Interesting analysis on the state of DMZ tours -- "a dangerous zoo" -- and their relation to South Korean attitudes toward reunification... The article reports that DMZ tours began in 1963 -- do any DMZ War readers remember them back then or before? One thing missing in this report, and a factor that probably played a role in those early tours, was the desire of South Korean residents (as opposed to fast-spending foreign tourists) to visit the 'Z to see their former homeland where loved ones often still lived, and/or honor their ancestors buried there.
“In 2006, South Korea rebranded the DMZ the Peace and Life Zone (PLZ).Untouched for decades, the area’s biodiversity and eco-credentials are now being pushed to the fore. Just pause and read that again: Peace and Life. In reference to what is effectively a scar severing the shared reality of a once united country; the last remnant of the Cold War that has divided families for generations and created one of the most extreme states of inequality on a national scale. As public relations go, it’s pretty audacious, like trying to reposition climate change as a way to get a better tan.” Read the rest here.