STEPHEN NOERPER: (Moderator)
Good day. Welcome to The Korea Society and welcome to Studio Korea. We're delighted to have all of you with us—our studio audience along with our streaming online viewers—to share the kickoff of our fall, 2013 season. I'm Senior Vice President Stephen Noerper.
Today I am delighted to welcome academic luminary Professor Charles Armstrong of Columbia University. Professor Armstrong (an old friend of The Korea Society) is a guiding force and thought leader on issues dealing with the Korean Peninsula as well as America's understanding of Korea—the essence of The Korea Society's mission. I want to take a moment to thank you, Charles, for your continued support of The Korea Society.
Charles is also the author of the soon to be released second edition of The Two Koreas published by Routledge Press. I strongly recommend it along with the subject of today's discussion, Tyranny of the Weak: North Korea and the World, 1950-1992. Today is the first event celebrating the publication of Tyranny of the Weak. At the end of next week, Professor Armstrong will be at the Wilson Center in Washington, DC to discuss this fine study. We are very grateful that he chose to spend his time here with us today.
O. A. Westad from LSE refers to Tyranny of the Weak as "the best book on the history of North Korea's foreign relations." Chen Jian of Cornell describes the research you employed as "pathbreaking." My first question for you is about the gestation of Tyranny of the Weak. Why this book and what is its appropriateness for this time?
Thank you, Stephen. It seems that North Korea is always appropriate for the time. This book is my attempt to explain the Groundhog Day feeling we have when dealing with North Korea and particularly U.S.-North Korean relations over the last sixty years.
The term "tyranny of the weak" may be too strong for some people (including all of my North Korean friends). It comes from an article I found on Cold War history and is meant to help us understand the "tail wagging the dog" phenomenon we witnessed during the Cold War—not from the point of view of the major protagonists (the United States, the Soviet Union and China) but from smaller, more peripheral countries.
North Korea is probably the best case of a small and relatively weak country that was able to do remarkable things—although not necessarily things we would all approve of—to maximize the benefits it received from its Great Power patrons (and even in some cases enemies more powerful than itself). This project is an attempt to approach the study of North Korea through the eyes of a historian. I've often said we can't truly know anything about North Korea as we can't do research there—that North Korea's history is locked away in a black box that's completely impenetrable.
It turns out this is not the case. We know a lot more about North Korea than previously thought. What drove me to engage in this particular project was the realization that we had so many new archival materials—from the former Soviet Union, East Germany and other Eastern European countries that had been allied with North Korea—and through these we would be able get a better understanding of North Korea. The research is not from North Korea's own archives—but it is the best we have and something never done before.
That's interesting, Charles. You mentioned that the title could have been "The World and North Korea" as opposed to North Korea and the World…
And this research was done in-house primarily at the Wilson Center?
At the beginning of the 1990s, the Wilson Center launched a project called the Cold War International History Project (CWIHP). This project acts as a clearinghouse of materials essential for anyone interested in Cold War history—materials from the former Soviet Union and other formerly Communist countries whose archives opened after the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991. A subsidiary of that is another program at the Wilson Center—the North Korea International Documentation Project (NKIDP)—that has translated many thousands of documents coming from Russia, Czechoslovakia, Poland, Germany and, to some extent, China.
Although I relied heavily on the archives from these two programs, I have to say I did a lot of my own work, as well. I dusted off my high school German and received a grant (the first ever awarded to an American by the German government) to study North Korean history in Germany—allowing an investigation of East Germany's Foreign Ministry archives as well as the party archives. East Germany was a very close ally of North Korea throughout most of the Cold War period, and it was indeed fascinating and revelatory. I went to China. I went to Seoul. I went to Russia. I even went to Addis Ababa and interviewed people who had dealt with North Korean advisors in Ethiopia during the Marxist period there.
This was a very wide-ranging and global research project attempting to interpret North Korea's interaction with the world starting from the outbreak of the Korean War—the first example, I think, of North Korea practicing its "tyranny of the weak"—to the collapse of the Soviet Union and the joint entry of the two Koreas into the United Nations.
You mention there are several aspects to the distinctive nature of North Korea's development—with its ability to weave together to maximum advantage all the benefits it derived—and which may be appropriate in trying to understand the events of this year. That perhaps the Great Powers of the Cold War were limited and that the Cold War is a history of contest and a history of conflict.
You begin by looking back sixty years to the beginning of the Korean War (what you refer to as the "unfinished war") from that perspective. How do you believe this aspect of North Korea's history will shape its thought process and guiding principles going forward with foreign policy?
One of the things we didn't know in detail about the Korean War until the last decade or so was how much of this event was driven by North Korea and Kim Il Sung. At the time, America assumed that Kim Il Sung was a proxy of Stalin and was doing Stalin's bidding in order to test the Americans.
What we now know is it was really Kim in particular, and a few around him, who pushed Stalin constantly. He visited Stalin numerous times encouraging an attack on South Korea. If there had not been this insistent pressure from Kim and the North Korean leadership, I don't think the Soviet Union would have agreed to this venture.
That was a very bold move by Kim and it almost succeeded. I think it's often forgotten how close the North Koreans really were to taking over the Korean Peninsula—and that we would not have the Republic of Korea today had it not been for the U.S.-UN intervention in December of 1950.
The fact that the war never ended and that ultimately unification did not happen has been very frustrating for the North Korean leadership to deal with. There is a sense that even though the North Koreans claimed victory—North Korea's official name for this war is the Victorious Fatherland Liberation War—it is a victory never achieved and something they would aspire to in some form in the future. That has been a driving force ever since.
I argue in the book that it is much more than just the division of the Peninsula that has created the hostility between North and South Korea still existing to this day. That is one reason the Korean division is very different from the German division. If East and West Germany had fought a war with each other, German unification might not have gone as well as it did—although it certainly had its problems.
Because of the Korean War, unification has been much more difficult to achieve. The North Koreans do not trust that the South Koreans will treat them humanely should unification be on South Korean terms. The war, and the memory of that war, has perpetuated the division of Korea more than any other single factor.
As to the point about Stalin, you note that Khrushchev discussed that in his memoirs published in English in 1970. You do an excellent job of framing that in a much broader way with your mention of the close relationship between Kim Il Sung and Erich Honecker—of understanding Kim Il Sung's successful manipulation, if you will, in dealing with the Chinese, with the Germans, with the Soviets and with playing the Great Powers off of themselves.
Most of us here in the United States think of the Cold War in terms of the U.S.-Soviet conflict. You rightly point out that from a North Korean perspective the Cold War was really three different wars.
Yes. The North Korean point of view is that there were three Cold Wars. The first was the U.S.-Soviet Cold War. The second was the thirty-year Sino-Soviet Cold War—a war that at times became very heated and briefly became a shooting war on the borders between the Soviet Union and China.
Third was the North-South Korean Cold War. After 1953, neither side could entertain the open conflict and hostility; and this developed a rivalry that mirrored or encapsulated, in a microcosm, the global Cold War fought on the Korean Peninsula. And, as we know, the third Cold War has not ended as of today.
North Korea's great advantage was its ability to maneuver between the Soviet Union and China during the Sino-Soviet Cold War that lasted from 1959 (when the Sino-Soviet split came about) until 1989 when Gorbachev visited Beijing (and the Soviet Union and China sort of patched things up).
Many countries within the Communist bloc had a great deal of difficulty dealing with this. Vietnam used a similar approach, but after unification fell into the Soviet camp. North Korea, meanwhile, managed to maximize concessions from the Soviet Union and China by playing each against the other thereby threatening, in a sense, to defect to the other side. Both the Soviet Union and China were quite concerned about this.
From the 1950s onward, the Soviet Union did not want North Korea to fall into the Chinese camp. They wanted to keep North Korea as an ally. China wanted to retain North Korea as a friendly nation on its border. The North Koreans handled this very shrewdly and gained a great deal economically—as well as in terms of military and political support—from both sides in this very tense and hostile relationship between these Communist Great Powers.
In terms of this contest for legitimacy between the North and the South, you guide us through a period in the 1960s and early 1970s when North Korea was perceived as being in a stronger position. Then you get to the apex, from 1972 to 1973, where the Non-Aligned Movement and North Korea presented themselves as something of a model. This was a period we tend to forget where North Korea enjoyed a level of support that has been greatly reversed relative to the amazing strength of the Republic of Korea internationally today.
That's correct. At the beginning of this period, North Korea was less connected to the broader world than South Korea. It had few diplomatic partners outside of the immediate Soviet bloc (the Soviet Union, China, Mongolia and the Soviet alliance states of Eastern Europe). And, of course, North Korea was much weaker—having half the population of South Korea—and both North Korea and South Korea were devastated by war.
But North Korea recovered from the war much more quickly than South Korea. It had an extremely impressive record of industrial development after the late 1950s—although I found, looking at the East European records, that the economic success of North Korea was much more problematic at that time than we thought. For example, there were food shortages in 1955 and 1959.
But, in terms of developing an industrial economy, North Korea did quite well. It was in the early to mid-1960s—when decolonization began and there were a lot of newly independent countries in Asia and Africa—that North Korea came into its own. Many of these newly independent nations tended to look at North Korea as a more attractive model for development.
South Korea was seen as a client state of the United States—as a corrupt regime that had a very dire economic situation—and North Korea claimed to be independent. It was not aligned in the Sino-Soviet conflict. It had developed (at least on the surface) this impressive industrial economy and it had done so on its own. This idea of Juche (of self-reliance and independence) was something that resonated widely in the post-colonial world in Asia, Africa and the Middle East—from about the early 1960s to, say, the mid- to late-1970s—and before the South Korean model began to look much more attractive.
By the early 1970s, North Korea had more or less reached parity with South Korea in terms of the number of countries with which it had diplomatic relations. Whether you look at voting in the UN or the appeal of economic models of development, North Korea was clearly ahead of South Korea from approximately 1972 to 1975.
Hence, the cover of the book—a 1976 Korea Daily piece that shows that alignment across developing-country representatives.
But what a different day. South Korea begins its economic juggernaut followed by its democratization process—something of a diplomatic miracle that mirrors the Miracle on the Han—and sees the disintegration of the Soviet Union and the former Eastern bloc. Membership in the United Nations in  is a very different reality for the Koreas—both North and South—certainly in terms of international recognition.
Then we get into the 1990s. Yeltsin's Russia wants very little to do with North Korea and North Korea was losing its past patrons. South Korea picked up both recognition and a new economic relationship—certainly with Russia. There was that transformation. Towards the latter section, you guide us to this last decade and a half of reality—of back and forth—and North Korea struggling relative to the policies of the United States and others.
How does that process lead us to the North Korea we see today? To the crises of March and April of 2013 where North Korea is the leading news event on all major networks for close to twenty-six straight days? And to its rather bellicose rhetoric—particularly in the wake of the missile and nuclear tests—leading to a great deal of international concern? What does it say about North Korea and how does this book help us better understand the North Korea of today?
I think that all countries are products of history and all foreign policies, are, as the political scientists say, to some degree past-dependent—they are following up from decisions made in the past. What I say in the book is that, in part, North Korea is a victim of its own success. It seemed to do well in the 1950s, 1960s and 1970s, but it was unable to adapt to the changes going on around it from the late 1970s onward and was unable even to recognize that until it was too late.
There's a very interesting incident I recounted in some detail of Kim Il Sung's last tour of the Soviet Union and Eastern Europe—which was, appropriately enough, in 1984—and he seems unable to see that the Soviet bloc, itself, is on the verge of momentous change and that this model is not working. At the very moment when the model is about to collapse, he declares that North Korea is and always will be a socialist country in solidarity with the Soviet Union and Eastern Europe—and they give up on the third-world model idea.
Then Gorbachev comes along and China engages in reform under Deng Xiaoping. The North Koreans are caught off guard and unsure how to handle this. They aren't willing to accept it. They take some steps toward their own economic reform—but it's too little too late—and they become trapped. To some extent, I think they are still trapped in this older model of the internal development of their political system—of their way of dealing with the world that is really out-of-date and unable to work well—in terms of both economic development and becoming, as we might call it, a "normal" country. That problem has its roots much deeper in North Korean history.
I do say toward the end of the book that North Korea is not "the land that time forgot." There was a serious attempt at reform in the late 1990s and early 2000s; but there were other concerns about security and so forth that overrode the impetus toward economic reform. North Korea is still in that position right now and I think it will be very difficult—perhaps not impossible—for it to be transformed into a new kind of system that can adapt to the challenges of the 21st century successfully.
One of my favorite photographs in the book is that of Chernenko and Kim Il Sung together. The reason I particularly like it is the placement of the Nicaraguan crocodile—which was one of the state gifts to the Kim family. It makes for an amusing juxtaposition of photographs. The rest of the photos inside are quite interesting, as well, and I assume gathered over the course of your research.
Yes. I gathered many photos, but the publishers really liked those you'll see in the book—particularly the crocodile photo. For some reason, that was very popular. But Chernenko, in the photo, looks like he's already been embalmed…
Yes. A few of us made that same comment before…
…and Kim, at the age of 72, is full of life and vigor. Like other leaders of his type (Mao, for example) Kim perhaps ruled a little bit too long. Had he not continued on the path he took—if he had stepped down or if there had been some other kind of leadership—it might be a very different North Korea today.
Let's get into some of that in our discussion with the audience here on where we find ourselves relative to Kim Jong Un, the Rodman visit and other things.
I find very interesting your general observations about this notion of the so-called Great Power relations, the "tyranny of the strong" and "the tyranny of the weak." I think in terms of the current Syria debate, some of the observations you make about the asymmetrical levels of influence, considerations and contests certainly play out. I find the book very timely for a modern history—and a modern history that covers the dates 1950 to 1992—but one that really says a lot about where North Korea is today and really helps us understand North Korea better.
I'd like to mention that we will conclude this season around December 10th, with author Bob Carlin as a guest, discussing the release of The Two Koreas—Don Oberdorfer's great book re-released with an update by Robert Carlin—a book widely regarded as the best contemporary history of Korea, both North and South.
Tyranny of the Weak and The Two Koreas make wonderful bookends for our season. I believe these books will be widely used in university and certainly well beyond—including here in New York to better inform our business community, assist others interested in assessing strategic risk and provide a better understanding of where Korea is today and the dynamics on the Peninsula.
Let us now turn to the audience to entertain a few questions. Please note I will be repeating the questions for the benefit of our streaming online viewers.
The question concerns the effect on Kim Jong Un's calculation in terms of what's happening with Syria now (and perhaps we could add what happened earlier in the year) and how that informs us by way of the disproportionate influence. What are some of your thoughts on how that will play out?
The North Korean leadership—and Kim Jong Un in particular—will of course be looking at this very closely. If we go back to 2003 and the North Korean reaction to that attack—it did not have quite the effect that I think the Bush administration had hoped. It did not shock and awe Kim Jong Un into submission—quite the contrary. It convinced the North Koreans—and they are still convinced of that to this day (perhaps now more than ever)—that you must have a nuclear arsenal, you must stand up to the Americans, and that is the best way to prevent an attack. You have to defend yourself.
I think the regime of Kim Jong Un is not only a product of North Korea's internal history and development, but is very much (in the way that it interacts with the outside world and the U.S. in particular) a product of the post-Cold War U.S. policy toward the so-called "rogue states" or these small regimes. I certainly don't think that an attack on Syria, if it is successful (whatever that may mean) will convince the North Koreans to lay down their arms and surrender. I think it will actually make them more determined than ever to maintain their weapons of mass destruction and defend their sovereignty.
There has already been talk of the interdiction on April 3 of a Libyan-flagged North Korean vessel that had material destined for Turkey (to be taken over to Syria) of gas masks and small arms. If further links appear between North Korea and Syria, does that change the calculation? If I recall, Kim Jong Il went into hiding for something like forty-seven days when the coalition attacked Saddam Hussein. Are these valid considerations?
I think so. I believe the North Korean leadership was very concerned after the attack on Iraq and that there were people in the Bush administration who thought that might not be a bad idea. I'm sure North Korea is very concerned about this now. I doubt that North Korea would engage in a provocation such as a nuclear test. My guess is they will lie low and see what happens.
North Korea, as I allude to in the book, actually has a longstanding relationship with Syria going back to the early 1960s. Syria is one of the first post-colonial Middle Eastern nations to establish diplomatic relations with North Korea. As we know, they've had technological exchanges for a long time—including the building of a nuclear energy plant. The connection, actually, between North Korea and Syria is much more real than it ever was between North Korea and Iraq, Iran or the other so-called members of the "axis of evil."
They are concerned about this. The interdiction of the North Korean ship coming from Cuba is a very significant event. How much effect this will have on the regime I'm not sure, but I would be surprised that there would be enough effectively enforced sanctions, particularly with Chinese participation, to change much in the way of North Korean behavior. But, we'll see.
I'd like to ask a methodological question. Since you spoke about the "tyranny of the weak," how different is your approach from James Scott's book, Weapons of the Poor, as it relates to human rights and Vietnam?
It's in relation to the James Scott book.
That's actually one of the inspirations of my title. I have faithfully read James Scott for many years and I think his work is great. A weapon of the weak can be very terrifying—although I say at the end of the book that a tyranny of the strong is worse than a tyranny of the weak—and for obvious reasons.
Scott gives a kind of "moral superiority" to the weak (as he calls it) resisting the strong. I think sometimes it's much more problematic than that. Although not everything about North Korea is necessarily something to be condemned—some interesting developments have happened. I think it's a regime that certainly bears a great deal of criticism.
That's why I don't call the book, "Weapons of the Weak" but Tyranny of the Weak. Again, I don't know whether that's too strong a word, but I think it does reflect a criticism of what regimes of this kind can do—and I consider that very important. Assuming that the strong and more powerful countries or parties can tell weaker countries what to do is one of the important lessons I hope readers come away with—and it's certainly relevant to Syria today. We should neither underestimate the power of the weak nor overestimate the ability of the strong. That is a lesson I would hope we have learned from Vietnam and Iraq—but perhaps we haven't learned it yet.
Professor Armstrong, you also write at one point, "To be sure, this state of conflict is used by the North Korean regime to justify internal oppression; as is often the case, tyranny within is directly related to a sense of weakness toward external threats." Certainly one of the great issues of international concern presently is that of human rights—especially with the ongoing Commission of Inquiry. Have you any thoughts on that relative to your work here?
There certainly is a great deal about the human rights situation in North Korea worthy of criticism. The question is what we on the outside can do about it. I don't believe confronting the North Korean government directly about their human rights policy will get us very far.
I end my book with a quote from Dr. Leo Strauss—the godfather (as some people refer to him) of neo-conservatism and a philosophy professor at the University of Chicago. I had never read Strauss before, and I started to interpret his writings in terms of what he actually said—as opposed to what people think he said or taught Paul Wolfowitz to say or whatever.
Dr. Strauss maintained that we couldn't eliminate a tyranny. The best we can do is try to push a tyranny to be a little less tyrannical and a little less irrational. We shouldn't overestimate that we on the outside of North Korea will change the situation within North Korea—and isolating and pressuring North Korea has never been effective. That is another thing I hope readers of the book come to understand better.
Change in North Korea has to come from the North Koreans—from within the society. The best we can do and what we should do is inform North Korean citizens as much as possible about the reality of their situation—in comparison to the outside world—and to attempt to bring North Korea out. I do not believe pushing the regime to change will have any effect and will most likely be quite counterproductive.
And how do we go about informing the North Korean citizenry?
First of all, the North Korean citizenry is not as ignorant of the outside world as many think. There's a great deal more communication beyond North Korea's borders than is often assumed. There are people traveling to China. News information is being brought into North Korea from China, South Korea and beyond. Although this is risky for the North Korean people, there is a great desire by the citizenry to learn as much as possible and to have at the very least an acknowledgement that things going on in the world are not quite what they've been told. I think that we can and should do our best to communicate and inform them—but also to become informed ourselves about what's really going on within North Korea and what the North Korean people are really about.
North Koreans are not slaves. North Koreans are not robots. North Koreans are human beings just like us. They're intelligent and thoughtful people. We need to interact with them and try to understand each other as much as we can.
Thank you. We at The Korea Society are starting our third year of our series, "Knowing North Korea," available at koreasociety.org. The gentleman in the back?
The next question is how important was the Cuban Missile Crisis to North Korea's understanding of the outside world?
The Cuban Missile Crisis was a hugely important event for all small third-world Communist countries—and the largest one, as well—China. It was perhaps the single greatest moment of disillusionment about the reliability of the Soviet Union for North Korea.
We know now from the released Cold War International History Project records that Castro wanted to say to the Americans, "Bring them on." He was willing to risk nuclear war and never forgave the Soviets for backing down to Kennedy. The North Koreans said exactly the same thing—that the Soviet Union buckled under the Americans. Once the Soviets gave into pressure, they could never again be relied upon as a stable and strong ally.
This was linked to personal issues, as well. I gathered from the records that Kim hated Khrushchev but had great admiration for Stalin. Stalin, after all, helped get him into power and was a role model for him. Khrushchev was a wishy-washy kind of guy. He told the smaller socialist countries they could have more freedom of maneuver on the one hand—but on the other hand, he tried to incorporate North Korea into what he called a "socialist division of labor," which essentially meant extracting North Korean primary products in exchange for Soviet manufactured goods.
Khrushchev's greatest sin from Kim's point of view was denouncing Stalin. And even at the very end of Kim's life—indeed even after the end of Kim's life because his book came after he died—Kim is quoted as saying that Khrushchev committed the unpardonable act of being unfilial (of betraying his political father Stalin) and that would never happen in North Korea.
Since you're a historian, you can speculate. Would Kim Il Sung have liked Vladimir Putin?
Probably a lot more than Boris Yeltsin. [Laughter]
The next question relates to the driving forces of unification in relation to the nuclear development issue. Does diplomacy not work?
I think diplomacy does work. I think the North Koreans are realists. After all that I've said this may come as a surprise—but I don't think it is a particularly ideological regime and it never has been. I find the Communist allies of North Korea had serious questions about whether North Korea was truly Communist after about 1956.
There is a wonderful excerpt from an East German embassy report on North Korea in 1961 (which is one of the epigraphs of the book) saying that North Korea is not Marxist-Leninist. They've developed an ideology that is associated with mystical ideas of Confucianism, which shade into nationalist tendencies.
I'm not quite sure what "mystical ideas of Confucianism" are, but I think the nationalist tendencies are very real and what drive North Korea. Should they see it in their national interest to improve relations with the United States—to connect to the outside world in what we would see as a more positive way—I think they will. The question is what we can do, as diplomatic partners of North Korea, to convince them that it is in their interest to do so.
The next question is about North Korean policy toward the United States, particularly in the 1970s.
I started this research with the belief that the North-South agreement of 1972 (the July 4th communiqué) was a symmetrical result of both sides being shocked by the fact that China, in North Korea's case (and the United States in South Korea's case) had abandoned them. What I discovered is that South Korea might have felt that way, but North Korea had a great deal of confidence that history was on their side. They were much closer in coordinating with the Chinese on this than the South Koreans were in coordinating with the Americans.
One of the first things North Korea did as a way to deal with South Korea was to reach out to the United States through China—through the meetings between Chou En-lai and Kissinger (and John has done research on this). North Korea attempted to meet with American diplomats in Beijing. And there seems to have been a genuine impetus toward improving relations with the United States at that time.
However, that was premised on the assumption that the United States was weak; that it was losing Asia; that it was about to withdraw all of its forces from South Korea and that Korea would be unified under North Korean auspices. One of the inspirations for that was, of course, Vietnam. The North Koreans were looking at Vietnam very closely and seeing the Americans lose there.
Kim Il Sung said repeatedly (to the extent that I think he really did believe this) that this would be the future of the Korean Peninsula. In April of 1975, he went to Beijing and declaring that the Asian revolution was on the march—that North Korea had nothing to lose but the Demilitarized Zone and that Korea would be unified. Whether that meant he was actually going to attack South Korea I doubt—but the Chinese apparently were a little concerned and tried to temper his enthusiasm.
I think that the North Koreans came into the early 1970s feeling very confident that they were winning in the competition with South Korea and that the Chinese and North Koreans were pushing the Americans out of Asia.
Let's come forward forty years to 2013. Do the North Koreans consider it as vital to normalize relations with the United States, or is it all about China?
The North Koreans (and I also try to show this in the book) have never been comfortable being anybody's lackey. They don't want to be dependent on anyone, including the Chinese. At the present time, it is my view that North Korea is trying to reach out and diversify its relationships with the outside world. It is far too much of a stretch to say it wants to be an ally of the United States against China—but it does want, I think, to balance the situation in Asia between China and the United States.
It is very different from the 1970s. It's not so much trying to push the United States out because they know it's not possible. I think the North Koreans understand their position is really much weaker now than it was forty years ago.
But they also dislike the deep dependence on China that has developed in recent years and would like to have greater independence and the freedom of maneuver as they have always had dealing with multiple partners and at times playing them off against each other. And in a certain sense, I think that for the last ten years or so, they've been trying to play off the United States and China in a way somewhat analogous to how they played off the Russians and the Chinese during the Cold War.
Charles, good luck with the book tour and good luck at the Wilson Center next week. We look forward to seeing you back here very soon. Please help me in thanking our good friend and scholar, Professor Charles Armstrong, and thank you all for joining us. [Applause]