Special Forum

The year 2017 brought unusual dynamism all around the world and particularly related to the Korean Peninsula. In the United States, an unprecedented type of president was inaugurated with scant appreciation of alliances and apparent lack of knowledge of the relations between the United States and South Korea, bringing an unfamiliar and wary air to the region. In China, President Xi began his second term, expressing ambition for an elevated status of China on the global stage. Prime Minister Abe Shinzo also solidified his political base in Japan by winning an early election to secure his political standing and his party’s future. North Korea conducted more than ten missile tests and its sixth nuclear test, claiming that it had completed its nuclear program. In South Korea, one president was impeached and ousted, and a new one was elected much earlier than scheduled. It was remarkable not only because of the unexpected but peaceful transition of power, but also because it signified a far-reaching transition from conservative to progressive government.

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