Despite a flurry of unprecedented inter-Korean summits in 2018 North Korea summits in 2018 and 2019, the military situation on the Korean Peninsula remains unchanged. Indeed, as Kim Jong Un's remarks on strengthening North Korea's nuclear forces indicate, Pyongyang will continue to stretch the WMD envelope. However, political leaders often paint an optimistic picture of changing relations with North Korea that obfuscates strategic realities. The recently released Korea Net Assessment addresses the gap between strategic realities and political assessments on the issues most important to Korean security: North Korea’s military threat, the health of the alliance, and South Korean relations with China and Japan.

Chung Min Lee

Chung Min Lee is a senior fellow in Carnegie’s Asia Program. He is an expert on Korean and Northeast Asian security, defense, intelligence, and crisis management.

Jina Kim

Jina Kim is chief of the North Korea Military Division at the Korea Institute for Defense Analyses.

Bryan Port

Bryan Port is former director of strategy for United States Forces Korea.

Kathryn Botto

Kathryn Botto is a research analyst in the Asia Program at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace.