President Lee Myung-bak's Trip to Washington

What You Need to Know

President Lee Myung-bak arrived in Washington, D.C., last week for the first official state visit by a South Korean president in over a decade. NBR follows developments in U.S. relations with South Korea closely. Recent NBR publications highlight critical issues on the Korean Peninsula and draw implications for U.S. policy in the region.


FOREIGN AFFAIRS | The Free Trade Agreement Could Spoil South Korea’s State Visit

In Foreign Affairs, National Asia Research Associate Victor Cha (Georgetown University) argues that the success of President Lee’s state visit depends on both countries passing the KORUS FTA and resolving differences about North Korea. Read more

BBC NEWS | Could Russia Pipe Gas to Seoul via North Korea?

In an interview with BBC News, NBR’s Energy Research Director Mikkal Herberg weighs in on the geopolitics of an LNG pipeline between Russia and South Korea: “Asia’s boom in oil and natural gas demand has increasingly provoked a scramble among regional powers to secure access to future oil and gas supplies, as well as intense competition over control of transportation links [and] infrastructure.” Read more

PBS NEWSHOUR | Long-Stalled Trade Agreement with South Korea Sees Some Light

National Asia Research Associate Victor Cha explained to PBS that the President Lee’s visit “will symbolize the growing importance of South Korea as a key Asian ally for the United States… as Japan remains embroiled in domestic political troubles and China pursues its own path to becoming a major regional and world power.” Read more

Recent Publications

Coping with Giants: South Korea’s Responses to China’s and India’s Rise by Chung Min Lee, Strategic Asia 2011–12

Political Change in the DPRK, an interview with Stephan Haggard and Daniel Pinkston, Asia Policy 12

Featured Publications on Korea

On U.S.-Japan-Korea Trilateralism by Hyeran Jo and Jongryn Mo, Asia Policy 9

The (Non-) Impact of UN Sanctions on North Korea by Marcus Noland, Asia Policy 7

Between Two Whales: Korea’s Choice in the Post-Crisis Era by Joon-Kyung Kim and Chung H. Lee, Strategic Asia 2009–10

The Rise, Fall, and Transformation of the “386”: Generational Change in Korea by L. Gordon Flake, NBR Project Report

Recent Events on Korea (Event Video)

Is Status Quo Destiny? China’s Interests in Post-Kim Dynasty Korea

A briefing by National Asia Research Fellow Sung-Yoon Lee on the dynamics of a post-Kim Dynasty Korean Peninsula.

Revisiting History: North Korea and Nuclear Weapons

A briefing by National Asia Research Associate Jonathan Pollack on the history of North Korea’s nuclear weapons program.

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