In 2004, PSY protested the Iraqi capture and murder of a Korean missionary; the captors insisted South Korea cease aiding America's war in Iraq. At a live protest alongside fellow Korean stars, PSY joined in a performance of a rock song called "Dear America," reportedly rapping the lines written below (and, please note, the severity, context and actual vocabulary of the verse has been disputed by numerous publications):
Kill those f--king 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
PSY rapidly responded on Friday, delivering delivering a statement and heartily apologizing while explaining the moment as "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."
He goes on to say: "I will forever be sorry for any pain I have caused anyone by those words. I have been honored to perform in front of American soldiers in recent months—including an appearance on the Jay Leno show specifically for them—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."