ICJS Event: Korea Japan Group-Book talk — Narushige Michishita on "North Korea's Military-Diplomatic Campaigns, 1966-2008" (Routledge, 2009)

Tuesday, December 15th, 2009
7:00 p.m. (talk starts at 7:30 p.m.)
TUJ Azabu Hall 212 (Access)
Open to general public.
Registration closed


This volume examines North Korea’s nuclear diplomacy over a long time period from the early 1960s, setting its dangerous brinkmanship in the wider context of its military and diplomatic campaigns to achieve its political goals. It argues that the last four decades of military adventurism demonstrates Pyongyang’s consistent, calculated use of military tools to advance strategic objectives vis à vis its adversaries. It shows how the recent behavior of the North Korean government is entirely consistent with its behavior over this longer period: its conduct is rational – in the Clausewitzian sense of being ready to use force as an extension of diplomacy by other means. The book goes on to demonstrate that North Korea’s "calculated adventurism" has come full circle: what we are seeing now is a modified repetition of earlier events – such as the Pueblo incident of 1968 and the nuclear and missile diplomacy of the 1990s. Using extensive interviews in the United States and South Korea, including those with defected North Korean government officials, alongside newly declassified first-hand material from U.S., South Korean, and former Communist-bloc archives, the book argues that whilst North Korea’s military-diplomatic campaigns have intensified, its policy objectives have become more conservative and are aimed at regime survival, normalization of relations with the United States and Japan, and obtaining economic aid.

About Narushige Michishita

Narushige Michishita (道下徳成) is Assistant Professor of the Security and International Studies Program at the National Graduate Institute for Policy Studies (GRIPS, 政策研究大学院大学) in Tokyo. He acquired his Ph.D. in International Relations from the School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS), Johns Hopkins University. His other works “Changing Faces of Japanese Defense Policy: Past and Future,” Global Economic Review 31/4 (2002); and “Alliances After Peace in Korea,” in Survival 41/3 (Autumn 1999). His most recent article, "Playing the Same Game: North Korea's Coercive Attempt at U.S. Reconciliation" (The Washington Quarterly (October 2009)) is available on-line here (PDF: 310KB).

About ICJS
The Institute of Contemporary Japanese Studies (ICJS) is an organization dedicated to fostering study and research on various topics related to contemporary Japan and Asia.