South Korea is building a $35 billion city designed to eliminate the need for cars

The International Business District (IBD) in Songdo, South Korea.

Gale International

When residents of the International Business District (IBD) in Songdo, South Korea go to work, pick up their kids from school, or shop for groceries, driving is optional.

That’s because the $35 billion district — currently a work-in-progress about the size of downtown Boston — was designed to eliminate the need for cars.

A project that began in 2002, the area prioritizes mass transit, like buses, subways, and bikes, instead of road traffic, according to Stan Gale, the chairman of Gale International, the developer behind the IBD.

When completed by 2020, the district will span 100 million square feet. It’s located on the northwest side of South Korea (the opposite coast of Pyeongchang, the site of the 2018 Winter Olympics).

Take a look at the IBD’s plan below.

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Bozell & Graham Column: The Sickening Celebration of North Korea

Every two years, Americans unite around the television to root for U.S. athletes and their dreams of gold medals come true. Unless you’re a journalist. Then the Olympics are a time to root against your country and her president on the world stage.

At the opening ceremonies in Pyeongchang, South Korea, organizers strangely seated Vice President Mike Pence just a few feet from Kim Yo-jong, the sister of North Korea’s communist dictator Kim Jong-un. To American reporters who hate Trump, a star was born. Just the summaries on Twitter were enough to make you throw your phone across the room.

Start with the wire services. The Associated Press gushed: “The trip by Kim Yo-jong is the latest move in an extraordinary show of Olympic diplomacy with Seoul that could prove to be a major challenge to the Trump administration’s hard-line Korea policies.” Reuters echoed: “North Korea has emerged as the early favorite to grab one of the Winter Olympics’ most important medals: the diplomatic gold.”

Could the North Koreans be any happier at the idiocy of the Western media?

The newspapers also claimed Mike Pence lost to the woman who serves as the North Korean deputy director of propaganda. The New York Times headline was “Kim Jong-un’s Sister Turns on the Charm, Taking Pence’s Spotlight.” They turned to Asian history professor Alexis Dudden for the slam dunk: “The fact that he and Mrs. Pence didn’t stand when the unified [Korean] team came in was a new low in a bullying type of American diplomacy.”

The Washington Post front page on Sunday declared they had found the “Ivanka Trump of North Korea.” She “has enraptured people in looks-obsessed South Korea with her sphinxlike smile and low-key beauty.” The story inside added her attendance at the Olympics was “a signal that North Korea is not this crazy, weird former Cold War state — but it too has young women that are capable and are the future leadership.’”

This kind of truth-shredding article makes a mockery of all the Post’s indignant “Democracy Dies in Darkness” bravado. One might forget that when last May Trump called the North Korean dictator a “pretty smart cookie,” the Post ran a story headlined “Praise for strongmen alarms rights advocates: Trump’s vocal affection for totalitarians marks major U.S. policy shift.”

The the most embarrassing coverage was delivered by, which announced “Kim Jong Un’s sister is stealing the show at the Winter Olympics.” The article began, “If ‘diplomatic dance’ were an event at the Winter Olympics, Kim Jong Un’s younger sister would be favored to win gold.”

That was in addition to another piece where ran the headline touting: “North Korea is winning the Olympics — and it’s not because of sports.” They insisted, without the slightest hint of irony or introspection, that “the North has gotten the kind of publicity money can’t buy.”

CNN also brought its academic expert. David Maxwell of Georgetown University proclaimed the communists were “masterful at getting something for nothing. They’re going to get recognition, legitimacy, resources, without giving anything up.”

This is a complete flip-flop from last May. When Trump called the North Korean tyrant a “pretty smart cookie,” CNN anchor Jake Tapper punched back with the brutal facts: “Kim Jong-un had his uncle murdered. That doesn’t make Kim Jong-un a smart cookie. That makes him a murderer.”

If our media elite truly revered democracy and loathed totalitarianism, none of this sugar-coated nonsense on North Korean “mastery” would have been uttered or published. Their bitter hatred of the Trump-Pence ticket colors everything they say and write.

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Lacking Self-Awareness, CNN Admits North Korea Manipulated ‘World Attention’ at the Olympics

CNN’s The Situation Room with Wolf Blitzer
February 13, 2018
5:01 p.m. Eastern [TEASE]


WOLF BLITZER: And family affair. North Korea’s brutal dictator welcomes his sister back from the Olympics. Despite the smiles, U.S. intelligence chiefs say North Korea’s charm offensive may not have worked can. Anything convince the young dictator to negotiate?


5:17 p.m. Eastern [TEASE]

[ON-SCREEN HEADLINE: Coming Up; Dictator’s Sister Returns from Olympics]

BLITZER: And later, North Korea’s brutal dictator welcomes his sister home from the Olympics as intelligence agencies try assess if North Korea’s attempts to manipulate world public opinion actually paid off.


5:25 p.m. Eastern [TEASE]

[ON-SCREEN HEADLINE: Coming Up; Dictator’s Sister Returns from Olympics]

BLITZER: Then later, as Kim Jong-un welcomes his sister back from the Olympics, do the big smiles tell the story or did North Korea’s charm offensive fall flat? 


5:46 p.m. Eastern [TEASE]

[ON-SCREEN HEADLINE: Coming Up; Dictator’s Sister Returns from Olympics] 

BLITZER: There’s much more news coming in, including the sister of the North Korean dictator Kim Jong-un returns home after an attempted charm offensive in South Korea. Did the brutal regime score an propaganda points at the Winter Olympics games?


5:51 p.m. Eastern

[ON-SCREEN HEADLINE: New Tonight; North Korean Dictator Aims for Propaganda Victory at Olympics]

BLITZER: New tonight, we’re getting fresh analysis — look at this. This is Kim Jong-un. Watch this for a second. 


It’s a nice reception over there in Pyongyang. We’re getting fresh analysis from intelligence experts on Kim Jong-un’s attempted charm offensive over at the Winter Olympics games. Brian Todd has been following this story for us. Brian, did the North Korean propaganda campaign have any serious impact? 

BRIAN TODD: It did have an impact, Wolf, but officials are telling us don’t be fooled by a lot of this propaganda. Tonight we’re told U.S. intelligence analysts are assessing the North Korean mission to the Olympics. What the North Koreans went there to do and whether they accomplished their goals. Part of that intelligence assessment involves pouring over the images now being released by Kim’s regime showing how he interacted with his sister and other delegates when they returned. With a military officer hailing the return and bands playing, Kim Jong-un’s sister and her delegation returned from their charm offensive at the Olympics. After briefing Kim on their trip, his sister, Kim Yo-jong, is photographed holding her brother’s arm. The other top North Korean delegate to the games, Kim Yong-nam, is holding the leader’s hand. 

MICHAEL MADDEN: This is sort of to express that they’re very confident in their trip. Whatever news they are delivering from South Korea, directly to Kim Jong-un, they had a very high degree of confidence in that — that this was good news. 

TODD: Tonight as intelligence agencies assess North Korea’s mission to the Olympics, a key question. What was Kim’s end game then? 

MADDEN: I think what he wanted to get out of it was the delivery of a message of this invitation to have President Moon maybe had visit the DPRK. He wanted to get things back on track in terms of interacting with the South Koreans and the South Korean government. 

TODD: Kim seems to have accomplish that had goal, analysts say, but they believe he’s also manipulated the South Koreans to an extent and tried manipulate world attention away from the vicious realities inside North Korea. 

JOSEPH DETRANI: I think the conversation now has been on Kim Jong-un’s presence and the cheerleaders and the athletes, not about the gulags that are still in North Korea, not about the 25 missiles that were launched in 2017.

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Kim Jong-un’s sister arrives in South Korea in historic visit

Home » Asia, Politics » Kim Jong-un’s sister arrives in South Korea in historic visit


The sister of North Korean leader Kim Jong-un arrived in South Korea on Friday for the Winter Olympics, making her the first member of the country’s ruling family to cross the border since the Korean War.

Kim Yo-jong arrived at Incheon International Airport on a private jet along with North Korea’s ceremonial head of state, Kim Yong-nam, and an entourage of senior officials. Kim Yong-nam is the most senior North Korean official to visit the South.

The last member of the Kim family to enter South Korea was Kim Il-sung, North Korea’s founder, in 1950. Although the Korean War ended with a ceasefire 1953, both countries are technically still at war as no treaty was ever agreed upon. Tensions have remained high between the two nations ever since, but terse relations have seen something of a thaw in the run up to the Games.

Yo-jong shook hands with South Korean President Moon Jae-in at the opening ceremony of the Olympics. The iconic moment was captured by photographers at the event.



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North Korea Holds Massive Military Parade Ahead Of 2018 Winter Olympics

North Korea staged a large military parade on Thursday, just one day before the opening ceremony of the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea.

The parade was reportedly held to commemorate the 70th anniversary of founding of the country’s armed forces, according to South Korea’s Yonhap News, but it also marks a display of power mere hours before the North is expected to march under a unified flag with the delegation from South Korea. 

The Associated Press reported that tens of thousands of people watched and participated in the parade, but Yonhap noted that the display was both smaller and shorter than past similar events. The parade was also not broadcast live, a decision that Yonhap described as “an attempt to keep it low-key.”

North Korean state television broadcast footage of the parade a few hours after it concluded. The footage appeared to have been edited, the AP noted.

Foreign media was largely absent at the event, but Michael Spavor, the head of a non-profit consulting firm that facilitates work in North Korea, tweeted several video and photos he said were taken from the sidelines of the parade:

Images taken at the parade showed a procession of trucks carrying soldiers and military personnel passing large crowds, followed by a contingent of tanks. Footage from the official broadcast also showed what looked like several intercontinental ballistic missiles, including the newly developed Hwasong-15s, which North Korea claims is capable of hitting the U.S. 

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un also delivered a speech celebrating the country’s military prowess.

Nearly 300 North Koreans crossed the Demilitarized Zone between the two countries on Wednesday to participate in the Olympics, including 229 women that were part of a large “cheering squad,” The Washington Post reported. They will soon be joined by a high-level delegation of senior officials, including North Korean leader Kim Jong Un’s sister, Kim Yo Jong. They are scheduled to meet with South Korean President Moon Jae-in on Saturday.

The Post notes that if the visit goes forward, she would be the first member of the Kim family to ever visit the South, a significant development in the fraught relationship between the two nations.

Kim is expected to arrive on Friday for the Opening Ceremony and stay for three days. U.S. Vice President Mike Pence, who is also attending the games this week, told reporters on Thursday that he has no plans to meet with North Korean officials.

  • This article originally appeared on HuffPost.

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Father Of Otto Warmbier Will Attend Winter Olympics In South Korea: Report

Fred Warmbier, the father of an American who died after he was imprisoned in North Korea, will attend the opening ceremony of the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea, later this month, The Washington Post reported on Sunday. He will travel to the country as a guest of Vice President Mike Pence.

Warmbier’s son, Otto, died last June after suffering brain damage while in the custody of the North Korean government. The younger Warmbier was in a coma for around 15 months before he was returned to the United States, although it’s unclear how he sustained the injuries that brought on the condition. Officials in Pyongyang said the coma was brought on by a mix of botulism and sleeping pills, although an autopsy could not confirm the cause of the brain damage, which a coroner called extensive.

Pence is expected to speak about continued pressure by the U.S. against North Korea in an effort to curtail the regime’s ambitions of crafting an arsenal of nuclear weapons capable of reaching America, the Post reported. His presence ― at the end of a five-day trip to Asia ― comes as the North is expected to send athletes to compete in the Olympics for the first time in years, including a joint team with the South in women’s ice hockey.

The Warmbiers recently attended President Donald Trump’s State of the Union address as guests of the White House. In his speech, Trump spoke about Warmbier’s imprisonment and called North Korean leader Kim Jong Un “cruel” and “depraved.”

“You are powerful witnesses to a menace that threatens our world, and your strength inspires truly us all,” Trump said. “Tonight, we pledge to honor Otto’s memory with total American resolve.”

Warmbier’s parents have been harsh critics of the North Korean government since their son’s imprisonment, and accused the Obama administration of not doing enough to ensure his return. Warmbier, then 21, was sentenced to 15 years of hard labor after he was convicted of stealing a propaganda poster while on a group tour to the country in early 2016. His parents were unable to speak to him during his entire imprisonment, and were only told of his condition in the hours before he was returned to the U.S.

In an interview three months after his death, Warmbier’s father condemned the actions of the North and slammed the Kim regime as torturers.

“We’re here to tell you North Korea is not a victim,” Fred Warmbier said on Fox News. “They’re terrorists. They kidnapped Otto, tortured him, they intentionally injured him … He was blind, he was deaf. As we looked at him and tried to comfort him, it looked as if somebody had taken a pair of pliers and rearranged his bottom teeth.

His wife, Cindy, said the North had “destroyed” her son.

  • This article originally appeared on HuffPost.

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It Sure Sounds Like The US Is Actually Going To Bomb North Korea

During his first State of the Union address on Tuesday, Donald Trump pledged the United States would continue its campaign of maximum pressure” against North Korea. Meanwhile, the Washington Post ran an opinion piece written by the man who was, until recently, set to become the U.S. ambassador to South Korea.

Victor Cha, a professor at Georgetown University and senior adviser at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, had reportedly passed all U.S. security checks, and South Korea had signed off on him.

It was expected — and for the government in Seoul, hoped — that Trump would soon formally nominate Cha for Senate approval. But over the weekend, it was reported that the White house informed Cha he was no longer being considered for the post.

Sources say the move was motivated by Cha’s disagreement with the Trump administration’s policy on North Korea. In particular, these sources say, the would-be ambassador took issue with the White House considering a preemptive strike against the Hermit Kingdom.

Writing for the Washington Post on Tuesday, Cha stated that the answer to the North Korean question “is not, as some Trump administration officials have suggested, a preventive military strike.”

Rather, Cha wrote, there are options available to address the threat “without escalating into a war that would likely kill tens, if not hundreds, of thousands of Americans.”

Cha, who previously served in the administration of George W. Bush, wrote that he expressed his concerns over North Korea policy while he was being considered for the Seoul ambassadorship.

The Georgetown professor went on to question the logic of the “bloody nose” strategy, meant to shock leader Kim Jong-un and make him think twice about his nuclear ambitions:

“If we believe that Kim is undeterrable without such a strike, how can we also believe that a strike will deter him from responding in kind? And if Kim is unpredictable, impulsive and bordering on irrational, how can we control the escalation ladder, which is premised on an adversary’s rational understanding of signals and deterrence?”

Cha noted that on any given day, there are around 230,000 Americans in South Korea and another 90,000 in neighboring Japan. He pointed out that if North Korea were to retaliate against a preemptive strike, those citizens “would most likely have to hunker down until the war was over.”

He also noted that unlike Japan, South Korea lacks sufficient missile defense systems to counter a barrage of artillery from the North, meaning Americans there, as well as millions of South Koreans, would be vulnerable:

“To be clear: The president would be putting at risk an American population the size of a medium-size U.S. city — Pittsburgh, say, or Cincinnati — on the assumption that a crazy and undeterrable dictator will be rationally cowed by a demonstration of U.S. kinetic power.”

Regardless of such warnings, Trump remained adamant that the Kim regime poses a substantial threat to the U.S. while speaking before Congress on Tuesday. After claiming his administration has been tough on authoritarian nations, Trump zeroed in on North Korea in his State of the Union Address:

“But no regime has oppressed its own citizens more totally or brutally than the cruel dictatorship in North Korea. North Korea’s reckless pursuit of nuclear missiles could very soon threaten our homeland. We are waging a campaign of maximum pressure to prevent that from ever happening.”

Continuing, the president suggested the U.S. “need only look at the depraved character of the North Korean regime to understand the nature of the nuclear threat it could pose to America and to our allies.”

This aspect of the president’s State of the Union Address — Trump’s focus on the character of North Korea as opposed to the country’s nuclear weapons program — already has some speculating that the White House may be preparing for actual war.

Writing for The Atlantic, Peter Beinart noted that Trump’s telling of the story of Otto Warmbier, the American arrested in North Korea who died shortly after his return to the U.S., as well as that of North Korean defector Ji Seong Ho, may have been an attempt to “rouse moral indignation” ahead of the outbreak of war.

Writing for The Intercept on Wednesday, Jon Schwarz made a different connection. He pointed out that in Trump’s speech, many of his stated justifications for war with North Korea were “frighteningly familiar” to those given by President George W. Bush during the lead-up to war with Iraq in 2003.

Further, a source speaking to Anti-Media on the condition of anonymity with knowledge of U.S. Naval activities told us preparations have begun for military conflict in East Asia over the coming months.




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North Korea could stage ‘intimidating’ military parade day before Olympic Games – Seoul

The North is preparing to mark the anniversary of the Korean People’s Army (KPA) at Mirim Airfield in the capital, Pyongyang, on February 8, Unification Minister Cho Myoung-gyon told a forum in Seoul, as cited by Yonhap news agency. “There is a high possibility that the North could hold an intimidating military parade by mobilizing sizable numbers of military personnel and almost all of its weapons,” Cho said

On Tuesday, North Korea announced that it would mark February 8 as Army-Building Day, the anniversary of the creation of the Korean People’s Army (KPA) back in 1948. Earlier in January, the North announced that the KPA anniversary should be held on February 8 instead of April 25 – the date it has been marked on since 1978.  

“The North seems to be preparing for major events massively on the ground as the regime marks the 70th anniversary of its creation, and its leader Kim Jong-un apparently wants to show his absolute power,” Cho stated. However, he declined to comment on whether Seoul sees the parade as a provocation.

The minister added that the decision by the US and South Korea to postpone annual joint military drills until after February’s Winter Olympics may pave the way for dialogue between the two Koreas. “If the allies resume their exercises, North Korea will likely protest strongly against them. There is a high chance of North Korean provocations, which would make the international community impose further sanctions,” he said, adding, however, that it is “a realistic guess” that “a vicious circle of repeated provocations and sanctions could come back soon.”

The Winter Olympics start in PyeongChang on February 9, and appear to have helped bringing about a relative thaw in the situation on the peninsula. North and South Korea have agreed to make a joint entrance under a unified Korean Peninsula flag at the opening ceremony. They have also agreed to send a combined women’s ice hockey team, while North Korea will be represented by 22 more athletes. 

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N. Korea possesses ‘powerful & reliable’ deterrent to counter any nuclear threat – Pyongyang

North Korea said it had made “absolutely the right choice” by boosting its nuclear capabilities.

Pyongyang’s representative has urged the US to completely stop joint exercises with South Korea and “all nuclear war drills” in the region and has spoken out against US’s military presence on the Korean Peninsula “under the pretext of the security of the Olympic Games.

This is a dangerous act of throwing a wet blanket over the current positive atmosphere of inter-Korean relations,” the representative said.

The US disarmament ambassador at the talks advocated for North Korea’s denuclearization and further pressure on Pyongyang, saying “The US will not recognize North Korea as a nuclear weapon state.”

Last week, Seoul and Pyongyang agreed on the North Korean team’s participation in the Olympic Games, where the two neighbors will also have a joint hockey team. The move was discussed during the first bilateral talks in two years, widely seen as a positive sign amid heightened tensions in the region.

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North Korea to compete in 4 sports at 2018 PyeongChang Games

North Koreans will compete in the figure skating, alpine skiing, cross-country skiing and women’s ice hockey events, Lee Hee Beom, president of the North Korean Olympic Committee, announced on Wednesday. The statement followed the third round of high-level talks between the two Koreas, held in the border village of Panmunjom.

The sides also confirmed previously discussed plans to march together at the Olympic opening ceremony under a unified flag depicting the Korean Peninsula, and to form a joint women’s ice-hockey team.

Last week, North Korea agreed to send a national delegation to next month’s Winter Olympics. The parties have already met three times over the past 10 days, making proposals and exchanging views over their future participation in PyeongChang.

The negotiations between the two neighbors, held for the first time in two years, have marked a thaw in their strained relations, which drastically deteriorated after North Korea’s recent missile tests.

The exact number of participants from North Korea remains unknown, as the final list of athletes requires approval from the International Olympic Committee (IOC).

“Basically, the IOC is the one that invites countries to the Olympics,” Lee said. “And the agreement between South and North Korea must follow the IOC’s standards,” he added.

Figure skating couple Ryom Tae-ok and Kim Ju-sik are the only North Korean athletes who have earned a PyeongChang berth, but the IOC is expected to grant wild cards to several North Korean team members allowing them to perform without meeting Olympic qualifying standards.

READ MORE: 5 big questions facing the world of sport in 2018

On Saturday, the Olympic governing body will convene a four-party meeting to work out all the details relating to North Korean participation in the upcoming Winter Games.

Chaired by IOC President Thomas Bach, the meeting will be attended by representatives of the PyeongChang 2018 Organizing Committee, as well as delegations from the national Olympic committees of the two Koreas.

“I warmly welcome the joint proposals by the governments of the ROK (Republic of Korea) and DPRK (Democratic People’s Republic of Korea) which have been applauded by so many other governments worldwide,” Bach said.

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