The coming crisis in Korea: a rubicon crossed
Despite the US administration's fixation with Iraq, it is fellow "axis of evil" member North Korea that has seemingly progressed the furthest in the race to build up a WMD arsenal. Is the Korean peninsula inevitably destined for imminent conflict, or can disaster be averted by eleventh-hour conciliation? As rhetoric and vitriol further strain relations between the US and North Korea, L. Gordon Flake, executive director of the Mansfield Foundation, examines the implications of the seismic shift in US foreign policy in the wake of 9/11 and of the intransigence displayed by both sides. Relating an anecdote that springs from his recent encounters with the classical traditions of Greece and Rome, the author cites a watershed event in the history of Ancient Rome to underscore the possibility that Washington and Pyongyang may already have passed the point of no-return, and concludes that the unified efforts of a multilateral coalition may represent the last best hope for a peaceful way out of the current impasse.