December 7, 2012
Psy sorry for anti-American song
South Korean pop sensation Psy has publicly apologized to his U.S. fans following the discovery of footage featuring his appearances at anti-America protest gigs in 2002 and 2004.
Video images of the Gangnam Style hitmaker, who is currently touring the U.S. as part of the Jingle Ball radio series, lashing out at the nation has stunned fans, and Psy has released a statement making it clear he regrets his past actions and remarks.
In footage at one show in 2004, he performs a song titled Dear American, which features the lyrics, "Kill those f**ing Yankees who have been torturing Iraqi captives/Kill those f**king Yankees who ordered them to torture/Kill their daughters, mothers, daughters-in-law and fathers/Kill them all slowly and painfully."
And he smashes a model U.S. tank on the ground during a performance at a 2002 rally on the Korean Peninsula - a response to the death of two Korean schoolgirls killed in an accident with an American military vehicle.
Psy, real name Park Jae-sang, went into damage-control mode on Friday and apologized for using "inflammatory and inappropriate language" during performances early in his career.
His statement reads, "As a proud South Korean who was educated in the United States and lived there for a very significant part of my life, I understand the sacrifices American servicemen and women have made to protect freedom and democracy in my country and around the world.
"The song I was featured in - from eight years ago - was part of a deeply emotional reaction to the war in Iraq and the killing of two innocent Korean civilians that was part of the overall antiwar sentiment shared by others around the world at that time.
"While I'm grateful for the freedom to express one's self I've learned there are limits to what language is appropriate and I'm deeply sorry for how these lyrics could be interpreted. I will forever be sorry for any pain I have caused anyone by those words."
He adds, "I have been honored to perform in front of American soldiers in recent months... and I hope they and all Americans can accept my apology. While it's important we express our opinions, I deeply regret the inflammatory and inappropriate language I used to do so. In my music I try to give people a release, a reason to smile. I have learned that though music, our universal language we can all come together as a culture of humanity and I hope that you will accept my apology."
The news item could not have come at a worse time for the star, who closed last month's American Music Awards with MC Hammer - he is billed to perform for U.S. President Barack Obama and his wife Michelle at this year's Christmas in Washington concert on Sunday.