The People’s Coalition on Food Sovereignty supports the farmers and people of the agricultural town of Seongju in North Geongsang province and of entire the Korean peninsula in opposing the US and South Korean governments’ decision to deploy the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) to the area.
The fact that the missile system will be deployed to a place populated by small farmers, and without consultation with them, is only the most immediate illustration of the move’s attack on small food producers and food sovereignty.
The THAAD will surely endanger the health, lives and livelihood of the farmers and people of Seongju, of North Geongsang, and of the Korean peninsula as a whole. The THAAD’s deployment to Seongju will mean the destruction of precious agricultural lands in favor of the big power interests of the US in defense and war. This bane to the farmers and peoples of the Korean peninsula is a boon to the Lockheed Martin Corporation and the entire military-industrial complex of the US.
The lack of food sovereignty is a dimension of a country’s general lack of sovereignty, and the THAAD’s deployment to South Korea can only confirm the South Korean government’s all-around puppetry to the US and goes against pursuing an independent foreign policy.
This move does more than the South Korean government’s objective of enhancing the country’s security, especially in relation to North Korea. Because it serves the geopolitical interests of the US and is dictated by the US, it has grave implications for the increasingly tension-filled geopolitics in the region and the world. Aside from further dividing the farmers and peoples of the Korean peninsula, this move will invite antagonism from China and Russia.
The fear voiced out by Prof. Lee Nam-ju of Sungkonghoe University is most valid: That the THAAD deployment in South Korea would signal the further deterioration of relations between China and Russia on the one hand and the country. Prof. Lee is correct in trying to draw lessons from the US’ deployment of a missile defense system in Eastern Europe supposedly because of the threat of Iran, which caused the marked deterioration of relations between Europe and Russia.
We condemn the US government for this imperialist move of exploiting regional conflicts in order to advance its geopolitical interests. We also condemn the South Korean government under the Park Geun-hye regime for this shameful act of puppetry to the US.
We support all the protests – rallies, hunger strikes, candlelight vigils, among others – being held by the farmers and peoples of Seungju and of the Korean peninsula against the deployment.
THAAD out of South Korea, out of Asia!