First it was the Philippines. Will South Korea be the next country where voters elect a leader whose policies threaten the increasingly precarious Asian peace? The WSJ:
In recent weeks, Mayor Lee Jae-myung, who favors reaching out to North Korea and taking a more confrontational approach to the U.S., has emerged as a serious challenger against front-runner Ban Ki-moon, who just wrapped up his 10-year stint as U.N. secretary-general.
Mr. Lee has called for direct talks with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, for the possible removal of the U.S.’s 30,000 troops from South Korea, and for the renegotiation of a trade pact with Washington.
The U.S. alliance “has degenerated into a subordinate relationship where we give whatever amounts of money they ask us to give,” Mr. Lee said. “The U.S. should be begging us for the defense of East Asia.”
The Eurocentric media universe is fixated on the political turmoil that threatens to rip the European Union to shreds. But in most ways, Asia is the much more combustible and dangerous region, and it is experiencing its own destabilizing set of events. The dynamic with South Korea in particular is one to watch closely.