|All options are on the table|
On one hand, it's scary enough to see this short-fused POTUS pull out a new deadly toy in the region just days after striking Syria...
|'The Hustler? XI Jinping not comfortable with Trump's 8 ball Syria-North Korea combo (KIM Jong-un unhappy with Syria strikes) - Heng cartoon' (20170410 - twitter.com/theseoulvillage/status/851233905646555140)|
And I feel just a bit less worried now that Steve BANNON will get fewer chances to chime in where it matters most:
|Steve BANNON can't always control himself. Please don't let him walk again.|
For the moment, even if all options are on the table here as well, MOON confirms that he can't build trust beyond his own base, and that his easiest path to victory lies in the emergence of small candidates dividing the votes.
AHN Hee-jung trapped in unwinnable primaries and refocusing on 2022, and conservatives failing to find a champion, Cheol-soo quickly and effortlessly gathered across the aisle the Anyone-But-Moon front, and toughened up enough to show that this time he will go all the way. Recent polls give him the lead in both 5 and 6 candidates scenarii:
|'For the first time, a poll with 6 candidates shows AHN Cheol-soo ahead of MOON Jae-in (Chosun Ilbo). Later still can't reach beyond own base' (20170409 - twitter.com/theseoulvillage/status/851043736951824384)|
'Yonhap-KBS poll with 5 candidates confirms AHN Cheol-soo's lead over MOON Jae-in. <20 a="" href="http://english.yonhapnews.co.kr/news/2017/04/09/0200000000AEN20170409003900315.html" no="" regional="" rifts="" target="_blank" undecided="">english.yonhapnews.co.kr/news/2017/04/09/0200000000AEN20170409003900315.html20>' (20170410 - twitter.com/theseoulvillage/status/851227886631624704)
Interesting to see the latest poll* in detail:
- the traditional age rifts diminish (the younger generation still favor MOON, but less than before, and 'only' until 50)
- the traditional regional rifts seems less relevant (AHN leads in Jeolla-do - where he claimed many seats - and Gwangju as well as in conservative strongholds - Daegu and Gyeongsang-do rally behind him)
- fewer than 20% remain undecided
It will be more about character and issues than ideology. So get ready for April surprises.
A positive April surprise would be the arrest of WOO Byung-woo. Korean justice needs to be purged from its enemies from within, but compromission is so pervasive that many could fall, and one can wonder if judges and prosecutors will have the courage to open Pandora's box.
Still better than a nuclear explosion. And as the myth goes, hope appears only after all evils have been released from the box.
But as the percentage of judges who keep heading for the same friendly structures after retirement tells us, the capacity to achieve total success looks like the ultimate myth.
Seoul Village 2017
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* "Ahn beats Moon for first time in hypothetical five-way race: poll" (Yonhap News 20170410)