February 9th, 2016 14:00. Seoul Jong-ro ku Ministry of Foreign Affairs Minister's office.
"Ambassador Jackie. Welcome."
"Yes, good to see you. Minister Kim, it's been a while since I met you during your appointment ceremony."
"It seems so. We should meet more often, but I guess my excuse was being busy."
The tall, slightly thin, and well-groomed United States Ambassador to Korea, Jackie Robins, shook Minister of Foreign Affairs Kim Jae-hak's hand and sat down. They drank warm tea for 10 minutes and conversed with each other before Minister Kim Jae-hak brought out some documents to get to the main part of the conversation. "Ambassador Jackie, please take a look at this."
The documents Minister Kim Jae-hak brought out contained the withdrawal and deposit statements from the former Minister of National Defense, Lockheed Martin, and Lizzy Ahn's rebate information. As Jackie Robins read the documents, he began to have a serious look on his face. Some time had passed before Jackie put down the documents and spoke shortly. "Hmm...there's a tremendous amount of data."
"The price for the Aegis system and ships we acquired from Lockheed Martin caused a large loss$1 billionfrom Lizzy Ahn's lobbying. Our president ordered to officially request a repatriation of Lizzy Ahn and the executives of Lockheed Martin."
"Minister Kim, the American political sphere is also highly interested in the defense industry's corruption scandal that Korea is also investigating. It's due to Lockheed Martin that our nation has a significant influence over American politics. However, Lizzy Ahn's adoptive father is also a senator of the US Senate, and he's been pressuring his fellow senators. If this scandal hit the US, it wouldn't fare well for the Korean government either."
"Is that a threat?"
"Of course not. I'm just informing you of current American government affairs."
"If that's the case, that's a relief. The president's will to eradicate this corruption scandal is staunch."
The mood in the conference room started off light with greetings and casual conversation, but it was turning sour and awkward. Ambassador Jackie Robins was silent for a while sipping his tea, then spoke after setting the teacup down. "Minister Kim, I'd like to offer a suggestion."
"A suggestion? Yes, I'd like to hear it."
"Currently, the American political sphere is concerned about the fact Lockheed Martin and Lizzy Ahn are involved in the defense industry's corruption scandal going public. On the contrary, President Suh Hyun-woo is determined to solve this issue. Since that's the case, if the Korean government would stay silent about this matter, we'd be willing to offer weapons from Lockheed Martin that matches the financial loss, and we'd lower the restrictions on purchases of new weapons in the future. How does this offer sound?"
Minister Kim Jae-hak was in deep in thought after hearing Ambassador Jackie Robins's suggestion. He thought to himself.
We'll receive weaponry for free? They'd lower the restrictions regarding the purchase of new weapons from the senate that held us back? The most important thing is our relationship with the US. If our alliance with the US had any issues during this national security emergency, that would be our most critical loss
After he gathered his thoughts, the Minister answered, "We'd like one more clause in addition to this offer."
"What would it be?"
"We'd like an amendment to the US-Korea missile guidelines. We want the range of the missiles to be doubled from the previous one."
"What? That's a difficult request..."
"Ambassador! Korea's in an emergency state that could go to war at any moment. I believe the request to amend the missile guidelines in this situation is a valid one."
Ambassador Jackie Robins looked flustered from the firm tone of Minister Kim Jae-hak and his inability to come up with a response to his well-reasoned words. For a moment he sank into thought, drank a sip of tea, and he answered the Minister. "Let's go with 1,200km, then."
"Excellent. Can you make an official document?"
"Well, we'll have to."
The mood in the conference room shifted to light-hearted, like it had been at the beginning after the negotiations were concluded with Ambassador Jackie Robins.
Ambassador Jackie Robins already had prepared a negotiation term from the US state department before meeting with Korea's Minister of Foreign Affairs, but it was not an amendment to extend the range of missiles. However, Ambassador Jackie Robins had no choice but to accept the terms because the state department had instructed that he resolve the issue smoothly. This was proof that Lockheed Martin and Lizzy Ahn's adoptive father had significant influence over US politics.
Meanwhile, Minister of Foreign Affairs Kim Jae-hak utilized the negotiating skills he built up from 20 years of experience working in foreign nations to negotiate with Ambassador Jackie Robins regarding the defense industry corruption scandal. He even managed to amend the missile guidelines at the last moment. He believed it to be a successful one.
* * *
February 10th, 2016 10:30. Seoul Jong-ro ku Blue House conference room.
In the president's conference room, a meeting was being held regarding the last stages of this corruption scandal case: requesting the repatriation of the executives from Lockheed Martin and Lizzy Ahn.
"Arrests of all suspects have been madeexcept for the executives of Lockheed Martin and Lizzy Ahn, and we're working with the prosecutor's office to determine a trial date."
"Good work. As both the President and a citizen of this nation, I'm grateful for the amazing results the Secret Bureau of Corruption Investigation made in just a few weeks."
"I'm flattered, Mr. President; however, we're ashamed of the fact that we still haven't resolved the matter about Lockheed Martin and Lizzy Ahn."
"Yes. Lizzy Ahn and Lockheed Martin...these are large obstacles. Minister Kim, could you brief us on the negotiations you made with the American ambassador yesterday?"
Minister of Foreign Affairs Kim Jae-hak presented the negotiations document from Ambassador Jackie Robins and spoke. "In conclusion, we've agreed to drop the charges towards Lockheed Martin and Lizzy Ahn. Also, Lockheed Martin will reimburse the $1.6 trillion with weaponry, and they'll ease the regulations of the US Senate on purchasing new weapons. Lastly, we've agreed to amend the US-Korea missile guide and extend the range from 800km to 1,200km."
"We weren't able to completely unroot this corruption scandal, but considering the terms of the negotiations, it's not too bad. Great work."
"Thank you, Mr. President."
"Excellent. You even managed to renegotiate the terms on the missile guidelines. Ha, ha, ha."
"It's nothing. Director An did a better job."
National Security Director Oh Jang-soo chimed in on the relay of praise, "I think Director Oh and Minister Kim both are outstanding."
"I do have a question, though."
Chief Secretary Na Sung-tae asked a question amidst the happy atmosphere. "What is it?"
"It's suspicious the US is willing to offer this much, despite that their own military industry was involved."
"I can explain," Minister of Foreign Affairs Kim Jae-hak answered. "According to Ambassador Jackie, Lockheed Martin and Lizzy Ahn's adoptive father are both exercising their significant influence over American politics to cover up the incident, but there is a separate, real reason. Currently, America owns more than 200 large military industries, including Lockheed Martin and Boeing. Right now, these companies are netting significant profit. Also, Japan and Taiwan are attempting to import large quantities of weaponry under the guise of our national emergency. In this state of affairs, if the news that Lockheed Martin, who represents the US, was involved in a corruption scandal worth trillions of dollars, they will lose confidence. Therefore, Japan, Taiwan, and other nations trying to purchase weaponry from Lockheed Martin might have a spread of protests against the purchases by their citizens or dismantle the business entirely. The US probably agreed to our terms based on this assessment."
President Suh Hyun-woo continued, "You have a point. The NIS also reported information about Japan and Taiwan working to import large amounts of weaponry from America. Taiwan might not do so, but Japan is not a country that would overlook this opportunity. Minister Kim should make progress supplying weaponry from America as soon as possible, and he should finish the missile guidelines amendments for the higher range missiles."
The steady tensions in the Korean peninsula rekindled the North-Eastern Asian military spending competition, and South Korea was facing more difficulties amidst an economic crisis.
* * *
March 7th, 2016 13:30. Seoul Suh cho-ku central district court.
"The 25 people involved in the defense industry corruption scandal, including the Ex-Minister of Defense, have just arrived at the central district court as the accused stand trial. This corruption scandal is being called the worst one yet, for it involved many high-ranking government bureaucrats from the last presidency and the loss of over $1 trillion. During this trial, the ability to charge the crime of transfer regarding defense industry corruption cases is gaining traction, as Congress passed that law two months ago. If the crime of transfer can be charged, then the sentences given might be the largest yet."
"Reporter Park Dae-gil! I've heard this trial will be broadcasted live. What could this mean?"
"This trial is planned to be on a live broadcast. It seems the government is making the trial available to the general public to ensure a fair trial under the surveillance from the people, and it's meant to raise awareness towards defense industry corruption."
"I see. Reporter Park, good work. We'll begin broadcasting the trial on schedule in a moment from the CBS channel."
The defense industry corruption scandal's trial was broadcasted throughout the nation thirty minutes later, and the crimes of those involved in the scandal were revealed. It angered even the younger generation that had no interest in politics.