Park Geun-hye Inaugurated as South Korean President


Park Geun-hye was officially inaugurated yesterday, becoming Seoul’s first female president, elected on a platform of ‘economic democratisation’ and the promise to improve North-South relations.

Park came under a lot of fire from netizens during her election campaign after unconfirmed rumours that she used an iPad during a televised debate and encouraged a South Korean spy agency to influence the presidential election.

She was also unable to shake the ‘daughter of a dictator‘ image that has followed her career, despite apologising for her father’s crimes.

Nevertheless, Park won a tightly-contested election, and started her five-year term yesterday. In her inauguration speech, she called on North Korea to abandon its nuclear capabilities, and has already put the ROK military on high alert in one of her first moves as Commander-in-chief.

PSY, whom some might now consider to be South Korea’s more prominent but bizarre cultural president, performed Gangnam Style at the inauguration ceremony.


Comments from Nate:


Contrary to the previous administration that started well, yet ended badly, I hope you make a successful president in spite of a rough start full with many opponents and controversies. I hope you make the security of the Korean Peninsula, welfare for all citizens, and the establishment of a fair legal system your priorities. I firmly believe you’ll pull it off President Park. God bless you!


President Park Geun-hye, congratulations on your inauguration. Although it’s not easy to unite generations divided into old and young, and left and right, I hope you’ll serve people sincerely and with wisdom for the next five years. We will follow you with trust. Above all, please get rid of the jongbuk, populists, and anti-nationalists.


Madam President, congratulations. I hope you will stick by the promises made in your inauguration speech.


What’s wrong with some of you; trying to sensationalise things from day one, ruining the atmosphere? Don’t call yourselves ‘liberal’ ke. You’re not liberals, you’re commies ke. The two things are not the same.


I hope you will be remembered both as Korea’s first female AND most successful president.


Long live the Republic of Korea; Long live President Park.


I hope you’ll become one of those leaders who can really empathise with the people’s sorrow.

South Korea's incoming President Park Geun-hye leaves her private residence before her inauguration to be held at parliament in Seoul


I hate people who are quick to criticise her even before her first day in office… Whether you supported her during the election or not, she’s our president now; it’s a shame some of you seem so determined to not help her do her job.


I liked when she said the North must stop pissing around and wasting resources. ke ke


The president doesn’t own this country or the ability to get things done all by herself. When all of us put the effort in for the sake of advancing the nation and harmonious coexistence among Koreans, miracles become a reality. Let’s become both cheerleaders and watchers of the Blue House to realise a second miracle on the Han River. President Park and her cabinet, National Assembly members and the people should all cooperate for a common goal. Stop fighting over ideological issues and start working together to bring about a better future for the nation. You are the future of the Republic of Korea.


She was doing really well delivering a speech without reading the script… surprising.


I always tear up when watching the inauguration ceremony. Even if you didn’t want to see her elected, let’s bless her anyway. Let’s pray for her to lead this little nation, Korea, for the better. After all, we’re all Koreans here; we’ve got the same history, ancestors, and nationality.


Long Live the Republic of Korea


Long Live Lady Gak-ha [A play on ‘Lady Gaga’, ‘Gak-ha’ is a formal term of address, similar to ‘your excellency’]


Why was Chun Does-tanks there? Motherfucker!


Did you see this? Ms. President. As you read these comments, unemployment amongst the young is serious. Finding it hard to get a job, discontent with society, they turn themselves into obsessed keyboard warriors and write vicious comments. I hope you’ll tackle unemployment during your term to do something about this.

Comments from the Hankyoreh:


It was quite entertaining to watch an elementary student [alluding to Park’s speech] practicing her speech at a speech hagwon [academy]. I just hope she’ll lead the nation according to what she’s said today.

Ki-hyeok Kim:

I’m sure the president is going to get fixated on the ‘growth’ of the economy [rather than ‘economic democratization’], even though the Korean economy has become too mature to achieve the same amount of speed and growth as we achieved before. I was really hoping for a president who’s capable of steering a capitalist economy the right way, but it seems like we’ve got ourselves yet another pariah capitalist. –;


When I saw her in that dress, it felt like the monarchy had come back, except the gender of the throne’s occupant is different. I found the speech quite tolerable, but seeing her in the dress reminded me of the dear oppa Chun Doo-hwan (who sent 600 billion won to Park back in 1978)’s wife’s royal gown.


The miracle on the Han River? Please. I just hope you don’t make us faint from messing anything up…


I’ve always thought the miracle of the Han River was made possible at the expense of workers giving up their human rights, the loss of soldiers sent to fight in Vietnam, the sweat of the nurses and mine workers who worked in Germany, with the great help of foreign loans and the second Chancellor of Germany Erhard’s advice. I’m quite surprised that, from watching the inauguration ceremony, it sounds like it was the dictator who did all the hard work. It’s absurd. If he was such a great leader, why was he killed by his subordinate? (Kim Jae-kyoo’s final statement said he wanted to prevent further sacrifices of the people)


You’re going on about ‘the happiness of the people’ etc, but you know what? There’s nothing more cruel than to torture and slap someone when they’ve got a smile on their face. You don’t seem hesitant to sue people for making you feel uncomfortable, so how are you gonna serve the people to make them happy? The happiness you’ve been showing us only serves you, not the rest of us.

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