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[Editorial] Leaving Uri’s Sinking Ship

Posted January. 23, 2007 07:05,   


Yesterday, lawmaker Im Jong-in of the Uri Party declared his defection. Lawmakers Yeom Dong-yeon and Lee Gye-ahn also signaled that they would follow the exodus.

It has been said that up to 10 people will leave the party this month. Main members who have been with the party since its foundation, such as current and former chairmen of Uri Party, Kim Geun-tae and Chung Dong-young, and former Minister of Justice Chun Jung-bae have openly talked about the possibility of withdrawal as well. They say the Uri Party will be divided into a pro-Roh group, a reformation-defectors’ group, and a conservative-defectors’ group. It is likely there will be competition to see who will jump ship from the sinking Uri Party first.

And yet, it seems like they don’t even know what kind of ship they wish to create afterwards. Nothing has been decided, including the captain, the route, and the crew. There is only the desperate feeling that unless they jump right now, they will die.

The people who once let them rule the country now feel betrayed, and therefore want to file a lawsuit against them. Nobody from the Uri Party is reflecting upon themselves, even though all kinds of confusion are being caused by them.

What is worse is that they are blaming each other even when they are separating. Defectors call the pro-party group “risk-takers,” and the pro-party group is calling the defectors “betrayers.” Now lawmakers start criticizing the conservative route of the Uri Party is not different from that of the Grand National Party. But it is too late. They once said that the Uri Party would maintain power for more than 100 years, so they would begin disclosing 100 years of modern history of Korea, but it is has been barely three years before the party is seemingly coming apart.

In the midst of this, the former party chairman Chung Dong-young had a ceremony launching his support group recently. In the ceremony, more than 2,000 members gathered. Chung can never feel free from the responsibility of wreck which the Uri Party is faced with. But even then, he held a gathering, which looked like a celebration of his departure for the coming presidential election, and had children sing songs arguing for the abolition of the National Security Law. I would like to ask of him whether he is really sane or not.

Whenever an election is imminent, the ruling party, which naturally should take responsibility, is discarded and a new party born. This is just for gathering votes, and they repeat the con game as needed. It would be more educational just to eliminate the contents of “party politics” and “responsibility politics” from the textbook.