30 Jul '13, 8am

Viewpoint: Korea and the power of politics

SEOUL - Americans like to pretend that politics don't matter and to bemoan the slight differences between our political parties. These are luxuries we can afford as the world's richest and most stable country. But for much of the world, politics are a matter of life and death. That is particularly evident in South Korea, which over this past weekend celebrated the 60th anniversary of the armistice that ended the Korean War. It is hard to exaggerate how devastated the Korean peninsula was in 1953; Gen. Douglas MacArthur said he vomited after he looked "at that wreckage." Three years of conflict killed about 3 million people, most of them civilians. One-third of all homes and two-fifths of all factories were destroyed. Seoul, Pyongyang and all other cities were little more than rubble. Food was scarce, orphans plentiful. Both North and South Korea received extensive assistan...

Full article: http://www.stripes.com/news/pacific/viewpoint-korea-and-t...

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