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A War Was Once Fought Here

Once or twice a month, I board a bus at the Dongbu (East Terminal) Bus Station in Daejeon for about an hour and forty-five minute bus ride to Seongnam. It’s my day out, as it were, to meet some friends, have lunch, do some shopping and then come back to Daejeon in the evening. I’ve […]

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Talk of War still Far from Heartland USA — Originally written in January 2003

The Story Behind the Story   One of my more ambitious writing projects was the time I interviewed some folks back home for a special article about whether or not the U.S. would invade Iraq and what the average American thought about North Korea.   It was December 2002 and I was home for the […]

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All that matters, isn’t gold

The Story Behind the Story   There have been a couple watershed years in Korea when a lot of crazy and intense shit was going down but for all the years that I have been in Korea, one year that stands out the most was 2002.   In Korea it was a year filled with […]

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Culture Shock?

The Story Behind the Story   In January 1999 I started to make monthly and bimonthly contributions to the Korea Times, the oldest (but sadly, not most read) English-language newspaper in Korea.   Although I had done a creative writing MA thesis in 1989 at Western Illinois University (Macomb, Illinois) I had only written a […]

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The Accidental Journalist, Part 23 — The Inchon Landing Commemorated, Sept. 15, 2000

The Story Behind the Story   Not even a typhoon could keep me from a story.   That’s almost what happened on September 15, 2000 when I went to Inchon (now spelled Incheon) to attend a ceremony to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the Inchon Landing/Invasion. The peninsula was being battered by a typhoon (another […]

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The Accidental Journalist, Part 21 — War Remains, The Long Journey Home

The Story Behind the StoryAfter I had written three articles on the recovery of war remains from the Korean War I was curious about what happened to those remains once they left Korea and went to Hawaii for identification? That’s when I came up with the idea for an article about the Central Identification Laboratory […]

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The Accidental Journalist, Part 20 — Departure Ceremony for Korean War Remains

The Story Behind the Story   Some of the more sobering and somber articles I wrote on a Korean War Commemorative event or Korean War-related topic were those I wrote about the ceremonies for the repatriation of remains thought to be those of U.S. service members killed during the conflict.   Since the end of […]

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The Accidental Journalist, Part 19 — An Unexpected Journey

The Story Behind the Story   This is actually a “story behind the story” of another story.   In addition to attending some of the major Korean War Commemorative Events in the summer and autumn of 2000, I was still writing weekly book reviews on books about the Korean War.   And once again it […]

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Veteran Stunned by Wonderful Chance to Revisit Korea

The Story Behind the Story In the spring of 2003 I was reading the Online edition of the News Tribune, a newspaper back in LaSalle, Illinois when I came across an article about a Korean War Veteran from Peru, Illinois who had received an all-expenses paid trip to Korea to attend the 50th anniversary of […]

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The Accidental Journalist, Part 17 — The “Chosin Few” Remembered

These days I have been reading The Coldest Winter – America and the Korean War by the late David Halberstam that looks not only at America’s involvement in the Korean War during the first six months of the war, but also what took place in and around the Chosin or Changjin Reservoir in North Korea. […]

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