly in the Global Competitiveness Report, it ranks higher than the US (Singapore is at number 2 while the US is at number 7). In the Ease of Doing Business Index, Singapore ranks number one. The US is number 4.

          • So you’ve got one country that is authoritarian and not corrupt? You’re not really making a strong case for the benefits of authoritarianism, you know.

          • All countries are corrupt, no country is perfect. You should live in a slum in some third world “democracy” then you’d understand how much of a genius Park Chung Hee is. Singapore is an authoritarian country yet the country has a high quality of life, very little corruption, and has an advanced education system. Singapore is THE model on authoritarianism and people like you can’t accept that fact and think that Western style democracy is the answer to everything when it’s NOT. It may be one country but it’s a perfect example

            Your bashing on authoritarianism isn’t even convincing me that authoritarianism doesn’t work.

            It’s working in China. The GDP, per capita, and infrastructure are all top notch thanks to the authoritarian regime. Compare China to India and you’ll notice the difference

          • Again with the equivocating. There’s nothing at all to suggest that GDP and infrastructure are the result of authoritarian rule. There’s no correlation between the two.

            Nor am I prescribing Western democracy for all. I said earlier that social equality, transparency and strong civic structures are the key to rooting out corruption, and there aren’t many Western democracies that have achieved in all three areas. But I’ll tell you what – most are doing a damn sight better than China are.

            And i can’t see any justification for calling Park a genius. As a dictator, he wasn’t even that original – most of his ideological gambits were cribbed play-for-play from other regimes – and the amount of aid and reparations that were coming his way, plus the support of the might of the US military, it was pretty hard for him to fail. To succeed as president, all he had to do was stay un-murdered, and to his credit, he managed that for a whole 17 years.

          • TrickyNishidake

            But on a corruption index, which I know, I can’t cite nor find anymore. Singapore was nowhere near the top of being corruption free. I was confused when I read it because I expected the opposite, but there has to be a reason right?

          • TrickyNishidake

            But China’s original prosperity was achieved under authoritarianism. Of course, it crumbled under authoritarianism too, but one needs to make concessions for cultural differences.

            If anything, China’s current situation is probably just an indicator of another “dynasty” on the “verge” of collapse.

            Apologies for the quotes, just woke up, don’t feel like elaborating until I’m more awake.

          • Yu Bumsuk

            I suppose at the end of the day the question is, am I glad Park Chunghee happened? And the answer is, without a doubt, yes. Do I wish he had done some things differently? Of course. But I really don’t think Korea would have climbed out of poverty without him.

          • So you don’t think that Yun Bo-seon, the intelligent and well-respected democratically elected president whom Park ousted, could have overseen the country’s development?

          • Yu Bum Suk

            It’s possible. I really don’t know a great deal about Yun besides the fact that under the set-up where he became president the president didn’t have much power and that Park felt he had good reasons for ousting him. Given the nature of everything that came before the coup I dout it, though. Counter-factual history is always a very dim field. I also suspect that if Park hadn’t come along, somebody else would have ousted him and as far as authoritarian rulers go, Park was one of the best.

  • dim mak

    What’s the problem anyway? There is no politician that brings a country out of poverty without using controversial, heavy-handed methods. It takes authoritarian control to move forward. Anyone that thinks otherwise is looking at the past through rose colored lenses.

    If I was Korean I’d say he was a hero. He’s not a saint but he got the job done. Easy for people today to judge him with their modern sensibilities.

    • It shouldn’t be the job of a politician to bring anyone out of poverty unless its with her/his own money. I’d rather see a government respect individual freedoms; let people work and earn the fruits of their labour and they will pull themselves out of poverty. No authoritarianism necessary.

      • dim mak

        Yeah I’m sure when people say bringing a country out of poverty we mean the president literally goes around handing out money instead of improving the economy

        Your peacenik method falls apart when there’s dissent, factionism and uprisings, common if not ubiquitous in poor countries. No amount of freedum magic is gonna solve real problems, it’s just a luxury first worlders take for granted because they already live in developed countries

        • holdingrabbits

          You fail to acknowledge that most of China is STILL in poverty. So when they get pissed off about officials and the upper class having tons of shit and want to riot, you’re just going to recommend a dose of killing?

          • That’s probably why the government tries to brainwash its citizens with nationalism and TV propaganda. That’s what the Korean military regimes did. It’s fascinating to see how Korean and China end up looking alike each other, given that they started out from the opposite direction, communism and capitalism.

  • dim mak

    Comments not working here?

    • dim mak

      nvm ^^

  • pillygg

    you gotta put both feet into Capitalism for a Capitalist-based
    economy to work. It requires resignation of national sovereignty and
    ownership of race, nation, or family. Government must standardize its
    dependency (commitment) for Capitalism. For example: Government cannot
    interfere with birthrate or population. The practice of controlling
    birthrate (lowering population) is called “genocide”. This is because
    Capitalism doesn’t care about lives, safety, etc. What matters to them
    are you are “human resources” for Capitalism. (greedy fat pigs who are
    in top positions of power = Capitalism).

    Park Chun Hee “furthered Korea’s economic status” because he gave up all rights to national sovereignty.
    The Korean War was precisely for this reason.

  • Paul M

    He immigrated to the US 2 days ago? I guess Western irreverence for political figures went straight to his head.

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