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Testing Korea’s Middle-Power Image in Korea-Japan Bilateral Disputes
|Issue Date:||2018-03-02 12:01:45 (UTC+8)|
This thesis seeks to test South Korea’s image as a middle power by examining the country’s approach to bilateral disputes with Japan. After a review of literature supportive and critical of Korea’s status as a middle power nation, it then focuses on evaluating the country’s management of ROK-Japan bilateral disputes using three different case studies span from the early 1990s to the Park Geun-hye administration. Finally, this thesis concludes by suggesting that since Korea does not consistently adhere to orthodox middle power behavior in its disputes with Japan, the middle power theory does not adequately describe South Korea’s unique foreign policy orientation. However, with time and with a sincere reevaluation of its Japan policies, South Korea has the potential to adopt a more robust middle power alignment.
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