-Dr. Mini Kaur
Foreign Affairs article by Hilary Clinton
What better place to be than where the action is right?!
Although I was contemplating talking about 'black swans' before I was introduced to the TV series FlashForward, which has now been canceled (not the most brilliant choice), now that it was mentioned in a very good TV series and has something to do with this entry I need to write about how it is relevant to the Koreas.
This Black Swan related to this entry is not necessarily as unlikely and massive as the disproportionate, high impact, unexpected event in FlashForward, but it is important to where I will be for at least the next year and of interest to the world. South Korea is a major economic, geographic, and political ally to the United States where is draws a lot of military support from, even if the South Korean youth think otherwise. Americans I hear are not too popular due to our reckless military youth stationed there. However, the relevance of South Korea in the political world and its future dealings with North Korea when, and I do mean when, it falls, will be a major concern for international trade in the future.
North Korea's new leadership will take on an even more militaristic character that threatens democracy and does not necessarily give the United States a choice, when it attacks South Korea. China claims that it does not support North Korea in the recent attacks on Yeonpyeong Island off the coast of the South Korean peninsula, but from my observations of "China's word", we better not rely on that. No matter how much I hope that China will stop the trade and destructive economic activity in Africa, and its self-inflicting poverty among Chinese individuals/citizens, I still think a better access point for China is through South Korea.
North Korea, due to common language (sometimes), culture, tradition, and history, will seek more help from South Korea because, first of all, they already do, and secondly it will make the peninsula more powerful in Confucian ideals and in 'fitting in' with the westernization of the rest of world. This combination can be achieved with hard (very hard) work, but it can also act as a bomb, when mixing two chemicals/(politicals), causing an explosion.
In Hilary Clinton's article she mentions, "Today's world is a crucible of challenges testing American leadership. Global problems, from violent extremism to worldwide recession to climate change to poverty, demand collective solutions, even as power in the world becomes more diffuse. They require effective international cooperation, even as that becomes harder to achieve. And they cannot be solved unless a nation is willing to accept the responsibility of mobilizing action." America's main motivation will need to be to reclaim or 'share' the leadership role.
President Obama frequently mentioned South Korea as a role model for the United States in his State of the Union address. He mentioned South Korean teachers to be "nation builders", as opposed to our 'tenure-hungry'-unionizing-blame-the-government teachers, and how when Americans are struggling to get internet all over the country, South Koreans have better quality and faster service, all over their country. This is a significant sign of America's lack of leadership. Are we already 'old timers' that we can't even implement a functioning wireless service to our entire country? Our country is quite larger than South Korea's but is it to large to manage efficiently, I mean we have done it for 200 yrs plus! Our ability to evolve as become slow, and this lack of creativity and curiosity in the world has hindered us. Generations before, well... mine, have been more focused on money. Money was what they built and created, rather than new economic methods for new technology etc. Was capitalism taken for granted?
The world is definitely getting smaller, and like in the previous post, America is becoming more vulnerable, therefore more worried and defensive because of the lack of knowledge about the 'outside' world. Although we have spent many years, since Nixon, developing foreign affairs for the better. Good things always take time, and to rush the process, like North Korea is doing, will ruin what it could possibly become. China needs to put a muzzle on their dog as a symbolic action that proves to the US they are serious about peace and security in OUR (as in everyone's) world.
I should be off to South Korea soon enough to teach English for at least a year. Once I start there, I am guessing this blog will take on yet another form, from Art to Politics/Governance (IR) to traveling and cultural anthropological observations - maybe it will just be more personal. I hope to learn more Korean, maybe an instrument?, who knows. Maybe I can find something on here that will lead me.
I was also told South Korea is not a place to 'find yourself', haha, well we will see. Having been to South Korea before I know to 'watch' myself in certain situations - pay attention to detail and emotions more so than I do in the stix of Kansas. This is probably for the best because I do care about certain people, and it will make me a better judge for those who care (or say they care) for me. Of course finding that medium between the two culture will result in some not so easy sacrifices, patience, and an extensive understanding by both parties involved.
Paul Kennedy emphasizes the strategy of "Wait and See"
Try Harder, Be Better, and Never forget to Smile :-D.