March 20, 2023

Imagining N. Korea’s secret police post-unification

With no practical way of dealing with security, military officials, discontent looks likely

Editor's note: This is the forth in Andrei Lankov's series on unification scenarios. To see previous installments click here, here and here.

Like it or not, Korea realistically can only be reunified if South Korea absorbs the North. The Southern “triumph” is likely to be a rather mixed blessing for a number of social groups. One such group is the North Korean middle class. There are other groups, however, whose fate does not usually elicit much sympathy, but who nonetheless have the potential to create serious and lasting problems for post-unification Korean society. We are talking about regime officials, not least the numerous personnel of its armed forces and secret police.