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Books & Videos about Korea worth the time

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  • Books & Videos about Korea worth the time

    Hi all, getting tired of watching two fat azzed gluttons talk about their junk on prime time TV? Some progressive dolts lying, cheating and betraying to stay on a stupid island or other stage set? Seems to be all that's on the tube lately. LOL, we have satellite with US channels and with our granddaughters over on weekends, Soo-jin has blocked most of those "modern: raunchy shows where every other line is connected with sex, "alternate life styles" or narcotics or one she about had a heart attack with about a "mom" that's into it all "Dutch, there's nothing worth watching on NBC, CBS, nor any other US station, why we pay for this trash? This stuff would be bad even in Juicy Bar...". So we watch a lot of KBS concerts, DVDs, Korean game sshows (they are a riot but most need you to speak Korean), Gag Concert, and of course K-Dramas and series like "Tamra Island" and "The legend of Hyang-Dan" both are comedies that even our granddaughters can enjoy. LOL, even on the KBS concerts morals rule with "bare navels" not allowed on dancers until after 2200 and then a "not for under15 years old" warning is posted lol.

    So if you're looking for something to read or view without every other word either being a 4 letter work, sex, narcotics or whatever here's a short list of some worth investing your time in IMHO. We both are history buffs so these appeal to both of us. I've checked and the videos are available in the US from Amazon and have either English subtitles or English sound tracks or both. A tip, the "official" DVDs with English subtitles is a good way to learn the Korean language, to learn the Hanegul (alphabet) and pronunciation music videos from KBS and others run the word with the song.

    To start out with entertainment. The following DVDs are great :
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    "J.S.A., Joint Security Area" Directed by Park, Chan-wook.

    WE enjoyed this one, lol. This will keep you on the edge of you chair, a good mystery and good look into the J.S.A. and the DMZ

    "in the DMZ separating the Koreas, peace is fragile as the wooden bridge linking the North and South. When two North Korean soldiers are killed, supposedly by one South Korean soldier, it threatens to ignite a full-scale conflict. An impartial Swiss intelligence team is sent to investigate and they quickly find flaws in the official version of events. Why were 19 bullets found at the crime scene when the assassin's gun housed only 15 rounds? It's a race to uncover the truth as tensions rise at the most heavily armed border on Earth."

    We both recommend this one, it's where we work and can say it's very realistic. The incident is handled the way they are in the real world. The DMZ is a very strange place, one day you can be waving at the NKPA patrols the next minute it could develop into a full scale firefight. The name Demilitarized Zone is just isn't what the "Z" is, it's war frozen in place that isn't over and it has flared up into very intense combat over the 60 years it's been there. One thing's not explained and concerns the "burning" of the DMZ, they show this but no explanation as to why. It's a military operation not just to keep the weeds down, you';ll understand it by the way the troops are dressed and equipped, they aren't "gardening" lol
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    "Tae Guk Gi, The brotherhood of war".

    This movie is as real as it can get, and about two Korean brothers. It's infantry warfare as it really is. You can't put the usual "Hollywood" BS in a movie targeted at the people who lived it and see it regularly. Heroics usually end it mutual death, heroes die they don't go home. At the end of a battle you're bleeding and covered in the blood and filth of your enemies and friends, not clean and writing your "mommy" that you're fine and killed 1000 bad guys. The notification some shows post warning that some sensitive my be upset...well if your sensitive don't even open this one on your DVD player. For those who've never been in a real infantry assault you'll get a shock. There's reason in an infantry assault on entrenched enemy you want a 10 to 1 percentage,...that's so maybe you can get 1 to 1 or at leat a 1 to 3 ratio when you finally get to the first trench. This is the kind of war we currently are not prepared for, most actions today are really basic police work and they even issue 'forensic kits" to units. This movie isn't for the "sensitive" it's as real as it can get without the viewer taking incoming. We like this movie, it shows it like it was in the 1950-1953 Korean War, from the MP draft gangs to what infantry combat is really like. "Blackhawk Down" never came close to realism compared to this. It's based on fact, Soo-jin said "Wooo Dutch, they're in Hyesan-jin where my family came from and left with the soldiers when they moved south". It shows how the retreating North Korean troops "liquidated" villages as they went north and the reactions of the infantry as they came across wiped out villages.

    Hey Dom, it also has a French subtitles with this one

    "In the powerful tradition of Saving Private Ryan and Band of Brothers comes this box-office hit from Korea. From Director Siri comes the epic tale of two brothers, Jin-tae a shoemaker, has worked tirelessly to provide money for the younger Jin-seok to go to college. But each of their hopes and dreams are shattered when both are forced to join the army against their will. Torn away from home and family, Jin-tae vows to protect Jin-seok despite the dangers and cost. In the searing crucible of battle, fate intervenes, forcing their bonds of faith, love and trust to be tested time and time again in this suspense-filled, action packed war drama."

    Okay that's an understatement lol, by Andrew Sun, "Hollywood Reporter", there's been nothing this realistic made in the US. it has to be here, every one serves and knows what it's like. From our home we can see an old M-26 US tank knocked out in 1953, the kids play on it. GET IT YOU'LL LIKE IT.

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    "Tamra Island".

    This one is a great "K-Drama" series, it's an 8 DVD set and lasts around 22 hours broken into one hour "episodes" You can get the set on Amazon or probably ebay. It has choice of English subtitles. It takes place in approximately 1640 AD when Korea was a closed country and foreigners were usually put to death if they entered the country. In this one you have about everything lol, armed insurrection, a banished nobleman, a sweetheart little lady diver, the Dutch east India Company, spies, sword play, lady divers, a determined lady "merchant" trying to take over the kingdom and even a SNIPER with a flintlock. The series is basically a comedy/adventure and historical. This is both Soo-jin's and my favorite for a rainy/snowy night at home and a huge amount of popcorn and Pepsi There's a lot of Korean humor in it and with most of it taking place and filmed on Jeju-do (old name Tamra) we doubly enjoy it.."we were there Dutch, remember that cave?"..."Woooo, Sunrise Mountain..."

    "What happens when an Englishman gets shipwrecked in 17th century Korea? Find out in the exciting comic-based TV drama Tamra Island!"

    "Young British noble William hops on a Japan-bound ship to look for Far Eastern treasures, but he gets thrown overboard during a storm and drifts to the exotic island of Tamra. Despite the language barrier, he falls for a local girl Boejin (Seo Wu), a cute and inquisitive young lady who dreams of life elsewhere. However, Park Kyu (Lim Juwan) an arrogant, exiled noble, isn't going to let William take Boejin away without a fight (IMHO William's a dork). But more importantly lives are at stake if the government officials find out there's a foreigner on the island.

    Add a mysterious Japanese sailor from the east India Company and an iron-lady merchant planning an insurrection, and little old Tamra Island is suddenly overflowing with romance, mishap and adventure"

    Our favorite and even the ladies like it, so a good "couples" movie that has just about everything in it Be careful you will be laughing out loud.

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    Books we liked. I'll be a bit more brief with the books all are available in the USA and even from book clubs there.

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    "Escape from Camp 14" by Blaine Harden.

    The true story of a boy born into Camp 14 a death camp in North Korea and finally escapes when a new prisoner told him of "fried meat" and a world he never knew existed.

    " This story is unlike any other....More so than any other book on North Korea, including my own, Escape from Camp 14 exposes the cruelty that is underpinning Kim Jong'il's regime. Blaine Harden, a veteran foreign correspondent from the Washington Post, tells this story masterfully,...The integrity of this book shines through on every page."
    Barbra Demick, author of Nothing to Envy: ordinary lives in North Korea

    This one will open your vision as to what's really going on in the "camps". With children born into them and never seeing any other world. this is the story of THE ONLY ONE TO ESCAPE FROM CAMP 14....EVER!

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    "Nothing to Envy, Ordinary lives in North Korea" by Barbara Demick

    A good companion to Escape from Camp 14 just what the "normal" North Korean faces daily and their escapes.

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    "Give me Tomorrow" By Patric K. O'Donnell

    The story of George Company USMC. Not to bad a story one of the better USMC tales from the Korean War.

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    "The US Army's First, Last, and Only All Black Rangers" The 2D Ranger Infantry Company (Airborne) In the Korean War, 1950-1951" By Edward L. Posey

    A great book of the forgotten of the Forgotten War. "The author Master Sergeant (ret) Edward L. Posey joined the US Army in 1947. After serving with Company L, 3rd Battalion, 505th Airborne Infantry regiment, he volunteered for airborne training with the Rangers in 1950 and served with distinction in the Korean War(where he was wounded) Sergeant Posey retired from service in 1969. In 2002, he was inducted into the RANGER HALL of FAME for his dedication to duty and distinguished military career." NOT an honor given lightly!

    The 2D Ranger Infantry Company (Airborne) was attached to the 7ID and made the airdrop with the 187 RCT at Munsan-ni. They proved themselves and deserve respect for their sacrifices. Master Sergeant Posey gets our salute, as do our brothers of the 2D Ranger Infantry Company (Airborne). Rangers lead the way!...always. Soo-jin and I live a short distance from where that historic air drop happened, it's part of our neighborhood so to say, prayers are always said there on Memorial day and Veteran's Day before we set out on our visits.

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    "Combat over Korea" by Philip Chinnery

    A great book about the UN Command Air Forces both in the air over North Korea and South Korea and when things go wrong and they join the infantry so to say A lot of information and about POWs still missing. A great read and a lot to digest. We both enjoyed this one, it gave us a lot of crash scenes and "last seen alive" sites. An accounting of "known alive, not returned" needs to be done, ROK POWs are returning and stories being told. Time to get this settled.

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    "Valleys of Death, a memoir of the Korean War" by Colonel William (Bill) Richardson, US Army (Ret)

    " Valleys of Death is a stirring story of survival and determination that offers a fascinating, intimate look at the soldiers who fought America's first battle of the Cold War in the unvarnished words of one of their own. Richardson endured many long months of starvation, torture, sleep deprivation, and attempts to indoctrination by the Chinese, yet remained defiant under conditions to break the mind, body, and spirit of men."

    very good read! You'll aslo hear the title "progressives" that the left likes to call themselves, "progressive's" were the turn coats who broke and accepted the Communist BS and betrayed their brothers..hmmm, not to different today eh?

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    "In the Shadow of the Greatest Generation, the Americans who fought the Korean War" by Melinda L. Pash

    "No one ever refered to our Korean War soldiers as part of the Greatest Generation; yet their war began just five years after VJ Day, and more than 36,000 of them died in service to their country. these were truly forgotten combatants of a forgotten war, but Pash has done a brilliant job of recounting the experiences of these military men and women who spent years fighting and dying on a peninsula that most Americans could locate on a world map and soon forgot."
    Lewis H Carlson, author of "Remembered Prisoners of a Forgotten War"

    And what Mr Carlson stated above still hold true. Most Americans have no idea where Korea is. Many think it's a jungle like Vietnam or some other truly strange idea. Not much is included in school classes anymore, and not many even know that the war is still not over. Nor that US Army troops are still being added to those 36,000 killed for the past 60 years or that there are even soldiers being taken as POWs by North Kore for those same 60 years or that there are still 8,000 known living POWs that were never returned...the forgotten of the forgotten.

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    "A morning in June, defending outpost Harry" by James W. Evans

    Fittingly the last in my list of books on the 1950-1953 Korean war. The "Battle of the Outposts" started in 1952 when the battle lines became 'stagnant". Battles were fought for small outposts in the "Punchbowl", heavy losses on both sides were made for really nothing, just to show the other side the will to fight was still there. These "battles of the outposts" is what is still going on today in the DMZ. The combat actions will remind the veterans of the 1966-1969 "DMZ War" of what they saw and remember from another "forgotten war" and "quiet war" on the peninsula. A war not even mentioned until 1999, and when soldiers never in Vietnam began to become sick from Agent Orange people began to ask, so where were they and how come Agent Orange exposure? How come these soldiers had obvious combat wounds and NO PURPLE HEARTS?

    A good read from start to finish...
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    These are our picks from our overflowing book cases. It's nice to have a wife that has the same interests We've visited many of the battlefields in these books and videos. We both 'work" in the JSA/DMZ. Our home is on the scene of several battles on the banks of the Imjin River and Seoul is a short car ride south of us with it's suburbs almost touching our town of Paju. One of my old positions from the 60's is a hill over and we run by it daily on our morning run. Each day at work we pass by the site of the horrible Nortn Korean ambush of an unarmed UNC 3/4 Ton truck that resulted in the North Korean troops executing 2 American and 2 Korean soldiers on the night of 14 April 1968, a night I still remember and comes in my dreams at times. We see "The Bridge of No Return" and "Freedom Bridge" every day. We see the scene of the 18 August 1976 "Axe Murders" each work day, you can't miss the trees remains.We go past memorials most people never see in the JSA and DMZ to the soldiers who have paid the price for freedom up here on Freedom's Frontier that nobody will ever hear about, and most could probably care less. And we've stood together waiting for the North Koreans to cross the wire from October 2012 to May 2013, and we have no doubts that it will happen again before we retire to Jeju together in a few years. And just recently there was heavy gunfire and a North Korean agent was killed very close to our home in Paju on the Imjin River. So we enjoy reading about our neighborhood, and leasons are learned

    LOL! A family that checks MOPP gear together stays together We hope you find something of interest, and maybe a fun video to share with your family about the old days of our new neighborhood, Jeju

    Take care...Jim & Soo-jin
    "A FAMILY THAT STANDS TOGETHER AND FIGHTS TOGETHER STAYS TOGETHER" The combined Dutch Family...


    "But I've a rendezvous with Death, at midnight in some flaming town, when spring trips north again this year, and I to my pledge word am true, I shall not fail that rendezvous"

    Alan Seeger, KIA Belloy-en-Santerre 4 July 1916, Legion Entrangere, American poet.



  • #2
    "The US Army's First, Last, and Only All Black Rangers" The 2D Ranger Infantry Company (Airborne) In the Korean War, 1950-1951" By Edward L. Posey[/b]
    I have this one, working my way toward it. I may have to bump it up the list.

    Got "J.S.A., Joint Security Area" Directed by Park, Chan-wook and "Tae Guk Gi, The brotherhood of war". are coming from Amazon, Hanley, movie night is getting scheduled.

    I'm looking for the others now, thanks.

    "Do the right thing even if it means dying like a dog when no one's there to see you do it." Vice Admiral James Stockdale, NAVY PILOT

    "Honor, Integrity, Commitment to core values. When they become abstract concepts or "ideals", all is lost." Me.

    "Character is doing the right thing, even when no one is looking." J.C. Watts

    "I have never seen a projectile turn in flight and come back at the ship that fired it, I cannot however make that same statement regarding missiles." Me.

    Deus lo vult! = "God wills it!"

    Comment


    • #3
      Hi Vince;

      Soo-jin did a search on eBay (US) for the "Tamra Island" 8 DVD set and came up with this the sets are hard to come by, it's a very popular series here lol. and the "buy now" price is really good When we spotted the set at the main exchange at Yongsan she about ran over two other ladies. We got the last two and gave a set to my son for barracks

      A suggestion for "movie night" we usually have bulgogi subs, popcorn, Pepsi and Beck's Dark along with a sheet pizza And the minimum of my friend Richard and my son over, western nights though most of the "Paju Corral Gang" shows up and eat and drink the chuck wagon dry When the 'cowgirls' show up at the door saying "yeoboseyo, pard-ner" you gotta smile I guess we're the nice parents

      Take care, my friend...Dutch & Soo-jin
      "A FAMILY THAT STANDS TOGETHER AND FIGHTS TOGETHER STAYS TOGETHER" The combined Dutch Family...


      "But I've a rendezvous with Death, at midnight in some flaming town, when spring trips north again this year, and I to my pledge word am true, I shall not fail that rendezvous"

      Alan Seeger, KIA Belloy-en-Santerre 4 July 1916, Legion Entrangere, American poet.


      Comment


      • #4
        Wow, simply wow! I just finished watching "Tae Guk Gi, The brotherhood of war" and it's everything Jim said plus some. Excellent movie, great story line, most excellent FX. Think "Saving Private Ryan", only on the Korean peninsula.

        This is a two thumbs up you need to see this movie.

        "Do the right thing even if it means dying like a dog when no one's there to see you do it." Vice Admiral James Stockdale, NAVY PILOT

        "Honor, Integrity, Commitment to core values. When they become abstract concepts or "ideals", all is lost." Me.

        "Character is doing the right thing, even when no one is looking." J.C. Watts

        "I have never seen a projectile turn in flight and come back at the ship that fired it, I cannot however make that same statement regarding missiles." Me.

        Deus lo vult! = "God wills it!"

        Comment

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