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Inaugurating the Center for National Movements against the South Korea-US FTA

Inaugurating the Center for National Movements against the South
Korea-U.S. FTA.

March 28, 2006

The South Korea-U.S. FTA Will Only Reenact the Historical Annexation
of Korea by Japan. Let Us Stop the FTA and Rescue the Country!

An Evil Spirit Haunts Korea

The agreement on suspension of pharmaceuticals price markdown in Oct.
2005, agreement on lowering standards of automobile exhaust fume in
Nov. 2005, forced settlement in the National Assembly on sanction over
rice negotiation in Dec. 2005, agreement on resumption of American
beef importation on Jan. 13, 2006, agreement on the strategic
flexibility of American forces in Korea on Jan. 19, announcement of
screen quarter reduction on Jan. 26, dismissal of the hearing
committee on Korea-US FTA on Feb. 2, surprise announcement of Korea-US
FTA negotiation on Feb. 3, commencement of Korea-US FTA preliminary
negotiation on Mar. 6, the State Council decision of screen quarter
reduction on Mar. 7. These are the measures that took place over the
last four months, a breathtaking schedule to launch the negotiation
let in the evil spirit called the South Korea-U.S. FTA into the

We now fear that the evil spirit of the FTA threatens an imminent
landing. Unless this landing is blocked, Korean economy, nay, the
whole Korean society will soon fall under U.S. unilateralism built
upon transnational capital, Korea-U.S military alliance, and of course
the new gained strategic flexibility of the U.S. forces in Korea. The
FTA with South Korea whose economy now ranks as the 10th largest in
the world may provide a crisis-solving breakthrough for the U.S. now
verging on national bankruptcy as a consequence of the "twin deficit."
But this only means that South Korea, still enraptured by the dreamy
notions of neoliberalism and globalization, shows once again its
inability to say "No!" to the United States and risks a breakdown of
its society.

The FTA Respects No National Interests and Has No National Approval

"The Korea-US FTA is absolutely necessary to overcome the social
polarization of Korean people." "Given the growing intensity of
Sino-Japanese competition, the strengthening of Korean-American
Alliance will contribute to striking balance among North-east Asian
countries." "Regardless of fierce nation-wide protests, I will
dedicate my remaining terms of office to realizing the FTA." "For our
competitiveness, we ought to be able to contend with top-business
groups of the world." With these groundless delusions, the
"Participatory Government" began a secretive move resembling a
military operation to prepare the FTA. Sadly, we are here reminded of
the dark days of the authoritative regimes. For does not the
"Participatory Government" act like a wolf in sheep’s skin as an
insidious missionary of neo-liberal globalizaion? Is it not about to
cross the point of no return to real democracy? The government
representing the exclusive interests of Korean and American financiers
and capitalists is not to be considered ’our’ government. President
Roh and his government officials are throwbacks of the Pro-Japanese
who sold out the country a century ago. These similarly argued that
"The open-door policy is the way out," and that "The only alternative
lies in the importation of Japanese civilization."

With the FTA and the Strategic Flexibility of American Forces in
Korea, the United States Will Strengthen Its Dominance over the Korean

What the United States demands in the FTA is nothing less than a 100%
open-door policy from South Korea. It will not admit three basic labor
rights. Nor will it allow Korea’s sovereignty over food, culture,
environment, and jurisdiction. Utilizing the terms of the existing
military alliance between the two countries, the United States also
high-pressured South Korea into agreement on strategic flexibility for
a rapid dispatch of American and Korean forces to troubled areas of
the world. We interpret that the demand for the FTA and strategic
flexibility derives directly from the desire on the part of the United
States for absolute dominance over Korean Peninsular. There is no
doubt that the FTA and strategic flexibility constitute U.S.’s new
plan for world hegemony. The measures attempt to turn South Korea into
an outpost for U.S.’s strategy to contain China.

Like Torrents under Frozen Ice, Nation-wide Protests Are under Way

Last winter in the turmoil of protest a couple of farmers died, and
last February film directors and actors took to the streets to protest
against the reduction of screen quota. Workers, farmers,
intellectuals, artists, and other conscientious people in every walk
of life are coming to form a unified front to stop the FTA.
Countermove councils and committees comprising as various social
sectors as film, agricultural-fishery, professors and academics,
health-medicine, audio-visual media, cultural-artists,
educational-PTA’s, and intellectual property rights have already been
organized. Still in other sectors such as labor, law, public service,
environment, feminism, and finance, attempts are being made to form
similar organizations to prevent the agreement. These efforts are not
confined to the metropolitan area either; they spread throughout the
country. It is only policy-makers and bureaucrats of commerce,
plutocrats, conservative journalists and politicians who have opted to
support the FTA. Deaf to nation-wide protests against it, they have
just become traitors to their country.

In the Name of History and People, We Stand up to Check Korea-US FTA

Now, an all-out people’s war is inevitable. We march against U.S
unilateralism. We oppose its neoliberal globalization, its strategic
flexibility, its demand for an FTA with South Korea. We say "No!" to
economic exploitation by transnational capital. For us, there can be
no sidesteps, no hideouts. People gather all over the country to
protest against the FTA. United, we shall overcome small differences.
Let us raise our torches up above to signal that we have risen up. We
shall create festivals out of people’s uprisings. In our joyful
revolution, we shall terminate the U.S. attempts to exploit the Korean
people. We shall also bring the treacherous supporters of the Korea-US
FTA before the tribunal of conscience and justice.

Today, thus inaugurate "The Center for National Movements against the
Korea-US FTA." We hereby proclaim a war against the forces supporting
the agreement and predict that with people’s united struggle we shall
prevail. We appeal to every citizen of the country to join us to save
our country. We need each everyone’s participation. "The Center for
National Movements against the South Korea-U.S FTA" will become a wild
fire on the prairie to start a nation-wide fight against the Korea-US
FTA. Let us open up a new world for our future!

 source: IPLeft