North Korean Collapse Scenarios

A new paper by Bruce Bechtol examines various North Korean collapse scenarios. Planning for the Future: Conditions of Combined ROK-U.S. Military Intervention in Potential DPRK Contingencies addresses the key concerns of a joint/combined ROK-U.S. military operation in the case of a necessary contingency in North Korea. As such, it focuses on the necessary military issues, some of the likely scenarios where these issues would arise (there are simply too many to address them all in this paper), and the likely political factors in South Korea, the United States, and the international community that would be at play during this time period. China is likely to be the “elephant in the room,” though diplomacy with Beijing will be key and the Chinese are unlikely to agree to anything unless it is very clear to the world that North Korea is obviously in the throes of collapse, civil war, or complete anarchy.