Ahn says, “yes, naval base, unless I access to ‘high class’ information.”
On Nov. 2, Ahn Chul-Soo (independent), one of the big three Presidential candidates along with Park Geun-Hye (ruling Saenuri Party that is also called, New Frontier Party) and Moon Jae-In (Democratic United Party), for the 18th South Korean President election, dropped by the village for less than an hour, after his visit to the April 3rd Peace Park in the Jeju City. He was the first of the three who visited Gangjeong. For the background of Ahn, see here.
Lots of media reporters that we have seldom seen during our years’ protests. From where did these reporters come while there have been only a few of them during the years the village has suffered?
In the talk meeting with the villagers in the village association hall at 11am, he is told to have stated that:
“It seems that, in the Jeju naval base project, there have been many problems in the process, including removed procedure seeking for the agreement with the villagers. The President [Lee Myung-Bak] and government personnel should apologize to [the villagers], visiting the Gnagjeong village themselves. ‘If I am elected as President,’ I, myself, will be the first to apologize to you, visiting your village again, even though it would be the affair by the predecessor government.”
Sounds good. Right? However, his ignorance shines here. Never new. He has already repeatedly mentioned this all along this year:
“There exist difficult points for general citizens to decide whether the naval base is needed or not. By now, various [precedent] governments reached to same conclusion. Even though I am not in the possible situation to access to the ‘high class’ information, if [the past governments] have reached to the same conclusion despite different ideologies and international situations, I cannot but agree with [the talk] that naval base in the Jeju is necessary for national security.’
Some says his words are calculated not to provoke the conservatives. However, Cheong Wooksik, representative of Peace Work has criticized on Ahn’s such remarks. See here. The below is a translation of parts of Cheong’s writing in July, this year.
I feel very sorry to hear ‘Ahn Chul-Soo who said that “If the four [ex-] governments of different [political] characters had reached to the same conclusion that naval base is necessary, it is right to accept the decision when there is no other information.”
Above all, he is lack of correct understanding on the facts. Even though it is a fact that the Jeju naval base project has been ‘examined’ from the Kim Young-Sam government (*1993 to 1998), it is fully different from ‘decision.’ Even though the project was reflected in the National Defense mid-term plan 1997-2001 in 1995 as its need was newly decided in the meeting of Joint Chiefs of Staff Council in 1993, it was merely that the military authority asked to the government.
Even though many projects are included in the defense mid-term plan, there are also many projects that are excluded during the government policy decision process and National Assembly discussion process on budget. In case of the Jeju naval base project, it was decided to be suspended at the ending term of Kim Dae-Joong government (1998-2003) in December, 2012. It was only 2006~2007, at the ending term of [ex-Roh Moo-Hyun] government that the project on which the military request and government suspension had been repeated was finally decided.
To be sorry, Ahn did not even grasp such basic facts. Therefore he became to conclude that the four ex-governments made “highly politic decision based on the information and resources related to the difficult national security matters,” regarding the Jeju naval base project and to assert that we should accept it. It is far from ‘responsibility’ that he emphasized himself. Further he could have gotten “other information” without limits if he had a little further laid one’s heart such as contacting with Gangjeong villagers.
On Nov. 3, the next day of his visit, villagers stated as the below. See the original Korean script here. (translation in parts)
If numerous problems such as matters of procedure, environment, conflict, base layout, [navy’s] failure to carry on National Assembly’s attached conditions, human rights violation, US base, had already made public, Ahn should not have covered various critical minds only with the reason of [so-called] national security that has not been verified, reasoning no access to ‘high class’ information yet.
Will there be any national disturbance if the Jeju naval base is not completed before 2015? He should have at least talked on the measure of solution on problems after tentative construction stop. It is because if construction is not stopped NOW, there is a high possibility that we meet irrecoverable situation. If then, consolation to villagers and ‘correct decision,’ that candidate Ahn says could be empty words with no meaning as a result. In that vein, we are DISSAPOINTED that candidate Ahn TURNED DOWN the village’s repeated urgent request on construction stop.
Am I wrong if Ahn reminds me little Obama? What does he mean by the words of ‘high class information?’
While Ahn is focused, the hard situation of field is under reported by the media.
When Ahn visited the village on Nov. 2, many young peacekeepers that could not sleep many days since the start of 24 hour construction on Oct. 25 were heartbreakingly fighting and roughed out by the police. A male peacekeeper was twice choked in his neck by the police on the day. His sleeve was torn. While a young female peacekeeper was crying appealing pain on her shoulder after the police roughed out people, an old policeman laughed looking at her.
Personally I saw three female activists were crying in an hour…I say, in an hour. A female activist says her upper cloth was lifted during the police’ roughing out people. Peacekeepers are suffering. They fall back while their shoulder joints are in great pain during the police roughing out of them. Their hearts are being broken with increasing bruises due to repeated police’s human rights violation on them.
It is told that navy and their buses were parking in the parking lot from the morning (emergency probably because of Ahn’s visit?) while many policemen were mobilized, too. It is told that a monstrous construction vehicle loaded with many funnels entered into the construction site early in the morning.
In the front yard of the village hall where Ahn was meeting with the villagers, some of female peacekeepers were writing slogans on the cardboard with markers. They were crying with hoarse voice. “Ahn Chul-Soo, please come to the construction gates,” “Today, it is already 108th police’s roughing out and beating (since the start of 24 hour construction on Oct. 25)
To people’s fury, many media reports did not even know the location of construction gates.
The important thing is the wisdom and will of people. Politicians will not save us. Their steps depend on the power and demand of people.
And invisible though, we have still five prisoners.
As of Nov. 3
Kim Bok-Chul (No. 598): 144 days in prison since June 14
Rev. Jeong Yeon-Gil (No. 187): 58 days in prison since Sept. 6
Mr. Park Suk-Jin (No. 188): 58 days in prison since Sept. 6
Mr. Park Seung-Ho (No. 290): 49 days in prison since Sept. 14
Fr. Lee Young-Chan: 11 days in the detention room of the Jeju Police station since Oct. 26
(Please mail to Jeju prison, 161 Ora-2 dong, Jeju City, Jeju, the Peace Island, Korea)
Free all the prisoners!
Immediately stop illegal naval base construction!
( Source on prisoners: Cho Sung-Bong. Click here)
해군기지, ‘사과 없는’ 문재인과 ‘사실 곡해’ 안철수
[정욱식 칼럼] 문재인과 안철수, 그리고 제주해군기지
12.07.23 20:22l최종 업데이트 12.07.23 20:23
안철수 “제주해군기지 문제 대통령이 사과해야”
강정주민과 대화…”제가 대통령되면 방문해 사과하겠다”
“해군기지 왜 강정이어야 하는지 주민동의 구했어야”
안철수 “대통령이 강정주민들에게 사과해야”
2일 ‘빅3’ 대선후보 중 처음으로 강정방문…“대통령되면 저도 사과”
‘고급정보 한계’ 전제로 “국가안보상 필요”…입장변화(?) 해석 분분
강정주민 보듬은 안철수… “대통령 사과해야”
강정마을 방문해 주민 위로… 해군기지건설 전면 재검토 주장엔 “글쎄”
안철수 후보, 강정마을‧토평APC 방문
2일 오전 주민간담회… “대통령‧정부가 직접 사과해야”
오후 선별 포장 체험… “한중 FTA는 식량안보 개념으로”
2012 년 11 월 02 일 (금) 15:36:30
안철수, 제주해군기지 철수야? 안 ‘철수’야?
4.3 눈물‧신공항 건설은 침묵…해군기지 해법은 “…”
강정 찾은 안철수 “대통령과 정부가 주민들 말씀 듣고 사과해야”
“여러 정부에서 같은 결론 … 국가안보 차원에서 필요하다는 결론 동의할 수밖에”