The Instigator
Kwhite7298
Pro (for)
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The Contender
TheDevilsAdvocate
Con (against)
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2 Points

From S. Korea's point of view: Alliance with N. Korea?

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Post Voting Period
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after 2 votes the winner is...
TheDevilsAdvocate
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 1/16/2013 Category: News
Updated: 4 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 1,682 times Debate No: 29290
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (2)
Votes (2)

 

Kwhite7298

Pro

1) North Korea possesses a larger military force than S. Korea

2) N Korean alliance could open up new trading partners such as Syria for S Korea. NY Times 1-02-13

3) N Korea is making a push towards a new govt. An alliance can always be broken but not always made
TheDevilsAdvocate

Con

I accept this challenge. Thanks for starting the debate Kwhite.


First let us define Alliance as an agreement between two or more parties, made in order to advance common goals and to secure common interests. It is a Political agreement between countries to support each other in disputes with other countries.

"1) North Korea possesses a larger military force than S. Korea"

The DPRK (Democratic People's Republic of Korea) indeed has a larger military force than South Korea, though that does not mean it is more powerful militarily. The quality of South Korea's military is far superior than that of the KPA (Korean People's Army; North Korea's armed forces). Regardless. South Korea's military is one of the strongest in the world; according to Global Fire Power it ranks #8 based on a variety of factors. South Korea is also allied with the US; which ranks #1, so why does it need to ally itself with the DPRK? [1]

"2) N Korean alliance could open up new trading partners such as Syria for S Korea. NY Times 1-02-13"

I'm guessing you assume that Syria would make a great trading partner for S. Korea? Which may be true under normal circumstances but:

1. Syria is currently ravaged, no reliable data can be used to determine how effective trade with Syria would be under these current unstable conditions. Syria is undergoing a civil war as of the date of this post and the future of the government of Syria and its policies, are uncertain. [2]

2. Syria was previously already an importer of South Korean goods. I cannot say the same about today because there is no reliable data, but this proves an economic parternship already existed. [3]

3. An alliance with the DPRK is not necessary to open any trade relations with other countries for S. Korea.

"3) N Korea is making a push towards a new govt. An alliance can always be broken but not always made"

The DPRK is still a classic example of a totalitarian regime. The state has total control over every aspect of society under a cult of personality for the absolute leader. South Korea is a democratic country with a judicial, legislative and executive branches of government to keep power from being consolidated into too few hands. Their government difference are a major obstacle, not to mention the diplomatic difficulties of forming an alliance.

On to my main argument.

1. The DPRK and S. Korea are still technically at war. The Korean War that shattered the Korean peninsula ended in an armistice and not in a conclusive treaty. An alliance cannot be made between two countries at war with each other; that would make no sense. [4]

2. The Korean Demilitarized Zone is ironically the most militarized area in the world. Running along the 38th parallel north, this is yet another obstacle to any such alliance. From S. Korea's point of view, the DPRK has had numerous intrusions since the Korean War including a tunnel system; to be used in preparation for a resume of active conflict. [5]

Sources

[1] http://www.globalfirepower.com...
[2] http://www.bbc.co.uk...
[3] http://motherearthtravel.com...
[4] Stokesbury 1990 p. 242–245.
[5] http://www.fas.org...
Debate Round No. 1
Kwhite7298

Pro

First off, I would like to point out a couple of perhaps more recent facts that may change your refution:
1) Bashar al-Assad was asked to step down by the UN and the al-Assad family is no longer allowed to be a part of Syrian government.
http://www.ibtimes.co.uk...

Now to refute your arguement:

1) Both N. Korea and S. Korea have decided to end the war between them, it's just not official yet.
http://sourcefednews.com...
http://english.hani.co.kr...

2) The DMZ has evolved away from the violence it once saw
http://www.theglobeandmail.com...

My arguement:
1) An alliance with N. Korea would be almost like 'testing ground'. If something goes wrong, the United States will back up S. Korea since S.K. is the 7th largest trading partner of the United States.

2) S. Korea needs an alliance in Asia other than China
http://www.scmp.com...
TheDevilsAdvocate

Con

Thanks for the response Kwhite, I want to show you something in response to your comment on Assad,

"1) Bashar al-Assad was asked to step down by the UN and the al-Assad family is no longer allowed to be a part of Syrian government."

The article you provided was dated August 2012, whereas Assad had an interview where he said he would not step down or leave Syria in exile; rather he would die in his country. Take a look at the first video.



So the situation in Syria is still uncertain, and contemperary data on Syria's trading is unreliable because of the conflict. Nevertheless the link I previously posted it up shows Syria was a trading partner with S. Korea before the conflict. This still refutes your point that an alliance with DPRK would open trade with other countries.


"1) Both N. Korea and S. Korea have decided to end the war between them, it's just not official yet."

Even if this was true, going from at-war to allied is a huge leap and is unrealistic. Until they officially end the war, then it is still impossible for them to enter an alliance and still unreasonable after the war ends.


"2) The DMZ has evolved away from the violence it once saw"

Even if the DMZ has seen less violence, the previous incidents (especially the more recent ones) have strained relations between the two Koreas. These incidents make the diplomatically far-fetched idea of partnership even more difficult to even enter realization.

Nevertheless, even if the DMZ had none of these incidents, it is still the most militarized area in the world. It is a physical manifestation of the distrust between the two nations. Millions of troops on both sides of the border are ready to enter full-scale war with the other.


"1) An alliance with N. Korea would be almost like 'testing ground'. If something goes wrong, the United States will back up S. Korea since S.K. is the 7th largest trading partner of the United States."

As I mentioned before, the differences, strained relations and general antagonizing nature of the DPRK has made the prospect of an alliance not only far-fetched, but nearly impossible. It is almost like suggesting an Israeli-Palestinian alliance, it would benefit them both but it's nearly impossible to implement; pragmatically speaking. A more reasonable approach is a peace treaty or to move towards rebuilding a strained relationship.


"2) S. Korea needs an alliance in Asia other than China"


The source you used does not even suggest S. Korea needs any alliance in Asia; and it was specifically talking about Japan-S.Korea relations and not Sino-S.Korea relations. I will use the very same source to refute this argument. The US is allied with both S.Korea and Japan so despite strained relations between the two from the past, collaberation and co-operation between the two is mutually benefecial. It is also more reasonable than DPRK and S.Korea co-operations because
  1. Japan and S.Korea are both wealthy, highly developed and technologically advanced
  2. Japan and S.Korea are both democratic
  3. Both nations have strong ties with the United States
  4. Both nations can mutually protect each other against China and the DPRK

Though it would be difficult to mend relations between Japan and S.Korea as Imperial Japan committed atrocious war crimes in the second world war, it is far more reasonable than a DPRK-S.Korea alliance.


I would also like to mention that if S.Korea proposed an alliance with the DPRK it would hurt relations with the United States severely, as the DPRK antagonizes the United States constantly. For S.Korea to alienate the US would be foolish; it is larger, much more powerful and much more beneficial to S.Korea than the DPRK ever can.

Take a look at this DPRK anti-US propaganda as an example of how the DPRK antagonizes the US in the second video.



Also here are some relatively recent events that make the prospect of an alliance even less beneficial:

1 http://www.huffingtonpost.com...
2 http://nwww.koreaherald.com...
3 http://www.un.org...


Pro has failed to address how the DPRK is a totalitarian dictatorship and that it would be very difficult to form a partnership with (from S.Korea's perspective) because of political differences and public opinion in S.Korea. Let's take a look at how North Korea actually looks like from within in the third video.




In conclusion, an alliance with the DPRK from S.Korea's standpoint is far-fetched and the cons of which outweight the pros. It would antagonize the West and stir up the S.Korean public because of the vast political differences. Instead, a more reasonable approach would be to end the war, draw a peace treaty and begin amending a relationship that has been heavily strained by at least refraining from any incidents along the DMZ. This would be far more beneficial to the DPRK (whom no longer needs to fret about S. Korean military buildup and impending war), S. Korea (for much the same reason and also not alienating the US) and America itself (whom can worry less about some sort of conflict occuring in Korea)

Debate Round No. 2
Kwhite7298

Pro

Kwhite7298 forfeited this round.
TheDevilsAdvocate

Con

Ugh forfeit. All my arguments extend. Vote Con!
Debate Round No. 3
2 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Posted by TheDevilsAdvocate 4 years ago
TheDevilsAdvocate
I have a feeling this one's going to be a forfeit. Why???
Posted by Ike-Jin-Park 4 years ago
Ike-Jin-Park
"testing ground".......
2 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Vote Placed by jh1234l 4 years ago
jh1234l
Kwhite7298TheDevilsAdvocateTied
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Reasons for voting decision: Forfeit
Vote Placed by ax123man 4 years ago
ax123man
Kwhite7298TheDevilsAdvocateTied
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Reasons for voting decision: Pretty close until the forfeit. And I learned a couple things. As is usually the case, DDO does a better job than the MSM.