Angelo State University will host four of the nation’s leading experts on North Korea for the 2015 Center for Security Studies Symposium on Monday, Sept. 28, in the Rassman Building, 2222 Dena Drive on the ASU campus.

Sponsored by ASU’s Kay Bailey Hutchison Center for Security Studies, the symposium will begin at 5 p.m. in Room 105 of the Rassman Building and is open free to the public. This year’s topic is “Preparing for Collapse in North Korea: Challenges and Issues.” Featured speakers will be:

  • Mark Tokola, vice president of the Korea Economic Institute
  • Dr. Tara O, Asia policy specialist at the Center for Strategic and International Studies and board member of the International Council on Korean Studies
  • Gordon Chang, columnist for Forbes Magazine and author of “Nuclear Showdown: North Korea Takes On the World”
  • Sung-min Cho, Department of Government, Georgetown University

Dr. Bruce Bechtol, a political scientist and North Korea expert on ASU’s security studies faculty, said the speakers will explore the varied issues the world will have to face with a collapsing North Korea. Specific topics will include:

  • How stability operations are likely to occur in the case of crisis or collapse in North Korea
  • How the nation-states with an interest in the region will react to a collapsed North Korea and, ultimately, a re-unified Korea
  • The role of China in North Korea’s survival and China’s role if a collapse occurs

“We should all care about this because the North Koreans proliferate weapons of mass destruction to rogue states like Syria and Iran,” Bechtol said. “They threaten U.S. forces in Asia with missiles and nuclear weapons, and yet the government is so unstable that it could collapse at any time. Because of this, we may see in the near future more U.S. troops deploying to the Korean Peninsula to conduct stabilization operations.”