The Spark

“The emancipation of the working class will only be achieved by the working class itself.” — Karl Marx

U.S. Toxic Occupation of South Korea

Feb 3, 2020

In December, the U.S. military gave four extremely polluted military bases back to the South Korean government.

This was no act of kindness by the U.S. government, which occupies South Korea with 28,500 troops, and forces South Korea to pay nearly one billion dollars per year to subsidize this occupation. For a decade now, the U.S. also has made South Korea spend nearly 10 billion dollars to expand U.S. Camp Humphreys south of Seoul into America’s largest overseas base. The U.S. is consolidating operations there from dozens of its old bases, which were originally built by the Japanese empire before World War II.

On those bases the U.S. military, known as the world’s biggest polluter, had dumped, spilled, and stored materials with dioxin, which causes reproductive, developmental, and immunological problems. Other toxins left behind include cancer-causing PCBs, gas containing TPH, benzene, xylene, lead, arsenic, mercury, and other poisonous metals. For years neighbors of these bases have protested pollution leaks, among other issues. South Korea estimates it will have to spend another billion dollars to remove these dangerous chemicals.

The corporate polluters and the U.S. military should pay for the clean-up!