On July 3, the former US President Barack Obama attended the 8th Asian Leadership Conference hosted by Chosun Ilbo at the Walkerhill Hotel in Seoul. During the conference Obama lectured about his eight-year experience at the presidency and the topic of “Leadership to Change the World.”
During the lecture, Obama talked how delighted he was to be back in Seoul for the first time since finishing his presidency. He mentioned the strength of the alliance between South Korea and the United States and how soldiers from both nations fought to protect the freedom of the Korean peninsula.
He talked about the progress that South Korea has made over time the decades, thanks to the Korean people’s dedication to innovation and work ethic. He said that South Korea’s trade and commerce with the rest of the world has made the future get better with every generation.
Speaking of exports and exchange, the lecture turned to South Korea’s pop culture reaching the rest of the world. Obama commented on the popularity of the boy group SHINee with the American youth.
“Some of our young people in America have even learned to speak some Korean so they can keep up with the band “SHINee.”
“In exchange, I understand SHINee has developed a passion for America’s In-N-Out Burgers.”
Kpop fans reacted to Obama’s speech by pointing out that Obama was very specific about SHINee rather than mentioning Kpop in general.
For years, there have been jokes and fan edited photo that made Obama look like a fan of the group. However, with Obama referencing SHINee in his speech, maybe the fans were not far from the truth at all.
Regardless, if Obama is really a fan or not, it is nice that SHINee is being recognized for their ability to captivate fans international by the former U.S President himself.
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