Policy Forum

Nautilus Institute’s Policy Forum‘s focus is on the timely publication of expert analysis and op-ed style pieces on the foremost of security-related issues to Northeast Asia. Its mission is to facilitate a multilateral flow of information among an international network of policy-makers, analysts, scholars, media, and readers. Policy Forum essays are typically from a wide range of expertise, political orientations, as well as geographic regions and seeks to present readers with opinions and analysis by experts on the issues as well as alternative voices not typically presented or heard. Feedback, comments, responses from Policy Forum readers are highly encouraged.

NAPSNet, Policy Forum

Why is the Korean Peninsula Trapped in a Vicious Circle of Permanent Crisis?

Vorontsov writes: “Most media, while painting a vivid picture of North Korea’s militancy, does not help readers to understand why the conflict in Korea is escalating so dramatically. When they do try, they usually name Pyongyang as the instigator of all the troubles, stressing that it was North Korea’s third nuclear test that triggered the “nightmare”. Without any approval whatsoever of Pyongyang’s overreaction to the UNSC Resolution 2094 and its belligerent rhetoric and disproportionate moves, it is urgent to examine the real, underlying causes of what is commonly referred to as “the Korean problem”.”

Alexander Vorontsov is currently the head of the Department for Korean and Mongolian Studies at the Institute of Oriental Studies of the Russia Academy of Sciences and the MGIMO-University Oriental Studies Sub-faculty associate professor.

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DPRK Nuclear Energy in the Context of a Proposed Peace Settlement

Squassoni writes: “This memorandum explores the contours of nuclear energy in the DPRK as part of a comprehensive peace settlement. It assumes: a) DPRK must rejoin NPT as a non-nuclear weapon state and must ratify the Additional Protocol; b) DPRK is likely to press for the right to nuclear power in any settlement; c) limitations may not be equally applied across all non-nuclear-weapon states (vice Halperin paper); and d) there are no guarantees against proliferation, even in a unified Korea.”

Sharon Squassoni is a Senior Fellow & Director of the Proliferation Prevention Program at the Center for Strategic & International Studies.

This report was originally presented at the New Approach to Security in Northeast Asia: Breaking the Gridlock workshop.

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Rattling the American Cage: North Korean Nuclear Threats and Escalation Potential

Peter Hayes and Roger Cavazos write: “We do not believe that North Korea intends to attack South Korea, pre-emptively or otherwise, in the current cycle of threat projection. However, miscalculation, accidents, or “wild cards” can all activate an unstoppable chain of events that lead to uncontrollable escalation…Talk is cheap, valuable, and entails no concessions. In the current charged environment, the only way to obtain badly needed information about North Korean intentions and therefore, the real level of threat, is to talk to them.”

Peter Hayes is director of Nautilus Institute and Professor of International Relations at RMIT University in Melbourne. Roger Cavazos is an Associate of Nautilus Institute and retired US military intelligence officer.

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Carbo Cult

Nikhil Desai writes: “a new cult – No Carbo(n) promised that if only these people gave up their carbon emitting ways, they will prove their devotion to the new cult. Climate change will be averted and they will not have to migrate to the white people’s lands.”

Nikhil Desai is the Energy Security contributor for the NAPSNet Weekly report.

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U.S-Japan Core Issues

Sheila Smith writes: “The proposal for A New Approach to Security in Northeast Asia: Breaking the Gridlock offers a fresh perspective on the diplomatic framework for negotiating peace and stability for Northeast Asia. This memo responds to this initiative from the perspective of Japanese security and the shared strategic goals of the U.S.-Japan alliance.”

Sheila A. Smith is a Senior Fellow for Japan Studies at the Council on Foreign Relations.

This report was originally presented at the New Approach to Security in Northeast Asia: Breaking the Gridlock workshop held on October 9th and 10th, 2012 in Washington, DC.

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Learning Organisation Paradigm and Climate Adaptation

Saleem Janjua writes that “Adaptation to climate change is increasingly becoming a policy priority for government and private sector organizations across the globe, partly driven by a rationale that successful adaptation will reduce the consequences of climatic impacts that are unavoidable….However, grasping such an opportunity through policy intervention is a major challenge, particularly in the urban sector in developing countries.”

Saleem Janjua is the Climate Change Adaptation contributor for the NAPSNet Weekly report.

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Replacing the Armistice With A Peace Treaty in Korea

Leon V. Sigal: “Whether a peace treaty precedes or follows denuclearization, it is inconceivable that Pyongyang would curb its nuclear and missile programs, never mind give up its nuclear arms and missiles, without a peace process. As long as the United States and South Korea remain its foes, it will feel threatened and want a stronger “deterrent” to counter that threat.”

Leon V. Sigal is director of the Northeast Asia Cooperative Security Project at the Social Science Research Council in New York.

This report was originally presented at the New Approach to Security in Northeast Asia: Breaking the Gridlock workshop held on October 9th and 10th, 2012 in Washington, DC.

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Tactically Smart, Strategically Stupid: Simulated B52 Nuclear Bombings in Korea

Peter Hayes states, “Deploying nuclear capable bombers accompanied by nuclear threat rhetoric will not quell regressive proliferation sentiment in Seoul. Nor will it persuade North Korea’s leaders to desist from nuclear aggression…..quiet actions will always speak louder in Pyongyang than aggressive words.”

Peter Hayes is the Director of the Nautilus Institute and the Deterrence contributor to the NAPSNet Weekly report.

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Canada and the Halperin Plan: Temper Expectations

Paul Evans states, “the perverse challenge is that while specific agreements may be possible, a Northeast Asian regional security framework is as far away as ever. In terms of regional architecture, a more muscular ARF of the future on non-traditional security threats and an overarching East Asia Summit process may be the best mid-term bets.”

This report was originally presented at the New Approach to Security in Northeast Asia: Breaking the Gridlock workshop held on October 9th and 10th, 2012 in Washington, DC.

Paul Evans is a Professor at the Institute of Asian Research, University of British Columbia.

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Sustainable discussions

Roger Cavazos: “A war on the Korean Peninsula, even a limited one, would be an ecological disaster. Even an uneasy peace has taken an environmental toll. Discussing environmental topics is a low cost way to sow seeds for discussions between the parties on and around the Korean Peninsula. The fruits of those discussions are likely sustainable.”

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