UPDATE : 2019.4.25 THU 10:26
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'Welcome to Korea, President Trump. We all love you in Korea!'Opponents against visit represent only a small minority in Korea

Welcome to Korea President Donald Trump! We Koreans all love you for your effort to keep the Korean people free from the North Korean regime!

In the opinion of many people in the Republic of Korea (south), President Trump of the United States should visit the Demilitarized Zone (DMZ) during his visit to Seoul on Nov. 7-8, 2017 at the invitation of President Moon Jae-in.
"Needless to say, President Moon Jae-in should go together with President Trump," say many people in Korea, especially the established generation--to speak nothing of the 'Korean War generation who fought side by side with the US and other United Nations Forces during the Korean War (1950-3) that was started by the late Marshal Kim Il-sung of the North Korean regime.

President Moon Jae (left) and US President Donald Trump

In the opinion of many people in Korea, President Trump? visit to the DMZ would show the firm resolve on the part of the US to defend the ROK against the backdrop of growing threat posed by the belligerent North Korean regime now fully engaged in nuclear weapons development.
President Trump is coming to Korea at a time when the people in the ROK are facing constant serious threats from the North Korean regime now in the hands of an extremely unpredictable and belligerent young man, Chairman Kim Jong Un of the (North) Korean Workers Party (KWP) which completely controls all segments of the North Korean society as well as the government and the Party.

President Moon Jae-in (left) and US President Donald Trump hold a joint press conference following their summit at the White House Rose Garden in Washington DC.

The people in South Korea are traditionally pro-American and the majority of the people regard the American people as their bosom friends who defended them from falling in the hands of the North Korean invaders during the Korean War.
The Korean people are traditionally pro-American but this tendency has become somewhat strained during the two past governments of former Presidents Lee Myung- bak and Park Geun-hye.
The mal-administration perpetrated especially during the past government of President Park who, according to reports, had literally been controlled like a puppet by the allegedly dishonest woman influence-peddler, Madam Choi Soon-shil, who is now undergoing a trial under detention.

First summit between President Moon (left) and US President Donald Trump

Reports indicate that Madam Choi took the law into her own hands, and committed all kinds of crime to satisfy her insatiable appetite for personal gains--all at the expense of the discredited former President Madam Park.
Madam denies all charges brought against her at the court on the grounds that the suspected acts of violation of the law were done without her knowledge.
Under these circumstances, Madam Park almost completely lost the confidence which the people had reposed in her and elected her as President of Korea.
Against this backdrop, the right-wing politicians in Korea have substantially lost their ground in terms of support of the people and much of the share of support from the people went toward the reform-minded, socialist- leaning people in Korea, who now surround President Moon.

President Barack Obama (second from left) visits the front line in Korea.

The Korean people in general, however, are democratically minded, love freedom and democracy, and follow the principle of free democracy vis-a-vis progressivism pursued by a limited number of people, many of whom have been done injustice by the former governments of Presidents Lee and Park.
In fact, the mal-administration and dishonest practices suspected to have been perpetrated by the discredited Madam Choi Soon-shil made former President Park lose her support from the people, and eventually put her under detention making Park undergo interrogations and stand trials on charges of the abuse of power, bribery and many other counts of serious crime.

President Moon Jae-in (center) shakes hands with US President Donald Trump during former's visit to the United states on June 29, 2017. At left is First Lady Madam Kim Jung-sook.

This is the backdrop which has given rise to some new political elements in Korea, who, under the pretext of supporting President Moon Jae-in, go to extreme lengths and chant anti-American slogans and even go to such extent where they try to ridicule President Donald Trump who is visiting the Republic of Korea on Nov. 7-8.
This group of people in Korea is very small in number and in terms of support from the general public.
Many Korean people wish that President Trump would visit the DMZ, and show his firm resolve to defend the ROK and discourage the North Korean regime from making any provocative military attempt against the ROK.

DMZ across the Korean peninsula about half way between the northern and southern ends of the Korean peninsula.

Almost all his predecessors visited the DMZ during their tour of Korea to show the firm resolve on the part of the US to defend its ally, the ROK.
In fact, the strong warning, “If North Korea should try to use nuclear weapons, it would mean the end of the regime,” was made former US President Bill Clinton during his visit to Korea.
Many influential Korean media, including the most widely circulated Chosun Ilbo and Dong-A Ilbo, strongly urge President Trump make the visit to the DMZ.
Dong-A Ilbo, reported on Oct. 27 that if President Trump should avoid visiting the DMZ, it could send a wrong message to the North Korean regime of Chairman Kim Jong Un that the US might be backing out from the trouble-ridden scene on the Korean peninsular or that there must be some problem in the relations between the ROK and the US.

US President Ronald Reagan shakes hands with US troops at Camp Liberty Bell during his visit to Korea on Nov. 13, 1983.

Many people in Korea feel that the Moon Government would have no alternative but to say ‘yes’ if the important guest (President Trump) shows his interest in visiting the DMZ.
Dong-A suggested, “Even if the Moon government has not formally invited President Trump to visit the DMZ, President Trump should show his strong interest in visiting the DMZ instead of giving up the most important target destination for the two countries.”
President Trump’s visit of Camp Humphreys would also be interesting. He would be the first US President to visit the large new military estate of the US Forces in Korea, which consist of modern facilities, which Dong-A said were built literally with funds provided wholly by the ROK side.
Dong-A said, “President Trump’s tour of the DMZ would give a much stronger message and show a firm resolve that the United States will protect the lives and properties of her ally, the ROK.

North Korea continues to test nuclear bombs to the chagrin of many people in Korea and round the world.

According to World News on Oct. 26, President Trump declined to say whether he will visit the DMZ or not.
It quoted President Trump as saying, “I’d rather not say, but you’ll be surprised.”
To the Korean ears, this undoubtedly sounds, ? will go to the DMZ.?It is because ?urprise?is almost always related with a ?uprise present?and what better surprise present would the Korean people appreciate than a firm assurance of the US for its defense of Korea.
Years ago, there was a Korean- language best seller fiction named The Mugunghwa Flower has opened. The books shows the ROK scientists having almost completed their development of nuclear weapons on their own, which was shortly before the death of the late former President Park Chung-hee. And this was over 20 years before the North Korean regime was suspected to have started developing nuclear weapons.
Many supporters of the late President Park believe that if Park had not been slain by former Korean Central Agency Director Kim Jae-kyu, the then Korean government should have succeeded in developing its own nuclear weapons.
Again, this was over 20 years before the North Korean regime had even dreamed of developing nuclear weapons.
Many people in Korea today, especially the established generation, feel that if the late President Park had been allowed to go ahead with his nuclear weapons development plan and succeeded in making the ROK a nuclear weapons- possessing country, there would be no such big problem now faced by the ROK, the US and the entire world.
Many Korean people, particularly the established generation, say, ?f President Park Chung-hee were alive today, we would never face the predicament we have to handle today!?They say that the ROK would have outstripped North Korea so far in development of nuclear weapons that the North would have given up its hope of developing its own nuclear weapons because it would be a sheer daydream to catch up with the ROK which was already so far away in the development of nuclear energy.
Against this backdrop, unlike his daughter (President Park Geun-hye), President Park Chung-hee still enjoys a good measure of support and admiration among the Korean people, especially the established generation for the ?iraculous achievements?done by him, including the eye-opening economic development attained in such a short period of time in the 1970s before his death.
White House officials said President Trump is to visit South Korea’s Camp Humphreys during his visit to South Korea to hail the U.S.-South Korean alliance.
“The message is that we are guests during a state visit of President Moon Jae-in, who’s invited us to make a visit to Camp Humphreys. So we’ll keep talking with the South Korean government to see if there are things that they want to adjust,” the official said.
According to a report by US Journalist Steve Herman on Oct. 17, President Trump told reporters "We'll take a look" at visiting the Korean Demilitarized Zone during his planned five-nation Asian trip next month.”
At the time, President Trump did not directly answer whether such a visit--similar to the one Vice President Mike Pence made in April--would be seen as provocative by the North Koreans.
"Every American President has visited the DMZ, and President Trump should, too," said a former U.S. ambassador to South Korea and assistant secretary of state, Christopher Hill.
Hill, now dean of the Korbel School of International Studies at the University of Denver, added that "timing is also something to weigh."
Trump has marshaled international support at the United Nations for economic sanctions against North Korea intended to deprive Pyongyang of export money to fund its nuclear weapons program.
But North Korean leader Kim Jong Un has continued nuclear and ballistic missile tests, certain to be a focal point of Trump's talks with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, South Korean President Moon Jae-in and Chinese President Xi Jinping.

Lee Kyung-sik  edt@koreapost.com

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