To Reconcile the Koreas, Teenagers Show a Way - NYTimes.com
When Germany found itself reunited almost over night, the country had been split apart since the end of World War Two. It took many years for the Western Germans and their separated brethren from the Communist East to reconcile and work things out. Polls show that most South Koreans are very worried about the Financial costs IT the Communist North were to follow the same sudden pattern.
This articles highlights the efforts of Citizens Alliance for North Korean Human Rights to help bridge the wide gap between children from the North who have escaped and are living in the South. Please NOTE, dear fellow adoptees, the prejudice that most Northern children face from the majority of South Korean children and society.
By CHOE SANG-HUN
Published: January 11, 2010
SEOUL — When Ju Jin-ho arrived here from North Korea in 2006, it was as if he had come to an alien continent, not just the southern end of the peninsula…
Even though the 14-year-old defector was placed in a school with children a year or two younger than he, most of his classmates were a head taller. They teased him as a “red.” They were far ahead of him in subjects like mathematics…
Notice the physical difference, “a head taller”! Years of famine and cut rations have stunted the Northerners while “dear leader” Kim Jong il enjoyed his wonderful food prepared by over twenty chefs and weekly flights from Europe bring in the finest products to insure that HE has the best cuisine. Poor leader has lost weight NOT from dieting but from his stroke and we almost, just almost lost him. We should all pray for his
Here is another telling picture showing the dear leader putting on his best face as he ponders which one of his 3 sons will be anointed the next ‘king’ of the North.
Back to the article, (The KWB couldn’t help himself, he he).
The “Weekend Program for South and North Korean Teenagers Together” was begun last August by the Rev. Benjamin H. Yoon, 80, head of the Citizens’ Alliance for North Korean Human Rights.
“Although we share the same genes, South and North Koreans live like completely different peoples, with different accents, different ways of thinking and behaving,” said Mr. Yoon.
One October evening, when the students had gone camping and stayed up late, Moon Sung-il, a 14-year-old North Korean, brought tears to the South Koreans’ eyes when he recounted his two-and-a-half-year flight with other defectors that took him through China, Myanmar and a refugee camp in Bangkok. But he stunned them when he said that none of this was as daunting as a South Korean classroom.
“I could hardly understand anything the teacher said,” he said. “My classmates, who were all a year or two younger than I was, taunted me as a ‘poor soup-eater from the North.’ I fought them with my fists.”
YOU SEE, Sung-il needs to know about ‘a rock in a sock’. This is only one article about the Northern children and their parents having problems getting a job, hiding their accents. THEY ARE NOT treated warmly by most Southern people, that is found here: blog about North Koreans facing prejudice, Social Adjustments NK Migrants, or the movie “the Crossing” here will give you the general idea.
“Whenever something bad about North Korea came up during class, everyone turned to look at me,” said Mr. Ju, who now attends an alternative school for defectors after failing to advance to a regular high school. “When teachers and students spoke disparagingly about North Korea, I felt like they were insulting me.”
“Ms. Park said she used to look down on North Koreans. “I associated them with something poor, dark and negative,” she said.”
“Although a spirit of unification persists in the South, many people balk at what is expected to be the prohibitive cost of integrating the economies. The North’s per capita income amounts to just 6 percent of the South’s, according to the Bank of Korea.”
“I used to oppose unification because I thought we’d lose more than we’d gain,” said Hur Ji-young, a freshman at Kyunggi. Her friend Lim Hyo-jeong, however, said she supported it because she saw an economic advantage in a larger domestic market.
After mingling with the North Korean teenagers for a semester, hearing about their hardships and their concerns for relatives left behind, the South Koreans said they believed more strongly in unification, but now less for economic reasons than something closer to good will.
“Before I joined this pro
gram, I considered unification with a calculator, not with my heart for fellow Koreans in the North,” Ms. Hur said.”