Korea: April 27, 2005

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All of North Koreas neighbors have warned the north against testing nuclear weapons. But the north has apparently realized that its armed forces are no longer the decisive weapon they were for nearly half a century. A real, working, nuclear weapon is seen as the only way to extort sufficient money and resources to keep the Communist government in power. However, discipline, among civilians and troops, continues to decline in North Korea. Economic reforms have created more opportunities for corruption, and made it easier to bribe your way out of the country. South Korean politicians, who had hoped to prop up the North Korean dictatorship until some merger deal could be worked out, are now faced with the prospect of a sudden collapse of the northern government. South Korean and Chinese officials have been quietly discussing how to deal with such a collapse. Both nations fear the millions of refugees that would result from such a collapse. Indeed, it's reached the point where an invasion by North Korean refugees is more feared than an assault by North Korean soldiers.

 

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