Long book, covers many topics and happy to discuss them in the Q&A.
These remarks focus on the summit and the way forward.
Interpreting the summit we should strike a balance between continuity and change.
Three key issues regarding North Korean intentions and capabilities:
1) Does this signal a fundamental reorientation of policy in the North?
2) If so, are the North Koreans capable of reforming their system?
3) What is the ultimate goal of the North Korean regime?
Flurry of diplomatic activity (Italy, Australia, Philippines...UK, New Zealand), big news was the North-South summit announcement.
Timing raised the issue of whether this represented a real strategic reorientation on the part of the North Koreans, or was it merely a tactical manuveur designed to extract maximum concessions from an electorally desparate Kim Dae Jung and hedge against the prospective election of a harder line Administration in the US.
EVIDENCE: TRlP TO CHINA
The North Koreans have been absolutely scathing in their denunciation of the reforms undertaken in Eastern Europe which have been likened to "germs," "mosquitos," and other vermin to be kept at bay.
Reform as "honey-coated poison" and opening as "a Trojan horse tasked with destabilizing socialism."
In 1994 the North Koreans described the Chinese as "traitors to the socialist cause," but subsequently toned down the rhetoric as their growing desperation required increasing reliance on Chinese beneficence.