South Korea

South Korean Missiles and the Launch of an SLBM from a Submarine


South Korea’s armed forces have recently engaged in a series of demonstrative exercises. Had they occurred in the North, they would have prompted alarmist headlines, glib political rhetoric, and angry speeches at the UN Security Council. As reported on September 7 by the Korean Agency for Defense Development, on September…

New Old Mayor of Seoul


On August 31, 2021, South Korean police raided Seoul City Hall as part of an investigation into allegations that Seoul Mayor Oh Se-hoon spread false information during his election campaign. Investigators searched some City Hall offices, including the city planning and transport policy bureaus, for seven hours to seize documents related to Oh Se-hoon’s comments on a scandalous development…

A Chronicle of the Pre-election Race in ROK: What Topics the Candidates are Delving Into


A conversation about the election race would be incomplete without mentioning what topics the contenders involved are locking horns with each other about. The Korea Times points out that while in previous elections the issues related to North Korea’s nuclear program, and improving inter-Korean relations, were important elements…

A Chronicle of the Pre-election Race in ROK: Conservatives and their Feuds


The main problem of the People Power Party is the lack of popular leaders in its own environment, which is why the leader of the Democratic Party, Song Young-gil, even called it “sterile”. Officially, the conservatives themselves have enough candidates for the presidency, but the best of them come in at about…

A Chronicle of the Pre-election Race in ROK: The Democrats and the Problems They Face


This text marks the beginning of a series of stories dedicated to the preparation work for the presidential elections in South Korea. Historically, for South Korea this process resembles an action-packed TV series full of scheming, scandals, and the “fight of bulldogs under the carpet” – and now it is time to get ready to watch the first…

Aftermath of the Afghan Conflict for South Korea


The almost instant defeat of Afghanistan’s ruling regime and the return of the Taliban (banned in Russia) is in itself a landmark event in world politics. However, without venturing into the realm of incompetence, we will talk about how it may affect the affairs of the Korean Peninsula and the context in which it is being discussed in the ROK. Seoul solved the immediate…

South Korean Military Exercises and North Korean Response


Every spring and autumn, inter-Korean relations are notoriously tested by the annual US-South Korea joint military exercises. Pyongyang has long criticized the South Korea-US military exercises, calling them a “rehearsal for an invasion of the North”, while Seoul and Washington emphasize their regularity and defensive nature. The level of escalation may vary…

Sex and Violence in the South Korean Army


During a meeting with the country’s top military leaders on August 4, 2021, South Korean President Moon Jae-in stated that the Republic of Korea’s armed forces must work to regain the people’s trust. The armed forces have been undermined by several recent incidents, most notably a high-profile sex scandal. Recall that it all began on May 25, 2021, with the suicide…

Beginning of a New Spy Scandal in South Korea

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Moon Jae-in’s administration and the ruling Democratic Party of Korea face a new political threat after it was revealed that a group of activists accused of spying for the DPRK had repeatedly contacted Moon and the party even before he was elected president. The conservative bloc is already calling the incident a “spy scandal,” demanding an explanation from the government…

Ideological Diversion Tactics, or Simple Incompetence?


On July 1, 2021 the government of South Korea requested police to investigate how a map of Pyongyang came to be included in a videoclip introducing Seoul at a conference of global climate change, held in May this year. The request was made after an internal investigation within the Foreign Ministry failed to determine whether subcontractors had deliberately…

Another US-ROK Joint Exercise – a New Reason for Inter-Korean Aggravation?


Another event is approaching that may turn out to be a new reason for inter-Korean aggravation or at least a marker of the current state of inter-Korean relations. Yet another US-ROK joint exercise. Let’s recall: The United States and the ROK usually conduct major joint exercises twice a year in March and August and smaller-scale activities…

Caveman Anti-Japanism – South Korea’s National Idea?


In previous articles we have already noted that anti-Japanism is a key part of South Korea’s political narrative, and commented on the country’s determination to erase “inconvenient persons and events” from its national history. But each time this issue is discussed we see comments from people who are unable to accept that South Korea’s preoccupation…

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