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US–South Korea alliance detriment to peace process

Frank Smith
Press TV, Seoul

A forum of leading scholars in Seoul Monday sought to forecast the changes taking place on the Korean Peninsula as South Korea recalibrates its relations with regional powers. Leading Russian Scholar Alexander Zhebin suggests Seoul exercise greater independence, considering its location.

South Korea has offended both Russia and especially China with recent deployments of hi-tech American missiles and fighter aircraft. 

Perhaps the most serious change discussed at the forum was the waning of American power in the region. Seoul and Washington have disagreed over several issues such as cost sharing of US troops in South Korea, the return of vacated US bases and strategy on denuclearizing North Korea. However, recent comments from the head of US forces here express a united front. 

South Korean President Moon Jae-in this week meets with US President Donald Trump and speaks at the UN general assembly with North Korea an expected focus.

The US and South Korea have had particularly differing views on how to denuclearize the Korean Peninsula. Seoul favors a step by step approach that would provide North Korea with incentives as it relinquishes its nuclear deterrent, and with the removal of hardliner John Bolton from Trump's staff, the so-called 'new method' just may involve US compromise.

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