North Korea: On The Path To Revolution?
Betts, Angelica Michelle
The Korean Peninsula is home to the last remaining Cold War division along its Demilitarized Zone (DMZ). To its north is the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) which has been ruled by a dynastic Soviet-Communist regime since the state's founding over 60 years ago. The Kim regime's record is one of human rights violations, mass famine and hunger-related deaths, rampant defection of its citizens, economic instability, and hostile relations with its neighbor to the south. And yet, despite what appears to be a country spiraling into decline, some analysts believe North Korea to be immune from the vulnerabilities that often serve as preconditions to revolution.This thesis contends that the conditions undermining North Korea's ruling regime and foreshadowing its collapse do, in fact, exist. In building this case, it draws on theories from political science and psychology, particularly theories of political violence, revolution, and frustration-aggression. In analyzing the make-up of North Korea's autocratic regime, the weakness of the political infrastructure, and the mass frustration that has resulted in nonconformist behavior, I argue that such conditions are becoming increasingly evident. Furthermore, the thesis shows that popular discontent and mass frustration may lead to resistance and rebellion that can bring about the demise of the Kim regime.These assessments provide a basis for recommendations for new policies by the U.S. and other key countries to help the North Korean people bring about political change for their state. North Korea is on the path to revolution and substantial support must be considered to assist its people to realize human freedom and dignity.
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