Ok, I live here right??? how is it I totally missed this??? I didn't hear a siren, I didn't see anything? No one even told me about it at work. I mean, really?? Clearly this was not all that important to people. I would have liked to of known beforehand though. That would have been totally great, thanks a lot US Embassy. Why did I sign up for your notices again?

Note to self: Don't expect help from the US Embassy or the SK Government if all hell breaks loose because apparently we foreigners aren't important enough to inform T_T Yeah, it's not that big of a deal but what if it were something more important. then It would have been a big deal. I mean, this drill should have also been about getting information out to both citizens and foreigners. Just sayin....
By HYUNG-JIN KIM and KIM KWANG-TAE, Associated Press Hyung-jin Kim And Kim Kwang-tae, Associated Press

SEOUL, South Korea – South Koreans stopped their cars, donned gas masks and ducked into underground shelters Wednesday in the country's biggest-ever evacuation drill — a government attempt to prepare traditionally indifferent citizens for possible new attacks by North Korea.

Fears of war on the divided Korean peninsula have intensified since the rivals fired artillery shells at each other last month across their tense western sea border. Four South Koreans on a front-line island were killed; the North's casualties are unknown.

Many South Koreans have become used to regular North Korean threats to turn the South into a "sea of fire" and have reacted coolly to civil drills in the past. There has been widespread anger and shock, however, over the North's Nov. 23 artillery bombardment of South Korea's Yeonpyeong Island.

It was North Korea's first assault targeting a civilian area since the end of the 1950-53 Korean War. Both Koreas accuse each other of staging the first provocation. The North claims that South Korea fired artillery toward its territorial waters, while South Korea says it launched shells southward, not toward North Korea, as part of routine exercises.

The nationwide 20-minute evacuation drills Wednesday were the largest since the country began the training in 1975.

In frigid temperatures, air raid sirens blared. Government officials and company employees stopped work and evacuated to underground shelters in basements, subway stations and parking lots. Housewives were asked to turn off the gas in their kitchens.

A dozen South Korean fighters flew over major cities to simulate North Korean airstrikes. Bullet trains ran at low speeds in a symbolic move to join with other stopped vehicles. In downtown Seoul, about 30 miles (50 kilometers) from the heavily militarized border and within easy range of North Korean artillery, the city's congested streets momentarily cleared as traffic halted.

There was no penalty for not going to shelters, but authorities encouraged participation, sending out word through the media and posting notices in residential areas. Officials expected up to 12 million of South Korea's 49 million people to take part in the drill.

So yup. Sounds like it was quite a thing. lol.


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2 Responses
  1. OMG I can't believe that, how scary! Especially that you knew NOTHING about it.

    Looks like you need to let somebody at the embassy in on the little secret!

  2. I must say I just adore your posts, each and every time!