May 22, 2022

Biden visit tests new South Korean president, a foreign policy novice

Source: The Washington Post

Journalist: Michelle Ye Hee Lee

Biden’s trip arrived unusually early in Yoon’s term and was arranged while the presidential transition team was still hiring staff, setting up their offices and working out the logistics of a presidential office.

But the two sides had a template off which to work: the agreement last year between the Biden team and Moon Jae-in’s administration to expand the military alliance into one that also encompasses economic security.

Now, Yoon faces the challenge of balancing his foreign policy ambitions with an overflowing domestic policy agenda, said Duyeon Kim, a Seoul-based adjunct senior fellow at the Indo-Pacific Security Program at the Center for a New American Security. Yoon “needs to prove himself at home this year because his election victory was so razor thin.”

“So, we’ll have to see if Yoon has the bandwidth and governing style to be able to give both domestic and foreign policies the attention they need,” Kim said.

Read the full story and more from The Washington Post.


  • Dr. Duyeon Kim

    Adjunct Senior Fellow, Indo-Pacific Security Program

    Duyeon Kim, PhD, is an adjunct senior fellow with the Indo-Pacific Security Program at CNAS based in Seoul. Her expertise includes the two Koreas, nuclear nonproliferation, ar...