Northolicy Toward South Korea:Harbinger of Change'
North Korea's bombingouth Korean elrllner Inthe loaaves--stends In stark contrast to its effort4 tooderate image end heightens our concern about additional violence as Seoul preperes to hoit tne Olympics. In Itself, the bombing does noteparture trom Pyongyang's longstanding tactics toward Seoul
the past two decades Nonh Korea's Cehav.or haswo-tree* epprpech to the South, mining acts ot violence with proposals lor talks
Our greater concerns ebout violence notwlthstendlng. Pyongyang continues to attempt to project an Image of moderation--for example, by proposing renewed tafka with Seoul We believe Pyongyang recognizes lhal the political costsellicose policy could be considerable.
including damaging relations wrth rts allies, curbing lis limitedto foreign capital acid tntnnoiogy. and circumscribing further ine chances for direct talks wrth Washington. Indeed, with Soulh Korean President Roh Tae Woo suggesting ha ii wilting to renew dialogue with Pyongyang attar tha Olympics,hange in US administrations in the offing, the North maynew reasons for emphasizing the "peaceful" side of Its dull approach over the now year.
After KA IU: More Violence?
Orvert Ihe Norths record ol terrorism--ranging from its assassination raid on the South Korean presidential mansion8 to the attempt to snoot President Park Chung Hee4 and the operation that killedouth Korean officials3 Inairliner bombing lest year obviously suggests tha threat ol violenceB la acuta (see thehe danger seema high now because of the evident motlvetlon for the sabotage: the lurvlving terrorist claims the bombing was intended lo disrupt the Seoul Olympics, tn fact,ttempt* so far to subvert the Games have) done nothing tohange In venue, build supporioycott, or foster backing forho sting' with Seoul Moreover, the etrtlner episode etone appears io have been too early toignificant Impact on the Olympics, which begin in September The action, therefore, may have been the flteteries ot incidents planned to portray South. Korea as unsafe mamWM
The Diplomatic Approach?
Despite our concerns about additional violence in the near term, we do not believe thencidentolicy that will rely solely on this course Pyongyang hai reasons to stress dlplomecy and dialogue aa well in the months ahead In fact, since ihe airliner bombing, ihe North has continued to try to appear the party
Seofet Nottdn Nocctftiract Oscon
Noforn Noca/ntreci :
most Interested tn Itnilon reduction end isUs under trie auspices of th*dialogue ot.ciels
continue IO repeel -fi-worn themes trie!yongyang* *peecefur worM view, including OnmiHc slept Such atits military rorcei
Guidance from Iheongyeng suggests we can expect mora of the umen hla Now Yaat's speech. Preaiaaniong calladorth-South eonference. attended by representative* ol boil governments end ell polilical parties, on tension reduction. Tha proposed agenda encompassed familiar Items. Including discussion of Teem Spirit the annual US-Soulh Korean mint military exercise, otsermament, end Olympics cohosting. Following up on the speech, in Jenuary and again In March. Pyongyangeries ol ioint conferences to discuss Its Ideas, to be held In the two capitals afterpreliminary session et Panmunjom.
Wa believe Pyongyang appredeies the polilical costs of relying solely on violence to influence events fen the South North Korea'song enernpt to use more flexible diplomatic tactics oijvtoush/ has failed to achieve Its presumed goal* of direct talks wtth Washington. Olympic cohosting with Seoul, and better access to Wesiern capital and technology,origveng hasny. attractive policy alternatives. Use of violence atone would not help Pyongyang close the widening gap between the North and South in their longstanding competition tor International prestige end recognition. Nor would It turn beck Ihe South's progress In expanding contacts with Beijing endIt could ecceterete the trend by elienatlng the Chinese end Soviets:
The North could well conclude that eny movoment toward contects with the United States Is unlikely without some emphasis on dlplometic norms.
- Beijing end Moscow have evolded publiclyongyeng for the KA 8S8
New Openings In Seoul'
The coming year mey offer Pyongveng other reesons tor pursuing the diplomatic approach- now administration in Seoulew one in Washington in It
S>orat Nojorn Nocoofract^>
In this context b,lc statements point to thn possibilityi Mo rant approach to tne Nonh as wall. According to the US Emb-ssy in Seoul. Roh played en Important role In formulating South Korea's restrained response to the airliner bombing, apparently ruling out military retaliation soon after the incident The Embassy also reported that Roh consideredonciliatory gesture to thean offer of food aid or to acturety for some of.F)
In public, Roh hss suggested an Inclination toofter tone toward the North than his predecessor;
after the airliner Incident Roh downplayed Pyongyang's culpability by suggesting the terrorist suspects might either represent only -bellicoser be rogue ectlvlsts who did not act on beholf of the Nonh Koreonshole. The remarks appear intended to give Kimace-saving way to extricate himself from theallout similar to tha tack taken by President Perk Chung Hoehen he characterized the aborted commando attack on the South Korean presidential mansionoguend thus paved the way lor tha first North-South dialogue.
flexibility waa also presaged during his presidential campaign, when he broke with policy intended to ensure Seoul's allies did not get out ahead In relations with North Korea by publicly stating Washington and Tokyo could recognize Pyongyang before Moscow end Beijing recognized Seoul Roh also endorsed tha North-South dialogue, calling for regular Cabinet meetings,big brother-little brother* relationship between Seoul and Pyongyang F)
To be sure, the North is likely to see thorns In Roh's olive branches. In itself, the 'big bfoihcr-'liile brolher analogy no doubtdemand for equal cohosting status with Seoul In the Olympics testifies to the Importance of suchNorth Korea would be loath to concede other disadvantagesis the South. In dealing with Roh's Ideo of providing eld, for Instance. P'yongyong would be untikeh/ tot needs help, or thet the South Is better off economically. The North elso has steadfastly opposed cross-recognition in sny formloy to permanently divide the peninsula. Pyongyang probably recognizes that Roh Is not risking much on the Issue, given Seoul's success already In expanding contacts with the North's allies.F)
ojorn Nocajfttrect Qfeon
No/brn Noccj/trect Os/or.
And ihe NorthRuction'
Depending on Ron's approach to rhe dialogue. North Korea may teal pleasuredespond, particularly If any apparent flexibility translatesouth Koreen effort to selie the Inltletlve. Pyongyang may also see opportunltlea to press Ms ceee on lasues ranging from tension reduction to the withdrawal of US troops from the penlneula. But. even If the Roh administration enlivens the exchange between the two Koreas, substantive progress on reunification Issues, in our view, will be slow:
With the Southositionuccessful hosting of theit lately to see Seoul as the party holdingthe cards,therefore unHkety to offer real concessions during any negotiations
Korea may also9 and beyond esetter chance for contacts with the United Slatesew US edmlnlstretlon settles hv Weshlngton will remain the kay target In Pyongyang's strategy to win withdrawal ot US troops, and the North may see continued pursuit of Hs diplomatic track as essential If It hopes to take advantage ot new departures In Washington"-Ion Korea policy
Sec/el Nof/m Oicon
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Selected [aamplos of th* North'* Dun Approach
resident Kim li-aong proposes talKs leadingorth-South confederation, wlthdrewot ot US lorces. end mutual force reductionen each
jm reiterates the confederation proposal
3 Pyongysngonaggression pact, standing committee lor culture) exchanges,onference of North-South representatives.
B: South Koreen security forcesorth Korean agent north of Seoul He confesses he wasission te essassinate President Park Chung Hee
North Korean guerrilla forcee eperete Inside South Korea In up to company-site strength. The forces seek to carry out swiftly executed attacks against US and South Korean military forces end Inflict heavy casualties.
6 Pyongyang callsorth-South conterence of polilical parties and social organ!rations.
January -ore North Korean commandos attempt to attack the South Korean presidential mansion to assassinate President Park.
an guerrilla ferce lands on the east coast of South Korea and unsuccessfully attempts toopular Insurgency. The entire force Is eliminated as ft travels overland to the North
hird North Korean attempt te kill Park failsomb explodes prematurely.
yongyangropose! for "peecefu! raunlflcetion" that callsorth-South political consultative meeting Involving representetives from political pertlas and public organisations.
he two Koreaspresldentlel envoys, conduct humanitarian contacts through the Red Cross, endouth-North Coordination Committee. Intermittent worklng-lovel contects In the SNCC channel continue untilIn the Red Cross chsnneltlh no subsiantlve progress.
ourth North Koreen attempt to hill Park fails when an assassins bullets striae Mrs Park Instead
0 The North Korean Premiereeting with the South Korean Prime Minister and lor the first time officially employs the term Republic of Korea.
im ll-song proposes toemocretlc Confederal Republic ot Koryo. although he subsequentlyouth Koreen proposal tor summit lefts
onh (drain agentsanadian aaaaasln to murder President Chun Doo Mwan. bui tha hit man absconds with tha money.
3 Chun rtairotvty eacepes assassinationorth Korean-planted bomb in Rangoon. Iwmi;outh Korean officials are killed
yongyang passei through Chineseroposal for unconditional talks between Seoul. Pyongyang, and Washington.
Soulh Korea accepts the North's offer of flood roller supplies.
ftieterei talks progress Mte-rmtientry on political economic, and humanitarian Issues.
JmiifMorth Korea presents proposals tot talks on political and military
January.orth Korea cellsorth-South joint conference
Seo/et Ho/Cm Noc/fntract OeconOriginal document.