Controversy Over Cheonan Report in Korea

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Tensions on the Korean peninsula intensified after South Korea published an investigative report indicating North Korea torpedoed South Korea’s warship Cheonan. According to the Sing Tao Daily, a recent poll conducted by a South Korean research center shows the majority of respondents – 70 percent – had confidence in the report. However, nearly half of those polled between the ages of 20 to 40 said they did not believe the findings of the report, and just a third of those polled with a college education found the report credible. Citing the China Times, the Sing Tao newspaper provided three reasons for the divergence in public opinion: First, the investigation took too long and the result was unexpected; second, the lack of strong evidence and explanation; third, the involvement of the United States in the investigation but not North Korea. In South Korea, different media outlets have published diverse perspectives on the international incident. Conservative newspapers JoongAng Ilbo and Chosun Ilbo supported imposing sanctions on Pyongyang, while others said that that punitive action would be a huge gamble for South Korea President Lee Myung-bak.