Friday’s Link Attack: NK, SK Enter Talks, Korean Susan Boyle, Park Ji-sung

Chief Nuclear Envoys From North and South Korea Meet
New York Times

The chief nuclear negotiators of South and North Korea met on Friday for the first time since 2008, raising cautious hopes that after months of recriminations the countries are inching toward broader talks on ending the North’s nuclear weapons program.

North Korea flouts ban on luxury goods, South Korea charges
Los Angeles Times

North Korea spent $10 million on items such as fine whiskey and American cigarettes, imported via China, in the first half of the year, South Korean officials say. The allegations come as North Korea is seeking international aid to feed its people.

‘Korea’s Got Talent’ sensation, Choi Sung Bong, opens up about his bitter and painful past

After his audition on ‘Korea’s Got Talent‘, Choi Sung Bong has been named the ‘Full Force’ of Korea, and earned attention from international media sources like CNN. It wasn’t until very recently however, that he conducted his first formal interview.

During a phone interview with Herald Media, Choi was asked what other interests he had other than singing. Choi responded, “When I was younger, I met a lot of people in the adult entertainment business. I haven’t had the chance to talk to ordinary people. I want to learn how to associate with normal citizens.”

Foreign interns get inside look at inter-Korean relations
Korea Times

Here’s a look at what it’s like to intern for South Korea’s Ministry of Unification.

Kelly Heo, a Korean-American studying public policy at Duke, added that it was a valuable chance to see the situation from multiple angles.

“I started by wanting to get closer to my culture. But as I went on, I realized the United States is more involved than I thought. It was interesting to see it from both perspectives,” she said.

Kenneth Choi Brings Nisei Soldiers to the Big Screen in ‘Captain America’
Pacific Citizen

Here is a nice in-depth profile of actor Kenneth Choi, who plays Japanese American soldier Jim Morita in the new “Captain America” film opening today.

For actor Kenneth Choi, dropping out of college was one of the best decisions he’s ever made.

As an unhappy accounting major at Purdue University bound for a life replete with tax forms and budget analyses, Choi dreamt of fulfilling his childhood dream of becoming an actor until finally, he was done with just dreaming.

“Eventually I said, you know, ‘I’m going to give it a go, I’m going to try it’ and so I dropped out of school, I packed up all of my belongings, which was not much, [I] saved up enough money to buy a one-way Greyhound ticket and I came out West,” said Choi.

Interview: Introducing Aziatix

Comprised of three Korean-American artists Flowsik, Eddie Shin and Nicky Lee, Aziatix garnered a surprising amount of attention domestically and overseas since their debut last March.

Produced by former R&B group Solid member Jae Chong, who also masterminded JYJ’s first global album “The Beginning,” Aziatix dropped their first single “Go” on iTunes on March 28 and their first EP on May 17. The EP went on to claim number five on the iTunes R&B/Soul album charts in the United States.

Manchester United offer Park Ji-sung a new two-year contract
The Guardian (U.K.)

Manchester United’s manager, Sir Alex Ferguson, has revealed the midfielder Park Ji-sung has been offered a new two-year contract by the club.

The 30-year-old South Korean, who joined United in 2005, retired from international duty after last season’s Asian Cup in an effort to prolong his club career.

He has been rewarded with a contract extension and Ferguson expects him to extend his stay at Old Trafford. “We have offered him a new contract and I am sure he will sign it,” said Ferguson.

Kimchi Chronicles Celebrate Seoul Food
Huffington Post

Once upon a time, there was a beautiful little girl born in Korea to a Korean mother and an African-American G.I. father. Due to hostile attitudes towards children of mixed heritage, she was denied a birth certificate, orphaned and at age 3, adopted by an African-American family and raised in Northern Virginia. At age 19, she miraculously found her birth mother and in 1999 met and married her prince charming, three-star Michelin chef Jean-Georges. But wait, just when you think the story couldn’t get any better, the same Korean government that did not acknowledge her because she was half black when she was born, in 2011 embraced her as one of their daughters and made her an ambassador for Korean culture.

Chicago Area Restaurant Ttowa takes Korean cuisine to unexpected places
Chicago Daily Herald

Dining at Ttowa is a pleasant experience. The servers are both genuine and informative, making what could be an intimidating experience to those unfamiliar with such fare seem as comfortable as the every day. Just remember to BYOB.