Fortunately this protest did not turn violent:
Conservative South Koreans who favor THAAD deployment confronted anti-THAAD activists near the site in Seongju when they attempted to enter the local town hall.
More than 200 members of a coalition of conservative organizations, including irate Korean homemakers, began a rally outside the building around noon on Tuesday, South Korean news service News 1 reported.
As tensions mounted between the two factions, about 1,500 police were deployed to block potential conflict, which was avoided until about 5 p.m. when activists calling for the “prompt deployment of THAAD” began marching on town hall.A Buddhist sect was holding an event on the road outside the building when the march began.
Won Buddhists protesting THAAD have called for its cancellation.
Facing police obstruction, the conservative activists demanded the “right of way quickly,” citing the law.
Shouts were exchanged across the sides, and anti-THAAD activists blocked the road to prevent an escalation.
No injuries were reported.
South Korean activists who oppose THAAD have not stopped occupying the town hall and outlying areas since the missile defense system was deployed in April. [UPI]
You can read more at the link.
These protesters may have wanted to rethink their protest date considering the 67th anniversary for the start of the Korean War is this weekend:
Thousands of protesters marched near the U.S. embassy in Seoul on Saturday, accusing U.S. President Donald Trump of “forcing” South Korea to deploy the controversial American missile defense system China opposes.
The protest came as South Korea’s new president Moon Jae-In heads to Washington next week for his first summit with Trump amid soaring tensions over Pyongyang’s nuclear ambitions.
Around 4,000 people participated in the first anti-U.S. rally under Moon’s presidency. It was also the largest protest since South Korea and the United States agreed to deploy the system, known as the Terminal High-Altitude Area Defense (THAAD).
Protesters marched with placards that read: “Trump, stop forcing (South Korea) to deploy THAAD” and “No THAAD, No Trump.”
The crowd included residents from the southeastern county of Seongju where the system is being deployed. [Korea Times]
You can read more at the link, but Yonhap had the protest number at 3,000.
What I am wondering is how many of these protesters are actually from the village bordered by the THAAD site outside of Seongju? How many were from the anti-US leftist groups that typically turn out to protests like this? You would think that would be basic information a reporter would try and find out.
Secondly their turn out for being a weekend in Seoul is actually quite weak which is an indication of the public support the South Korean leftists have on the THAAD issue. Recent polling data shows that 53% of Koreans support the deployment and 32% are against it. The only thing that I see that could change those numbers in favor of the leftists is if President Trump makes unreasonable compensation demands for the deployment on President Moon. Hitting the pocket books of South Koreans is something that could quickly get the South Korean public to side with the leftist protesters.
I saw this posted over at Reddit Korea. I highly recommend that anyone traveling to Seoul this weekend avoid this area because the leftists in Korea are quite emboldened now and who knows how they would react to Americans especially USFK servicemembers wandering around their protest:
It looks like some of the silent majority in South Korea have decided to stand up to the currently empowered leftists trying to create a wedge in the US-ROK alliance:
Dozens of South Koreans waved American flags and signs with slogans like “Deploy THAAD immediately” and “Strong ROK-US alliance” during a rally Monday to support the 2nd Infantry Division after several musicians boycotted a recent concert celebrating its centennial.
The municipal government in Uijeongbu organized the June 10 concert at a sports complex in the city, which has long been home to 2ID headquarters at Camp Red Cloud. But several South Korean K-pop bands and other musicians who had been expected to perform either did not show up or declined to play their songs.
The group organizing Monday’s rally, which was held on the sidewalk in front of the U.S. Army garrison, produced a letter addressed to the division’s commander, Maj. Gen. Theodore Martin.
“We, Patriotic Koreans want to deliver our deepest apology about the disruption of the Centennial concert,” the letter read. “We also want to express our sincere appreciation for you and your soldiers’ dedication for the security of the Republic of Korea.” [Stars & Stripes]
You can read more at the link, but the boycott had to be highly embarrassing to the Uijongbu mayor Ahn Byung-yong who was sitting next to USFK Commander General Vincent Brooks when the cancellations happened. According to the article the mayor is blaming pro-North Korean leftists and media for causing the cancellation.
Here is an update from the anti-THAAD frontlines in Seongju county:
In Soseong-ri, a small farming village of about 80 residents in southern South Korea, a band of elderly women is at the forefront of protests against the deployment of a U.S. anti-missile system next to their neighborhood.
A dozen or so women, in their 60s to 80s, stand watch each day around the clock to make sure no military vehicles enter the deployment site through the only road to it — a former golf course owned by a leading conglomerate, the Lotte Group.
The vigil has forced the U.S. military to use helicopters instead to shuttle fuel and supplies to the site hosting the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) system. (………..)
The women, who brandish canes and umbrellas at the military helicopters and shout for them to go away every time one flies through the village, say they have no interest in the politics of the deployment.
But they protest, longing for the peace they had before.
“I can’t sleep. I’m taking sedatives at night but I still get only two hours of sleep,” said 87-year-old Na Wi-bun, who lives within a kilometer (0.62 mile) of the site and says she can hear the generator that powers THAAD humming around the clock. [Reuters]
You can read more at the link, but it is ironic they are complaining about noise when their protest is causing the noise. The helicopters would not be flying if trucks were allowed to drive up the road to the site. Also the generators as we have seen in with the radar site in Japan can be muffled and the noise ultimately eliminated when the radar is hooked up to commercial power. However, if construction crews cannot drive up the road to hook up to commercial power then the noise will remain.