Peter Rutland, professor of government, authored an opinion piece in the Dec. 29 Moscow Times titled “A Cold War Could Turn Hot in the Korean Peninsula.”
Rutland writes: “Much of the commentary about North Korea after the death of Kim Jong Il has sidestepped the question of reunification. While the nations of Germany and Vietnam were united, Korea remains split into two. In this part of the world, the Cold War is not over, and there is a real danger that it might turn into a hot war.
North Korea is committed to unifying the nation by military means. Its pursuit of nuclear weapons is not solely for defensive purposes. South Korea does not have its own nuclear weapons, and thus a U.S. withdrawal would leave them vulnerable to a nuclear-armed North.
Various scenarios could play out if the leadership transition goes sour. The worst case would be chaos and civil war, possibly leading to Chinese intervention.”
Read the full story online here.
Rutland also blogs about nationalism at www.nationalismwatch.com.