North Korea’s 2016 nuclear and missile tests underscored the regime’s continued defiance of the international community and its growing capabilities. Pyongyang’s testing of a submarine-launched ballistic missile, though not yet successful, reflects a new threat to the United States and its allies. North Korea’s provocations have strengthened the U.S.-South Korean alliance. But upcoming presidential elections in both countries have raised concerns over potential dramatic policy changes.
Understanding both capitals’ assessments of the security environment is critical to coordinating defense against the North Korean threat. We are pleased to have two senior South Korean retired defense officials to provide their views on how Seoul perceives the threat environment and provide recommendations on alliance strategy.
General (ret.) Kim Jae-chang has been a security adviser for President Park Geun-hye since 2013. He served in the Republic of Korea Army for 32 years as the 9th Infantry Division Commander, Director of Operations in the Joint Chiefs of Staff, 6th Corps Commander, Deputy Minister for Policy, Vice Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, and Deputy Commander in Chief of the ROK-U.S. Combined Forces Command. After retirement, he served as the Chairman of the Defense Reform Committee.
Lieutenant-General (ret.) Park Yong-Ok is currently a member of the Republic of Korea National Security Committee for President Park Geun-hye. He previously served as the 15th Provisional Governor of South Pyongan Province, Vice-President of Hallym University of Graduate Studies, and the Deputy Minister of National Defense.
More About the Speakers
General (ret.) Kim Jae-chang
Lieutenant-General (ret.) Park Yong-Ok
Introductory Remarks by
President, Korea Submarine League, Washington, D.C. Chapter
Kim Dong Gi
Consul-General, Embassy of the Republic of Korea
Senior Research Fellow, Northeast Asia