The National Assembly of South Korea voted for the impeachment of President Park Geun-hye in response to the people’s outcry and now the ball is in the court of the Constitutional Court of Korea.
It is well known that their recent candlelight vigils are not their first one. Back in 2008, a South Korean broadcasting station spread a canard about the opening of the local beef market and import of U.S. beef, which resulted in similar nationwide candlelight vigils. At that time, demonstrators included those carrying babies in strollers while refusing to feed them with U.S. beef that might not be safe from mad cow disease. At this time, the candlelight vigils have attracted a large number of students and their parents, who have claimed that the preferential university admission of the daughter of Park’s friend Choi Sun-sil has resulted in unfair competition and disadvantages on the part of the majority of people without any background. This shows the true nature of the vigils and politics in the agora driven by incitement.
Recently, the candlelight vigil organizers going by the name of Emergency People's Movement Calling for the Park Geun-hye Government to Step Down held a press conference immediately before U.S. Secretary of Defense James Mattis’ visit to Seoul. “THAAD deployment in South Korea is directly against the 10 million candlelight vigil participants,” the organizers claimed at the press conference, coming up with the public sentiment against the Choi Soon-sil scandal triggered by the manipulation of state affairs by a close aide of the President. These organizers are mainly made up of left-wing organizations, these organizations include the Nationwide Movement against THAAD Deployment, and this group staged a demonstration on February 3 in front of the Ministry of Defense of South Korea, branding the U.S. Secretary of Defense as a warmonger threatening the peace of the Korean Peninsula. This group consists of the 90 or so left-wing organizations including the Pan-Korea Alliance for Reunification, which was classified by the court in the past as a group of anti-government activists.
Over last few months, South Korean lawmakers, who had hampered the administration of state affairs over and over to the point of putting the National Assembly into a state of suspended animation, have jumped on the organizers’ bandwagon by catering to the outcry pursuing their own personal or partisan interests. In other words, the guardians of representative democracy, who are supposed to represent the people and overcome the harm of the politics in the agora, have been driven by the vigils while taking advantage of the vigils at the same time for their own survival. As a result, the ruling Saenuri Party to which the President belongs has been split into two and the conservatives have lost their center while the liberals are likely to take power soon, who implemented their so-called sunshine policy led to today’s nuclear crisis following their money pouring into North Korea.
In addition, the most promising opposition candidate, who mentioned that he would visit North Korea ahead of the United States once elected as the next President, is a person who said that North Korea’s opinion should be referred to first in the UN Resolution on North Korean Human Rights as the chief presidential secretary during the Roh Moo-hyun administration.
These days, North Korean leader Kim Jong-un is continuing his reign of terror in his country to solidify his leadership while threatening the international community, not to mention the Korean Peninsula, with nuclear missiles. The opposition candidate will have to clarify first whether he is going to visit the North in order to support the dictator’s misdeeds. A lot of people are concerned about the future of South Korea that is already facing so many difficulties and challenges both inside and out. Now is the time when every entity constituting the country should be armed with wisdom and prudence.