Abstract

Abstract:

China's rising regional influence, North Korea's intractable challenges to peace and stability, and a US president fond of 'big deals' and skeptical of overseas deployments in allied countries—these factors and others have intensified speculation about a strategic bargain regarding Korean unification. Washington would withdraw troops from South Korea, Beijing would end its support of the North Korean regime, and Seoul and Pyongyang would proceed with integration. This article finds that such strategic bargain proposals tend to suffer three major flaws: mistaken historical analogies with Cold War Europe, disregard for domestic political variables, and sacrifice of international norms while accommodating China. Washington pursuing a grand bargain with Beijing regarding Korea would deepen misperceptions in Asia, damage US alliances, and deny Seoul productive agency for transforming the security, economy, and diplomacy of the Korean peninsula.

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Additional Information

ISSN
2288-2871
Print ISSN
0258-9184
Pages
pp. 701-723
Launched on MUSE
2020-10-09
Open Access
No
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