June 03, 2023

Is it time for South Korea to nuke up?

A S. Korean nuclear program isn't needed: rebuilding the U.S.-ROK alliance is the way forward

Since North Korea showed the rest of the world that it has made significant progress in developing its submarine-launched ballistic missile (SLBM) technology earlier in August, and combined with its quickly-growing ability to miniaturize nuclear weapons, there have been increased calls among South Korean lawmakers, think tanks, military experts, and pundits for South Korea to acquire its own nuclear submarines to counter the North Korean threat.

It is still unclear if the South Korean government will act upon this rhetoric. Aside from political pressure that South Korea might face from the U.S. and the risk of possibly further straining its ties with China, there are other more practical reasons to dissuade South Korea from going down this route.