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[Editorial] President Kim, Must Keep Promise

Posted January. 04, 2002 09:03,   


President Kim Dae-Jung must keep the promise he made at the New Year speech not to involve himself in party affairs nor participate in `party-making`. This is the path toward national and political progress.

We do not need to bring up again cases where former presidents tried to play their hand by choosing successors or replacement administration, which only created division in the end and brought about the contempt of the people. Those individuals did not pay attention to the tasks at hand as their term was coming to an end, but focused on getting more power and ended up in a worse lame duck situation.

If President Kim puts his energies into economic problems, the World Cup, regional elections, and presidential elections from a position transcendent of party politics as promised and step down, people may judge him differently than has been the case. This is also a way to avoid falling into the worn path of chronically diseased traditional politics.

First and foremost, President Kim must do everything in his power to keep his promise. As a politician who has stood on the side of the opposition all his life, his attachment to power may be stronger than anyone else`s. Furthermore, in the case of retiring presidents, they naturally begin to lose power and this has led many unwittingly to become more attached to power. Yet, President Kim must break this circle and focus on establishing a basis for the next administration to secure its victories without unnecessary obstacles.

Those who surround President Kim must also forego the illusion of the `Kim Intention` (Kim Shim). The Millennium Democratic Party is currently in the midst of a fierce competition over the presidential nominee. Presidential candidates will face the strong temptation to piggy-back on the `Kim-mind`. In the coming days, baseless rumors about the `Kim Intention` and President Kim may unknowingly find himself in the middle of the presidential race. Already the inner circle of the MDP is talking about the `Kim Intention` without any regard to President Kim`s position. This is why President Kim must take special care of his surroundings and restrain himself from saying or doing anything that may rouse the slightest suspicion.

It will become more difficult for President Kim to keep his promise as time passes. The situation at home and abroad is getting more complex and the lame duck phenomenon will quickly intensify. We, therefore, cannot help but stress the vital importance of President Kim`s willingness and determination to keep his promise.