- ‘Optionally piloted’ Black Hawk helicopter clears tests; future missions to go ‘fully unmanned’
- Vice News reporter kidnapped in Ukraine is freed after being beaten, blindfolded
- FCC’s new ‘net neutrality’ proposal sparks outrage among consumer advocates
- Families of ferry’s lost confront South Korean officials
- 2-week truce for Sriracha hot sauce maker, California city
- NYC’s de Blasio seeks to ban wood-burning fireplaces
- Residents angry Obama mispronounced town’s name during mudslide visit
- Israel halts peace talks with Palestinians
- Netanyahu’s driver accused of raping girls under age 12
- Putin calls Internet ‘CIA project’ that must be controlled
Park breaks through ‘glass ceiling’ to win presidency of South Korea
Although South Korea is notorious for its so-called “glass ceilings” for female achievement, the liberals had dominated the gender debate, sniping at Ms. Park’s never-married status and lack of motherhood experience.
On Wednesday, she responded: “Like a mother who dedicates her life to her family, I will become a president who takes care of the lives of each one of you.”
Scott Snyder, director of the Program on U.S.-Korea Policy at the Council on Foreign Relations, said that although Ms. Park did not campaign on a platform of women’s issues, her victory makes her a role model for Korean women.
“There are ways in which Korean society is changing and needs to change, and in theory some of those changes can be accelerated by the fact that Madam Park has reached this position in Korean society,” Mr. Snyder said.
An economic challenge
During the campaign, there was little difference between the two candidates on the major issues of the day — the economy and North Korea. Both Ms. Park and Mr. Moon called for renewed efforts to engage North Korean officials and reforms to help South Korea’s middle class and small businesses.
“Traditionally, there were policy differences related to North Korea or economic issues,” said Kang Won-taek, a politics professor at Seoul National University. “But this time, policies are quite similar. There is no salient issue.”
Ms. Park has pledged to “restore the broken middle class,” but analysts said she has her work cut out for her.
“On the domestic front, she has to raise Korean growth rates from a paltry 2 percent to levels Koreans are used to — 5.5 percent — but at the same time do that without leaving people behind,” said Mr. Cha of the Center for Strategic and International Studies.
Voting appeared to be along demographic lines, with older voters who had experienced Park Chung-hee’s “economic miracle” opting for his daughter and those who had protested the dictator and the general who succeeded him favoring Mr. Moon.
“I voted Park, she is wonderful,” said Lee Kyung-joo, 83, a retiree and Korean War veteran. “And her father was a great president.”
The clearest ground between the candidates was on corporate policy. Mr. Moon demanded tough measures to rein in the giant family-run conglomerates such as Samsung and Hyundai. Despite being economic locomotives, the corporations are widely alleged to crush competition.
Late in the campaign, Miss Park toned down her earlier demands for reform.
On foreign policy
Foreign policy is more complicated than it was just weeks ago.
© Copyright 2014 The Washington Times, LLC. Click here for reprint permission.
About the Author
Ashish Kumar Sen is a reporter covering foreign policy and international developments for The Washington Times.
Prior to joining The Times, Mr. Sen worked for publications in Asia and the Middle East. His work has appeared in a number of publications and online news sites including the British Broadcasting Corp., Asia Times Online and Outlook magazine.
TWT Video Picks
By Andrew P. Napolitano
Obama's veil of secrecy is pierced
- In its hunt for Senate, Republican candidates campaign against Harry Reid
- Obamacare class-action suit opens a new legal front
- List Hillary Clinton's successes? State Dept. spokeswoman flubs answer
- 'Top Gun' for drones: Squadrons of carrier-based killers have Navy's approval
- Nevada rancher Cliven Bundy hailed as patriot, ripped as lawless deadbeat
- 'Conservatives' should feel exposed by Bundy's racist comments: Scarborough
- Obama avoids 'red line' for China, prepared to impose tougher sanctions on Russia
- America is an oligarchy, not a democracy or republic, university study finds
- Texas is next! AG warns BLM wants 90,000 acres after Bundy ranch standoff
- Sold out: Ukraine's leadership swapped best military weapons for cash
Top 10 handguns in the U.S.
Celebrity deaths in 2014