Last week's presidential election in South Korea presages a sea change in that key U.S. ally's policies toward North Korea. The resounding defeat of the candidates who favored more of Seoul's all-carrot, no-stick approach to Kim Jong Il presents Washington with a horizon of new possibilities for reining in Asia's most troublesome dictator. The question now is whether the Bush foreign policy team will be adept enough to seize this opportunity.
The landslide vote, to be sure, was in large measure a rebuke of President Roh Moo-hyun's inept handling of the economy and polarizing domestic policies. Yet, taken together, the candidates who opposed the "Peace and Prosperity" policy (originally dubbed "Sunshine") toward North Korea in last Wednesday's election received more than 63 percent of the vote -- compared with 35 percent for all those who approved of it.… Seguir leyendo »