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NEW YORK, SPECIAL TO THE J (AP) Lately South Koreans’ view of the United States has improved as the Obama-Clinton contest showed the possibility of ending the Bush-Republican Iraq war and halting the destruction of American democracy. Now, South Koreans are rebelling against President Lee Myung Bak, accusing him of lifting the import ban on American beef and kowtowing to lame-duck President George W. Bush.

Ostensibly they reject American beef as “unsafe due to Bush’s relaxed quality checks.” In reality, South Koreans have seized on American beef to express pent-up anger over 60 years of American “occupation.” Long gone is South Korea’s gratitude toward Truman’s America, which liberated it from Imperial Japan’s brutal occupation and later rescued it from North Korean and Chinese invaders.

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