These attempts to present the Olympics as a communist event because of North Korea's participation could make us an worldwide laughingstock.
South Korean businessmen are pushing for a trip to North Korea around the end of next month to inspect their facilities at the now-shuttered joint factory park in the North's border city of Kaesong, the head of a private task force said Wednesday. After months of missile and nuclear tests and a war of words between Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, the two Koreas agreed this month to march jointly at the opening ceremony under a unified flag. "The proponents of Juche Thought who have taken over the Blue House and the government are attempting to put the destiny of this country and its people into the hands of Kim Jong-un", said Hong Joon-pyo, leader of the Liberty Korea Party, during his New Year's press conference on January 22.
"North Korea, like any national Olympic committee, has the right and even obligation to take part in the Olympic Games", he said.
Shin Han-yong, the head of a task force that speaks for all 123 South Korean firms that operated factories in Kaesong, said they will seek government approval for a trip between the end of the PyeongChang Winter Games on February 25 and the beginning of the Paralympics on March 9.
Pence will be present at the games not just for ceremonial purposes but to try to offset the "charade" he expects the North Koreans to put on when they send a team and also march in the opening ceremony with their South Korean counterparts, according to the official traveling with the vice president and speaking on condition of anonymity.More news: Saudi-led Arab Coalition launches a major humanitarian operation in Yemen
More news: Senate GOP will seek stay to Pa. Supreme Court redistricting decision
More news: China warns off U.S. destroyer near South China Sea's strategic Scarborough Shoal
It's reasonable for the South Korean government to take steps to facilitate the on-site work by the preliminary review team under Hyon Song-wol, which is now visiting South Korea.
"And the most important value we want to deliver through the ceremonies is peace", said executive creative director of Olympic Ceremonies Seung Whan Song.
Following a tour of potential musical venues by a North Korean delegation over the weekend, two concert halls will be used to celebrate the Olympics and the unification efforts between North and South Korea. "Everyone in South Korea should respect (the) excellent work having been done by the organizing committee (of PyeongChang 2018)", he said.
While President Moon hails the opportunity as a "miraculously earned" chance at relieving tensions between the neighbors, others, such as Bong Young-shik, a visiting research fellow at Yonsei University, said that "we have seen this all before" in reference to attempts at Korean solidarity, adding that "nothing lasted". Experts say the move risks giving Kim's heavily sanctioned government legitimacy and some much-needed cash.
To do this, the Moon administration believes the two Koreas need to build trust through dialogue. "I understand the meaning of sweat and tears shed by our athletes, and they'll be under tremendous pressure because the Olympics will be at home".