Experts look at causes and possible solutions to current tensions on the Korean Peninsula
NK News.org, April 4, 2013
With a seemingly never-ending cycle of threats and counter-threats, North Korea has been in the news at an unusually high frequency in recent weeks.
From the North Korean side, threats of “pre-emptive nuclear strikes”, a severance of military hotlines, and the potential closure of the only joint run inter-Korean industrial complex (Kaesong) have all been on the cards in recent days and weeks.
From the South Korean and U.S. side, B-2 and B-52 nuclear bomber training sorties, missile defense deployments and ongoing Foal Eagle drills have been detailed to media by military spokespersons in Washington DC and Seoul at unprecedented levels of late.
While the nature of threats made on the Koreas seems to increase by the day, few know what Pyongyang’s over-arching strategy is, how likely it is that a military escalation will take place, or how tensions can possibly be dampened at this point.
To find out answers to these questions and more, NK NEWS spoke to three experts familiar with North Korea:
- Dr. Andrei Lankov – a former student at Kim Il Sung University in Pyongyang and Professor at Kookmin University, South Korea
- Dr. Leonid Petrov – a researcher at Australia National University in Melbourne, Australia
- Mr. Michael Madden – a North Korean leadership specialist and author of the excellent NK Leadership Watch blog