The U.S. Embassy in Seoul sent this cable to the State Department on February 18, 2010. It summarizes what Assistant Secretary Kurt Campbell learned from meetings with South Korean leaders and experts about the possibilities of succession in North Korea.
Asia policy expert Michael Green says the Obama administration is taking a cautious approach to any bilateral talks on North Korea's denuclearization, noting Pyongyang's backsliding after the Bush administration adopted a softer tone.
Korea expert Victor D. Cha says effective implementation of the UN sanctions imposed on Pyongyang in June prompted recent conciliatory gestures from the regime. He says the United States might resume bilateral talks with North Korea in addition to pursuing multilateral discussions on Pyongyang's nuclear program.
CFR Korea expert Scott A. Snyder says the visit to Pyongyang by former President Bill Clinton, which won the pardon of two U.S. journalists, provided a rare opportunity to gauge North Korea's views as nuclear talks remain stalled.
Human rights in North Korea have been on the diplomatic back burner with Washington preoccupied over the nuclear question. Human rights specialist Roberta Cohen proposes a multilateral security mechanism for Northeast Asia that focuses on a broad range of issues, from energy to human rights.
China remains Pyongyang's biggest trade partner and arguably has the most leverage on Kim Jong-un's regime. But analysts believe China's patience with its ally might be wearing thin, says this CFR Backgrounder.
The Council on Foreign Relations' David Rockefeller Studies Program—CFR's "think tank"—is home to more than seventy full-time, adjunct, and visiting scholars and practitioners (called "fellows"). Their expertise covers the world's major regions as well as the critical issues shaping today's global agenda. Download the printable CFR Experts Guide.
Campbell evaluates the implications of the Boko Haram insurgency and recommends that the United States support Nigerian efforts to address the drivers of Boko Haram, such as poverty and corruption, and to foster stronger ties with Nigerian civil society.
Koblentz argues that the United States should work with other nuclear-armed states to manage threats to nuclear stability in the near term and establish processes for multilateral arms control efforts over the longer term.
The authors argue that it is essential to begin working now to expand and establish rules and norms governing armed drones, thereby creating standards of behavior that other countries will be more likely to follow.
Learn more about CFR’s mission and its work over the past year in the 2014 Annual Report. The Annual Report spotlights new initiatives, high-profile events, and authoritative scholarship from CFR experts, and includes a message from CFR President Richard N. Haass. Read and download »