Korean-American to Reject Top South Korean Government Job

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Kim Jeong-hoon (Jeong H. Kim), a Korean American businessman and former US Navy officer nominated by newly-inaugurated conservative president Park Geun-hye to be a South Korean government minister has withdrawn his candidacy, citing a confrontational political climate, and public opposition to his appointment.

“I left behind what I have built in the United States and returned home so I could devote the rest of my life to the country where I was born, but as I watched the confusion over the government reorganisation bill, my dreams were also shattered,” Kim told a press conference.

The bill, which is currently being debated by South Korean lawmakers, makes the case for a new ‘Future Creation and Science’ ministry that combines the remit of science and technology ministries under the formation of a new government body.

Korea’s main opposition party, the DUP (Democratic United Party), oppose the position, claiming Park’s government could use the post for closer control of the South Korean media (an industry the South Korean government still has much influence over). However, political mud-slinging, questioning the allegiance of an American to the Korean state, have also been blamed for ending the process.

The story was one of the most-commented articles this week, attracting a high number of comments across several different articles. President Park has not-yet been able to assemble a cabinet following her inauguration last week.

Comments from Nate:

wind****:

What are you sorry about… WE are sorry. You wanted to devote your life for the motherland, giving up your US citizenship, wealth and fame, but the assemblymen are arguing and delaying the government reorganization bill for ridiculous reasons. You might as well be fucking pissed off… The funny thing is, they praised you for being a proud Korean before you were a minister candidate. Now that you’ve been nominated to be a minister, they’re like ‘Yankee, go home’. Who wouldn’t get pissed off?

dooo****:

The opposition party should look in the mirror. He emigrated to the US when he was a middle school student and has kept his Korean name so far. And they denigrate him for being a ‘Yankee’.

e631****:

Kim looked very upset during the press conference. The Democratic United Party [DUP] spokesperson even added oil to the fire, criticising him for being visibly upset about the situation. Then he left Korea the very next day. ㅜㅜ Can you guys [DUP] look in the mirror? ㅡㅡ

youh****:

It wasn’t enough to treat him like a hero on par with Ahn Cheol-su. But fucking crazy DUP trashes were calling him an American agent. Why would he come for such poor treatment, giving up hundreds of million dollars and staying away from his family like that?

jazz****:

The bastards, who paid billions of dollars of tributes to fucking Kim Jong Il, oppose Kim Jeong-hoon for his previous technical advisor role in CIA? Ridiculous. What’s so bad about his career in CIA? American foreign policies’ biggest beneficiary has been South Korea. What’s so wrong about working for CIA that plays a major role in such policies? You guys’ll oppose anything that might upset Dear General Kim Jong-un. ‘Untouchable Lado [Jeolla-do]’. Hope this becomes a new meme.

opti****:

Kim Jeong-hoon was born in a poor family and moved to America for his father’s work. DUP Park Young-seon and Jeong Dong-young sent their children to expensive private schools in America. His nationality is the problem? Check out his interview and see whether his level of Korean is from someone who decided to live only as an American. Despite his 35 years in the US, his Korean pronunciation is better than Park Chan-ho who lived in the US for 18 years. He donated 2 million dollars to support Korean studies and also donated a large sum of money to the University of Maryland to help students from Korea. He gave Korean names to his own company as well as his two daughters. He was willing to pay hundreds of million dollars of taxes for giving up his American citizenship and devote himself to his motherland. And you kicked him out? He is established in the US. He is in the American top 1% and has ties with high-ranking officials. Would it be comfortable for him to live in America or in Korea where he has no personal connections? What about money? He is the president of the world-renowned Bell Labs and the CEO of world-renowned telecommunications equipment company Alcatel-Lucent. How would this compare to the salary of a minister in Korea? Despite all these odds, he tried to work for Korea… If I vote for any current DUP figures in the future, I’m not even human, fuck.

ilov****:

Lee Seok-ki is well and alive whereas Kim Jeong-hoon was kicked out… Ahn Cheol-su the Hesitating, who said there’s no North Korean spy in this day and age, has come back to Korea… This country will go under soon. I will emigrate ASAP.

siro****:

DUP jwajoms seem to be waiting for war to break out. Then, rich, young and bright people will all flee…

jaeh****:

One talented man has left…

sos6****:

Fucking DUP bitches will agree only if we give a seat to a real commie from North Korea.

kude****:

China and other countries are all desperately trying to bring in talented individuals but our country kicks them out even if they want to come. That’s your DUP. Nothing new.

itsc****:

DUP bastards…

wayb****:

Sigh, lefty commie garbage fucks

jeta****:

DUP did it again, ke ke ke. Lee Sun-shin [revered war hero] was exiled in the middle of war. I guess it might have happened like this, ke ke ke. This incident must have left a huge impression on talented overseas Koreans. Working for your motherland only humiliates you, ke ke ke.

kimy****:

Pity. Thanks to Jongpuk Lee Seok-ki (who tried to turn public opinion against Kim for his CIA career and claims not singing the national anthem is being patriotic), a good man has left.

okhf****:

You’ve got to acknowledge his talent. We’ve lost one talented man. He has earned so much money only with his own talent. I envy him…ㅠㅠ

ack7****:

Kim ran away because he had something suspicious. Bastard.

caor****:

Kim avoided giving an answer when he was asked what he would do if there is a conflict of national interest between America and Korea. Isn’t this telling? Defend only what you can.

dldd****:

DUP members are low-lives who go hand in hand with the pirate broadcast Naggomsu. What do you expect? Those trashes who said they would find the truth sacrificing themselves… Where are they? Naggomsu bugs and jwajom trashes bought their garbage books and they are travelling around with that money. They haven’t even come back to Korea. And DUP is in good terms with such group spreading false rumors. All they do is douchebaggery. They call Saenuri thugs but Roh Mu-hyun’s impreachment was led by DUP and DUP’s brawls in the National Assembly were worse. How dare they even brought a hammer and a tear bomb into the National Assembly where they are supposed to deal with the will of people? How can jwajom treat them like heroes? DUP opposes for the sake of opposition. They won’t be able to do this for long. They will be crushed soon.

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  • commander

    With the nation’s democracy gaining maturity in the throes of clashes and conflicts, a phenomenon that is widely found in advanced democracies, the administration id no longer able to press ahead with its bill without consultation and discussion with the legislature.

    The still vivid memory of media control by former preaident Lee Myung-bak understandably and compellingly gives the opposition party the reason for the objection to the transfer of broadcasting oversight agency’s main fumctions to the newly proposed mammoth ministry.

    Without dispelling the concerns and suspicion over possible ripple affects from power concentration, the present political standoff will not be broken in Park’s favor.

    Kim’s withdrawl of candidacy leaves a lot to be desired. Legislative confrontation can be viewed a disappointingly dysfunctional parliament but also seen as ample evidence of a democratic process that can reconcile conflicting values and arguments.

    Continued political standoff in Washington over fiscal spending and a higher tax for the well to do can be a case in point.

    This means his decision might be somewhat hasty. His intial aspiration to honorably serve his mother country should have overrided uncertainty and public concerns over his truthfulness about his resolve for the nation’s renewed development.

  • Yu Bum Suk

    I’d love to see what would happen if they brought Michelle Rhee in to be minister of education.

  • redgirls

    What a pity, he is such a clever fellow.

  • A Gawd Dang Mongolian

    Smart man. It takes a special kind of sleazeball to move into a political sh*tstorm with a straight face.

  • ChuckRamone

    Some people just aren’t cut out for the world of politics. For me, it speaks in his favor that he’s not the type to enter that world.

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