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Reuters Sobs: Korean Bush Protest Flops

From a heartbroken Reuters:


[Reuters caption:] Christians participate in a prayer meeting held to welcome U.S. President George W. Bush in Seoul August 5, 2008.

Bush arrives in Seoul, anti-U.S. protest fizzles

By Jeremy Pelofsky

SEOUL (Reuters) – U.S. President George W. Bush arrived in South Korea on Tuesday for talks focused on communist North Korea and was greeted by a minor protest aimed mostly at his host instead of a big anti-U.S. rally that had been expected.

In a surprise boost for Bush, who has largely managed to set aside prickly issues with Seoul, it was a rally in the city centre in support of what is likely to be his last visit to East Asia as president that ended up attracting a huge crowd.

“I came to pray for the country to come together and with President Bush coming, for his visit to go smoothly,” Lim Ji-young, 23, said against a background of gospel music at the pro-U.S. prayer rally of an estimated 15,000 people.

There was little sign of the widespread anger that had sparked weeks of mass anti-government protests after President Lee Myung-bak agreed to completely end a ban on U.S. beef imports, which had been barred five years earlier over mad cow disease concerns…

There was little sign of the widespread anger that had sparked weeks of mass anti-government protests after President Lee Myung-bak agreed to completely end a ban on U.S. beef imports, which had been barred five years earlier over mad cow disease concerns.

Some 20,000 police have been mobilized for the Bush visit and easily outnumbered a few hundred anti-Bush protesters who were dispersed with a brief burst of water cannon.

A Reuters Television cameraman said he saw police arrest at least a dozen protesters.

A senior U.S. official said the furore over beef had receded as an agenda item in the meeting with Lee after the two sides reworked an April deal to open what was once the third-largest foreign market for the U.S. product…

Lee had agreed to the beef imports in April during his first overseas trip after taking office. Bush hosted him at Camp David, hoping the deal would lift a major barrier to the U.S. Congress approving a free trade deal with Asia’s fourth largest economy.

But anger at home over the beef accord became a lightning rod for mass protests that signaled wider dissatisfaction with the conservative Lee government, which has seen its popularity tumble in less than six months in office.

Hours before Bush arrived, the South Korean government announced that quarantine inspectors had allowed in the first shipments of U.S. bone-in beef for five years.

U.S. and South Korean beef will be on the menu when the two leaders have lunch together on Wednesday after their morning talks and a joint news conference…


[Reuters caption:] Conservative protesters take part in a rally welcoming U.S. President George W. Bush at the Seoul City Hall Plaza August 5, 2008. Other South Korean activists planned a large candlelight rally to protest U.S. President Bush’s visit on Tuesday and demand the two countries scrap a widely criticised beef import deal.

Please note that Reuters says this crowd numbered only 15,000 people. And even then they have to call them “Christians” and “conservatives” and “protesters.”

On the other hand, the communist protesters are called simply called “activists,” with no hint of their religious or political persuasion.

Also, as of this hour, there are only four photographs of this pro-Bush rally on the wire services.


[Reuters caption:] Protesters take part in a mass rally against U.S. President George W. Bush’s visit in Seoul August 5, 2008.

Meanwhile, there are dozens of photographs of the piddling anti-Bush protests. And most of them are artfully cropped to make their turnout look larger.

Some 20,000 police have been mobilized for the Bush visit and easily outnumbered a few hundred anti-Bush protesters who were dispersed with a brief burst of water cannon.

A Reuters Television cameraman said he saw police arrest at least a dozen protesters.

That is to say, the anti-Bush protesters were kept away by the jackbooted thugs.

Indeed, this is how the perpetually Bush deranged Associated Press is breathlessly reporting the event:

Police fire water cannon at Bush protesters

By PAUL ALEXANDER, Associated Press

SEOUL, South Korea – Police fired water cannons at thousands of protesters Tuesday as President Bush got a volatile reception in South Korea at the start of his three-nation Asian trip…

What media bias?

Moreover, lest we forget, the conservative Mr. Lee Myung-bak won election in South Korea in a landslide just a few months ago.

And as we noted back in June, the so-called “beef protests” were actually protests against his planned political reforms, mostly attended by leftists, unionists and other fellow travelers.

But these are minor details our watchdog media somehow always forget to mention.

This article was posted by Steve on Tuesday, August 5th, 2008. Comments are currently closed.

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