South Korea Talk And Fight

Chun makes an offer to his opponents, but protests resume

Once again, last Friday, the heart of Seoul was turned into a combat zone. Tens of thousands of demonstrators roamed through the capital's streets and squares, unfurling banners and shouting slogans protesting the rule of President Chun Doo Hwan. Once again they were pursued relentlessly by squads of police wearing their familiar Darth Vader helmets and brandishing chest- high shields. Once again the stench of pepper gas, fired in prodigious quantities by the police, wafted into the early summer night, an acrid testament to the scenes of defiance.

The sudden burst of mass protest was not the largest or most violent...