Jean Lee speaking with CBS News in the days before the Feb. 27-28, 2019, Trump-Kim summit in Hanoi.Read More
Quoted by Robin Wright in the New Yorker:
The big unknown now is Kim’s reaction. “How the North Koreans portray this summit to their people will be key to understanding whether they’ll treat this rupture as a course of diplomacy—or use it to justify a return to provocation,” Jean Lee, the director of the Woodrow Wilson Center’s Korea Program, told me. “Let’s hope Kim and his propagandists are able to spin this in a way that allows these discussions to continue.”
“I worry about the consequences,” said Jean H. Lee, a Korea expert at the Wilson Center, a research organization in Washington. “Did these two leaders and their teams build up enough good will to keep the lines of communication open, or are we headed into another period of stalled negotiations — or worse, tensions — that would give the North Koreans more time and incentive to keep building their weapons program?”
“This result leaves very little room for Kim to save face,” she added.Read More
Jean H. Lee, a Korea expert at the Wilson Center, a Washington-based research organization, said of Mr. Kim that “he does want a changed relationship with the United States, and to improve his country’s shattered economy.”
“But we need to remember that he sacrificed his people’s well-being, making decisions that deprived them of food, clean water, electricity, heat and medicine, in order to build nuclear weapons,” Ms. Lee added. “He won’t be willing to give his weapons up readily, and may be prepared to sacrifice his people again if things don’t go his way.”Read More
What Has Been Accomplished Since The First Trump-Kim Summit?
February 27, 20195:01 AM ET
Heard on Morning Edition
Rachel Martin talks to Jean Lee, a Korea expert at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, about expectations for the second summit between President Trump and North Korea's leader.Read More
Kim Jong Un faces mounting pressure to get sanctions relief for North Korea
Feb. 25, 2019 - 4:08 - North Koreans are going without heat during an incredibly cold winter, says Jean Lee, director at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars.Read More
Secure a political declaration to end the Korean War
Jean H. Lee, director Hyundai Motor-Korea Foundation Center for Korean History and Public Policy
The biggest prizes for Kim will be diplomatic as well as economic.
Kim, like Trump, craves a big dramatic and historic moment in which the two leaders, foes for seven decades, stand side by side to declare a political end to the Korean War. To be clear: Such a declaration would not serve as a peace treaty formally ending the war. But it would be enough for Kim to take home to his people as a propaganda victory.
Ending the Korean War was a goal neither his father nor grandfather accomplished before dying; to accomplish that task would cement his authority inside North Korea as a master statesman and military strategist.
Such a declaration would allow Kim to turn the country's focus away from war and toward the economy; it also would start the lengthy process of negotiating a formal peace treaty with China, the United Nations and the United States.
More importantly, Kim will be seeking economic concessions in return for rapprochement and promises to give up elements of his nuclear program. A lifting of crippling UN sanctions imposed on North Korea is a priority for Kim. Once sanctions are eased, South Korea in particular is poised to restart joint economic projects that could serve as an economic lifeline to Pyongyang as well as to rebuild North Korea's decaying infrastructure. In addition, Seoul must wait for concrete nuclear concessions from North Korea to justify lifting its own bilateral sanctions in place since 2010.
For Kim, a successful roadmap to denuclearization in Hanoi would pave the way for North Korea's return to the international fold, politically and economically, while delaying the complete relinquishing of his prized nuclear assets for many years to come.
He was a legendary guerilla fighter, battling to free Korea from Japanese occupation in the 1930s. He went on to start the Korean war—and establish North Korea as the most controlled society on earth. How did Kim Il Sung rise to power, transform himself into a “living god,” and launch a dictatorship that has lasted for three generations?
Jean H. Lee provides commentary on Kim Il Sung’s rise to power in this PBS documentary.Read More
2차 미국 정상회담 일정이 공개됐는데, 이번 회담에서는 실질적인 진전이 이뤄져야 한다는 기대가 커지고 있습니다. 비핵화와 상응조치를 두고 미북 간 어떤 타결이 가능할 지 분석합니다. 회담 개최국 베트남은 북한이 선택할 경제 개방과 외교 관계 개선의 모델이 될 지 살펴봅니다. 진행: 조은정 / 대담: 스콧 스나이더(미 외교협회 미한정책국장), 진 리(우드로 윌슨센터 한국국장) #VOA #워싱턴톡 #2차미북정상회담 #베트남 #하노이 #비핵화 #비건 #김혁철 Originally published at - https://www.voakorea.com/a/4779663.htmlRead More
“The North Koreans do not take criticism well,” said Jean H. Lee, an analyst at the Wilson Center and a former reporter who opened an Associated Press bureau in Pyongyang in 2012. “They are very sensitive to an assault on their way of life and their political system and their penal code. I suspect there may be some reluctance to bring up the issue of defectors and showcase them in a way that Trump did last year, to avoid angering the North Koreans.”
“Both the South Koreans and the North Koreans have made a very compelling case for starting the process with at least a declaration,” Jean H. Lee, a Korea expert at the Woodrow Wilson Center in Washington, said at a talk there on Wednesday.Read More
A top North Korean Diplomat Kim Yong-chol met with President Trump Friday. NPR's Mary Louise Kelly speaks with journalist Jean Lee of the Wilson Center about the diplomat's background.Read More
With North Korea's relations with the rest of the world at a new and unpredictable inflection point, National Geographic Documentary Films presents INSIDE NORTH KOREA'S DYNASTY, a groundbreaking four-episode documentary series that examines the extraordinary history of the world's only communist dynasty, three generations in the making. Featuring interviews with journalist Jean H. Lee.Read More
When experienced reporter Jean Lee took on the role of AP bureau chief in Seoul, she was asked to establish a bureau in North Korea’s capital, Pyongyang.
The task, which seemed almost impossible, became even less certain when the Supreme Leader, Kim Jong Il, disappeared.
Jean managed to open the news bureau in 2012, and was witness to the momentous change brought to North Korea by Kim Jong Il’s death.Read More
The leaders of North and South Korea announced a wide range of agreements Wednesday, which they said were a major step toward peace on the Korean peninsula. But the premier pledge of denuclearization contained a big precondition: North Korean leader Kim Jong Un said he'd permanently dismantle his main nuclear complex only if the United States takes corresponding measures.Read More
“You have South Korea moving so quickly on these projects to push for reconciliation with North Korea, and in Washington you have people pushing for denuclearization before anything else happens,” said Jean H. Lee, director of the Wilson Center’s center for Korean history and public policy. “They have very different end games and very different time frames. It’s very problematic.”Read More
"The more protracted the U.S.-North Korean negotiations, the more potential for a gap between Washington and Seoul on North Korea policy as South Korea makes moves to lift its sanctions to allow for economic partnership.”Read More
Though only a brief interaction, it was telling that the salute was included in the documentary, according to Jean H. Lee, a North Korea scholar at the Woodrow Wilson Center in Washington.
“This is a moment that will be used over and over in North Korea’s propaganda as 'proof' that the American president defers to the North Korean military,” Lee said. “It will be treated as a military victory by the North Koreans.”Read More
NPR's Audie Cornish talks with North Korea expert Jean Lee about what daily life is like in the country and how much the average person knows about the upcoming summit between President Trump and Kim Jong Un.Read More
No matter what comes next in the talks between Kim Jong Un and President Trump, their handshake will remain historic, Jean H. Lee, a North Korea expert at the US-based Wilson Center, told CNN.
"I’m really thinking about how this is going to play in Pyongyang because this is such a powerful moment for the North Korean people," she said.
"It will be celebrated in North Korea as the moment the United States acknowledged and treated North Korea as an equal.”