This blog may contain not-so-strong languages and slightly strong ecchi pictures. Please proceed with caution.

Monday, 29 June 2015

Inside Changdeokgung, Part IX: Uiduhap Pavilion

Uiduhap Pavilion (Hanja: 倚斗閤) was built by Crown Prince Hyomyeong Yi Yeong (효명세자 이영/孝明世子 李旲) a.k.a Posthumous King Munjo-Ikjong of Joseon Dynasty as a place of study, reading, and contemplation. Unlike other royal structures, the architecture is conservative and not decorated with vivid paintwork. It is one of the most modest buildings at Changdeok Palace.

The structure was built in 1827 (27th Reigning Year of King Sunjo) by Crown Prince Hyomyeong who was the first son of King Sunjo - the 23rd Monarch of Joseon Dynasty (1790-1834; Reigned: 1800-1834). Along with Aeryeonjeong Pavilion, these are the only buildings in the palace that face north to allow more sunlight for reading and contemplation.

Crown Prince Hyomyeong only lived to be 21. Known for his intelligence and fine character, he handled state affairs on behalf of his father from the age of 18. He is commemorated in an album of six scenes created to celebrate the commencement of his learning at the Seonggyun-gwan, one of a number of documentary paintings (gungjung girokhwa/궁중기록화 of the Joseon dynasty).

Saturday, 27 June 2015

Hallelujah Korea, Part XXIV: Wondong Cathedral, Wonju, Gangwon Province - Home of Diocese of Wonju and history of Korean Catholics under Park Chung-hee's Regime

The Roman Catholic Diocese of Wonju (Hangul/Hanja/Latin: 천주교 원주교구/天主敎原州敎區/Dioecesis Voniuensis) is a diocese of the Latin Rite of the Catholic Church located in Wonju, Gangwon Province. The diocese is a suffragan to the Archdiocese of Seoul. The current bishop of this diocese is James Kim Ji-seok.

Diocese of Wonju was formed by Pope Paul VI in March 22nd 1965. However, The diocese lost territory four years later when the Diocese of Andong was established on May 29th 1969. It covers southern bound of Gangwon Province (Wonju, Hoengseong, Taebaek, Jeongseon, Yeongwol, Samcheok, southern bound of Pyeongchang and former Bukpyeong-eup, Samcheok County in the present-day Donghae) and Northeast of Northern Chungcheong Province (Jecheon and Danyang). 

Back to the Southern Counterpart of Gangwon Province, only the Southern Bounds of Pyeongchang and Donghae are covered by the diocese of Wonju. The precincts and communes mentioned are:
  • Donghae (former Bukpyeong-eup, Samcheok County) - CheonGok-dong, Pyeongneung-dong, Songjeong-dong, Yongjeong-dong, Jiheung-dong, Hyoga-dong, Donghoe-dong, Naan-dong, Swaewoon-dong, Bukpyeong-dong, Guho-dong, Gumi-dong, Chuam-dong, Daegu-dong, Naedong, Hohyeon-dong, Danbong-dong, Jiga-dong, Gwiun-dong, Ido-dong, Samhwa-dong, Igi-dong, Iro-dong, Sinheung-dong, Bicheon-dong, Dalbang-dong
  • Pyeongchang - Pyeongchang-eup, Mitan-myeon, Bangnim-myeon, Daehwa-myeon

Its mother church is Wondong Cathedral of Our Lady of Grace (原洞聖堂), located at 27 Won-il Avenue/Wonillo, Wondong 85-4 beonji, Wonju City, Gangwon Province. The cathedral was built in August 17th 1896 as a branch cathedral of Pungsuwon Cathedral in Hoengseong County in the same province. However, the cathedral was heavily destroyed during the Korean War. In 1954, the cathedral was rebuilt at the current place with 120 pyeong (396.6942 sq m) of area.

Korean Catholics versus Yushin Constitution during Park Chung-hee's Regime Timeline
As Daniel Ji Hak-sun, the first Bishop of the diocese of Wonju announced a declaration of conscience and was detained on July 23, 1974, all Catholics shocked at 'a bishop's detention' in the first place. Ambassadors to Korea met Foreign Minister Kim Dong-jo and conveyed their intention to show clemency to Ji Hak-sun and those concerned with the National Federation of Democratic Young Students and the Holy See also expressed its opinion "This judgement will reach a fair settlement" on August 8. However, to tell the truth, the position of the Roman Catholic Church of Korea priests was very equivocal. They issued a statement in the name of the priests on July 25 shortly after Ji Hak-sun's detention and announced a statement at the level of standing committee of the priests on August but they did not make any position clear.

In such uneasy circumstances, Father Shin Hyeon-bong who had been nervous about chief of the diocese Ji Hak-sun's detention made a tour around the country to petition his release and Choi Gi-sik, who had happened to prepare for studying abroad in Seoul, removed to a Catholic publishing company at Myeongdong from the very beginning and kept pace with Shin Hyeon-bong. And foreign missionaries belonging to the Missionary Society of Saint Columban working for the Wonju diocese also made a resolution not to have a haircut and a shave until Ji Hak-sun was set free. In such course, fathers of the Seoul diocese of about the same age of Choi Gi-sik joined. Among them were Hahm Sei-ung who had studied at and returned from the Colegio Urbano seminary in Rome, Kim Taek-am, Yang Hong, Oh Tae-sun, Ahn Chung-seok and Kang Deok-pil. Situation prayers for urging Ji Hak-sun's release were held round the country and especially Kim Byeong-sang and Hwang Sang-geun from the Diocese of Incheon, Mun Jeong-hyeon from the Diocese of Jeonju, Lee Gye-chang from the Diocese of Daejeon, Song Gi-in from the Diocese of Busan and Ryu Gang-ha and Jeong Ho-gyeong from the Diocese of Andong were in real earnest and on the go.

In the meantime, Ji Hak-sun who had been behind bars tried to operate the Catholic Justice and Peace Committee in his charge actively. At that time, the Justice and Peace Committee exited in name only and had neither organization nor system at all. He nominated Father Park Sang-rae as a person responsible for it, drew up the statute of the Justice and Peace Committee on pulp paper and had it taken out of prison in secret. However, in an emergency, as it was kind of unreasonable to conduct the mission through any official channel, it needed another alternative. At last, on August 29, 23 priests of the Seoul diocese who had gathered at the priest hall at Myeongdong Cathedral, decided their official position about the Ji Hak-sun, recommended the priests to make a high profile clear and resolved to feel their way for a joint action.

It came to fruition in Wonju on September 23. At a seminar for clergy held on Wonju on 23 September prior to a prayer and praise meeting for martyrs held in Seoul on 26 September, some 300 priests attended. It is not too much to say that almost all fathers of the country had gathered when we consider there were all 639 ordinary priests in Korea. At the gathering, they agreed on forming the National Catholic Priests' Corps for the Realization of Justice (NCPCRJ) and resolved to keep on with the prayer meeting for restoring human rights and democracy. In addition, they decided to hold the first prayer meeting in the priests' name at Wondong Cathedral in the following day.

At a prayer meeting held at Wondong Cathedral, priests decided to stage a street demonstration. It was something new under the sun. As it was the first since Ji-Hak-sun had advanced the street in denouncing irregularities and corruption, there were not a few dissenters. Jang Il-sun and Kim Yeong-ju who had practical charge of presiding the prayer meeting in Wonju were afraid that any street demonstration might make Ji-Hak-sun's release rather more difficult.

However, hundreds of young fathers expressed their position that they should push away with it without splitting hairs and in the long run, they staged a demonstration by taking a round as far as the rotary via Wonju City Hall.

Two days later on September 26, the priests held a prayer meeting at Myeongdong Cathedral and issued the first declaration on the situation for the exclusive purpose of abolishing the Yushin constitution and restoring democratic constitutionality. The priests paraded a demonstration to the front of Myeongdong Police Stand and Shin Hyeon-bong was walked off to the police during the demonstration, The issued the second declaration on the situation (6 November) and a statement for realizing social justice (20 November), which elucidated under the sun that churches had started a campaign against the Yushin regime officially by announcing that "Any existing government should be subject to criticism according to the name and standard of the God's country and no democratic government shall be exempt regardless of whether or not it is legal.

The priests was an organic and voluntary organization which had neither its official representative not its membership list. Young fathers, who constituted a the main force, deemed Shin Hyeon-bong, who was a senor by ten years than them, as representative. As political matters were dealt with in Seoul district, especially on the scene of Myeongdong Cathedral and Hahm Sei-ung at Catholic Seminary and the fellow fathers of the Seoul diocese were the focus of dispute.

Fathers belonging to the priests also played a major role in 'the National Assembly for Restoring Democracy', a nationwide organization out of office formed on December 25, 1974. The National Assembly which consisted of 71 religious circles, academicians, journalists and leader out of office, included Kim Taek-am, Park Sang-rae, Shin Hyeon-bong, Yang Hong and Hahm Sei-ung. Father Yun Hyeong-jung became standing representative and Hahm Sei-ung served as spokesman. Father Yun Hyeong-jung held a new year's press conference requested Park Chung-hee regime to step down. In response to it, the priests held a 'prayer meeting for restoting human rights and democracy' with some 80 clergymen and about 2,000 Christians attending and announced a statement on January 9.

"We had carried a torch in the dark and had anxiously prayed and shouted for a restoration of humanity in the country according to the teachings of Jesus Christ who was our light for the last one year. However, our prayer was infringed on by the ruler and the vices of the ruler who looked away from truth and disobeyed conscience increased and deepened. The Word is denied, the words of a dictator are consecrated, churches are surveilled, dictatorial power is sanctified, freedoms of religion and press are persecuted and violence is used frequently by the man in power. The Word was distorted and general conscience of human beings were expelled by power for a reason that it was not ours".

On such movements Park Chung-hee denounced them as 'illusionary romantists' at an Armed Forces Day's laudatory address on October 1, 1974. Subsequently, on November 19, Kim Jong-pil threatened to judge those Christians who were criticizing the government in God's name by quoting Chapter 13 of the Epistle to the Romans "Let every soul be subject unto the higher powers. For there is no power but of God: the powers that be are ordained of God." at 'a prayer meeting for Prime Minister' hosted by the Korea Christian Businessmen Association. When Park Chung-hee was going to hold a referendum in February 1975, the priests conducted a campaign for boycotting it. The then Minister of Culture and Information Lee Won-gyeong criticized in a statement that "Recently, some religious figures are intervening too much in political activities and are repeating sayings or doings which could disturb legal order and instigate social disorder without knowing their place".

In the meantime, Ji Hak-sun was released after a referendum, the Catholic priests held a spring episcopal meeting and stated "It is necessary that churches should strive for to be of one accord in them and block misunderstandings from outside by reflecting themselves on the past doings and establishing an attitude to cope with similar situations in the future" in a message released on February 28. To be short, it implied to the effect that the problem of political participation in the future should be entrusted with not the priests but with the episcopate and the Justice and Peace Committee under the episcopate. As the priests took an active part in earnest so far and a lot of people, whether they were believers or not, gathered at the cathedral but not a few people were dissatisfied with such movements on the other hand. The episcopate called it in question.

But the priests no longer the clergymen who had campaigned for releasing Ji Hak-sun from the prospect of defending ecclesiastical authority. It's because they came to the world by digging a tunnel which unenlightened the real problems as mine workers digging out the truth locked in the dark listening to lectures on the situation and discussing by calling in specialists periodically before holding any prayer meeting. They met workers, farmers and urban poor people while they were shouting for restoring democracy and realized social changes as the first mission of churches. They volunteered to become not charity pots jingling at Christmas but churches which would extricate themselves from the misery on their own.

Korean Joga Bonito, Part X: Goyang Hi FC - A Christian-based Football Club that makes you HIGH.

Goyang Hallelujah-Immanuel Football Club or simply known as Goyang Hi FC is a South Korean professional football team based in Goyang, Gyeonggi Province. They currently compete in the K League Challenge. They play their home games in Goyang Stadium, located at 1601 Jungangno, Daehwa-dong 2320-beonji, Goyang IlsanSeo-gu.

The club traces its origins to Immanuel FC, a Christian football club founded in 1983. The team previously played in Iksan and Gimpo before moving to Ansan. Immanuel FC, the predecessor of Goyang Hi FC, was founded in 1983. In 1985, Immanuel FC and Hallelujah FC decided to join together to create a unified Christian football club. As a result, Immanuel FC became Hallelujah's reserve team. After the 1985 season, Hallelujah FC left the professional ranks in order to concentrate their financial efforts on missionary work.

The two clubs separated after one year. Immanuel FC participated in many tournaments as and amateur football club. They even competed with Hallelujah FC in 1991. In 1992, Immanuel FC suffered from a lack of funds. Therefore, E-Land took over the team and changed name to E-Land Puma FC. From 1992 to 1998, they won the three championships in some tournaments.

At the start of 1998, the Asian Financial Crisis affected the club's parent group E-Land, necessitating the release of the club, which became amateur again as Immanuel FC. The club brought in some footballers for Hallelujah FC and changed their name to Hallelujah FC in 1999. The foundation of Hallelujah FC is the official starting point of Goyang Hi FC history by K League. 

In 2003, the team moved to Iksan and joined the Korea National League, finishing a creditable third after the First Stage, but were prevented from competing in the Second Stage after protests by radical Won Buddhists led to the club being barred from playing in Iksan. The club moved to Gimpo, where they enjoyed their most successful season in the National League in 2006, completing the Second Stage at the summit of the league, before being defeated in the Championship Play-off. 

The club moved again, this time to Ansan in 2007 under the banner 'Ansan Hallelujah FC'. The club made another successful campaign in 2008, a season which saw them reach the final of the National League Championship, where they were defeated on penalties, before evolving into Ansan 'H' FC for the 2012 National League season. In September 2012, it was confirmed that the team would be moving to Goyang City for the 2013 season, and changed its name to Goyang Hi FC.

Thursday, 25 June 2015

Korean Joga Bonito, Part IX: Ulsan Hyundai FC - May the Tiger Force be with you.

The Ulsan Hyundai Football Club (Hangul/Hanja: 울산현대FC/蔚山現代FC) is a South Korean professional football club, owned by Korean corporation Hyundai Heavy Industries, they entered the K League in 1984 as Hyundai Horang-i a.k.a Hyundai Tigers. Home ground of this team is Ulsan Munsu Football Stadium, located at Okdong, Ulsan Nam-gu.

Ulsan Hyundai was established in Incheon on 6 December 1983, as Hyundai Football Club, with Horang-i (Horang-i means tiger in archaic Korean) as its mascot. They entered the league in 1984 and finished the season in 3rd place. In 1986, the club expanded their franchise from Incheon, Gyeonggi to Gangwon. But In 1987, the club was based solely in Gangwon. In the early 1990s, the club moved to Ulsan, becoming Ulsan Hyundai. The club became the league champion in 1996, but then entered a long dry-spell. Korean football legend Cha Bum-kun a.k.a Tscha Boom managed the club from 1991 to 1994.

They finished runners-up in 2002 and 2003, and started to emerge as a strong force. In 2005, they qualified for the Championship Play-off. In the play-off semi-final, they beat Seongnam Ilhwa 2–1, and in the final, they beat Incheon United 6–3 aggregate, with a hat-trick from Lee Chun-soo in the first leg. The club also went on to win the A3 Champions Cup in 2006.

In 2012, the club won the AFC Champions League, defeating Al-Ahli 3–0 on 10 November. In the run up to the final, Ulsan went unbeaten in all 12 games, winning nine consecutive and scored 27 goals.

Ulsan Hyundai FC's Home Pitch: Ulsan Munsu Football Stadium
Ulsan Munsu Football Stadium (Hanja: 蔚山文殊蹴球競技場), nicknamed Big Crown Stadium, is a football-specific stadium at 44 Munsu Avenue/Munsu-ro, Okdong san 5-beonji, Ulsan Nam-gu. It is home to the Ulsan Hyundai FC. The stadium was built from 18 December 1998 to 28 April 2001 and its total cost was 151.4 billion won (US$116.5 million).

Located in a major industrial city, the Ulsan Munsu football Stadium contains both mechanical and environment-friendly imagery. The overall shape of the stadium is in the shape of skull crown that symbolizes Silla Kingdom and Bangudae Petroglyphs. The stadium has three floors and 2 basement floors and a seating capacity of 44,466. There is also an auxiliary stadium with 2,590 seats. Next to the stadium is Munsu Park with a lake, a fountain and bicycle courses, lakeside square. It replaced Ulsan Complex Stadium. The venue hosted several 2002 FIFA World Cup matches.

Wednesday, 24 June 2015

Koihime Musou Girls and Famous Koreans, LARGE Edition! (Part IX): Lu Su and Roh Hoe-chan

Roh Hoe-chan (Hangul/Hanja: 노회찬/魯會燦; Born: August 31st 1956 in Busan) is a Korean politician and labor activist. He has a Degree in Political Science & International Relations Studies from Korea University. He is affiliated in the Justice Party of Korea (정의당/正義黨) and a member of Ganghwa Roh Clan (강화 노씨/江華魯氏), originated from Ganghwa County, Incheon Metropole. Roh is dubbed as Anpan-man (Hoppangmaen/호빵맨 in Korean) due to his looks which is resembled to the character. He is a person who responsible to bring up the Samsung X-Files back in 2005, citing the need to expose Samsung's relationships with powerful prosecutors.

Roh was an assemblyman for Seoul Nowon-byeong (Seoul Nowon-gu 3rd) Electoral District for 19th Session of Korean Republic National Assembly. However, in February 14th 2013, he lost his seat in the assembly when he exposed the corruption made by one of the famous Korean Chaebols, Samsung Group. The Supreme Court of Korea upheld that by publishing transcripts of wiretapped conversations online, he broke communications laws; the conviction means he cannot remain a lawmaker, and he has received a suspended prison sentence. In explaining its decision, the court said "Unlike distributing press releases to journalists, uploading messages on the Internet allows an easy access to anybody at any time." It added that the media publishes select information "with responsibility" rather than providing the public with "unfiltered access" to what it knows.

The conversations in question are part of what is known as the Samsung X-File, a trove of tapes illegally recorded by the government's intelligence service during the 1990s. The files include conversations between Samsung chairman Lee Kun-hee and his brother in law, and reveal bribes allegedly paid by the conglomerate to prosecutors, politicians, and presidential candidates.

But investigations into the X-File centered around the illegal nature of their recording and release — only Roh and MBC journalist Lee Sang-ho were indicted for their role in publishing the wiretaps, and none of the resulting evidence was admissible in prosecution. Lee was handed a suspended prison sentence in 2011 on the grounds that his reporting of private conversations was not in the public interest. However, Joongang Daily newspaper publisher Hong Seok-hyun was forced to resign as US ambassador over his implication in lobbying presidential candidates with Samsung bribes, as was Vice Justice Minister Kim Sang-hee.

In July 30th 2014, Roh was competed in Korean by-elections for the assemblyman seat of Seoul Dongjak-eul (Seoul Dongjak-gu 2nd) Electoral District when the previous holder, Chung Mong-jun was resigned his post as the assemblyman of that area. However, he lost to Na Kyung-won of Saenuri Party with the majority of 1029 votes (Na: 38,311 [49.9%] - Roh: 37,282 [48.69%]). 

Hallelujah Korea, Part XXIII: Yangdeok Cathedral, Changwon MasanHoewon-gu, Southern Gyeongsang - Home of Diocese of Masan

The Roman Catholic Diocese of Masan (Hangul/Hanja/Latin: 천주교 마산교구/天主敎馬山敎區/Dioecesis Masanensis) is a diocese of the Latin Rite of the Catholic Church located in Masan District of the Unified Changwon City, Southern Gyeongsang Province. The namesake of the diocese - Masan was a municipal city in Southern Gyeongsang which consists only two districts - known as Happo-gu and Hoewon-gu. On July 1st 2010, this city was later integrated with Changwon and Jinhae Cities to form the Unified Changwon City which consists five districts and these include districts in Masan as well (Present-day Changwon MasanHappo-gu and Changwon MasanHoewon-gu). The diocese is a suffragan to the Archdiocese of Daegu. The current bishop of this diocese is Francis Xavier Ahn Myeong-ok.

Diocese of Masan was formed in February 15th 1966 by Pope Paul VI from the claimed territories of the Diocese of Busan - majorly in Southern Gyeongsang Province. Only three cities in Southern Gyeongsang - Gimhae, Yangsan and Miryang remain in the Diocese of Busan with some exceptions on particular communes which covered by Diocese of Masan:
  • Gimhae (JinYeong-eup and Jillye-myeon)
  • Miryang (Cheongdo-myeon, Muan-myeon, Bubuk-myeon, Chodong-myeon and Hanam-eup)

Its mother church is Yangdeok Cathedral of the Sacred Heart (양덕성당/陽德聖堂), located at 128 Yangdeog-yet 2-gil/양덕옛2길, Yangdeok 2-dong 72-7 beonji, Changwon MasanHoewon-gu, Southern Gyeongsang Province. The cathedral is designed by Kim Swoo-geun (김수근/金壽根; Born: February 20th 1931 - Died: June 14th 1986), a prominent Korean Architect who designed Seoul Olympic Stadium in Seoul Songpa-gu for 1988 Summer Olympics. 

The cathedral is not too big, but it gives off a warm, cozy feeling. Similar as Kyungdong Presbyterian Church in Seoul Jung-gu which is designed by the same architect, it uses red brick and you must climb a set of steps before entering inside the cathedral. With a skylight above the altar, the design uses sunlight to great effect.

Hallelujah Korea, Part XXII: Mokseong-dong Cathedral, Andong, Northern Gyeongsang - Home of Diocese of Andong

The Roman Catholic Diocese of Andong (Hangul/Hanja/Latin: 천주교 안동교구/天主教安東教區/Dioecesis Andongensis) is a diocese of the Latin Rite of the Catholic Church located in Andong, Northern Gyeongsang Province. The diocese is suffragan to the Archdiocese of Daegu. The current bishop of this diocese is John Chrysostom Kwon Hyeok-joo.

Diocese of Andong was formed in May 29th 1969 by Pope Paul VI from the claimed territories of the Archdiocese of Daegu and the Diocese of Wonju. The diocese covers Northern Bound of Northern Gyeongsang Province (Andong, Yeongju, MunGyeong, Sangju, Uljin, YeongYang, Bonghwa, Yeongdeok, Cheongsong, Uiseong and Yecheon).

Its mother church is Mokseong-dong Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception (목성동성당/木城洞聖堂), located at 145-3 Seodongmun Avenue/Seodongmunno, Mokseong-dong 51-1 beonji, Andong City, Northern Gyeongsang Province - not far from Andong City Hall. The titular saint of this cathedral is Saint Mary of the Immaculate Conception. The old building at Mokseong-dong san 1-beonji was established in June 14th 1927 and relocated to the current site in 1949. However, it was deteriorated with the passage of time and came to need more space to play role as a Cathedral.

On April 25th 2004 - the Most Rev. John Chrysostom Kwon Hyeok-joo, Bishop of Andong dedicated the newly remodeled Mokseong-dong Cathedral. The new premises include a chapel, a grand hall, meeting rooms, residence for priests and a house of sisters and the chapel can accommodate about 600 persons. There are also a socializing place for the elderly and free funeral facilities for the local community. 

Tuesday, 23 June 2015

KorEconomics 101 (한국경제학개론), Part XVI: Mirae Asset - Building on Principles

Mirae Asset Financial Group (Hangul/Romanization: 미래에셋금융그룹/Mirae Asset Geum-yung Group) is a multinational and independent financial services group in Asia, headquartered at Mirae Asset Center One Building - 26 Eulji Avenue 5th Street/Euljiro 5-gil, Suha-dong 67-beonji, Seoul Jung-gu. While the group’s core business is asset management, it also provides comprehensive financial services in the areas of wealth management and life insurance. Mirae Asset was founded by Park Hyeon-joo in 1997; in the wake of the Asian Financial Crisis, and is credited with creating the asset management industry within Korea. The company introduced the very first mutual funds to Korean retail investors in 1998.

Mirae Asset Global Investments Group is the asset management arm of Mirae Asset Financial Group. It is one of the largest investors in emerging market equities. With approximately 593 employees, including more than 120 dedicated investment professionals, Mirae Asset Global Investments Group has a presence in Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, Colombia, Hong Kong, India, Korea, Taiwan, United Kingdom, United States and Vietnam.

Mirae Asset Securities Co., Ltd. provides wealth management, brokerage, investment banking, and retirement pension solutions in South Korea. It offers wealth management service in various financial products, such as equities, funds, and insurance; investment products, including foreign bonds, bond-type funds, derivative products, trust, and government bonds; and financial advisory services for wealth management and retirement planning. 

The company also provides brokerage trading services on securities, such as stocks, futures, and options through various trading channels; and online and mobile trading systems. In addition, it offers corporate financing services comprising IPO underwriting, IB products, OTC products, structured financing, real estate financing, social overhead capital, project development, merger and acquisition consulting, fixed-income underwriting, and proprietary trading. Further, the company provides retirement pension system and asset management consulting services. 

Mirae Asset is recognized as one of the largest investors in emerging market equities by AUM of fund managers surveyed. In fact, as of 28 Feburary 2014, the investments in emerging markets equity exceeded USD 21.59 billion. Furthermore, the Mirae Asset's total AUM accumulated to USD 57.30 billion for the same period. 

Sunday, 21 June 2015

Koihime Musou Girls and Famous Koreans, LARGE Edition! (Part VIII): Xu Chu and Strawberry Milk

In this 58th Installment of Koihime Musou Girls and Famous Koreans, we will reveal the identities of identical twins in Strawberry Milk, Choa and Way. They were born on July 12th 1990 in Seoul. Based on their real names, it is proven that the surname of the twins is Heo. They are the members of Gimhae Heo Clan (김해 허씨/金海許氏), a clan which is originated from Gimhae City, Southern Gyeongsang Province and descended from Queen Heo Hwang-ok of Geumgwan Gaya, where a fellow Korean Celebrity - Heo Young-saeng is originated from the same clan as them.

About Choa
Choa (초아), whose born as Heo Min-jin (허민진/許敏真) is the main vocalist of Crayon Pop. She enjoyed singing and dancing as a young girl, and dropped out of high school in order to purse a career in musical theatre. She began studying acting at Seoul Institute of the Arts in 2009, but later took a leave of absence due to lack of finances. She worked as a model before joining Chrome Entertainment in 2011, and later resumed her studies at Seoul Institute of the Arts.

In June 2014, she was featured on an alternate version of Zan Zan's debut single, "Chicken Feet"; she also played the leading female role in the music video. Choa made her acting debut in the television drama High School: Love On on 11 July 2014, where she played a supporting role. In April 2015, she and Way were featured on Kim Yoo-min's "Road" (길), the lead single from his debut mini album (released under the stage name, Bear Planet).

In 2015, she was cast in a dual role in the musical Princess Deokhye, playing Princess Deokhye and her daughter Jeonghye. She shared the role with Moon Hye-young, the musical's scriptwriter, and the musical ran from April to June. Choa's singing was well-received at her audition, and cultural critic Ha Jae-geun praised her performance.

About Way
Way (웨이), whose born as Heo Min-seon (허민선/許敏善) is Choa's identical twin sister. Before joining Crayon Pop, she was the main vocalist and songwriter of indie band N.Dolphin. In 2015, she was cast as Yoo Miri in the Korean adaptation of the musical Singin' in the Rain. Way is a student at Sungshin Women's University, majoring in applied music. In April of that year, she and Choa were featured on "Road" by Kim Yoo-min (Bear Planet). The sisters also played two of the lead roles in the music video.

About Strawberry Milk
Strawberry Milk (Hangul/Romanization: 딸기우유/Ttalgiuyu) is Crayon Pop's first subgroup, featuring twins Choa and Way. Chrome Entertainment announced the subgroup (also called a unit or sub-unit) on 29 September 2014. Their debut album, The 1st Mini Album, was released on 15 October, along with a music video for the title track, "OK". Another song on the album, "Let Me Know", was written by Way. The lyrics are based on the twins' struggle to become singers.

Strawberry Milk performed "Let Me Know" for the first time at the First Chrome Family in Japan Concert on 4 October. Their debut showcase was held on 15 October in Cheongdam-dong, Seoul Gangnam-gu, and their music show debut stage for "OK" was on M! Countdown on 16 October. "OK" was promoted through November on all the major music shows, including The Show, where they were nominated for first place.

KorEconomics 101 (한국경제학개론), Part XV: KDB Life Insurance - a subsidiary of Korea Development Bank

KDB Life Insurance (Hangul/Hanja/Romanization: KDB생명보험/KDB生命保險/KDB Saengmyeong Boheom) is a Korean insurance company which served as a subsidiary of Korea Development Bank. The headquarters of KDB Life is located at KDB Life Insurance Tower - 372 Han River Boulevard/Hangang-daero, Dongja-dong 45-beonji, Seoul Yongsan-gu.

The company was founded in 1973 as Donghae Life Insurance with net capital of 1 billion won. It changed its name into Dong-A Life Insurance in 1983. In 2000, Dong-A Life Insurance merged with Kumho Life Insurance, a company under Asiana Group under Kumho Life banner. Kumho Life was previously known as Kwangju Life Insurance in 1988 and Aju Life Insurance in 1993. In June 2010, Kumho Life Insurance changed its name into KDB Life Insurance and the ownership of the company was transferred to KDB Financial Group, the parent company of Korea Development Bank.

KDB Life Insurance Co., Ltd. provides life insurance solutions to individuals, and public and private companies in South Korea. The company also offers accident, sickness, and annuity insurance solutions. It also handles government and municipal bonds, as well as stocks; leasing properties and facilities; discounting bills; and providing consulting services. 

Based on Korea Economic Daily (한국경제/韓國經濟/Hankook Kyungje) Financial Watch in May 2015, KDB Life took in the largest amount of premium income of 320 million won. The biggest advantage of online insurance is lower premium, typically 20-30 percent cheaper than comparable life insurance policies sold through conventional channels as it cuts out the middleman. Online life insurance is also low in cancellation rate. For example, the rate of life insurance policies that maintain their account by the 13th month was 94 percent for Kyobo LifePlanet.

For KDB Life, whose share of online contract is highest in the industry, the daily average number of new online policies in March 2015 was as high as 350. Even for Lifenet, Japan's largest online life insurer, the number was only 300.

Koihime Musou Girls and Famous Koreans, LARGE Edition! (Part VII): Cao Shun and Jo Sung-mo - The Ballad Prince, on par with Jo Kwan-woo

Jo Sung-mo (Hangul/Hanja/Romanization: 조성모/曺誠模/Jo Seong-mo; Born: March 11th 1977 in Hwayang-dong, Seoul Gwangjin-gu) is a South Korean singer who mainly focuses on ballads and some dance pop songs. He is a member of Changnyeong Cho Clan (창녕 조씨/昌寧曺氏), a clan which is originated from Changnyeong County, Southern Gyeongsang Province where the fellow Korean celebrities such as Kyuhyun of Super Junior, Jo Sumi and Jo Seung-woo are originated from the same clan as him.

He was a dropout from Daelim University in Library and Information Science Studies before he proceeds to Kyonggi University. He is a graduate from Kyonggi University where he obtained Degree in Leisure Sports and Health Science Studies and Master in Sports Science Studies

He debuted in September 4th 1998 with a sad, romantic ballad titled "To Heaven." This song was featured in episode 99 of Lee So-ra's Proposal (이소라의 프로포즈). Jo is notable for his "million sellers", as his first few albums were widely popular such as:
  • 1 - To Heaven, 1998 (Sold Approximately 1,000,000 albums)
  • 2 - For Your Soul, 1999 (Sold Approximately 2,100,000 albums)
  • 2.5 - Classic, 2000 (Sold Approximately 1,600,000 albums)
  • 3 - Let Me Love, 2000 (Sold Approximately 2,100,000 albums)
  • 4 - No More Love, 2001 (Sold Approximately 1,000,000 albums)

His notable songs such as Eternal Love (불멸의 사랑), For Your Soul, Pledge (다짐), Thorny Tree (가시나무), Do You Know (아시나요) and Piano become popular to Koreans until he dubbed as the Ballad Prince (발라드의 황태자) by his fans. Jo also contributes some songs for K-Dramas such as Truth, Lovers in Paris, Painter of the Wind and Jeon Woo Chi. He has his own official fan club which is known as Maria, established since March 14th 1999.

Koihime Musou Girls and Famous Koreans, LARGE Edition! (Part VI): Sun Qian and Son Dong-woon (BEAST)

Son Dong-Woon (Hangul/Hanja: 손동운/孫東雲; Born: June 6th 1991 in Busan), more commonly known as just Dong Woon, is a South Korean idol singer and dancer. He is the vocalist and youngest member of the Korean boy group Beast. He is a member of Gyeongju Son Clan (경주 손씨/慶州孫氏), a clan which is originated from Gyeongju City, Northern Gyeongsang Province - Royal Capital of Silla Kingdom.

Dong Woon's father, Son Il-rak (손일락), is a professor at Cheongju University. Dong Woon stated in an interview and in the KBS show Win Win that he studied in Santa Rosa, Laguna, Philippines. Dong Woon was a trainee from JYP Entertainment for 2 years, and was the last member chosen to join BEAST. He is the youngest of the group.

Dong Woon is known for his more Western look compared to the other members which he gets from his mother who harbors more Western aesthetics. He also has various talents such as speaking Chinese as well as playing the piano and electric flute. Dong Woon attended Hanyoung High School and currently attends Dongguk University majoring in Theatre.

In December 2010, Dong Woon released a digital single album "Udon" together with Davichi’s Kang Min-kyung. However, it is said that by the composers of ‘Udon' that the title of the song is in Japanese, hence the main 3 broadcasting networks confirmed that they will not be showing on television.

In April 2012, Dong Woon released “In the Cloud” for Shinsadong Tiger’s 'Supermarket_another Half'. On May 22nd 2012, Cube Entertainment revealed that Dong Woon will release his first solo album "Kimishika" on July 1 before officially beginning his Japanese debut promotions.

Saturday, 20 June 2015

Koihime Musou Girls and Famous Koreans, LARGE Edition! (Part V): Zhou Tai and Ji Hyun-woo (Joo Hyung-tae)

Ji Hyun-woo (Hangul/Hanja: 지현우/智鉉寓; Born: November 29th 1984 in Seoul), whose born as Joo Hyung-tae (주형태/周亨太) is a South Korean actor and musician. He was formerly the lead guitarist for Korean indie rock band The Nuts and is best known for his leading role in tvN's drama entitled Queen In-hyun's Man (인현왕후의 남자). His older brother, Ji Hyun-soo (Joo Yoon-chae) is a keyboardist for the rock band group N.EX.T.

Ji Hyun-woo officially made his debut as an actor in 2003. His popularity increased in 2004 with the sitcom-turned movie Old Miss Diary. Besides acting, Ji is also talented musically. He started as a session guitarist for the second album of Korean band Moonchild. Then in 2004, he along with Park Joon-shik (vocals) and Kim Hyun-joong (bass) formed rock band The Nuts.

In 2005, Ji played Danny Zuko in a Korean staging of the musical Grease, which released its cast recording. He has also contributed to the soundtracks of several of his films and television series. Ji continued to star on the small and big screen, among them the TV dramas Over the Rainbow (2006), Merry Mary (2007), My Sweet Seoul (2008), My Precious You (2008), Invincible Lee Pyung-kang (2009), Becoming a Billionaire (2010), and A Thousand Kisses (2011). He also appeared in the films Attack the Gas Station 2 (2009) and Mr. Idol (2011).

In 2011 Ji released his first solo single Crescendo, comprising three songs which Ji wrote and composed, and which was produced by his older brother Ji Hyun-soo who is also a member of rock band N.EX.T. He was one of the season 2 hosts of Invincible Youth, a variety program based on members of popular girl groups experiencing the rural countryside of Korea.

In 2012, he starred in the fantasy romance Queen In-hyun's Man on cable channel tvN, in which he played a time-traveling Joseon scholar who falls in love with an actress in the 21st century (played by Yoo In-na). Ji enlisted for his mandatory military service on August 7th 2012 with the Chuncheon 102nd Reserve Forces. He was due to enlist in July but it was delayed for one month while he recovered from a back injury suffered during the filming of Queen In-hyun's Man.

In January 2013, Ji starred in military musical The Promise. It was co-produced by the Ministry of National Defense and Korea Musical Theatre Association, to commemorate the 60th anniversary of the signing of the armistice. It ran from 9 to 20 January at the National Theater of Korea, with a cast composed of actors Kim Mu-yeol and Jung Tae-woo, as well as singers Leeteuk of Super Junior, Yoon Hak of Supernova, and Lee Hyun of 8Eight. The musical is centered around a group of soldiers who keeps a promise made to each other during the Korean War. He was discharged on May 6th 2014.

For his first post-army project, Ji was cast as a genius songwriter/musician who helps the heroine become a trot singer despite his distaste for the musical genre, in the romantic comedy series Trot Lovers. Then in 2015, he played a naive, idealistic homeroom teacher who falls for a housewife masquerading as a high school student in Angry Mom.

Friday, 19 June 2015

KorEconomics 101 (한국경제학개론), Part XIV: Heungkuk Financial Group - a subsidiary of Taekwang Group

Jonathan Borofsky’s “Hammering Man” stands outside the Heungkuk Life Insurance Building
Heungkuk Financial Group (Hangul/Romanization: 흥국금융그룹/Heungkuk Geum-yung Group) is a company that specialized in insurance, equities and savings in Korean Republic. It is a subsidiary of Taekwang Group, one of the famous Chaebols in textiles and petrochemical products. The headquarters of the company is located at Heungkuk Life Insurance Building - 68 Saemunan Avenue/Saemunanno, Sinmunno 1-ga 226-beonji, Seoul Jongno-gu

Heungkuk Life Insurance (흥국생명/興國生命/Heungkuk Saengmyeong), one of the nation’s leading mid-sized insurance companies founded in 1950, became part of the Taekwang Industrial Group in 1973. The acquisition was the first foray into finance after a long history of satisfied customers in the chemical and textile businesses for the company, which has no relation to the firm of the same name involved in the Park Yeon-cha bribery scandal.

After two years as part of the Taekwang family (1975), Heungkuk had made 1 trillion won in contract holdings, and in 1981 it started a nationwide online insurance service. The life insurer expanded its contract holdings by 10 trillion won in 1988, then by 20 trillion won in 1990. Though not as big in terms of volume as Korea’s top three insurers - Korea Life Insurance (present-day Hanwha Life Insurance), Samsung Life Insurance and Kyobo Life Insurance - Heungkuk has pushed to fill its own unique niche.

In order to differentiate itself, Heungkuk started offering bancassurance services, a first for a local insurer, in 2003. These packages are offered to banks so that they can sell insurance and other financial products through the same channels. As the pioneer in the field, Heungkuk boasted the highest sales of bancassurance products in Korea in fiscal year 2007.

Step by step, through mergers and acquisitions, the Taekwang Industrial subsidiary developed into six finance-related sister companies under the Heungkuk Finance Group. The currenct companies are Heungkuk Securities, Heungkuk Asset Management, Heungkuk Fire & Marine Insurance (past-day Heungkuk-SsangYong Fire & Marine Insurance), Yegaram Bank and Goryo Bank.

Heungkuk Fire & Marine Insurance Co., Ltd. (흥국화재/興國火災/Heungkuk Hwajae) engages in the insurance business in South Korea. The company offers automobile, medical, children, silver, accident, general, annuity and savings, fire and property, traveler’s and leisure, and group insurance products. It also provides insurance for bancassurance, insurance contract loan, apartment collateral loan, and real estate collateral loan products. The company was formerly known as Heungkuk-SsangYong Fire & Marine Insurance Co., Ltd. (흥국쌍용화재/興國雙龍火災/Heungkuk-SsangYong Hwajae) and changed its name to Heungkuk Fire & Marine Insurance Co., Ltd. in 2009. Heungkuk Fire & Marine Insurance Co., Ltd. was founded in 1948.

Heungkuk Life Insurance and Heungkuk Fire & Marine Insurance together rake in 13 billion won in insurance premiums and fees monthly with assets of 8.4 trillion won and sales of new policies worth 3.4 trillion won as of March 2008.

Jinju Fortress, Jinju, Southern Gyeongsang: Former Provincial Office of Southern Gyeongsang (1896-1925)

Jinju Fortress (Hanja: 晉州城) is a fortress which linked to the Japanese Imjin Invasion in 1592, was originally named Geoyeol Fortress (거열성/居烈城) during Samguk Period on Baekje's soil, later renamed as Chokseok Fortress (촉석성/矗石城) in the Goryeo Dynasty and finally settled as Jinju Fortress in the Joseon Dynasty. The fortress which is located at 626 Namgang Avenue/Namgangno, Namseong-dong 212-9 beonji, Jinju City, Southern Gyeongsang Province was used for the Southern Gyeongsang Provincial Office from 1896 to 1925.

The reinforced stonewall has a circumference of approximately 1,760m, 5m-8m in height and contains three wells and springs. According to Ha Ryun’s Seongmungi in the Survey of the National Geography of Korea, the castle had been frequently destroyed by the Japanese invasion and was later reinforced by Jinju’s minister, Kim Jung-gwang during the fifth year of Goryeo King Woo's reign (1379). During this period, the circumference was 800 bo (pace), with Uijeongmun Gate to the east, Jijemun Gate to the north, and Yehwamun Gate to the south. 

Outside the castle, Cheongcheon River flows in the west and Namgang River in the south and a pond lies between the castle and the trench dug during the war times. As a fortress to safeguard from the Japanese attacks, it blocked the Japanese from advancing toward Honam Region during the 25th year of Joseon Seonjo King’s reign (1592). Within the temple lies Chokseongnu Pavilion, Kim Si-min Memorial, Uigisa Shrine, Seojangdae, Bukjangdae, Changyeolsa shrine, Jinju National Museum, Hoguksa Temple, and an outdoor stage.

During the First Siege of Jinju (1592), General Kim Si-min won a victory at this castle with a group of reinforcement led by Red-Robed General Chung-ik Kwak Jae-woo, which was one of three great victories in the war. However, General Kim died when a bullet was hit on the side of his head and fell, unable to command his forces. 

And the next year (1593) - the Second Siege of Jinju, about 70,000 militia corps and government troops resisted to the last to die for their country gloriously. The Koreans resisted for ten days, until a section of wall was breached by Japanese sappers, who had hid in an armored cart called a "tortoise shell cart". This became the origin of the Uwajima Ushi-oni Festival, celebrated in Ehime Prefecture, Japan. The fortress was captured by the Japanese Invasion Forces with the loss of the garrison commander, Hwang Jin, and all of his defenders and civilians.

From 1969, the first Jinju Fortress Restoration Project was started. In 1972, Main Gate of Chokseongmun was completed, and in 1975, fortress repair was finished. From 1979, the second Restoration Project was conducted. Removal of 751 private houses was promoted and was completed in 1984. In 1992, as the third project, outer wall of castle was improved.

Standing grandly above the rocky cliffs of Nam River is Chokseongnu Pavilion (Hanja: 矗石樓), arguably one of the most beautiful ‘nugaks’ (multi-storied building without walls) in the Yeongnam region. Chokseongnu (historically known as ‘Jangwollu’) has undergone 8 renovations since its establishment in the 28th year of King Gojong Wang Cheol (1241, Goryeo Dynasty) and was once used as a stronghold for defending Jinju Palace in times of war. During times of peace, it was used for holding state examinations. 

Although the structure was burnt down during the Korean War, it was restored in 1960 through the efforts of the Jinju Historical Site Preservation Society. The design of the roof is similar to that of an octagon and the stone pillars were built with rocks collected from Mount Chokseok, located in Changwon. The wood used for the structure was brought from Mount Odae, situated in Gangwon Province. Noticeable features of Chokseongnu are the four engraved signboards and a board that holds the works of renowned poets and calligraphers. From the tall structure, visitors can catch a bird's-eye view of the rest of the Jinju Fortress and of the surrounding area.

Wednesday, 17 June 2015

Koihime Musou Girls and Famous Koreans, LARGE Edition! (Part IV): Chen Gui and Dr. Chin Dae-je - Former Korean Politician-turned CEO of SkyLake Investment Company

Chin Dae-je (Hangul/Hanja/Romanization: 진대제/陳大濟/Jin Dae-je; Born: January 20th 1952 in Uiryeong County, Southern Gyeongsang Province) is the Chief Executive Officer of Skylake Incuvest & Co. Prior to founding the firm in 2006, he was a Chair Professor at Korea Information and Communication University and Kwangwoon University since 2006. He is a member of Yeoyang Jin Clan (여양 진씨/驪陽陳氏), a clan which is originated from the Commune of Janggok-myeon, Hongseong County, Southern Chungcheong Province, where a speed skater, Jin Sun-yu and the famous Korean critic, Jin Joong-kwon are originated from the same clan as the CEO of Skylake Incuvest. 

He attended Gyeonggi High School and then studied Electronic Engineering at Seoul National University (B.Sc. and M.Sc. in Electrical Engineering, class of '76), the University of Massachusetts Amherst (M.Sc. in Electrical Engineering, class of '79) and Stanford University (Ph.D in Electrical Engineering, class of '83).

Previously, Dr. Chin served as a Minister for the Ministry of Information and Communication, Republic of Korea from 2003 to 2006. He resigned from the government in early 2006 and ran for the governorship of Gyeonggi Province on the ruling Uri Party ticket. However he lost to Kim Moon-soo, the candidate of Grand National Party, as part of the widespread electoral revolt against the incumbent ruling party. He was however the only candidate to collect more than 30% of the votes by a ruling Uri-party candidate in all of the contests in the whole nation, except Former Governor Kim Wan-ju of Northern Jeolla Province. In prior to his defeat in the 4th Korean Republic General Elections, Dr. Chin started a VC/private equity fund, Skylake Incuvest & Co, focusing on ICT sector investment in October 2006.

In addition, he served as the Chief Executive Officer and President of Digital Media and Samsung Electronics from year 2000 to 2003. Prior to that, Dr. Chin served as the Chief Executive Officer and Vice President of System LSI, Samsung Electronics from 1997 to 1999 and as the acting Chief Technology Officer of Samsung Electronics from 1997 to 1999. Previously, he served as Vice President and Senior Vice President of Semiconductor Samsung Electronics from 1985 to 1996, as a Research Engineer of IBM Watson Lab USA from 1983 to 1985, and HP IC Lab USA from 1981 to 1983.

Currently, Dr. Chin serves as Director of Amicus Wireless Technology, Inc. He is the author of “Computer Aided VLSI Design, Manage Your Passion“. He received the Samsung Technology Grand Prize in 1987 and 1989, Korea Award of Science & Technology in 1997 and The King Sejong Grand Award (patent technology award) in 1994.

Koihime Musou Girls and Famous Koreans, LARGE Edition! (Part III): Chen Deng and Jin Sun-yu

Jin Sun-yu (Hangul/Hanja/Romanization: 진선유/陳善有/Jin Seon-yu; Born: December 17th 1988 in Daegu, South Korea) is a South Korean short-track speed skater. She is a triple Olympic Champion from 2006 and a three-time Overall World Champion (for 2005–2007). She is a member of Yeoyang Jin Clan (여양 진씨/驪陽陳氏), a clan which is originated from the Commune of Janggok-myeon, Hongseong County, Southern Chungcheong Province.

She was the winner of the gold medal in the 1500 meters and the silver medal in the 1000 meters at the 2005 World Championships in Beijing, as she ended up as the overall champion. At the 2006 World Championships in Minneapolis-Minnesota, Jin won the 1000, 1500, and 3000 meters on her way to a second consecutive overall championship. She also finished first in the overall World Cup standings for the 2005-2006 season, in addition with 2007 World Championships in Milan.

At the 2006 Winter Olympics in Turin, she won three gold medals, winning women's individual 1000 meters, and 1500 meters events, and as a member of the South Korean women's victorious 3000 meter relay team. In doing so, Jin became the first athlete (by less than half an hour) from Korea to win three gold medals in one Olympics. Ex-Korean-turned Russian speed skater, Viktor Ahn Hyun-soo matched Jin's achievement later by helping Korea to win men's 5000 meters relay.

Koihime Musou Girls and Famous Koreans, LARGE Edition! (Part II): Sun Quan and Vice Admiral Sohn Won-yil (1909-1980) - Forefather of Republic of Korea Navy

Vice Admiral Sohn Won-yil (Hangul/Hanja/Romanization: 손원일/孫元一/Son Won-il; Born: May 5th 1909 in Gangseo County, Southern Pyeongan Province, DPRK - Died: February 15th 1980 in Seoul Mapo-gu, ROK) was a South Korean navy vice admiral, best known for being the first Chief of Naval Operations (CNO) and the founder of the Republic of Korea Navy. He was a member of Miryang Son Clan (밀양 손씨/密陽孫氏), a clan which is originated from Miryang City, Southern Gyeongsang Province - Home of Miryang Arirang.

Vice Admiral Sohn was the first son to Methodist Pastor, Sohn Jeong-do (who once served as the chairman of congress for the Provisional Government of Korea) and Park Shin-il. After graduating from the National Central University in Shanghai with a degree in navigation, he was sent to Germany to study, funded by the Chinese Navy. In 1930, he was arrested when he entered Korea as a secret liaison for a Shanghai independence group. When he was released the next year, he went to China. He came back to Korea as soon as Korea regained independence. 

Vice Admiral Sohn Won-yil, with the help of other important figures including Vice Admiral Jeong Geung-mo, established the Haesadae (해사대/海事隊/maritime affairs unit). He educated personnel after dividing them into two units: navigation and marine engineering. In order to resolve Haesadae's financial problems, it was merged with Haesabogukdan (해사보국단/海事報國團/maritime affairs corps for national defense) led by Captain Seok Eun-tae and renamed as Joseon Haesahyeophoe (조선해사협회/朝鮮海事協會/maritime affairs association).

When the US established a Military Government which is known as USAMGIK, representatives of the Haesahyeophoe explained that they were the only organization that could carry out maritime affairs. In turn, the US Military met with Admiral Sohn Won-yil to seek advice as to if it were possible to establish an organization that could perform coast guard tasks. Admiral Sohn Won-yil led negotiations with the US Military Government and reached an agreement: the Haebangbyeongdan (해방병단/海防兵團/Coastal Defense Force) would be established and he would command it as the first Chief. Under the motto “I devote my life to the nation and its people,” the Haebangbyeongdan was launched. This became the foundation for today’s ROK Navy November 11th was selected to mark the Navy’s image as the ‘gentlemen of the sea’. The Chinese letter ‘sa’ meaning ‘gentleman’ consists of two parts: ‘sib’ (meaning number 10) and ‘il’ (meaning number 1). The Navy’s commemoration day is still celebrated on November 11th, each year. 

Vice Admiral Sohn Won-yil held important positions throughout his career. In 1946, he served as the superintendent of the Coast Guard and the Commander in Chief. In 1947, he was inaugurated as the first Chief of Naval Operations. In 1952, he transferred to the first reserve as Navy Vice Admiral. From 1953 to 1956, he served as the Minister of National Defense. In 1957, he was appointed as the First Ambassador to Germany and served the position until 1960. In 1970, he was the president of Korea Oil, and in 1972 he was Chairman of the Public Information Association. From 1972 to 1974 he served as the Chief Director and Advisor to the Korea Anti-Communist League (present-day Korea Freedom League). In 1976, he served as the standing Advisor to the Korean International Culture Society. Through various patriotic services and posts, Vice Admiral Sohn Won-yil has contributed to national defense, diplomacy and society. 

In recognition of his great contributions and achievements, the late Vice Admiral Sohn Won-yil has received various awards and decorations: The Order of Military Merit, The Award of the US Silver Star, Legion of Merit, Taegeuk Order of Military Merit, Field Marshal Lord Eulji's Order of Military Merit (Gold Star), The War Medal for suppressing communist guerillas, Denmark Red Cross Medal, US Medal, The War Medal for the Korean War, The UN War Medal and Taegeuk Order of Military Merit (Gold Star).

In honor of Vice Admiral Sohn, the ROKS Sohn Won-yil (SS-072), the flagship of Type-214 Sohn Won-yil Class Submarines was commissioned in December 27th 2007, named after the forefather of Korean Republic Navy.

Korean TrauMMA, Part II: Jung Chan-sung - Is that the Korean Zombie?

Jung Chan-sung (Hangul/Hanja/Romanization: 정찬성/鄭贊成/Jeong Chan-seong; Born: March 17th 1987) is a South Korean mixed martial artist and kickboxer currently competing in the UFC's Featherweight division. A professional competitor since 2007, Jung has also formerly competed for the WEC, Pancrase, World Victory Road, and DEEP. His nickname, "The Korean Zombie" comes from his ability to continue to move forward and fight aggressively, even after taking heavy blows. Jung is currently serving in the Republic of Korea Armed Forces and thus is not ranked by most MMA media outlets, however he was ranked as #8 in official UFC Featherweight rankings before hand.

Born in Pohang, Northern Gyeongsang Province, South Korea in 1987, Jung moved to Namyangju, Gyeonggi Province, a satellite city of Seoul when he was in his mid-teens. Due to his slight stature and his rural origins, he was bullied constantly by his classmates and got into many fights as a result. When his aunt could no longer stand to see Jung's predicament, she took him to a nearby Hapkido gym when he was 15 years old. Jung trained in kickboxing until his junior year of high school. Later he also began training in judo and Brazilian jiu jitsu.

At the age of 18, Jung joined a Tae Kwon Do and boxing gym. In June 2007, he won a Sambo tournament arranged by the Korean Sambo Association, and in December of the same year, he won the Lightweight division of the Pancrase Korea Neo-Blood Tournament after defeating fellow South Koreans Yoo In-seok and Lee Hyung-geol. At age of 20, Jung began mixed martial arts. In May 2008, he participated in and won KOREA-FC's 8-man MMA tournament in the 65 kg division. Jung was also a participant of a show called Street Fighter in 2007 which aired on South Korean cable television. He participated in the 70 kg tournament and won. The tournament was stand-up only (similar to K-1 but not in a ring). At the age of 20, Jung was introduced to mixed martial arts, and made his professional debut soon after.

Jung made his professional debut in June 2007 and in December the same year he won a Lightweight Tournament arranged by Pancrase Korea. In 2008 he won both his fights for Japanese promotion DEEP. He then entered the 2009 Sengoku Featherweight Grand Prix where he won his first-round fight but was eliminated from the tournament by the eventual winner Masanori Kanehara. On August 16, 2008, he defeated Michihiro Omigawa at DEEP: Gladiator via unanimous decision. His next fight was against Fanjin Son at DEEP: 39 Impact where he won via knockout in 17 seconds.

Jung then entered the 2009 Sengoku Featherweight Grand-Prix and was matched up with Shintaro Ishiwatari in his first-round fight at Sengoku 7. After dropping Ishiwatari once in stand-up striking, Jung hit Ishiwatari with a right hand forcing him to give up his back. From there Jung sunk in a rear-naked choke submission forcing Ishiwatari to submit at 4:29 of the first round.

In his second-round fight at Sengoku 8 on May 2, 2009, he lost via unanimous decision to Masanori Kanehara officially eliminating him from the tournament. The decision was considered questionable by the English commentators and many fans (especially given Sengoku's history of biased decisions against Korean fighters), who felt that Jung had done enough to deserve the decision. On June 7, 2009, it was announced Jung would face American Matt Jaggers at Sengoku 9 in a reserve bout for the tournament with the winner stepping in as a replacement should some of the remaining fighters be unable to continue. Jung ended up winning the fight by triangle choke submission at 1:25 of the second round, but was not required to step in as a replacement.

Jung Chan-sung then signed with World Extreme Cagefighting. He made his American and WEC debut against Leonard Garcia (who replaced injured opponent Cub Swanson) on April 24, 2010 at WEC 48 losing by an extremely controversial split decision. Many MMA publications and fans (including many in the Sacramento home crowd) opposed the decision, which has led again to questions about the accuracy of the fight judging. However, the bout was declared the Fight of the Night honors, this was later awarded for the Fight of the Year by the Wrestling Observer Newsletter.

Jung next faced George Roop on September 30, 2010 at WEC 51. He lost the fight via knockout due to a head kick in the second round, which resulted in Jung's first knockout and stoppage loss in his MMA career. He was expected to face Rani Yahya on January 22, 2011 at UFC Fight Night 23. However, Jung was forced from the card with an injury.

A rematch with Garcia was scheduled for March 26, 2011 at UFC Fight Night 24, after Jung stepped in to replace an injured Nam Phan. Jung was able to avenge the original loss after submitting Garcia with a twister in the final second of the second round. This was the first time in the history of the UFC that a twister submission ended a bout and the win earned Jung his first Submission of the Night honors. This was later awarded for the Submission of the Year by the World MMA Awards. In his post-fight interview, Jung stated he learned the move by watching Eddie Bravo videos on YouTube.

Jung faced former title challenger Mark Hominick on December 10, 2011 at UFC 140. Jung won the bout via KO at 0:07 of the first round, which tied a UFC record for fastest knockout. Jung's victory over Mark Hominick earned him Knockout of the Night honors. The victory also earned Jung much praise in his native South Korea, appearing on news broadcasts on the country's major national television channels (such as KBS).

Jung faced Dustin Poirier on May 15, 2012 at UFC on Fuel TV: Korean Zombie vs. Poirier. Jung defeated Poirier via submission (D'arce choke) in the fourth round. The performance earned Jung Submission of the Night and both participants Fight of the Night honors. The bout was honored as Fight of the Year and Submission of the Year by several publications at the conclusion of 2012.

Jung was expected to face Ricardo Lamas on July 6, 2013 at UFC 162. However on June 14, it was announced that Jung had been pulled from the Lamas bout and would replace an injured Anthony Pettis to face José Aldo for the Featherweight Championship on August 3, 2013 at UFC 163. Aldo defeated Jung via fourth round TKO, finishing Jung with a flurry of strikes after Jung suffered a dislocated shoulder while throwing an overhand right.

Jung was expected to face Akira Corassani on October 4, 2014 at UFC Fight Night 53. However, Jung pulled out of the bout citing another injury and was replaced by Max Holloway. He announced in mid-October 2014 his intention to begin his stint for mandatory military service in his home country of South Korea. While Jung did not comment about the future upon his completion, his manager indicated that he would return to mixed martial arts at the end of the two years.

Are you expecting that the Korean Zombie looks like THIS? NAY.

Oh HELL YEAH! This would be better!