Monday, July 26, 2010

Doubts surface on North Korea’s role in ship sinking

Some in South Korea dispute the official version of events: that a North Korean torpedo ripped apart the Cheonan.

By Barbara Demick and John M. Glionna, Los Angeles Times, July 23, 2010

Reporting from Seoul —

The way U.S. officials see it, there’s little mystery behind the most notorious shipwreck in recent Korean history.

Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton calls the evidence “overwhelming” that the Cheonan, a South Korean warship that sank in March, was hit by a North Korean torpedo. Vice President Joe Biden has cited the South Korean-led panel investigating the sinking as a model of transparency.

But challenges to the official version of events are coming from an unlikely place: within South Korea.

Armed with dossiers of their own scientific studies and bolstered by conspiracy theories, critics dispute the findings announced May 20 by South Korean President Lee Myung-bak, which pointed a finger at Pyongyang.

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