NAPSNet Daily Report
monday, august 27, 2001

I. United States

II. Republic of Korea

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I. United States

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1. Jiang Zemin's DPRK Visit

Reuters ("CHINA CONFIRMS PRESIDENT JIANG TO VISIT NORTH KOREA," Beijing, 08/27/01) reported that the PRC's official Xinhua news agency said on Monday that PRC President Jiang Zemin will visit the DPRK from September 3-5. Xinhua quoted Yu Hongjun, spokesman for the International Department of the Chinese Communist Party's Central Committee, as saying that Jiang would travel to the DPRK at the invitation of DPRK leader Kim Jong- il, but gave no further details.

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2. ROK-DPRK Water Rights

The Associated Press (Christopher Torchia, "RIVER'S FLOW RAISES TENSIONS BETWEEN KOREAS," Hwachon, 08/26/01) reported that the DPRK's use of a major tributary of the Han River for hydroelectric power effects the amount of water available to the ROK. Kim Chang-ho, an ROK engineer at a hydroelectric plant near Hwachon Dam, said that the DPRK "shut and open their dam according to their own convenience." He said that it is difficult for ROK engineers to predict the river flow "unless they notify us, which they're not doing." According to the ROK Ministry of Construction and Transportation, the amount of water flowing annually into Hwachon Dam has dropped by 12 percent to 2.6-billion tons since 1996. However, the ministry said that the loss has not affected electricity and drinking-water supplies to areas as far south as Seoul. Park Eung-kyuk, a public policy professor at the ROK's Hanyang University, stated, "We cannot live without water resources. This is one of the most urgent problems between the South and the North since the Korean War."

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3. US-ROK Military Exercises

The Associated Press ("US TAKES ON INVADER ROLE IN WAR GAMES," Seoul, 08/27/01) reported that 10,000 US troops are taking part in the annual "Ulchi Focus Lens," joint exercise with the ROK, which ends Friday. The exercises involve computer simulation such as moving supplies northward and fighting off a DPRK invasion. Computer operators at Camp Casey simulate an invasion using a battle plan that is partly independent from that of the defenders. Captain John Neal said that to do the same kind of exercises without computer simulations, "You would literally be sending divisions of troops into the field. It would cost a great deal of money. It would also disrupt the countryside and the activities of the populace."

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4. US Policy toward DPRK

The Washington Post (Alan Sipress and Steven Mufson, "POWELL TAKES THE MIDDLE GROUND," 08/26/01, A01) reported that despite retracting his statements on resumption of US dialogue with the DPRK during ROK President Kim Dae-jung's visit to Washington, US Secretary of State Colin Powell's position is now the official one of the US government. An unnamed State Department official stated, "Though he didn't initially prevail, he didn't give up.... We had an opportunity to voice our views and -- voila, we're at the point where our opinion is the accepted viewpoint." The official added that when Powell said that the US would resume talks, "He believed in the depths of his soul it was the right thing to do. We didn't realize that we were getting out front on the issue." The article said that US Deputy Secretary of State Richard L. Armitage built momentum for a resumption of dialogue during a visit to Seoul in early May, and James A. Kelly Assistant Secretary of State for East Asian and Pacific Affairs, further promoted that view as head of a Korea policy review committee.

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5. ROK History Textbooks

The Los Angeles Times (Mark Magnier, "SOUTH KOREANS HAVE OWN TEXTBOOK CONTROVERSY," Seoul, 08/26/01) reported that ROK civic groups and educators said that the ROK's middle and high school textbooks distort aspects of Korean history. Critics said that those in power have used their influence over school curricula and other social institutions to deflect attention from collaboration and obfuscate their families' roles during the Japanese occupation. A survey in the early 1990s by the Institute of National Affairs Studies found that half of all ROK professionals and 90 percent of bureaucrats came from families with strong ties to the Japanese colonial government. Lee Bu-young, vice president of the main opposition Grand National Party, noted that after the colonial period, "Anyone who even suggested that a collaborator should be removed was immediately branded a virulent Communist." Critics also said that the textbooks distort the anti-Japanese independence struggle. Kim Yug-hun, a history teacher at Sang Gye High School, stated, "The movement for independence from Japan was national. And, in fact, after 1922, most of the struggle came from the North. But the textbooks almost completely ignore the North's achievements and laud the South's essentially nonexistent contribution." Critics have also charged that the texts have downplayed the US role in the Korean War, only briefly mentioning US participation in the UN coalition. Critics also charged that uprisings by farmers against government corruption and mismanagement after 1890 are routinely downplayed or blamed on cults. Lee Hyun-hee, a history professor and textbook committee member, argued, "A single version of history based on a uniform ideology inevitably serves the interest of the state, and teachers end up acting as official mouthpieces. As a result, elements of the textbook are based on myth, not evidence, resulting in mistakes that can be compared to the Japanese distortions." Kang Man-gil, dean of Sangji University, stated, "Things should improve once the government monopoly on writing textbook ends. We need to teach as much and as truthfully as possible."

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6. ROK, PRC Relations with Japan

The Associated Press ("JAPAN PM SEEKS MEETING WITH LEADERS," Tokyo, 08/27/01) reported that Japanese Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi's spokesman Tsutomu Himeno said Monday that Koizumi hopes to meet with ROK and PRC leaders to ease anger over his visit earlier this month to the Yakusuni Shrine. Himeno stated, "He remains hopeful to have these opportunities, but when, where and how these meetings may take place are yet to be worked out." Himeno refused to comment on press reports that the lingering anger over the shrine visit may cause problems with Koizumi's trip in October to Shanghai for the annual Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) forum leaders' conference.

The Washington Post (Doug Struck, "JAPAN'S NEIGHBORS COOL TO KOIZUMI," Tokyo, 08/25/01, A13) reported that foreign and Japanese diplomats said that the leaders of the PRC and the ROK have turned down requests for meetings with Japanese Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi. An unnamed top Japanese Foreign Ministry official stated, "My sense is that this is really a very, very bad situation. Usually your diplomats will scramble to try to find some way to get things back on track. This time they're at a loss." Attempts to arrange a meeting with ROK President Kim Dae- jung during a UN Special Session on Children in New York next month failed after the ROK insisted that Koizumi must first reiterate Japan's 1998 apology for wartime atrocities and acknowledge the correctness of the decision by most local school boards in Japan to reject the use of the controversial history textbook. PRC President Jiang Zemin has also refused to meet with Koizumi at the APEC meeting. Huang Xingyuan, a diplomatic counselor at the PRC Embassy in Japan, said Thursday, "There's a Chinese proverb: 'He who starts trouble must act to end it.' We will wait to see whether Japan does that." Former Japanese Ambassador to the PRC Yoshiyasu Peter Sato stated, "It's a very tough attitude, a very tough reaction on the part of the Chinese and Koreans. As far as I remember, this kind of contact has never been refused by the Chinese side." Tomohisa Sakanaka, former director of the Research Institute for Peace and Security, argued, "We have to be more concerned about the relations with Asian countries. The historical recognition problem is not a new thing. It will take time to convince China and Korea."

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7. US-PRC Maritime Talks

The Washington Times (Bill Gertz, "U.S., CHINA TO MEET ON MARITIME ACCORD," 08/25/01) reported that US and PRC military officials will meet September 13 and 14 on Guam to discuss ways to avoid maritime incidents. The US delegation to the talks will be led by Rear Admiral Stephen Smith, chief of operations for the US Pacific Command. US Defense Department spokesman Navy Lieutenant Commander Jeff Davis said Friday, "We view this meeting as an important step in working past the EP-3 incident." He added, "It will provide a proper forum for both sides to discuss the important issue of future incidents." Davis stated, "The objective of the meeting is to discuss principles of safe flight and navigation activities conducted on the high seas, in international airspace and in exclusive economic zones."

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8. Cross-Straits Economic Relations

The Associated Press (William Foreman, "TAIWAN LEADER TAKES ADVICE ON CHINA," Taipei, 08/26/01) reported that Taiwan President Chen Shui-bian on Sunday accepted the advice of a panel of economic advisers to boost economic ties with the PRC. The group urged Chen to relax limits on how much Taiwanese can invest in the PRC, to let Taiwanese banks set up branches in the PRC, and to ease restrictions on PRC investments in Taiwan. Chen said that his government would spend the next two weeks figuring out how to implement the suggestions. Taiwan's top PRC policy-maker, Tsai Ing-wen, said that the policy was "a significant step forward" toward trying to improve relations with the PRC. Tsai stated, "This is a clear demonstration from our side that we are prepared to take the risk and take a positive attitude toward China."

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9. US Missile Defense

The New York Times (William J. Broad, "ACHILLES' HEEL IN MISSILE PLAN: CRUDE WEAPONS," 08/27/01, 1) reported that US government and private experts said that the US planned missile defense may not be effective against the kinds of rudimentary warheads that countries like the DPRK, Iran, and Iraq would fire. An unnamed US Department of Defense antimissile scientist stated, "We've concluded that it's an extremely difficult problem." Advanced warheads have a rotation, known as spin stabilization, to help them stay on target, but a crude warhead fired by an inexperienced attacker is likely to have no spin stabilization and to tumble end over end, making it hard to track. US officials are planning the first interceptor flight tests meant to track and destroy mock tumbling warheads, but will not be able to hold it for several years. General Ronald T. Kadish, the antimissile program's director, stated, "Our test philosophy is to add step- by-step complexities over time. It is a walk-before-you-run, learn-as-you-go development approach." He added, "Our test evaluators cannot learn by overloading system components with multiple test requirements and testing them too early under highly stressing conditions." Theodore Postol, an arms expert at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, argued, "Tumbling is a terribly big deal. It's totally unpredictable, a wild card. It makes it much harder to know what to look for." Dr. Nira Schwartz, a senior engineer in 1995 and 1996 at military contractor TRW, said that when he did computer simulations in which a kill vehicle was tested against 200 types of enemy decoys and warheads, the kill vehicle always failed to distinguish between tumbling warheads and decoys.

II. Republic of Korea

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1. Jiang Zemin's DPRK Visit

Joongang Ilbo (Kim Hee-sung, "JIANG ZEMIN TO VISIT PYONGYANG NEXT MONDAY WITH OVER 100 AIDES," Seoul, 08/27/01) reported that PRC President Jiang Zemin is to visit Pyongyang from September 3-5 accompanied by over 100 aides, PRC sources said on Sunday. The delegation is to be formed of various officials from the PRC Communist Party, military and economic sector. He is to meet with DPRK Chairman Kim Jong-il to discuss economic cooperation and military assistance. Jiang's aides will include Zeng Qinghong head of the organization department of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee, Qian Qichen, vice-premier of the State Council of the People's Republic of China (PRC), Zeng Peiyan of the State Development Planning Commission, and top members of the People's Liberation Army, the sources said. The PRC President is expected to urge Chairman Kim to resume dialogue with the ROK and make his promised visit to Seoul. The two leaders will release a joint statement at the end of the meeting.

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2. ROK Fighter Program

The Korea Herald (Kang Seok-jae, "SEOUL LIKELY TO FURTHER DELAY SELECTION OF WINNING BIDDER FOR FIGHTER PROJECT," 08/27/01) reported that ROK defense experts said Sunday that the ROK government is likely to further delay its announcement of the winning bidder and model for its next-generation fighter project. An anonymous expert stated, "Given the tight schedule for the selection of the successful bidder and model, it seems inevitable that the Seoul government will postpone the announcement of the winning bidder for another two months until November." He added, "The military evaluation team is known to have just completed its final price negotiations with all the foreign bidders last week and is expected to reach its final conclusion on the matter around early or mid- September. Based on the negotiation results, the Korea Institute for Defense Analyses (KIDA) then has to produce a cost-to-effect analysis report, which is expected to take at least six weeks. Then the National Security Council will review the result, which will go to President Kim Dae-jung for final approval around November, at the earliest."

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Produced by the Nautilus Institute for Security and Sustainable Development in partnership with:
International Policy Studies Institute Seoul, Republic of Korea
Center for American Studies,
Fudan University, Shanghai, People's Republic of China
Monash Asia Institute,
Monash University, Clayton, Australia

Gee Gee Wong:
Berkeley, California, United States

Timothy L. Savage:
Berkeley, California, United States

Robert Brown:
Berkeley, California, United States

Kim Hee-sun:
Seoul, Republic of Korea

Hiroyasu Akutsu:
Tokyo, Japan

Peter Razvin:
Moscow, Russian Federation

Yunxia Cao:
Shanghai, People's Republic of China

Dingli Shen:
Shanghai, People's Republic of China

John McKay:
Clayton, Australia

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