Saturday, September 24, 2016
South Korea’s President Has No Easy Options in Dealing with an Aggressive North
South Korea's President, Park Geun-hye, has had the luxury of making decisions on what to do about the North Koreans' nuclear tests. Park, who is a conservative, has been dealing with the North by keeping and placing more sanctions on them. Most of her liberal counterparts have urged Park to speak with the North's leader Kim Jong-un. This is easier said than done due to extreme tension and hostility between the North and South. "She can stay on her current course, facing more provocations from Pyongyang and the likelihood of going down in history as the president during whose term the North completed nuclear weaponization. Or she can try to engage an erratic government that has gone so far as to call her a prostitute, and that has not agreed to discuss the possibility of nuclear disarmament in any future talks," quoted from the New York Times. Park was also responsible for accepting Thaad, which stands for Terminal High Altitude Area Defense, from the United States. With North Korea being "at the final stage of nuclear weaponization", South Korea agreed to accept the missile-interceptor. This decision came with great scrutiny from China which causes more tensions between the North and South because of China's alliance with the North and the North's hatred for Western Civilization in general. The last key factor that this article mentions is that the South will continue to side with the United States. "Ms. Park’s choice of Washington over Beijing in the dispute has been seen here as a momentous decision and a central part of her legacy. 'When President Park calls Thaad inevitable, she sends a message that when relations between the United States and China turn bad and South Korea has to choose, it will be the United States,' said Lee Jung-chul, a political scientist at Soongsil University in Seoul."