National Geographic : 1969 Mar
Guardian of a national treasure, a Buddhist monk at Hae In temple near Taegu displays one of 81,258 wooden printing blocks hand-carved in the 13th century. The blocks record Buddhist scripture in Chinese characters, read- led us to the truce camp near the village of Panmunjom, the only point of contact be tween the North Koreans and the free-world forces. Here were held the meetings between the U.N. chief negotiator, Maj. Gen. Gilbert H. Woodward, who later won release of the Pueblo crew, and the Communist, Maj. Gen. Pak Chung Kuk. When I arrived, the 275th meeting of the Military Armistice Commission was about to begin. Open windows at each end of a long, corrugated-iron barracks provide an observa tion place for journalists, both from the Com munist countries and from the free world. Looking in, I saw General Woodward seated at a felt-topped table. Opposite and facing him barely three feet away was Gen eral Pak, an expressionless propagandist for the Communist side. The line separating North and South Korea runs through the center of the conference table (page 334). Across this table, the United Nations Com mand had up to then charged the North Ko reans with 6,100 violations of the 1953 cease fire agreements. The North Koreans had ad mitted to two in 1953. They, in turn, had charged the U.N.C. with 54,399 violations, of which 92 were admitted.