Extra! Korea

June 19, 2010

North Korea’s Mount Baekdu could erupt … because of their nuclear tests

Filed under: North Korea, schadenfreude moment — extrakorea @ 12:01 pm

Wow. Rarely is the idiom “shoot yourself in the foot” so close to being literally true.

Geologist Yoon Sung-hyo at Pusan National University strongly believes that an eruption is possible.

“Baekdu could erupt anytime soon,” said Yoon who has monitored the mountain for changes. “A variety of indicators are backing this scenario. The thing we should try to predict is when. It’s clear it’s imminent.”

The geologist speculated that an eruption could take place in a couple of years.


Yet, “unusual signs,” including minor trembling among others, began to emerge around June 2002 and their frequency quakes has notably increased since a 7.3-magnitude earthquake rattled the area around the mountain, according to geologists..

Among other indicators backing the scenario of a future eruption is the height of Baekdu, which has grown nearly 10 centimeters since 2002. Experts say an expanding magma pool, a precondition for an eruption, is gradually pushing up the height of the mountain as well as the temperature on the surface.

On Oct. 1, 2006, a Russian satellite found the surface temperature of the mountain notably higher than before. The finding came just days after North Korea conducted an underground nuclear test in its northern territory, which could have been a catalyst reactivating magma flows, according to analysts.

(emphasis mine)

So when might it erupt?

The last volcanic eruption at the 2,744-meter Mount Paektu was in 1903.


Historic records indicate volcanic activity has previously occurred on the mountain roughly every 100 years.


At a KMA seminar earlier this week, an expert said that Mount Paektu could erupt “within several years,” citing topographical signs and international studies. Some Chinese experts even predict that there may be an eruption between 2014 and 2015, said Yun Sung-whyo, a geology professor at Pusan National University.

And what kind of damage are we potentially looking at?

Yoon said that if Paektu does erupt, the damage will far exceed the airline chaos caused when a volcano in Iceland erupted last April. That eruption spewed about 0.11 cubic kilometers of lava, but lava flows and ashes from the Korean mountain will be of greater volume, Yoon said.

Imagine if that were to happen just as Kim Jong-un were taking the reins of power from his late father. That would be a sure sign that the heavens disapprove of him as much as the rest of us do.

April 24, 2009

Wonder Girls’ Yoobin to netizens: You can bite my supposedly fat ass

Filed under: celebrities, gender equality, music, schadenfreude moment — extrakorea @ 6:19 am

Not too long ago, netizens made comments about Yoobin (of the girl group the Wonder Girls), specifically, that they thought that she had gained too much weight.

Initially, she wrote on her Cyworld page, “Please stop calling me fat,” then deleted her comments. (In case you don’t know, Cyworld is social networking website, somewhat similar to MySpace and Facebook.)

Now she’s written again, this time telling the netizens that if they think her ass is fat, they can bite it. Okay, she phased it much more politely and eloquently than I did.

“Regarding my body, I think I am still putting on weight. There are many people who like me and care about me, and I had received many comments of advice and concern. Everyone is curious about my condition. Even though I’m not perfect, I am sufficiently satisfied with my body.”

“Even though I like the trend of being skinny these days, I prefer to have a suitable and healthy body. I am also controlling my diet and doing exercises.“

“During the ‘Nobody’ days, actually [I didn’t take good care of myself], and [I was out-of-shape]. But [by performing concerts] now, I have [lost] some weight and I feel healthy. For people who are looking at me and [feel] that I am plump and unfit, I am feeling healthy and I like my looks now a lot.“

In a country where netizen vitriol has driven celebrities to suicide, I’m glad to see her standing up to these pimply-faced, sponging-off-their-parents losers.

(Hat Tip to AllKPop and to PopSeoul, entries one and two)

April 13, 2009

Super Junior’s Yesung confused with Kim Jong-il’s youngest son

Filed under: celebrities, Kim Jong-il, North Korea, schadenfreude moment — extrakorea @ 3:37 am

Here’s my schadenfreude moment of the week:

A member of the boy band Super Junior, Yesung, had his picture labeled by Swiss tabloid Blick as Kim Jong-il’s third and youngest son. The confusion came from the fact that Yesung’s real name is Kim Jong-un, the same as the dictator’s possible heir. (source)
Who are Super Junior? They’re a boy band and they suck. That’s all you need to know.

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