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Murderer Presents...The greatest South Korean Protests in history

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The Exciting World of South Korean Protests

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For a country of about 50 million people, there are a lot of protests in South Korea. With a national average of 11,000 public protests a year, the average South Korean riot policeman is mobilized to contain 85 demonstrations a year.

While the majority of such protests are probably pretty standard affairs involving marching, shouting, and possibly some violent clashes between protesters and police, there are also some far more interesting protests going on. Here are a few particularly uniquely interesting/crazy South Korean protest photos we’ve stumbled upon:

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Dropping One’s Pants: A lot of South Korean soccer fans were bitterly disappointed in when their national team lost to Switzerland in the 2006 World Cup. Most fans simply felt bad about it, others made threatening phone calls to the Swiss Embassy about it, and South Korean internet users bombarded the FIFA homepage with complaints, forcing a temporary blocking of Korean access to the site. However, none of them could compare to this brilliant man, who decided to protest Korea’s loss by dropping his pants and standing around in the street:

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Flag-Eating: Apparently burning foreign flags is illegal in South Korea, so if one wants to legally express their displeasure with a foreign country, why not eat their flag instead? This man was so angry about Japanese Prime Minister Koizumi’s visit to the Yasukuni Shrine in 2005 that he tried to do just that:

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China has also been attacked in flag-eating protests:

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Throwing Shit: Yes, the man in the photo below is indeed hurling feces in a protest. The man was a member of a group of South Korean cattle farmers, who were enraged that Lotte supermarkets had decided to sell U.S. beef. The newspaper source of this photo, which is worried about being sued under Korean law for harming the reputation of the photo’s subjects, has blurred out their faces:

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Severed Dog Heads: In March 2007, a former South Korean army commando held a protest in front of the Japanese embassy in Seoul to mark the anniversary of peaceful mass demonstrations against Japanese colonial rule that took place in 1919. Apparently he got the brilliant idea of bringing along 5 dog heads, which were taken from some of the dog meat markets in the city, and placing them on the pavement to symbolize Koreans who supported Japanese colonial rule.

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Ripping Apart Pigs: In May 2007, a group who opposed the a government decision to move a military office to Incheon held a protest in which they ripped apart a live two-month-old piglet. South Korean animal rights groups were understandably outraged by the protest:

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Botched Hara-kiri: Some particularly lively Korean nationalist protesters have taken a page from feudal Japanese history by holding protests in which they attempt to commit hara-kiri. One example is this man, who stabbed himself in the stomach to protest Japanese plans to conduct a marine survey of the waters close to the disputed Liancourt Rocks:

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Finger Chopping: Another group of South Korean nationalists protesting against the Yasukuni Shrine in 2001 seemed to favor chopping off some of their fingers instead of hara-kiri:

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Beheading Dummies: A far less dangerous way of expressing anger against Japanese leaders can be found in these photos of protesters beheading a dummy Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi:

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But dummies can never really replace the fun of beating up human enemies:

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The Bee Man: Ahn Sang-gyu, a South Korean bee farmer and patriot, held a protest in May of 2006 in which he covered himself with bees to express his disagreement with Japan’s territorial claim to the Korean-occupied Liancourt Rocks. According to the BBC, he covered himself with 187,000 bees to represent the 187,000 square meter dimensions of the islets:

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His crazy performance even got covered by the Japanese press:

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Pro-Prostitution Protests: When the South Korean government passed an anti-prostitution law in 2004, thousands of Korean prostitutes took to the streets to demand that their livelihood be protected and prostitution be legalized. Most of the women wore masks to hide their identities:

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On June 29, 2007, another such protest was held in Seoul against government crackdowns on prostitution, with about 3000 sex workers taking to the streets, including this girl in a bikini:

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Torchlights: It is not uncommon for South Korean protesters to carry torches during their marches. One example would be this march to mark the anniversary of the March 1st movement:

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Torch-carrying protesters can also be particularly terrifying for riot police. Here is a confrontation between riot police and anti-FTA farmers in late 2007:

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The aftermath of that protest was, shall we say, predictable?

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Burning Holy Books: Speaking of fires, here are some South Korean protesters who were extremely angry when Iraqis kidnapped and murdered a Korean. They retaliated by burning some copies of the Koran:

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Luckily, nobody in the Muslim world was paying attention to their protest, so Korea didn’t face the kind of reaction those responsible for printing a cartoon of the prophet Mohamed faced.

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Resisting Water: We’ll close this post with some images of an anti-APEC protester, who refused to back down when faced with fire hose-equipped riot police during a 2005 protest:

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