Tuesday, August 5, 2014

South Koreans really, really don’t trust their government


South korea riot policeENLARGE
Folks like these apparently don't appreciate poetry. (Chung Sung-Jun/Getty Images)
SEOUL, South Korea — Menacing battalions of police, wearing neon yellow uniforms and carrying anti-riot shields, regularly march through the South Korean capital, at times showing up en masse to small and harmless protests.
In Gwanghwamun Square, a government district and popular rally spot, an army of riot police recently put up an unusually colossal blockade. Traffic was halted and sidewalks were obstructed to prevent the advance of a mass demonstration of, well, poetry readings and memorial songs for victims of the Sewol ferry sinking.
Were they North Korea sympathizers?
Certainly not.
Looters and hooligans?
Hardly.

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