Thesis Title

North Korea: Resolving the Threat

Date of Graduation

Spring 1995


Master of Science in Defense and Strategic Studies


Defense and Strategic Studies

Committee Chair

Jack Crouch


North Korea presently represents one of the gravest threats to international security and to United States national interests. North Korea has been pursuing a nuclear weapons capability and is nearing the ability to amass a militarily significant stockpile. Concurrently, North Korea has developed one of the world's largest conventional military forces, the purpose for which is the military defeat or intimidation of the Republic of Korea (South Korea). In addition to the North's growing military strength, its new leader, Kim Jung Il, having recently replaced his father, leads a particularly aggressive and brutal regime. Beginning with the 1950 invasion of South Korea, North Korea has acted to overthrow violently the govenment of Seoul on different occasions, has precipitated cross border skirmishes, and continues to call for an uprising in the South for the displacement of the democratically elected government there. This thesis analyzes the military and political context of North Korean policy toward the South, and reviews options available to the United States and South Korea to prevent the North from following through with its threats to unify the the peninsula and to derail the North's nuclear program. The final chapter recommends the application of Allied military force against the North as the most effective means of resolving permanently the threat posed by the North Korean regime.

Subject Categories

Defense and Security Studies


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