Korea Focus: essays on humanitarianism and human rights

Two interesting essays in the latest issue of Korea Focus, a publication of the Korea Foundation.

South Korea’s Internal Division over Humanitarian Aid to North Korea and North Korean Human Rights

Jhe Seong-ho
Professor of Law at Chung-Ang University;
Former Human Rights Ambassador
Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade

The question of humanitarian aid to North Korea has become a major social and political issue in South Korea, pitting liberals against conservatives, and moderates against hard-liners. These groups have taken sharply different positions regarding the distribution of aid to the North, suspected diversion of aid to the North’s military and linking material assistance to other matters concerning inter-Korean relations. These conflicts derive from North Korea’s uncommon status as an entity that will eventually have to be reunified with the South and as a threat to the South’s security. If assistance was intended for a country stricken by natural disaster, there would be no such discord.

A Critical Review on the Debate of Korean Development Model
Back Jong-gook
Professor of Political Science
Gyeongsang National University

The Korean development model is a theoretically and practically important topic. It not only represents the history of the Korean community but also provides lessons for the future of this community. Moreover, the Korean model is a valuable reference for Third World countries that are trying to develop in similar ways. […] This paper has two objectives. First, it intends to conduct a critical review of the theories surrounding Korea`s development that have been discussed in Korean political science academia, a group of approximately 1,700 political scientists and researchers. Among many, three theories are selected in consideration of their historical context and will be introduced in this paper. The second objective is to analyze the common characteristics of these theories.Sung kim

Also, it looks like Sung Kim, Washington’s special envoy to the six-party nuclear talks, is likely to become the next ambassador to South Korea. If Kim is chosen, it would be the first time in the 129-year history of US-Korea bilateral ties that an ethnic Korean a Korean American has been appointed to the position.