SEOUL, ($1=1,176.10 South Korean Wons) – The development of the situation in Afghanistan, where the power in place was swept away in a matter of weeks by the Taliban in favor of the military withdrawal of the United States, will not have failed to be exploited by Chinese propaganda. Indeed, the media in the line of the Chinese Communist Party [CCP] took the Afghan example to assert that Taiwan could meet an identical fate, that is to say, an “abandonment” by the United States as soon as the Army People’s Liberation [PLA] will try to reunite the island with mainland China by force.
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In any case, in South Korea, the Afghan policy of the United States questions. During wartime, operational control of South Korean troops [OPCON] is currently scheduled to be handed over to US forces, which have around 28,500 troops in the country. In the era of the Trump administration, there was talk of revising this provision. Especially since it was a goal of Moon Jae-in, the incumbent South Korean president. But since the change of tenant at the White House and with the covid-19 pandemic, this request from Seoul has not yet materialized.
Also, the leader of the Democratic Party [PD], currently in power in Seoul, Song Young-Gil launched an appeal to accelerate the movement, given, precisely, the Afghan crisis.
“The US withdrawal from Afghanistan underscores the need for South Korea to quickly regain operational control of its troops in times of war,” said Song Young-Gil.
The South Korean official mainly reacted to a comment by Marc Thiessen, the former pen of President George W. Bush who now writes for the Washington Post. “The North Korean military is more advanced than the Taliban. The point is, South Korea could not defend itself without the help of the United States. If you do not agree, we can economic billions of dollars each year and withdraw our troops,” said via Twitter, this columnist in delicacy with Donald Trump.
This opinion is also shared by Condoleeza Rice, the former head of American diplomacy during George W. Bush’s second term. In a post published by the Washington Post, she estimated that a “long engagement” of American troops in Afghanistan could have avoided the situation in which this country now finds itself.
And, to support her demonstration, she cited the example of South Korea, asserting that the American military presence in this country was an “admission that even the South Korean army”, yet endowed with “sophisticated” capabilities, cannot “deter North Korea on its own”.
For the leader of the South Korean Democratic Party, such comments are not acceptable. “It is libelous to compare South Korea’s advanced military and economy to those of Afghanistan,” especially since South Korean forces are “well equipped” to counter North Korea, he said. he estimated.
However, he also admitted that “the alliance between Seoul and Washington remains necessary to maintain a balance of power and peace in Northeast Asia and to deter provocations from North Korea.” But, he insisted, “the legitimacy of defense is just as important as the alliance, and that is why the South must speed up the transfer of OPCON.”
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