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Korean Media Op-Eds
Japan and South Korea on the Brink: International Affairs and Trade Relations Experts Elucidate the Conflict between the Two U.S. Allies
The recent escalation of diplomatic and trade disputes between South Korea and Japan has alarmed numerous observers and is rather confusing to many around the world to whom the two countries seem to have much to lose and little to gain by the deterioration of the bilateral relationship. What underlying forces are driving the conflict? Are these new forces, or the same historical forces coming to a head? How much are factors from the international environment, such as the behavior of the United States, influencing the current escalation?
Tension and discord in Japan-South Korea relations are nothing new, but the unfortunate, intensifying conflict between the two countries — a manifestation of right-wing Japanese nationalism and left-wing South Korean nationalism — seems headed toward a collision course. To understand the escalating friction between Tokyo and Seoul one must recognize the unique characteristics of Korean nationalism, and particularly its historical origins, development, and political role in shaping Korean attitudes toward Japan.
"Trilateral Framework at Risk" – APARC Director on South Korea's Decision to End Its Military Agreement with Japan
South Korea (hereafter Korea) is widely regarded as among the world’s most ethnically and linguistically homogeneous countries. In 1990, Korea counted only 49,000 foreigners amongst its population. But over the last two decades, the number of migrants in the country has grown dramatically, reaching 2.3 million (or 4.5% of the population) in 2018. Just as important is the growing diversity of migrants coming to Korea.
Taehwa Hong (BA '21 International Relations) has been awarded the 8th annual Korea Program Prize for Writing in Korean Studies for his paper, "North Korea in the Soviet-Albanian Dispute." Yong Suk Lee, deputy director of the Korea Program at Shorenstein APARC, says, "Hong's paper is an outstanding piece of research and writing." "The paper delves into a rather novel topic - how North Korea diplomatically responded to the Albanian Crisis between two socialist powers, the Soviet Union and China." The details of the announcement may be viewed
The world is “graying” at an unprecedented rate. According to the UN’s World Population Prospects 2019, the number of persons over the age of 65 is growing the fastest and expected to more than double by 2050, then triple in another 50 years’ time.
The year 2019 is the centennial of several anti-colonialist movements that emerged in Asia, including the March First Movement of Korea. On that day a century ago, protesters shouting “Mansei!” (“Long live Korean independence!”) gathered in Seoul and formed what would become the first nationwide political protest in Korea under Japanese colonial rule. Although the movement failed to achieve national sovereignty, it left important legacies for Korea and other parts of Asia under foreign dominance.
The current stalemate should not be taken as a restless waiting game or a prelude to dejected failure. The situation is frustrating and nerve-wracking to some, but the good news is that neither side is willing to close the window of talks and jump off the lurching — but still running — train of diplomacy.
Scholar Andray Abrahamian organized many projects to promote economic change in North Korea over the past decade, including that country’s first two ultimate frisbee tournaments. So when he spoke at Carleton College in Northfield last week, the first thing Abrahamian did was acknowledge the school’s prominence in the sport. [Its intercollegiate team is a perennial power and most of the school’s students play in intramural leagues.]
We are happy to share that FSI’s SK Center Fellow and APARC's Korea Program Deputy Director Yong Suk Lee is the recipient of the 2018 Urban Land Institute United Kingdom Academic Prize for his paper “Entrepreneurship, small business and economic growth in cities.”
The Korea Program Prize for Writing in Korean Studies recognizes and rewards outstanding examples of writing in an essay, term paper, or thesis produced during the current academic year in any discipline within the area of Korean studies, broadly defined. This competition is open to both undergraduate and graduate students. The prize will be awarded at a special ceremony in the fall, and the first place winner will receive a certificate and $1,000; Honorable mention winner(s) will receive a certificate.
On the heels of the abrupt ending of the Hanoi summit between President Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, with the future of the diplomacy of denuclearization in question, the Korea Program at Shorenstein APARC convened the 11th Koret Workshop, appropriately titled this year “North Korea and the World in Flux.”
After Hanoi: APARC and CISAC Experts Discuss the Outcome of the Trump-Kim Summit and the Future of U.S.-DPRK Diplomacy
Following the abrupt ending of the highly anticipated second bilateral summit between President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un in Hanoi, APARC and CISAC scholars evaluate the result of the summit, its implications for regional relations in Northeast Asia, and the opportunities moving forward towards the goal of denuclearization of the Korean peninsula.
President Trump caught the world by surprise once again yesterday with a decision not to sign a deal with his North Korean counterpart, Chairman Kim Jong-un, in Hanoi, Vietnam. While walking away is a common tactic in working-level negotiation, what happened in Hanoi was a rare case and the least expected outcome.
Read the full article on Axios.
At first glance U.S. President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un seem like an unlikely pair. A few years back they were calling each other “Rocket Man” and a “dotard,” and tension between the United States and North Korea was escalating rapidly in 2017. But in a few days they are slated to meet for the second time, and according to Trump they had “fallen in love” not long after their first encounter. What could have created such intimate bond between the two?
We sat down with our 2018-19 Koret Fellow in Korean Studies Andray Abrahamian to discuss North Korea denuclearization and the approaching Trump-Kim second summit in Hanoi; Abrahamian's work with the nonprofit organization Choson Exchange that took him to North Korea nearly thirty times; his book that compares North Korea and Myanmar; and his fellowship experience. Watch: