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Crisis on the Korean Peninsula

Crisis on the Korean Peninsula by Christoph Bluth
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For many in the West, North Korea is a secretive, reclusive, and enigmatic country, a rogue state that threatens the world with its nuclear program and ballistic missiles. Confronted with its numerous provocations involving nuclear tests and missile launches, however, the international community still has not formulated a coherent response.

So how do we understand the crisis on the Korean peninsula that has persisted well beyond the end of the Cold War? Christoph Bluth presents an in-depth analytical account of North Korea’s development from a Soviet satellite to a failed state in the post–Cold War period. He also explains South Korea’s transition from a military dictatorship to a modern democracy with a thriving economy. Based on interviews with key policymakers and experts located in South Korea, Bluth’s study throws light on Korean hopes for unification and the future of the U.S.–Republic of Korea alliance.

U.S. policy toward North Korea has been politically controversial, with some supporting engagement and negotiations, and others calling for isolating the regime on the basis that it cannot be trusted. Neither approach will work, according to Bluth, who explains that North Korea’s foreign and security policy is the result of both the internal and external threats to the survival of a regime that can no longer sustain itself.

A suitable text for undergraduates as well as postgraduates, this book will be of interest to anyone with an interest in Korea, international security, and, in particular, nuclear nonproliferation.
Potomac Books; October 2011
252 pages; ISBN 9781597975773
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Title: Crisis on the Korean Peninsula
Author: Christoph Bluth