Absent evidence of N. Korea's involvement, S. Korea's response to the recent sinking of one of its ships has been measured. But public anger about the incident will impact June elections and increase scrutiny of the defense ministry, says CFR Korea expert Scott Snyder.
A South Korean security expert says it is likely that North Korea will ratchet up pressure over the summer through threats and possible missile tests if Washington refuses to engage Pyongyang in direct talks.
Marcus Noland outlines two recent surveys of North Korean refugees in China and South Korea which found, not surprisingly, that North Koreans privately hold highly critical views of the regime and are rather miserable.
This report from the International Crisis Group provides an overview of the existing humanitarian crisis in North Korea and how tightening sanctions and domestic problems have deepened the DPRK human security tragedy.
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.
The authors argue that the United States has responded inadequately to the rise of Chinese power and recommend placing less strategic emphasis on the goal of integrating China into the international system and more on balancing China's rise.
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.
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