September 27, 2023

Peace on Korean Peninsula eluded again

We should acknowledge that the two Koreas and the U.S. define 'peace' differently

Peace – men of God pray for it, politicians extol it, the elderly yearn for it, and children take it for granted. Peace is exactly what has been missing on the Korean Peninsula for the past 66 years because, as any Korea-watcher will be able to tell you, the Korean War ended with an armistice – an agreement to merely temporarily stop fighting, and not with a formal peace treaty – a formal agreement to end the state of war.

The peace dividends that would result from a formal end to the Korean War could be immense as both North and South Korea would be able to pare down their respective defense spending. Particularly considering the widespread malnutrition and dearth of properly functioning infrastructure in North Korea, the North Korean people would benefit the most from a peace treaty. So why has peace been so elusive?