Saturday, July 10, 2010

U.S researchers question theory North Korea sank Cheonan

Voice of America is carrying a story about U.S researchers who question the theory that North Korea sank the South Korean navy ship, the Cheonan.

Researchers J.J. Suh and Seung-Hun Lee say the South Korea made a weak case in concluding that North Korea was responsible for sinking the Cheonan. Speaking in Tokyo Friday, the two said the investigation was riddled with inconsistencies and cast "profound doubt" on the integrity of the investigation.

Suh and Lee conclude that the cracked portion of the bottom of the ship does not show the signs of a large shock that are usually associated with outside explosions. They add that all the ship's internal parts remained intact and few fragments were recovered outside the ship.

Lee, a professor of physics at the University of Virginia, points to a blue mark on a fragment of the torpedo to question the validity of the study. South Korean scientists say that part of the torpedo was marked "number one" in Korean, with a blue marker. Suh and Lee say the writing would not have survived the intense heat of an explosion.

While the researchers say their findings do not prove that North Korea did not sink the Cheonan, they simply state it is irresponsible for the South Korean government to reach its conclusions based on an inconclusive study. They are calling for a new international investigation to re-examine the Cheonan's sinking.

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