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Here is a fictive dialogue between a pessimist and an optimist to answer these questions.

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Still, the deeper negotiators delve into the endless issues that must be resolved to disarm Pyongyang, the clearer the dangers and costs of doing so are likely to become. We also believe that there is a way past the LWR obstacle that may be acceptable to all parties. Read discussion of this essay by Chaim Braun. Read discussion of this essay by Georgy Bullychev. The United States, in its turn, has been able to leverage the relationships to establish new joint work in the nonproliferation arena - exactly the goal that Washington seeks with North Korea. The North Koreans will be accused of not being grateful, the South Koreans will be told that it is their fault, the already not-so united front of the five nations at the Six Party Talks will be further weakened, and the North Korean leadership will open a bottle of Champaign.

Read discussion of this essay. Karin J. Such an approach will go a long way toward whittling away at the divisive issues and may result in more good news.

The Twilight of the Bombs

If this misguided course had a name, it would be hawk disengagement. Mitchell B. If they are successful and North Korea agrees to dismantle its nuclear weapons programs in a verifiable way in return for security and economic assistance, there would be an opportunity to begin to build new security institutions in one of the most volatile regions in the world, thereby providing both strategic stability and economic opportunities for all six participant countries to advance trade and investment projects that would benefit them all.

The DPRK case shows once again that strategic drift is not substitute for realistic policy when it comes to nuclear weapons. It is a conscious effort to return to reality. It requires communication, dialogue, learning and teaching, refusing to walk away when the going gets tough, engaging without illusion for the purpose of influencing outcomes. These may be viewed as very small steps, but this is a very long-term problem.

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And as we have learned from the six-party process, any step is better than no step at all. Charles Wolf Jr. At that time, such conjectures were rife, and we were surprised that none of the envisaged possibilities ensued. Now, when such conjectures are absent, and attention instead is pre-empted by North Korea's threatened or actual acquisition of nuclear weapons, we may be surprised again -- but this time in a reverse direction. Selig S. Pending normalized relations, North Korea is unlikely to reduce its nuclear arsenal, if it actually has one, at any price or to permit the inspections necessary to call its bluff, if it is bluffing.

Significantly, however, in my meeting with him, Kang Sok Ju proposed discussions on a new freeze agreement that would rule out further reprocessing of plutonium produced not only by the existing Yongbyon reactor but also by two much bigger projected reactors, linked to a formal North Korean commitment not to transfer fissile material to third parties. Let's support instead the Korean reunification happening right before our eyes.

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Far better that the Bush administration convince China that the wiser course is to prevent a nuke race by telling Pyongyang the time has come for a deal. We didn't like the Chinese in the era before the s, but we found ways to engage them also. I believe that ways can be found to seriously engage the North Koreans, difficult as it might be. Whatever means are chosen to deal with it, the problem of nuclear weapons in the divided Korean peninsula is too dangerous to be left to fester.

How the two nations address that nightmare, and how the current crisis on the Peninsula is resolved, will ultimately determine what dreams Korea and the United States will share in the future.

- Korean Endgame A Strategy For Reunification And U S Disengagement Century Foundation Book

This speech by U. Representative James A. One of our many tasks in the weeks ahead is to make that previously unthinkable possibility easier for the North Korean leadership to imagine. Whether the regime survives or not, North Korea will need officials who are better versed in economic matters and have a greater exposure to the world. Go to the essay. PFO A: U. Can't Act Alone in North. Nor could we cope with an emergency in the North without U. South Korea and the United States must wisely resolve this discord in a spirit of alliance.

This is the good news emerging from my ninth visit to North Korea from April 5 to April 9. The bad news is that Pyongyang is no longer prepared to discuss the dismantlement of its existing nuclear weapons as part of the six-party process in Beijing. Ralph A. Otherwise he will not only lose the diplomatic stand-off with North Korea but will lose the hearts and minds of the South Korean people as well.

Jason T. In North Korea the opposite is true. We must engage the regime first to end and ultimately reverse its nuclear program. We must therefore hold our noses in seeking to bring the North into the world community, including securing its membership in security forums, the World Bank, the Asian Development Bank etc. Quite remarkably, this position of being an independent actor in international relations corresponds very well with the North Korean position and opens one more field of possible future cooperation of both Koreas. Such efforts collectively undermine US objectives to present a unified negotiating position to Pyongyang as well as any future attempts to garner international support for stronger measures.

Now it has broken ranks over the Korean Peninsula, fed-up and concerned with the failure to resolve the ongoing crisis in North Korea. Haksoon Paik, Ph. The world needs to adjust peacefully to its legitimate claims -- one of which is for other nations to stop militarizing the Taiwan problem -- while checking unreasonable Chinese efforts to impose its will on the region. Kenneth Lieberthal is a professor of political science and of business administration at the University of Michigan, and is a visiting fellow at the Brookings Institution. Kenneth Lieberthal writes: "North Korea is both morally repugnant and a maddening adversary in negotiations.

But simply going through the motions of negotiation in the hope that regime change will somehow happen enhances Kim Jong-Il's opportunity to develop and proliferate nuclear capabilities. Given the stakes, the U. Hence, the two-bomb settlement is a second best option which still would respect the red line of the United States. The situation could be positive or negative according to how they manage it.

The year is very meaningful for both South and North, since it is their 60th year of Independence, and the 5th year of the June 15 Joint Declaration.

A Strategy for Reunification and U.S. Disengagement (A Century Foundation Book)

This year, I expect that we will be able to settle peace on the peninsula more firmly through economic development, improvement of the South-North relationship, and resolution of the North Korea nuclear problem. After years of resistance to negotiating with North Korea, it may be up to Congress to help get the situation back on track. All of which seems to indicate that Kim Jong Il is firmly behind and committed to the economic reform process.

For those who favor a changing regime rather than regime change the message is clear. Now is the time to engage. Yu, Chai-shin S. Shamanism: The Spirit World of Korea.

Korean Myths and Folk Legends. Jain Publishing Company, Kim, Richard E. Lost Names: Scenes from Korean Boyhood. In this novel, Kim writes of seven scenes from a childhood in Korea during the Japanese occupation. Kim, Kichung.

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Sharpe, M. Lee, Peter H. This was the first major anthology of Korean literature and includes poetry and prose from BCE to the end of the nineteenth century. A must-have for those interested in Korean literature. Lee, Peter. Modern Korean Literature: An Anthology. Honolulu: University of Hawaii Press, McCann, David R. Early Korean Literature: Selections and Introductions.

Columbia University Press, McCune, Evelyn. Rutland, Vermont: Tuttle, Sallee, Hyun-Jae Yee, ed. An inexpensive anthology of modern Korean fiction by authors who have won literary awards. Wong Janet S. A Suitcase of Seaweed and Other Poems.