Tensions rising in North Korea
Tensions continue to escalate between North Korea and South Korea. South Korean factory workers found themselves without access to the Kaesong Industrial Park, a joint complex that had in the past been a symbol of cooperation between the two countries. The industrial park lies just inside North Korea. This latest development comes a day after Pyongyang announced it would restart a nuclear reactor, a move highly criticized by the international community, including China.
International relations professor William Keylor recently spoke with WCVB-TV in Boston discussing what these actions by North Korea mean to the Korean Peninsula and the world. Keylor is the author of A World of Nations: The International Order Since 1945. Below are some of his comments:
On North Korea’s motive: “When you keep repeating that the American imperialists are about to attack us, then that will enforce cohesion within the country.”
How can it be stopped: “I really think that the key to this whole problem lies in Beijing. China is the only one with any kind of leverage over North Korea. So I am hopeful that the Chinese government will recognize that this is going to be a real challenge.”
Worst case scenario: “A miscalculation that could be catastrophic. The capital of South Korea is 30 miles from the demilitarized zone and if the North decided to attack, it would be, in a matter of seconds that South Korea would be devastated.”
Can N. Korea’s weapons reach mainland U.S.: “Every indication that I have is they don’t have that capability.”
Contact Keylor at 617-358-0197 or firstname.lastname@example.org.