Accession Number:

ADA621100

Title:

North Korea's Provocation and Escalation Calculus: Dealing with the Kim Jong-un Regime

Descriptive Note:

Occasional paper

Corporate Author:

CENTER FOR NAVAL ANALYSES ALEXANDRIA VA STRATEGIC STUDIES RESEARCH DEPT

Personal Author(s):

Report Date:

2015-08-01

Pagination or Media Count:

65.0

Abstract:

The 2010 Cheonan sinking and Yeonpyeong-do artillery bombardment were indications of how difficult it is to deter low-level North Korean provocations. These incidents elicited U.S.-ROK reaffirmation of their strategic deterrence commitment as well as a ROK declaratory policy shift toward proactive deterrence and manifold retaliation. Despite these reactions, strengthening deterrence of low-level provocations while minimizing risks of potential rapid conflict escalation remains a central dilemma as was demonstrated in the reaction to North Korea s alleged hack of Sony in order to prevent the release of the movie The Interview. This paper, which builds from an earlier paper written on covert versus overt provocations for the 6th CNA-KIMS workshop, examines North Korea s provocation and escalation calculus, as well as the timing inherent in its brinksmanship decision-making. It contains information up through the end of May 2015.

Subject Categories:

  • Government and Political Science
  • Unconventional Warfare

Distribution Statement:

APPROVED FOR PUBLIC RELEASE