China’s role in N. Korea’s future

December 20th, 2011

International relations professor Joseph Wippl, a former 30-year CIA operations officer, offers the following comments on China’s role in N. Korea’s future following the death of Kim Jong Il:

“Peace on the Korean peninsula is in the interest of both Koreas, Japan, the United States but most essentially China. This is an issue where China has to play a predominant and hopefully positive role. China has the power to force literally its will on North Korea.

“China now has to have what is affectionately known as ‘frank discussions’ with the North Korean military hierarchy. Those discussions boil down to no activity upsetting the balance of power at this time. Later, the Chinese will have to insist on the type of changes in the North Korean economy which alleviate periodic hunger famines.

“The U.S., Japan and South Korea must encourage the Chinese government to act in the best interests of the region.”

Contact Wippl at 617-353-8992; jwippl@bu.edu

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