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PacNet #39 – Practical Steps From War to Peace on the Korean Peninsula

U.S. participants in a meeting with Korean scholars at Cheju Island in mid-September welcomed the hopes for peace symbolized by the inter-Korean summit, and were pleased – not jealous – that South Korea is leading direct contacts with the DPRK. A little over three months after Kim Dae-jung’s historic dialogue in Pyongyang with his counterpart Kim Jong-il, however, some Americans and South Koreans still question the extent of North Korea’s change of heart and worry whether the two Korean leaders will be strong, sincere, and consistent enough to sustain the budding Korean peace process by taking real steps to remove the threat of war between the two sides.