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Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

Tracking Number:  134567

Title:  "US Force Withdrawal From ROK Won't Endanger Security." National Defense University Seminar paper by Steven Sudderth. (900403)

Date:  19900403


04/03/90 *

(Editor's Note: This is another in the ad hoc series of papers chosen from among those presented at the recent NDU symposium on the Pacific Basin. Since these papers present views that are not necessarily in consonance with U.S. policy, PAOs and IOs may wish to review them carefully before using them in support of program activities.)

U.S. FORCE WITHDRAWAL FROM ROK WON'T ENDANGER SECURITY (Text: NDU seminar paper by Steven Sudderth) (5100)

Washington -- A substantial withdrawal of U.S. forces from South Korea won't endanger security on the peninsula because of current international and internal constraints on North Korean military aggression, according to Steven K. Sudderth, research associate at the Hoover Institution, Stanford University.

In a paper presented March 2 at the National Defense University's annual Pacific Symposium, Sudderth notes that "the leadership in North Korea is in a state of transition not conducive to an act of aggression." Furthermore, widespread shortages of food and other basic necessities reduce North Korea's combat sustainability as well as diminish national morale.

China and the Soviet Union, both North Korea's allies, recognize that hostilities on the peninsula would jeopardize their own fast-growing economic interests in the Republic of Korea. Their reluctance to aid North Korea in war reduces the likelihood of it ever happening, Sudderth writes.

These circumstances allow greater flexibility in American force deployment, Sudderth argues. "Significant American force withdrawals can now be made, including most if not all of the 2nd Infantry Division and its support units at Yongsan, without a corresponding decline in Korean security," he writes.

The text of Sudderth's paper follows:

(begin text)

For over thirty-five years, a vital strategic interest of the United States has been the deterrence of North Korean aggression against the Republic of Korea (ROK). This has been accomplished with the presence of American ground, naval, and air forces on the peninsula combined with the growing capabilities of the ROK armed forces. That objective is no less important today. However, a changing environment both on the Korean peninsula and in the region requires a reevaluation of the North Korean threat to better assess the most effective and efficient means of maintaining that deterrence.

From a strictly military point of view, North Korea remains a dangerous foe. It maintains the world's fifth

GE 2 pxf203 largest armed force with 65 percent of its ground forces, 57 percent of its naval forces and 41 percent of its aircraft on thirty airfields, all in the lower third of the country, south of the Pyongyang-Wonsan line. Seoul, with 25 percent of the Republic's population generating 50 percent of its GNP, lies only 26 miles from the DMZ, just a few minutes flight time, and is highly susceptible to a blitzkreig-type attack. Further, North Korea remains committed to its goals of preserving its totalitarian system, reunifying the Korean peninsula on its own terms, subverting the ROK, and undermining ROK-U.S. relations.

However, a true threat assessment must also address the political and economic components. Clearly, Pyongyang is facing its most critical strategic crisis since the Korean conflict. With its image as a "backward" society unable to meet its financial obligations and its willingness to use terrorism against its southern neighbor, North Korea is being increasingly isolated in the international arena. Even its two major allies, the Soviet Union and the PRC, recognize the balance of power on the peninsula has shifted in favor of the ROK and have essentially adopted de facto "two Korea" policies.

This paper will examine the North Korean menace from a political and economic perspective, focusing first on external pressures from key players in Northeast Asia and then on domestic problems which affect North Korea's combat readiness. The military component of the threat equation is beyond the purview of this paper and will be addressed only as it relates to economic issues.


The ability and willingness of North Korea to initiate hostilities has been diminished by political and economic developments in the ROK, the Soviet Union, the Peoples' Republic of China, and Japan.

Republic of Korea

The Republic of Korea is basking in acclaim. Showcased in the 1988 Olympics, Seoul has been elevated to new heights around the globe and commands respect as an economic "tiger." Its dramatic economic growth in the last three decades has propelled it to seventh place among the world's largest trading nations. Its gross national product is expected to reach 450 billion dollars, with per capita income approaching 10,000 dollars by the end of their Five Year Socio-Economic Development Plan (1992- 1996).

The most disturbing aspect of the ROK's "economic miracle" for North Korean war planners is the Republic's rapid force modernization. In a series of five-year Force Improvement Plans commencing in 1976, the Republic of Korea's armed forces have been molded into a formidable fighting force. Spending only five to six percent of its

GE 3 pxf203 GNP on defense, the ROK has outspent the North in total military expenditures since 1978 and in capital military expenditures since 1986. It has narrowed the military gap with North Korea which a 1988 ROK Ministry of Defense White Paper states should disappear by the early 2000's. Combat aircraft have been a high priority in the ROK modernization. It has acquired almost three times as many jet fighters as the North since 1975. These have included 36 General Dynamics F-16 jet fighters and a recent 4.4 billion dollar deal to purchase and co-produce 120 McDonnell Douglas F/A 18's. Offsetting the North's quantitative advantage with a qualitative edge, Seoul has also produced a modern main battle tank (K-1), a variety of military helicopters, armored personnel carriers, naval vessels, and missiles which must raise serious doubts in the minds of North Korean decision-makers about their chances of success should they opt for war.

In contrast, the bleak economy of North Korea is not favorable for force modernization. A 1985 RAND Corporation study estimated that during the 1990's, Pyongyang would have to spend 36-46 percent of it's GNP, up from its current 20-25 percent, on its military to match Seoul's expenditures.

The growing ROK economy has produced other spin-offs that favor the ROK and mitigate the chances the North will initiate hostilities. Economic relations between the ROK and the People's Republic of China, Soviet Union, and Eastern Europe have grown considerably. ROK trade with the PRC exceeded 3 billion dollars in 1989. One PRC city, Shenyang in Liaoning province, has opened a trade office in Seoul. Officially, Shenyang's office represents not the city but the ethnic Koreans living in the area. Nevertheless, the trade office, according to Professor Koh, is important as a symbol of the PRC's de facto "two-Korea" policy.

The Soviet Union opened a trade office in Seoul last April, and the trade volume between Moscow and Seoul has doubled in two years to over 500 million dollars. This figure is expected to climb much higher. Even more important to the Soviets is the ROK's help in developing Siberia and the Soviet Far East which "contain by far the greatest part of the USSR's endowments and potentials in oil, gas, hydoelectric sites, coal, other minerals...." Stronger economic ties with Pyongyang's traditional allies undercut Pyongyang's position on the peninsula and weaken North Korea's will to commence hostilities against Seoul. It seems unlikely that Pyongyang would commit an overt act of aggression that would run directly counter to the economic interest of its two largest allies. The prospective loss of political, logistical, and intelligence support from the USSR and the PRC is in itself a potent and persuasive deterrent to North Korean war planners.

Soviet Union

GE 4 pxf203

In order to give priority of resources to Moscow's floundering economy, Soviet foreign policy has undergone radical changes under Mikhail Gorbachev. The General Secretary has acknowledged that restructuring the Soviet economy requires a reduction of Soviet defense expenditures and an influx of capital and technology. Recognizing this would require an image-building campaign, Gorbachev began to preach a "Novoe Politicheskoe Myshlenie" (New Political Thinking). He claimed that the Soviet Union's security and international position is not solely dependent upon its military strength and that the Kremlin would de-emphasize the military option as a means of resolving problems.

In the Asia-Pacific basin, Gorbachev's foreign affairs version of "perestroika" began with the Soviet's 27th Party Congress in March 1986. Here he announced that the Soviet military posture would, from then on, be defensively oriented and forces determined by "reasonable sufficiency." Beginning with his Vladisvostok speech in July 1986, Gorbachev has offered various measures to reduce tensions and expand economic cooperation in East Asia. At Krasnoyarsk in September 1988, Gorbachev offered a seven- point peace plan regarding Asian-Pacific security. He suggested the "lowering of military confrontation in the areas where the coasts of the USSR, the People's Republic of China, Japan, the Democratic People's Republic of Korea, and South Korea converge be discussed on a multilateral basis with a view of freezing and commensurately lowering the levels of naval and air forces and limiting their activity." Image building, economic cooperation to gain much needed capital and technology, and a money saving reduction of military forces require in Eduard Shevardnadze's words, "a durable peace." This peace, if the Soviets have any say in the matter, cannot be disrupted by North Korean adventurism on the Korean peninsula. Being the only supplier of high-technology military equipment to North Korea, as well as a vitally needed economic prop to the Pyongyang regime, the Soviets are likely have considerable say.

People's Republic of China

China's economic reforms preceded the Soviet "perestroika" (restructuring) by almost ten years, beginning shortly after the death of Mao Tse-tung. The PRC's "glasnost" (openness) called "kaifang" has been pursued since 1978. In pursuit of what Zhao Ziyang had labeled "a common prosperity" for the Chinese, economic reforms have included decollectivization of agriculture, decentralization, and adoption of some market reforms. In its "special economic zones," China has opened its economy to the West with the minimum of political and bureaucratic interference. Reforms have also included a marked decrease of military expenditures and a reduction of armed forces. The PRC has joined the World Bank, the International Monetary Fund, and the Asian Development Bank. Economic reforms have paid off. The PRC's per capita income more

GE 5 pxf203 than doubled between 1979 and 1988 with foreign trade growing from 30 billion dollars to 102 billion dollars. The Tiananmen Square massacre made these reforms seem tenuous, but as former President Richard Nixon was told by all the Chinese leaders he met last November, Deng's economic reforms would continue and were irreversible.

In order to expand its economic growth and diversify its sources of technology imports and overseas markets, the PRC has reevaluated its relations with previous adversaries, the United States and the Republic of Korea. Since the normalization of ties between the PRC and the United States in 1975, trade between the two countries had grown to 8 billion dollars a year in 1988. Even more important to the Chinese is the surge in technology transfers from the United States including an agreement to cooperate on the development of nuclear energy. The United States' sale of dual-use technology to China increased to 1.2 billion dollars in 1984. The U.S. sale of a 550- million-dollar F-8 avionics package to the PRC was approved in 1986 and delivery was in progress until Tiananmen Square. Recognizing the importance of the Republic of Korea to Chinese modernization, the PRC, like the Soviets, spurned Pyongyang's call to boycott the 1988 Seoul Olympics. Trade between the PRC and the Republic, though unofficial, is booming. If North Korea were again to initiate hostilities, Beijing's support of Pyongyang would jeopardize this relationship. Technolgy transfers from the United States, suspended since Tiananmen Square, would not be resumed. So the shattering of peace and stability on the Korean peninsula would simply not be in the national interest of the PRC. This new reality is reflected in Beijing's gentle nudging of Pyongyang toward accommodation and coexistence with the ROK.

Displeased with the Rangoon bombing in October 1983, China signaled to the North Koreans that it would not be in a position to support them if they renewed hostilities on the Korean peninsula. That position is likely even stronger today. Opposition to hostilities by Pyongyang from an ally whose ties are "cemented in blood" significantly diminishes North Korea's will to attack the South.


Japan also has a compelling stake in peace and stability on the Korean peninsula. The 1969 Sato-Nixon joint communique stated that the "security of the Republic of Korea is essential to Japan's security" and that "to maintain the peace and stability of the Korean peninsula is imperative for the peace and stability of East Asia, including Japan." Taking the cue from ROK President Roh Tae-woo's 7 July Declaration that Seoul was ready to "cooperate with North Korea for improving its relations with the United States, Japan, and other allies," Japan has sought to improve relations with Pyongyang. Just before the 1988 Olympic games, Japan lifted its sanctions against

GE 6 pxf203 the North for the 1987 bombing of KAL 858 and expressed its willingness for "government-level contacts with no prior conditions." The Japanese government even went as far as a public apology to North Korea. Prime Minister Takeshita expressed at a Diet meeting, "deep regret and reflection regarding the history of unhappy relations between the two countries" and a desire to improve relations.

For a while, it seemed there might be a breakthrough in relations between Tokyo and Pyongyang. In March 1989, Ho Dam, North Korean party secretary and chairman of the North Korean Committee for the Peaceful Reunification of the Fatherland, stated North Korea would accept a Japanese Diet delegation including for the first time members of the ruling Liberal Democratic Party (LDP). Kim Il-Sung also said an LDP official would be welcome in Pyongyang. Possibly because Pyongyang feels normalization of relations with Japan could denigrate the prestige of Kim Il-Sung or encourage the PRC, the USSR, and other of its allies to recognize South Korea, nothing has come of the offer. Nevertheless, as the walls of communism come tumbling down and the North becomes more and more isolated, Pyongyang may accept Japan's gestures as an image-bolstering measure.

Japan's most sigificant impact on the peace and stability on the Korean peninsula stems from its economic strength: the world's second largest GNP, largest trade surplus, and largest budget for economic assistance. Its foreign aid exceeds 10 billion dollars a year. Despite the profound mistrust of Japan in China, Korea, and Southeast Asia where memories of Japan's attempts at a "Greater East Asia Co-prosperity Sphere" are alive and well, this extraordinary economic strength has allowed Japan to build its regional influence. It can hold out enormous "carrots" to the PRC and the Soviet Union to exert pressure on North Korea to maintain the armistice. Japanese technology itself provides an enticing lure to Pyongyang. As North Korea's economy continues to drudge along and the economic prop provided by the Soviets becomes increasingly questionable, Japan's technology may be viewed as the key to the North's economic salvation. If North Korean war planners decide reunification by force is important, they will have to give up any hope for massive help from Japan.

The enormity of Japan's GNP allows it to have the world's third largest defense budget while spending only one percent of its GNP on its military.

Consequently, the Japanese Defense Force (JDF) is becoming a power with which to be reckoned. It has nearly three times as many destroyers and frigates and four times as many P-3 Orions as the U.S. Seventh Fleet. Its 340 air-defense fighters, more than NORAD'S, include top-of-the-line F-15 fighters. The planned FSX (next-generation fighter), additional command and control aircraft, advanced missile systems and radar will continue to significantly enhance combat capability.

Although the JDF is restricted to homeland defense, Kim Il-Sung cannot rule out the possibility that Japan would view North Korean aggression on the peninsula as a

GE 7 pxf203 threat to Japan and become involved militarily, at least in a maritime role. Also, a stronger JDF can take on a greater role for the security of Japan and thus gives greater freedom to the United States in responding to any North Korean aggression on the peninsula.


Political trends within North Korea reinforce its enormous economic problems in diminishing the likelihood of a North Korean attack against the ROK.

Transitional Leadership

The top priority for the North Korean leader Kim Il- Sung is still the successful transition of power to his son, Kim Chong-Il. The elder Kim would be unlikely to risk this succession with a conflict against the South unless he was reasonably confident he could succeed. There is a strong reason to believe, however, that this confidence has eroded and will continue to crumble. Other leadership changes have seemingly diminished the likelihood of a North Korean invasion. Since Kim Chong-Il's rise to the number two position following the 6th Party Congress, he has been in charge of selecting personnel to fill out the party and military hierarchy. As a result of this and natural causes, there has been a slow evolution away from the "Old Guard" to a younger generation of leaders. Kim Nam Shik's analysis of this is quite revealing. Four of Kim Il-Sung's former comrades against the Japanese who were elected as full Politburo members in 1980 have died. Whereas the military outnumbered the civilians on the Politburo in 1980, of the current 14 full members, only O Jin-U and So Chol are from the military. Seventy-six percent of the Politiburo and Secretariat have technical backgrounds. All but one of the premiers heading the Administrative Council since its inception in December 1972 have been technocrats. These technocrats of Kim Chong-Il's generation are less driven by revolutionary ideology and also less willing to accept the sacrifices and losses of war.

Nationwide Shortages

In recent years, shortages of food and basic necessities have appeared widespread through the North Korean civil sector. They continue to worsen. North Korea has tried to come to grips with the problem by a continual reshuffling of personnel and economic ministeries.

Even the premiership has not been exempted. In late 1988, Yi Kun-Mo was replaced by Yon Yong-Muk, the second change in two years. Although Yi's health was cited, most analysts agree his failure to pull the North from its economic doldrums was the real reason. The North has also tried to combat the problem with its "Let's Make More With Less Materials" campaign and its "200-Day Battles" in 1988 and 1989 which placed the work force in a state of

GE 8 pxf203 permanent mobilization. These have only resulted in some marginal short-term gains.

Possibly recognizing a growing discontent among the populace, Kim II-Sung has promised that feeding, clothing, and housing the people would remain a top priority. He declared 1989 as the "Year of the Light Industry" and in July 1989, he established the Ministry of Local Industry to manage small factories and workshops supplying consumer goods. But the sincerity of such declarations is brought into question by the regime's willingness to spend an estimated 4-7 billion dollars on July 1989's "13th World Festival of Youth and Students" simply to "prove" to the world that North Korea could have co-hosted the 1988 Olympics. The 105-story hotel currently being erected in Pyongyang is another example of diverting scarce resources to showcasing.

Meanwhile, daily life in North Korea plods on. Visitors to North Korea report that the basic food items are rationed and the government has not been able to supply the average meat allotment of 2 kg per family. Vegetables are scarce in the winter. A professor at Pyongyang's University of National Economy reportedly told a foreign journalist in July 1989 that the North Korean crop output had not increased since 1984. To conserve power, the few traffic lights at Pyongyang's intersections are turned off. To make matters worse, the people are forced to donate from their savings to "help the poor people in the South."

To what extent do these shortages impact on the North Korean threat? It is difficult to measure the impact on combat sustainability. We don't know the amount of stored weapons, ammunitions, POL (petroleum, oil and lubricants), and foodstuffs, the North Koreans have set aside for a conflict. POL could be their weak link. Not only the civil sector, but the North Korean military, due to its reorganization to a more mechanized force requires more POL. Unfortunately for the North, this is a resource for which they are solely dependent from outside sources, primarily the Soviets and the Chinese. Pershable foodstuffs may also be a problem to replace. The poor harvests of the last three years and the North's continuing need to export much of the crop as barter, may be impacting on war reserves.

However, there is no way to be sure. The North Korean military normally accorded gets priority in the allocation of resources, and there is no evidence that war reserves are lacking. In fact, the priority of maintaining well- stocked war reserves may be a major cause of the obvious shortfalls in the civilian sector. In absence of hard evidence to the contrary, we must assume that North Korean war reserves are well stocked and able to sustain combat operations for 90-180 days though North Korean doctrine indicates planning for a war of a much shorter duration.

But civilian shortages have more subtle effects on combat readiness. First, it is of paramount importance to North Korea to generate and maintain popular support for the war effort once hostilities erupt. This popular

GE 9 pxf203 support is much more likely when basic necessities are being met, and they are not. Second, the shortages are causing a quality control problem that has a considerable impact on the military. Factory managers, including those in the defense industry, are unable to rely on a steady flow of critical parts and materiel. The reasons for this are numerous. One reason stems is the reduction of imports from the West since 1975. This has brought about a shortage of parts and materials needed to maintain plant facilities originally supplied by Western sources. But the chief difficulties are with transportation and power. The North Korean transportation system is abominable. A shortage of roads and of double-tracked rail lines often forces factories to shut down for a lack of key parts arriving on time. A lack of storage capacity for finished products that cannot be delivered has also resulted in a cutback in production. Hydroelectricity accounts for over one-half of North Korea's power output, so much of its power production is weather-dependent. Factories are forced to shut down by winter freezes. Although military facilities enjoy higher priority for resources, they are still dependent on inadequate supplies from the civil sector.

Unable to count on a steady flow of parts and materiel, factory managers are forced to hoard to meet their quotas. This in turn causes severe shortages for other plants. What Robert Coffin calls "not quite right" parts are used to mitigate these shortages in production but cause devastating problems for the defense industry: faulty weaponry for the services and arms exports that do not please overseas customers.

Debt Crisis

In 1988, North Korea's exports totaled 1.99 billion dollars. Imports were estimated at 3.16 billion dollars, for a 1.2 billion dollar deficit. Trade deficits have been a part of the North Korean economy for over 15 years. In the early 1970's, Pyongyang, determined to keep pace with the ROK economically, went on a spending binge. By the time it was over, North Korea owed nearly 2 billion dollars. This did not seem to be extraordinary, especially when compared to the ROK debt, but the combination of the oil crisis, declining metal prices, drought, and bad management soon meant that North Korea could not pay its debts. These debts have now risen to over 5.2 billion dollars. In 1987, a Western banking group moved to seize North Korea's foreign assets because of Pyongyang's failure to make any payments since April 1984 on the 770 million dollars it owed them. Australia and Sweden even closed their embassies in North Korea for failure to meet its debt obligations. The North's credit image has made it difficult for it to attract foreign investors with the capital technology needed to turn their economy around.

Although the North tried to ease the problem in 1984 by passing a Joint Venture Law, there has been little

* PAGE 10 PAGE 10 pxf203 success. Of the 23 joint venture projects established under this law by the end of 1988, most have been with Chongryon, the pro-Pyongyang General Association of Korean residents in Japan. With the debt problem exacerbating attempts to procure items on the international market, North Korea has been forced to buy small amounts and attempt reverse engineering. But today's higher levels of technology levels make this even more difficult.

Without technology and plant modernization, North Korea's forces cannot hope to match the more sophisticated weaponry of the ROK. They depend heavily on weapon deliveries from their allies. But PRC military assistance to the North has been very limited in the last decade. The Soviets have provided the North with sophisticated aircraft and air-defense systems but not in any volume to tempt the North into believing that it has a new and significantly decisive edge on the ROK forces. Furthermore, the sole dependence on the Soviet Union for sophisticated military hardware limits Pyongyang's flexibility and subjects them more to Moscow's will; a will that now favors peace and stability on the Korean peninsula.

Hollow Nationalism

"Juche," or self-reliance, the North Korean ideology for decades, has been synonymous with North Korean nationalism. It has served as an emotional shield for the North Korean people to rally against the "imperialists." However, the need for technical and economic assistance as discussed above has weakened the allure of "juche." By the late 1980's, "juche" has been used for little else than external propaganda and internal restraint. Like it or not, North Korea's leaders must consider the weakening of this armor when contemplating hostilities.


Both the changing environment in Northeast Asia as well and the internal morass of North Korea's political and economic systems mitigate the North Korean military threat. The military modernization of the Republic of Korea is outpacing, and its economic power dwarfing those of the North. Military planners in the North are faced with a much more formidable foe than ever before. Further, both the Soviet Union and the People's Republic of China recognize privately that the balance of power on the Korean peninsula may have shifted in favor of the ROK. Even more important, they realize the South can do more for them economically than Pyongyang and are gearing their relations accordingly. Neither want the Korean peninsula to be embroiled in a conflict which would jeopardize their economic interests. As a result, the North Koreans must know that if they commence hostilities against the ROK, they go alone without guarantee of political, logistical, or intelligence support from their two closest allies. This diminishes the chances that they will.

* PAGE 11 PAGE 11 pxf203

Domestically, the leadership in North Korea is in a state of transition not conducive to an act of aggression. Kim Il-Sung is not likely to jeopardize the succession of his son with military adventurism. Technocrats permeating the party are less inclined toward the military option than the "Old Guard" they are replacing. It is quite clear that politically and economically, North Korea is ill-prepared for war. Widespread shortages of food and other basic necessities, compounded by an inability to service the foreign debt, diminish North Korea's combat readiness. If not directly reducing combat sustainability, these problems degrade morale -- an integral part of a nation's combat readiness equation. Furthermore, irregular supply distribution, bureaucratic mismanagement, and the lack of an advanced technological base present quality control problems for the defense industries. Some Korea watchers argue that the North's dismal economy actually increases the likelihood that Pyongyang would launch an attack as a "final act of desperation". This argument holds little credibility. Regardless of its economic conditions, no country has ever invited extinction. A country's leaders will attack only if and when they feel confident that they will succeed. The factors discussed above seriously erode that confidence.


The political and economic environment discussed above diminishes the North Korean threat and allows a greater flexibility in American force deployment. Significant American force withdrawals can now be made, including most, if not all of the 2nd Infantry Division and its support units at Yongsan, without a corresponding decline in Korean security. American air force units at Osan and Kunsan alone are more than adequate to complement the ROK forces in providing a strong deterrence, demonstrating that the United States is committed to the security of the ROK, and providing insurance that the United States would be involved if hostilities commenced.

American force reductions could not only maintain, but enhance the ROK-U.S. alliance and Korean security. However, there are some cautions. First, reductions must be made only after close consultation with our allies. Both Seoul and Tokyo must be informed of the American conviction that any changes in United States' force structure in Korea stem from a reevaluation of the threat, not simply as a money-saving device or diminution of the American commitment to bilateral security agreements in the Asia-Pacific. Second, reductions must be timed to correspond with the growing strength of the ROK vis-a-vis the North. As Congressman Solarz put it, "If there are to be any adjustments, we must do it in close consultation with our South Korean allies in a way which enables South Korea to compensate for any actual diminution in war- fighting capacity of our combined forces." Third, changes in force structure must be pursued in conjunction with arms

* PAGE 12 PAGE 12 pxf203 control and confidence-building measures. Significant reductions in military forces, without extracting a quid pro quo from the North for measures that would reduce tensions along the DMZ, would be a gross under-utilization of U.S. leverage. Arms control and confidence-building measures could range from prior notification of military exercises and limits on such exercises to relocation of North Korean forces north of the Pyongyang-Wonsan line. These would all increase warning time. Over optimism must always be guarded against, particularly when the sovereignty of a nation is at stake. However, age-old fear or persistent traditions should not keep decision-makers from seeing the new opportunities for a positive change and taking them.

(end text)


File Identification:  04/03/90, PX-203
Product Name:  Wireless File
Product Code:  WF
Document Type:  TXT
Thematic Codes:  1EA
Target Areas:  EA
PDQ Text Link:  134567

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