[Editor's note: We gratefully acknowledge the special contribution of this paper,
published by the Heritage Foundation courtesy of Bruce Klingner to ICAS. sjk]
South Korea Needs THAAD Missile Defense
June 12, 2015 Heritage Foundation Backgrounder 3024 on Missle Defense
Despite escalating North Korean nuclear and missile threats, South Korea resists implementing a more effective defense of its populace and critical military targets. Seoul refrains from deploying more capable interceptors and linking its network into a more comprehensive and capable allied network. President Park Geun-hye maintains a policy of “strategic ambiguity” due to Chinese pressure against U.S. deployment of the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) to South Korea. Seoul should instead exercise its sovereign right to defend the country and its citizens against the North Korean threat brought on, in part, by Beijing’s unwillingness to confront its belligerent ally.