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Upcoming Webcast – Across the DMZ: Revealing North Korea

By William Tucker

Last Thursday, as most Americans were celebrating Thanksgiving, North Korea threatened to turn South Korea’s Blue House into a sea of fire. For the uninitiated, the Blue House is South Korea’s presidential residence located in Seoul. If the term “sea of fire” sounds familiar that is because it is a familiar refrain from North Korean leadership when they issue their frequent threats. Although threats from the North are nothing new, this particular one was issued in response to South Korean military exercises on the disputed island of Yeonpyeong. South Korea chose to conduct military exercises on the island as it was the subject of a North Korean artillery attack one year ago. North Korea was making clear that it viewed the military exercises as a deliberate provocation by the South.

North Korea’s warning and actions may seem bizarre at times, but they are not necessarily irrational. Shortly after the Pyongyang issued this recent warning they followed up with claiming that their new uranium enrichment plant was operating on schedule. This is usually followed by more provocations that result in diplomatic talks. The methodology is always the same – the North makes concessions in return for foreign aid. On December 9, AMU will be hosting a webcast on North Korea entitled, “Across the DMZ: Revealing North Korea.” I will be discussing the North’s behavior, what drives it, and what is coming for the country in 2012. You can register at the link below.

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