Friday, December 24, 2010

A different perspective on North Korea

A refreshing bit of calm from an expert on North Korea.
"When we consider cases of vulnerable and failed states, the inability to govern and paralysis of national functions presage regime collapse. However, in the case of North Korea, the ruling mechanism is still working."

It will be difficult to say for certain whether Kim Jong-un is seen as a valid leader until the demise of his father. Propaganda thus far suggests that legitimacy is being conferred through comparisons to Kim Il-sung, not Kim Jong-il. Whatever the case, it's a good reminder that, despite its bellicosity, North Korea has given no sign that it is abandoning its preference against all-out war. As long as both sides on the peninsula can agree on the worst possible outcome, it is unlikely that military tests or other provocations will undermine the stability in irreparable ways.

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