US Foreign Policy

US-ROK Alliance: Alternative Futures Out-Briefing

Following an “Alternative Futures” workshop in Seoul, South Korea, held from January 15 to January 16, Stimson organized a discussion with House and Senate staffers on where US-ROK relations could be headed.

The discussion opened with a summary of the workshop, which covered alternative futures to the alliance and drew on in-depth discussions with high-level ROK diplomatic and military officials on topics such as the significance of the alliance as it relates to US national defense strategy, the division of labor and military equities in the alliance as it continues to evolve, the implications of extended deterrence and various models of extended deterrence. Staffers asked about the possibility of different types of US missile deployments to the region in a shifting strategic context; ongoing cost-sharing negotiations between Washington and Seoul; and the implications COVID-19 for the alliance and region. Four experts shared their thoughts on the “Alternative Futures” workshop and supported the conversation:  Maj. Gen. (Ret.) Rick Martin,USAF Retired, former 3-star general with nearly four decades of service in the US Air Force, Dr. Shane Smith, Senior Research Fellow at the National Defense University’s Center for the Study of Weapons of Mass Destruction, Jenny Town, Fellow and Managing Editor of 38 North, and Dr. Clint Work, Fellow for Stimson’s Security for a New Century program.


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