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South Korea Headed For Military Coup?

a) South Korea is at extreme risk of a military coup--from either hardline anti-Pyongyong, anti-communist military forces; or by military and civilian supporters of impeached President Roh Moo-hyun. South Korea is no stranger to military juntas and civilian uprisings.

b) South Korea is also at risk of a sudden invasion from the North. With America's military might spread out in Iraq and Afghanistan, it is very possible that the U.S. will not have the power or wherewithal to protect South Korea from a communist invasion (North Korea/China/Russia).
State of the Nation: South Korea

by Todd Brendan Fahey
March 22, 2004
Exclusive to SiaNews.com

(Seoul) - The Republic of Korea (ROK; hereafter referred to as South Korea) has reached crisis proportions. Newly-elected President Roh Moo-hyun has been impeached by a Parliamentiary vote of 193-2, with the recently-formed pro-Roh Uri party locked out of chambers. Fistfights, tears and even instances of self-immolation were seen worldwide on television and Internet broadcasts. It is a nation as divided as any on earth.

Having lived in South Korea since 1999, and having covered political and military situations in this nation which the U.S. "mainstream media" either failed to report or reported weeks after the events, the following is my assessment of the "state of the nation" of South Korea:

1) President Roh Moo-hyun was elected in December, 2002, by a razor-thin margin over conservative opponent Lee Hoi-chang--a situation akin in almost every respect to the Bush/Gore saga of year-2000/01.

Supporting the conservative opposition, which carries the majority of Parliamentary seats, are the older generation, which remembers the events of the Korean War, and anti-communists, generally. Supporting impeached President Roh and his predecessor, Kim Dae-jung, are the younger generation of "progressives," who wish to unify the two nations; such unification efforts have come under the rubric of Kim Dae-jung's "Sunshine Plan," which grants nearly unconditional aid and trade to North Korea, for little in return.

Impeached President Roh largely carried on with Kim Dae-jung's Sunshine Plan, even after it was revealed that ex-President Kim personally ordered the laundering of nearly US$40 billion to North Korea via clandestine channels (including through Hyundai Merchant Marine Bank conglomerate and through a registered North Korean agency based in Macao, China). Ex-president Kim is currently said to be "too ill to testify" on his own behalf in any investigation of treason or wrongdoing.

2) South Korea's Constitutional Court has 180 days to review the impeachment case. Until a legal decision is rendered, President Roh Moo-hyun is stripped of all Presidential powers, though he retains the right to access his Presidential office and retain a skeleton staff.

3) Taking Roh's place is Prime Minister Goh Kun (equivalent to U.S. Vice President), considered widely as a stable, seasoned administrator, whose ideological ties are slightly closer to Washington D.C. than his predecessors; he is also slightly more anti-communist than his predecessors...

Constitutionally, a vote of at least six of the nine members of the Constitutional Court are needed to affirm the impeachment decision, whereby a new Presidential election would be ordered. It is not clearly known the ideological make-up of the nine-member Constitutional Court panel.

North Korea (the Democratic People's Republic of Korea, led by Kim Jong-Ill) has been warned by all parties in South Korea, and by Japan and Washington D.C., to not interfere in this crisis situation.

These are the abject facts of the past 15 months in South Korea.

As a veteran political strategist, aide to a U.S. Congressman, Governor and several U.S. Military Generals, my interpretation of these facts are as follows:

a) South Korea is at extreme risk of a military coup--from either hardline anti-Pyongyong, anti-communist military forces; or by military and civilian supporters of impeached President Roh Moo-hyun. South Korea is no stranger to military juntas and civilian uprisings.

In 1979, right-wing President Park Chung-hee was assassinated by his own KCIA (Korean Intelligence Service) chief, in a restaurant just steps from the Presidential palace. Several versions of this event exist:

The first is, that Park Chung-hee had insisted on attaining for South Korea its own nuclear deterrent--something which was objected to vehemently by then-U.S. President Jimmy Carter and Carter's National Security staff. As the story goes, President Park's KCIA chief got the orders from Washington to "take out" Park Chung-hee. The KCIA chief was summarily tried for treason and executed.

As goes the second story, assassinated President Park was willing to bend too far toward complying with the requests of the radical youth in the southwest Chollanam-do region, which was later beset by the "Kwang-ju massacre," in which the military junta which took power after Park's death stormed the city of Kwangju and opened fire on thousands of protesting students and union-types. Occurring in 1980, this was South Korea's "Kent State."

Such a view, ironically, would have President Park Chung-hee being "too sympathetic" or "soft to" the radical youth and unionist movements. And the "hardliners" took him out for being a softie. Again, this is mysterious territory, and these are only one man's analysis.

b) South Korea is also at risk of a sudden invasion from the North. With America's military might spread out over God's green earth, it is very possible that the U.S. will not have the power or wherewithal to protect South Korea from a communist invasion (North Korea/China/Russia).

It is no secret that North Korea possesses no oil; and, therefore, targets such as Iraq, Iran and Syria are more favorable amongst the warhawks of the U.S. Military/Industrial complex. Whether the U.S. would back South Korea at this stage is anyone's guess.

c) The proliferation of nuclear weapons and weapons trading in North Korea continues, and the George W. Bush administration has done nothing to stop it. In my opinion, the malignancy that is Pyonyang has been allowed to spread--either by incompetence or by design.

d) Taiwan is also facing turmoil, given the recent assassination attempt of President Chen and his Vice President (or, the hoax of an assassination, whichever you prefer; the jury is still out).

The aforementioned suggests that Northeast Asia is the world hot-spot--not the Middle East.

My personal ideology is that of our Founding Fathers: that entangling alliances are dangerous, and that strong fences make good neighbors. But, push comes to shove, I would insist on our Leaders in D.C. to defend a free Taiwan and a free South Korea against communist Chinese aggression.

"May you live in interesting times" -- ancient Chinese proverb

-----

Todd Brendan Fahey has served as aide to former Congressman John B. Conlan (R-AZ), Governor Evan Mecham (R-AZ); to CIA officer Theodore L. "Ted" Humes (Division of Slavic Languages) and to the late Lt. General Daniel O. Graham, among others.

homepage: homepage: http://www.sianews.com/modules.php?name=News&file=article&sid=1609

SPLITTING APART becomes HOLDING FIRM 29.Mar.2004 05:23

politics as possible

Stuff that has been ignored by mainstream U.S. media and, probably, by our over-paid "intelligence services" --- this is a very fine report from South Korean point of view. We could almost wish that Bill Clinton had ordered the attack on Pyongyang and ended this troublesome threat to global stabilization. Or, alternatively, that Harry Truman had not trumped MacArthur's impulse to A-bomb the bridges over the Yalu. We are left with this reality of the divided Korea freezing us forever in the cold-war Soviet/American polarized world. What to do now? What to do?

I suggest that the solution now is to perceive where we are in the reality of the moment: this is best expressed in the hexagram for "SPLITTING APART" becoming "HOLDING FIRM". Thus, (probably over a 50 year period but perhaps much sooner), we shall see, as follows:

Six at the beginning means:
The leg of the bed is split.
Those who presevere are destroyed.
Misfortune.

Inferior people are on the rise and stealthily begin their destructive burrowing from below in order to undermine the place where the superior man rests. Thus followers of the ruler who remain loyal are destroyed by slander and intrigue. The situation bodes disaster, yet there is nothing to do but wait.

Six in the second place means:
The bed is split at the edge.
Those who persevere are destroyed.
Misfortune.

The power of the inferior people is growing. The danger draws close to one's person; already there are clear indications, and rest is disturbed. Moreover, in this dangerous situation one is as yet without help or friendly advances from above or below. Extrenme caution is necessary in this isolation. One must adjust to the time and promptly avoid the danger. Stubborn perseverance in maintaining one's standpoint would lead to downfall.

Six in the third place means:
He splits with them. No blame.

An individual finds himself in an evil environment to which he is committed by external ties. But he has an inner relationship with a superior man, and through this he attains the stability to free himself from the way of the inferior people around him. This brings him into oppostion to them of course, buy that is not wrong.

SPLITTING APART becomes HOLDING FIRM 29.Mar.2004 05:25

politics as possible

Stuff that has been ignored by mainstream U.S. media and, probably, by our over-paid "intelligence services" --- this is a very fine report from South Korean point of view. We could almost wish that Bill Clinton had ordered the attack on Pyongyang and ended this troublesome threat to global stabilization. Or, alternatively, that Harry Truman had not trumped MacArthur's impulse to A-bomb the bridges over the Yalu. We are left with this reality of the divided Korea freezing us forever in the cold-war Soviet/American polarized world. What to do now? What to do?

I suggest that the solution now is to perceive where we are in the reality of the moment: this is best expressed in the hexagram for "SPLITTING APART" becoming "HOLDING FIRM". Thus, (probably over a 50 year period but perhaps much sooner), we shall see, as follows:

Six at the beginning means:
The leg of the bed is split.
Those who presevere are destroyed.
Misfortune.

Inferior people are on the rise and stealthily begin their destructive burrowing from below in order to undermine the place where the superior man rests. Thus followers of the ruler who remain loyal are destroyed by slander and intrigue. The situation bodes disaster, yet there is nothing to do but wait.

Six in the second place means:
The bed is split at the edge.
Those who persevere are destroyed.
Misfortune.

The power of the inferior people is growing. The danger draws close to one's person; already there are clear indications, and rest is disturbed. Moreover, in this dangerous situation one is as yet without help or friendly advances from above or below. Extrenme caution is necessary in this isolation. One must adjust to the time and promptly avoid the danger. Stubborn perseverance in maintaining one's standpoint would lead to downfall.

Six in the third place means:
He splits with them. No blame.

An individual finds himself in an evil environment to which he is committed by external ties. But he has an inner relationship with a superior man, and through this he attains the stability to free himself from the way of the inferior people around him. This brings him into oppostion to them of course, buy that is not wrong.