If Deterrence Fails: Rethinking Conflict on the Korean Peninsula

  • March 27, 2014
  • Patrick M. Cronin
  • Reports

In "If Deterrence Fails: Rethinking Conflict on the Korean Peninsula," Asia-Pacific Security Director Dr. Patrick Cronin charges U.S. policymakers to rethink deterrence and escalation in a changing security environment. Dr. Cronin note that preserving a strong U.S.-ROK alliance is central to this mission. The report begins with an overview of the destabilizing economic, political and military trends in North Korea. It then argues how deterrence might fail; how escalation might occur; and why South Korea and the United States might not be ready. It also suggests what might be done about it, offering operational and strategic recommendations to ensure that the U.S.-ROK alliance can better meet this potential security challenge.