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Tsutomu Nishioka

【#630(Special)】Japanese Media Failing to Cover Anti-Moon Rally

Tsutomu Nishioka / 2019.10.31 (Thu)

October 28, 2019


Japanese media coverage of South Korean situation is ridiculous. From the afternoon of October 25 to the next morning, some 200,000 citizens staged an overnight mass rally urging President Moon Jae In to step down. As far as I know, however, no Japanese media have reported the rally, indicating that Japanese media cannot correctly report the substance of what is going on in South Korea.

200,000 joined an overnight rally

Led by Pastor Jeon Kwang Hoon and others, the “National Struggle Headquarters for the Resignation of Moon Jae In” organized the mass rally in the wake of the gatherings of more than 500,000 citizens in Seoul on October 3 and 9 respectively to demand the resignation of Justice Minister Cho Guk. The two rallies effectively forced Cho to step down as justice minister.

The overnight rally planned by the same organizer should have been a matter of great interest to anyone who understood the historic significance of the October 3 and 9 rallies where more than 500,000 furious people from throughout the country voluntarily gathered.

The latest rally began at the Gwanghwamun Plaza, with participants occupying about a half of the square. The initial participants consisted mainly of elderly people but included many middle-aged women. Conservative activists grabbed a microphone one after another while youth songs and dances were performed. Referring to a complaint by students of Seoul’s Inhon High School against the school’s “ideological dictatorship” under which students were forced to shout anti-Japan slogans, a number of mothers of high school students said that similar anti-Japan education was enforced in their children’s schools and that mothers should protect students from biased education.

At 7 p.m., the rally expanded into a mass meeting. People who finished their work gathered to fill up the whole driveway between the plaza and the Gwanghwamun rotary and a half of that between the rotary and the Seoul City Hall. Speakers said that Cho Guk’s resignation represented only the beginning and that President Moon should resign. Hwang Kyo Ahn, head of the Liberty Korea Party, the largest opposition group, sat on asphalt until the next morning.

A national revolution has begun

Shortly past 11 p.m., the mass meeting developed into an overnight Christian prayer meeting. Lawmaker Kim Jin Tae of the Liberty Korea Party applauded the prayer meeting by making the following comment:

“The Moon government has mistreated Christians. Christians have stood up. Even after an overnight service, they remained vigorous. The rally gained momentum after the mass meeting changed into the prayer meeting. Few people walked away before 5 a.m. They repeated a set of sermons, carols and prayers. They were not bored but encouraged. The rally differed from those organized by political parties or social groups. It represented religious power. The Moon government should be upset.”

Lawmaker Kim, an activist who had persistently participated in Taegeukgi (national flag) rallies against the impeachment of then President Park Geun Hye, looked stunned by the latest rally.

However, the Moon government still holds power. A national revolution to protect South Korea’s anti-communist liberal democracy has just started. Japan should be more interested in the struggle that would directly be linked to the future course of Japan.

Tsutomu Nishioka is a senior fellow and a Planning Committee member at the Japan Institute for National Fundamentals and a visiting professor at Reitaku University. He covers South and North Koreas.