New MHP book proving a little too timely ….
Whether or not the mysterious sinking of a South Korean military vessel on Friday had anything to do with North Korea, the world should turn its attention to the possibility that the death of Kim Jung Il could mean an increased likelihood of more military actions, says B.R. Myers in a Wall Street Journal commentary from the weekend.
Echoing a scenario he detailed in his new Melville House book, The Cleanest Race: How North Koreans See Themselves and Why It Matters, Myers says
The latest incident comes days after a conference in which some experts described the Kim dictatorship as being in the first stage of collapse. Americans should be paying attention: If North Korea decides to go out in a blaze of nuclear gloryâ€”and its current penchant for kamikaze rhetoric suggests it mightâ€”the enormous number of casualties would likely include many of the U.S. troops stationed on the peninsula. But even a less-apocalyptic form of collapse could destabilize the entire region. Those South Korean experts might be wrong in their predictions, but the regime seems increasingly unlikely to last out the decade, even if the planned hand-off of power to the Dear Leader’s son Kim Jong Eun goes off without a hitch.
Dennis Johnson is the founder of MobyLives, and the co-founder and co-publisher of Melville House.