Forecast for the World in 2012
Thorough analysis of the world in 2012 from international politics to Mayan prophecies

A bad scenario in which the Taiwanese Presidential Election is invalidated

Yet, there is one potential bad scenario. The Taiwanese Presidential election was originally due in April. Now it has been rescheduled for January along with the general elections for the legislature. This rescheduling reportedly will bring electoral gain for the ruling National Party (KMT). However, if the voter turnout increases, it works in favor of the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) since Taiwanese popular sentiments are pro-independent.

Thus, the bad scenario would begin if the DPP won the presidential election. Under their Constitution, the presidential succession takes place in May. There is a concern if the KMT would really hand over the presidential post. There are many ways to prevent this such as investigating election violations etc.

- Indeed, the former president Chen-Shui-bian was arrested.

There are various ways: For instance, they can bring the case to the court. If the demonstrations and the counter demonstrations occur and escalate into a public disturbance, then China could take advantage of the situation to intervene in Taiwan as an internal affair. The period between next January and May is when the hawks in China still remain strong. The first half of 2012 is the most critical period of the next year. Although this potential scenario is overlooked now, if the DPP wins the election, everyone should start worrying immediately.

Putin is both pro- and anti-China

- In Russia, Prime Minister Putin is going to come back as the President.

In November 2010, President Medvedev visited Japan to attend the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) summit in Yokohama. On his way, he visited Kunashiri Island, (one of the four Russian-held islands off Hokkaido claimed by Japan). Prime Minister Naoto Kan should have called off the meeting with Medvedev. Then, since Russia is a democratic country to some extent, the Russian public would have judged that “Medvedev has worsened the Japan-Russia relationship by doing what he should not have done.”

- At that point, the next Russian President was not certain. Medvedev was competing with Putin for higher approval rating.

If Medvedev had blundered at that point, it would not have been a bad thing for Putin. Mr. Kan missed the perfect opportunity to present the official Japanese stand on the Northern Territories to Russia.

- Although Mr. Putin occasionally appeared to be pro-China, he is basically vigilant against China, isn’t he?

I think both points are correct. In the end, the relationship with the U.S is the most important one for every country. He may try to make use of the Shanghai Treaty Organization (STO), which is composed of Russia, China and countries of Central Asia, as a tool to pressure the U.S. However, he would not support China if the U.S-China relationship is deteriorating. He does not wish to worsen the U.S- Russia relationship.

Now Russian forces are moving towards the North. One of the reasons is that after having gone through the financial hardship (after the collapse of the Soviet Union), Russia now eventually has the funding to build warships. On the other hand, Russia reportedly has explained to the U.S. force that it is vigilance against China. Therefore, he will take both pro and anti-China stances as he has shown up until now.

- In South Korea, will the Hannara (Grand National) Party manage to win the presidential election to succeed President Lee Myung-bak?

If Park Geun-hye is nominated as the presidential candidate, the Hannara Party will win. There are still a lot of people who keep fond memories of her father, the former President Park Chung-hee. Ms. Park herself is a clean upright lady. If the Hannara Party continues to be in power, it will be a relief for both Japan and the U.S. Yet, we cannot rule out the possibility of a Hannara Party split. If the opposition party wins, it will not be a good thing for Japan and the U.S.

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Forecast for the World in 2012
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