Opinion

Ernest J. Moniz in Foreign Policy: “A Nuclear South Korea is a Dangerous Miscalculation.”

Ernest J. Moniz in Foreign Policy: “A Nuclear South Korea is a Dangerous Miscalculation.”

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Ahead of this week’s summit between the U.S. and South Korean presidents, NTI Co-Chair and CEO Ernest J. Moniz writes in Foreign Policy that the security threats facing South Korea are real, but Seoul will not solve its national security challenges by developing nuclear weapons.

In “A Nuclear South Korea Is a Dangerous Miscalculation,” Moniz argues that South Korea would not increase its own security with a nuclear arsenal. Instead, it would invite new challenges and trigger consequences that would stymie Seoul’s rise as a global leader and imperil both economic prosperity and national security in the process.”

Moniz writes:

“Instead of embarking on this pathway, which serves neither South Korea’s nor the United States’ interests, the countries should use the upcoming White House summit to further invest in their now 70-year-old alliance to address emerging challenges in ways that advance, rather than undermine, nuclear stability and nonproliferation.

“That means strengthening extended deterrence, including by tighter coordination of U.S. and South Korean military capabilities, and improved planning and communications mechanisms for peacetime and crises. It also means continuing to work toward an eventual nuclear weapons-free peninsula through renewed diplomacy with North Korea. For the United States, it means finding ways to manage strategic competition and avoid nuclear risks with China, however daunting those tasks may seem.”

Moniz adds that Yoon should reaffirm his commitment to nonproliferation and “Biden should applaud that commitment given the country’s worrisome security environment and, in return, reiterate the importance the United States attaches to its mutual defense obligations.”

Read the full opinion piece in Foreign Policy here 

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