September 27, 2023

South Korean conservatives: Right on North Korea, wrong on everything else?

Elections tend to feature progressives who don’t get the DPRK and reactionaries out of step with 21st-century values

In late November, while walking past one of Honolulu’s many Korean-owned shopping marts, I noticed a sign that showed Moon Jae-in embracing Kim Jong Un, an image unmistakably from their second summit in 2018. But rather than celebrating this bygone, briefly amiable moment in inter-Korean relations, the sign’s message contained a warning against the “peace” agreement that is Moon’s fondest wish before he leaves office in May 2022.

Two middle-aged women approached, and one holding a clipboard proceeded to explain the state of play on the Korean Peninsula. “Will you sign our petition saying no to the end-of-war declaration?” she asked.