Thursday, May 14, 2009

Dora Observation Platform

Mt Dora Observation Platform is one of the few observation platforms along the 38 degree parallel, which separates the Korea Penisular into two vastly different countries.

On a sunny day, you can see Kaesŏng Industrial Park in North Korea clearly. Unfortunately, my visit was on a rainy day. North Korea is covered by a secret veil of haze. At point A in the photo above, you can see a bit of the buildings in Kaesŏng Industrial Park.

The road that arrow B is pointing at, is the road linking South Korea with Kaesŏng Industrial Park. And North Korea just closed this road, cutting off the link between the two Koreas in protest against the US, and threatened to restart their nuclear program.

Then arrow C is pointing in the direction of where ShangGanLing(上甘岭) is. I met a South Korean soldier who can speak fluent Mandarin Chinese at the platform. He told us that from Dora Observation Platform, you can't really see ShangGanLing(上甘岭), as it is way too far. The tour guides are just bluffing people, especially tourists from China.

As a Chinese, I wonder, China is North Korea's ally in the Korean War, yet now we can only stand on the land of South Korea, once our enemy, to see the battle field where our soldiers died, for the sake of North Korea! Why can't we go directly to North Korea and pay our respects to our heroes there! Seems like Chinese, just like the Americans, are not welcomed by North Korea!

You may wonder why Chinese tourists are so interested in ShangGanLing(上甘岭). Basically the battle there is said to be a great military victory for the Chinese and a battle that the Americans don't want to ever mention again or remember.

You can find some write-ups about the battle (in English, the name is 'the battle of Triangle Hill' or 'Operation Showdown') at the links below:


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