December 20, 2012
ALONG THE AXIS OF GOOD:
Korea gets first female president (The Korea Herald, 12/19/12)
Posted by Orrin Judd at December 20, 2012 4:20 AMConservative Park Geun-hye clinched a climactic election victory Wednesday to become South Korea's first female president on the back of pledges for political reform and measured economic democratization. [...]The president-elect is expected to bolster the alliance with the U.S. while seeking improved strategic ties with China. She has expressed firm resolve on her intolerance to North Korea's provocations, the most recent being its Dec. 12 rocket launch. Park, however, has also expressed willingness to better cooperate with Pyongyang to defrost highly strained inter-Korean relations.Her emphasis on balanced growth and welfare appeared to have struck a chord with the swing voters as the country faces a challenging year ahead amid a slumping economy, frosty ties with North Korea, simmering feuds with Japan and a growing rivalry between the U.S. and China.It was a day of victory for the conservatives, with Hong Joon-pyo of the Saenuri Party winning in the election for South Gyeongsang Province governor, and conservative-leaning former education minister Moon Yong-lin being elected as Seoul City education superintendent.