Abe’s Game Plan on North Korea
August 28, 2014
There are situations in international politics, as there are in life, in which there are no good options, in which nothing works. Trying to deal with North Korea is a case in point. The United States has tried everything in its tool kit in an effort to come up with an effective North Korean policy. Positive incentives have not worked; neither have negative ones. Hard line policies have the perverse effect of prodding the North Korean leadership to seek more customers for its nuclear technology and ballistic missile exports and to tighten the screws on its long suffering population. Aid and other “soft” inducements to get North Korea to give up its nuclear weapons are unavailing. North Korean leaders are not wrong to believe that a North Korea bereft of nuclear weapons would be more vulnerable to efforts to undermine their regime.