Thursday, October 13, 2016

Seoul Questions Own Defense Strategy as North Korea Nuclear Threat Grows

South Korean defense spending is up and a debate is growing over the nuclear option

By Alastair Gale, WSJ
Updated Oct. 13, 2016 12:06 p.m. ET

SEOUL—North Korea’s nuclear push is triggering a military buildup here and adding fuel to a hot debate over South Korea’s defense strategy—including whether the country should have its own nuclear option.

A few conservative politicians and a small majority in opinion polls have for years supported South Korea getting access to nuclear weapons. Lately, some prominent new voices have joined them, including Kim Jin-pyo, a four-term lawmaker from the main, left-of-center opposition party, who said Seoul needed a “balance of terror” to match North Korea’s threat.

Mr. Kim said nuclear weapons in South Korea would also pressure China and Russia to deal with North Korea more seriously.

(More here.)

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