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  • Author: Choong Nam Kim
  • Publication Date: 09-2007
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: International Journal of Korean Studies
  • Institution: International Council on Korean Studies
  • Abstract: The Republic of Korea (ROK) requires a new strategic vision and a workable new strategy befitting a changing security environment and changing national interests. Having been preoccupied with an engagement policy toward Pyongyang, South Korea seems to be lacking a long-term strategic vision beyond the peninsula. In other words, its national strategy is not well defined. Moreover, the South Korean people are sharply divided over their country's security and foreign policies.
  • Political Geography: South Korea, Pyongyang
  • Author: Yoon-Shik Park
  • Publication Date: 03-2007
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: International Journal of Korean Studies
  • Institution: International Council on Korean Studies
  • Abstract: In October 2006, North Korea (officially the Democratic People's Republic of Korea or DPRK in short) tested a nuclear bomb based on plutonium, thus proclaiming it to be a full member of the select nuclear bomb club. Whether the test was a resounding success or not is still not fully resolved, and the status of North Korea's uranium enrichment program is yet to be admitted by the DPRK government. Faced with strong international condemnation and a movement towards punitive sanctions coordinated by the United Nations, DPRK reached an agreement at the six party talks on February 13, 2007, under which DPRK eventually agreed to abandon its nuclear programs in return for aid. The accord implements a deal reached in September 2005, but the talks had stalled until early 2007. Paradoxically, a nuclear North Korea may lead to successful denuclearization of the Korean peninsula and robust economic developments there. As the DPRK regime feels confident enough in security terms now that it is recognized as a nuclear club member, it can enter into a “big deal” with its main opposing powers, the United States, Japan and South Korea, for swapping its nuclear weapons program for an iron-clad security guarantee and massive economic assistance for the modernization of the DPRK economy.
  • Political Geography: Japan, South Korea, North Korea
  • Author: Choong Nam Kim
  • Publication Date: 03-2007
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: International Journal of Korean Studies
  • Institution: International Council on Korean Studies
  • Abstract: South Korea (Korea hereafter) has represented one of the most successful cases in the history of nation building. The country, known as “an East Asian model of economic prosperity and political democracy,” emerged as a modern nation in a single generation and under the most trying circumstances—the legacy of colonial rule, national division, the Korean War and continual confrontation with the Communist North. Its success in nation building is extraordinary, not only in the history of this country, but also in comparison with other third world countries.
  • Political Geography: East Asia, South Korea, Korea
  • Author: Bruce E. Bechtol, Jr.
  • Publication Date: 09-2006
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: International Journal of Korean Studies
  • Institution: International Council on Korean Studies
  • Abstract: The foreign policy issue regarding the ROK-US alliance that dominated the news headlines in South Korea for much of the spring and summer of 2006 focused on Wartime Operational Control (OPCON) of ROK and US forces and how this command and control relationship would change in coming years. Unfortunately, this issue has received almost no attention in the United States, where security concerns relating to other regions in the world have consistently dominated the headlines. In the view of the author, this has the potential to be extremely dangerous, as South Korea is Washington's 7th largest trading partner, a staunch and loyal ally for six decades, and a country that has become culturally, economically, and politically linked to many aspects of society in the United States.
  • Political Geography: United States, South Korea
  • Author: Young Whan Kihl
  • Publication Date: 03-2006
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: International Journal of Korean Studies
  • Institution: International Council on Korean Studies
  • Abstract: The Kim Jong-Il Government's policy toward South Korea is an extension not only of North-South Korea relations, especially since the historic June 2000 North-South summit meeting in Pyongyang, but also of the DPRK domestic politics of the Kim regime survival strategy. How are the domestic policy agenda of “Building the Kangsong Taeguk (Strong and Prosperous Great Power) and “the Military-First Politics,” for instance, related to the Kim Government policy and strategy toward the South? What are the implications for Pyongyang's strategy of balancing against major powers' competing interests and driving a wedge between Seoul and its allies in Tokyo and Washington?
  • Political Geography: Washington, South Korea, Tokyo, Pyongyang
  • Author: Hong Nack Kim
  • Publication Date: 03-2006
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: International Journal of Korean Studies
  • Institution: International Council on Korean Studies
  • Abstract: In his inaugural address in February 2003, President Roh Moo- Hyun declared his intention not only to retain his predecessor's North Korea policy (the “sunshine policy”) but also to expand the scope and the content of the “sunshine policy” in order to build a “structure of peace” on the Korean Peninsula. Dubbed as the Policy for Peace and Prosperity,” it envisions three stages of development. In the first stage, South Korea seeks to resolve the North Korean nuclear issue and facilitate peace on the Korean Peninsula. In the second stage, Seoul seeks to develop further inter- Korean economic cooperation and lay the foundation for a peace regime. In the third and final stage, the policy is to launch a peace regime on the Korean Peninsula. In implementing the North Korea policy, Roh has pledged to adhere to four basic principles: (1) all issues should be resolved through dialogue; (2) priorities should be placed on building mutual trust and “upholding reciprocity”; (3) the inter-Korean issues should be resolved by South and North Korea in cooperation with the international community; and, (4) Seoul will strive to ensure transparency, expand citizen participation, and secure “bipartisan support” in implementing North Korea policy.
  • Political Geography: South Korea, North Korea
  • Author: Bill Cooper, Mark Manyin
  • Publication Date: 03-2006
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: International Journal of Korean Studies
  • Institution: International Council on Korean Studies
  • Abstract: On February 2, 2006, United States Trade Representative (USTR) Robert Portman and South Korean Trade Minister Kim Hyun-chong announced their two countries= intention to negotiate a free trade agreement (FTA). The announcement came after many years of official and unofficial discussions of the feasibility of concluding an FTA. The climate for launching the negotiations improved following South Korean willingness to address four areas of concern to the United States: beef, automobiles, pharmaceuticals, and Ascreen quotas.@ (Screen quotas limit the amount of screen time that foreign films can be shown.)
  • Political Geography: United States, South Korea
  • Author: Robert Sutter
  • Publication Date: 03-2006
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: International Journal of Korean Studies
  • Institution: International Council on Korean Studies
  • Abstract: This article assesses recent developments and the current state of play in China's relations with South Korea in order to test the widely publicized proposition that China's rise in Asia is being accompanied by an emerging China-centered regional order that is marginalizing the influence of the previous regional leader, the United States. A careful analysis of China's relations with its various neighboring countries in recent years shows that China has made the most significant gains in relations with South Korea, and these gains have coincided with a decline in US influence in South Korea brought on by major difficulties in the South Korean-US alliance relationship. Thus, if China's rise is leading to a China-centered order in Asia that marginalizes the influence of the United States, the trends in the South Korean- China relationship in the context of South Korean-US developments should provide important evidence and indicators.
  • Political Geography: United States, China, Asia, South Korea
  • Author: Youn-Suk Kim
  • Publication Date: 09-2005
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: International Journal of Korean Studies
  • Institution: International Council on Korean Studies
  • Abstract: Battered by a nearly bankrupted economy and continuous food shortages, North Korea has been cautiously opening its doors to strike economic deals with South Korea in recent years. The closed nature of the North's economy has resulted in low industrial productivity and efficiency, technological backwardness, and, in the end, economic stagnation. The North is also concerned that with the disparity in economic levels, unification with the South might result in the virtual absorption of the North into the South. Thus, the South's policy in this regard has been to reassure the North that unity through absorption is neither feasible nor desirable under the current state of military confrontation.
  • Political Geography: South Korea, North Korea
  • Author: Dick K. Nanto
  • Publication Date: 09-2005
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: International Journal of Korean Studies
  • Institution: International Council on Korean Studies
  • Abstract: North Korea stands at a crossroads now that is every bit as momentous as its decision to invade South Korea in 1950. What Kim Jong-il does over the short- and medium-term will put his country either on a path leading to reconciliation with the world and economic and military security or a path leading to a nuclear standoff or military hostilities. As this drama plays out on the world stage, the economy of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea plays a critical role. Economic forces play a twopronged role. Starvation and dismal economic conditions exert pressures on Pyongyang from inside the country, while the prospect of economic assistance and normalized trade and investment relations with other nations provide a powerful incentive for the North Korean leaders to undertake actions that otherwise would be difficult. North Korean is in transition. It can turn back state socialism, state control, and starvation, or it can take the road of China and the states of the Former Soviet Union and join the rest of the world.
  • Political Geography: South Korea, North Korea, Korea