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[Editorial] A New Original Sin

Posted November. 07, 2007 07:24,   


Former Grand National Party Chairman Lee Hoi-chang plans to announce his run for the presidency in a press conference today. A close acquaintance said, “After long and serious consideration, former Chairman Lee has decided to join the race.”

That is a shame. His decision taints the development of democracy and politics in Korea.

For him, running for president may be a critical decision. But for us, he seems to be the personification of betrayal and immorality. How could he possibly betray his own party that had chosen him twice as a presidential candidate? Back in 2002, the GNP had the dubious honor of trying to get him elected, and some party leaders were imprisoned. Lee did not, however, take any responsibility. His party made the utmost effort to save him. What a betrayal.

By choosing division among conservatives over the end of the leftist administration, Lee is about to make an irreversible mistake and do harm to the GNP and his country. He is the person who led us to 10 years of liberal governance because he was an incompetent and arrogant political leader. It would be self-denial if he helps the current administration sustain its power by prompting the division of the right once again.

Lee mentions a “grand consolidation of conservatives” and unpredictable accidents of the current GNP candidate as a reason for his candidacy. But this is only a lame excuse. In fact, his political view on North Korea is no different from GNP candidate Lee Myung-bak. Former chairman Lee Hoi-chang is the one who flip-flopped his North Korea policies to his advantage over the past two presidential elections.

He says he worries about the identity of the country, but neither the GNP nor GNP candidate Lee has ever denied it. It is no surprise that the ruling party mocks his run as a comedy of history.

His decision stems from his greed and opportunism, and is taken to fulfill his own aspirations for power, taking advantage of the weakness of the GNP candidate and the unstable power structure of the party.

The public cannot tolerate the anachronistic leftist administration just because of a person’s desire for the presidency. We have to block him from running. Even if he joins the race, Koreans should cope with this wisely. Over the past ten years, we have seen our country’s reputation in crisis, chaos in the administration, and devastation of ordinary citizens’ lives.