‘Say no to THAAD, stop the war games!’

Protest at Korean Consulate in San Francisco.

San Francisco — Korean anti-war groups in New York, Minneapolis, Los Angeles, San Francisco and Seattle held actions on July 27 opposing the deployment of the U.S. THAAD missile system in their homeland. Here in San Francisco, the event at the south Korean Consulate involved the Hella Organized Bay Area Koreans (HOBAK) and their supporters.

The date was the 64th anniversary of the Korean Armistice, which was supposed to have ended hostilities between the armed forces fighting in Korea from 1950 to 1953. The key demand was for the new south Korean president, Moon Jae-in, to push for a Korean peace treaty and stop deployment of the THAAD system. Additionally, they called on President Moon to “Stop the war games, end the travel bans, blacklisting and the National Security Law. Let Juyeon J.C. Rhee in, and finally put an end to the violence and displacement caused by this unended war.” Rhee, a Korean American, was denied entry to south Korea on July 25 after spending 25 hours at the Incheon International Airport.

HOBAK read a letter to President Moon that a delegation tried to bring inside, along with a basket of locally grown Korean melons. They were not allowed to enter, but a consulate employee finally came out to accept the letter and the fruit. Meanwhile, the Korean drumming group ieumsae performed a compelling and rhythmic series outside the consulate.

Io Ruiz Sunwoo, one of the drummers, reported back from a recent trip Sunwoo had made to south Korea, where they visited the village which was the site of the THAAD installation. Sunwoo described how small the village was and how the mostly elder population has been steadfast in their resistance to THAAD, welcoming countless anti-war activists while still having to work their fields and maintain their own livelihood.

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