This episode of the Korea Now podcast features an interview that Jed Lea-Henry conducted with Alon Levkowitz. They speak about the relationships between the two Koreas and the Middle East, the security, economic and diplomatic motivations behind these relationships, the early economic reasons for South Korean engagement, the shift over time to military involvement, the difficult diplomacy with countries like Syria and Iran, the economic opportunities for the Chaebol, and the ‘neutral’ policy aim toward the region and how it affects South Korea’s relationship with Israel; North Korea’s sale of military hardware to the region, their trade in chemical, missile and nuclear technology with various countries, their direct involvement in the 1967 and 1973 Arab-Israeli wars, and significantly North Korea’s nuclear relationship and comparisons with Iran.
Alon Levkowitz is a Chair of the Social Science and Civics department at Beit-Berl College, and a lecturer at the Asian Studies Program at Bar-llan University, and a Research Associate at the Begin-Sadat Center for Strategic Studies. An expert on East Asian security, the Korean peninsula, and Asian international organizations, Alon has written extensively on the relationships and interests at play between the two Koreas and the Middle East. The articles of Alon’s, used as research for this podcast, are: ‘North Korea and the Middle East’ (https://www.academia.edu/33985018/North_Korea_and_the_Middle_East), ‘The Middle East Reopens for Business but with Old and New Hazards for South Korea’, (https://www.academia.edu/26854141/The_Middle_East_Reopens_for_Business_but_with_Old_and_New_Hazards_for_South_Korea), ‘South Korea's Middle East policy’ (https://www.academia.edu/11468432/South_Koreas_Middle_East_policy), and ‘Korea and the Middle East Turmoil’ (https://www.academia.edu/11468471/Korea_and_the_Middle_East_Turmoil).
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