What’s next for South Korea?..Ban Ki-moon set to swoop?
South Korea’s Park Geun-hye is at the center of a political firestorm and under attack on multiple fronts over a devastating corruption scandal. The country’s first female president faces impeachment and mass street protests calling for her arrest.
The bizarre scandal engulfing Park’s government is rooted in allegations that her longtime personal friend and confidant, Choi Soon-sil, exerted an inordinate amount of influence on government policies, edited the president’s speeches, and even influenced government appointments.
Choi, a civilian with no security clearance, was found to illegally possess confidential government documents. Park is alsoaccused of personally lobbying corporations like Samsung and Hyundai to make massive financial contributions to charitable organizations controlled by Choi.
To add to the salaciousness, Korean media reports claim that Choi’s father was a spiritual mentor to Park after the death of her parents because of his alleged ability to channel the spirit of her assassinated mother and induce trance-like experiences in the future president.
Park’s approval ratings have plunged to five percent and she has agreed to resign in an effort to head off a pending impeachment vote. However, she has admitted no legal wrongdoing and called for the country’s ruling assembly to decide the terms of her resignation.
There is speculation that she is attempting to bide her time, considering that any proceeding in the assembly would take many months. Even if lawmakers voted overwhelmingly to end Park’s rule, the country’s Constitutional Court judges could block the measure, allowing her to see out her term, which is due to end at the end of next year.
Since coming to power four years ago, Park has governed high-handedly with a secretive leadership style that has stoked public curiosity in her closely guarded personal life. She campaigned on reducing income inequality and expanding welfare, but emerged adrift as a bland center-right defender of the status quo.
Park is heir to a fallen political dynasty, the daughter of Park Chung-Hee, a contentious military dictator strongly associated with the rapid growth and authoritarian politics of his eighteen-year rule. Both her parents were killed in political assassinations during her youth, and she has remained an unmarried and solitary figure throughout her life.
Relations with North Korea have reached their nadir under her hawkish foreign policy, symbolized by the closure of the Kaesong Industrial Complex and the suspension of all inter-Korean cooperation and channels for emergency communication between north and south.
The governing party lost its parliamentary majority during Park’s tenure and now faces two emboldened opposition parties with populist programs.
However the political crisis plays out, it’s clear that the conservative wing of the political establishment faces a daunting challenge: Park could very well become the first elected president to be removed from office and face trial.
The opposition needs just 28 of the 128 lawmakers from the ruling party to secure her impeachment and this figure may be within reach before the closing of the current parliamentary session on 9 December. There is already discussion of Park’s successor. Ban Ki-moon, the outgoing UN Secretary General, is considered a front-runner for the job.
read the last paragraph..then connect some dots..
“Park is heir to a fallen political dynasty, the daughter of Park Chung-Hee, a contentious military dictator strongly associated with the rapid growth and authoritarian politics of his eighteen-year rule. Both her parents were killed in political assassinations during her youth, and she has remained an unmarried and solitary figure throughout her life.”
i can see the moon man parachuting into this role now that his tenure with the UN is finishing..
“The opposition needs just 28 of the 128 lawmakers from the ruling party to secure her impeachment”