Letter to the NYT Editor on North Korea

Below is a response by me and Edward Baker to the New York Times March 8 op-ed on North Korea: https://www.nytimes.com/2017/03/13/opinion/talk-with-north-korea.html?ref=topics.

Talk With North Korea

MARCH 13, 2017

To the Editor:

Re “North Korea’s Scary Show of Strength” (editorial, March 8):

Your analysis and recommendation that only a new round of negotiations between the United States and North Korea “holds any reasonable promise of working” are correct, but you don’t mention the incentives necessary to get the North to return to the table.

The United States, instead of rejecting renewed negotiations, as it did on March 8, should make clear that it will be willing to discuss not only a halt to joint military exercises with the South and the installation of the Thaad missile defense system but also conclusion of a treaty that will finally formally end the Korean War.

In Churchill’s famous phrase, it is better to “jaw-jaw than to war-war.”


Mr. Cohen is faculty chairman at N.Y.U.’s U.S.-Asia Law Institute, and Mr. Baker is a special adviser at Harvard’s Korea Institute.