As I often quote Hunter S. Thompson, “When the going gets weird, the weird turn professional.”
It is still too early to figure what’s happening in Korea regarding this issue.
I have tried to provide below a cross section of perspectives, ranging the opposition newspaper, the Hankyoreh, to the Samsung-owned establishment paper, the Korea JoongAng Daily. Understandably, the two editorial staffs of the papers look at the situation quite dramatically. While I wouldn’t suggest that the Korea Times is taking a more independent stand, it is just as well to start with them first.
As of now, I can make the following observations:
1. The Establishment newspapers report this past week’s dead Californian dairy cow is the fourth recorded incident of the sort within the US over the past eight years.
2. The Hankyoreh simply reports that four cows have died from the disease (full stop)
3. The NGOs were out in force in their knee-jerk reactions. Beyond the Hankyoreh, I’m not sure how many people were actually listening to them
4. Today through Monday, sunny spring weather is forecasted – perfect for demonstrations. We may recall that the ongoing 2008 Anti-Mad Cow Disease Demonstrations finally came to an end with that summer’s raining season.
5. The most rational critique I’ve heard so far from a Korean “expert” is that the US-Korean beef exports agreement needs be tighten up to ensure no American dairy cows be exported as beef to Korea. Not that is likely to happen in any case, but such a regulatory refinement would take some of the wind out of Korea’s professional contrarians’ sails.
‘Korea, US cut secret beef deal’
Lawmaker claims gov’t complied with US demand for softer stance
By Kim Tae-gyu
The Korea Times
April 26, 2012
Click here to read article.
Experts say US beef imports should be halted and investigated
US and South Korean governments say this case doesn‘t count as ‘urgent”
Kim Hyun-dae, agricultural correspondent
April 27, 2012
Civic groups call for suspension to US beef imports
Opposition figures say investigation needed into where recently discovered case came from
Kim Yang-joong, medical correspondent
April 27, 2012
Consumers keep calm over scare on U.S. beef
혼비백산한 美, 한국 콕 집어 “감사”
By Lee Eun-joo, Kim Mi-ju
Korea JoongAng Daily
Apr 27, 2012