Publication Year

ISBN: 9781771861359-00

Categories: , , , ,

View more details about this title
on the publisher's website:

One Country—Two States

From: Patriots, Traitors and Empires


The introduction, One Country-Two States explains how as a nation, Korea has existed for over a thousand years within clearly delineated and recognized borders; however, Korean have had the great misfortune to live on geo-strategic territory which has been contested by powerful states who have used Koreans as pawns in their rivalries. This situation has led to the singular nation of Korea being divided into two Korean states. One, the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK), or North Korea, controls territory in the northern part of the peninsular country. The other state, the Republic of Korea (ROK), or South Korea, controls territory in the southern part. Both states claim sovereignty over all the country and regard the other as illegitimately occupying territory over which it has jurisdiction by right. Neither state, then, regards the de facto border that separates them as an international frontier. On the contrary, they see the border, the so-called demilitarized zone, or DMZ, as a cease-fire line only, marking the dividing line between the two states at the end of the Korean War. The chapter provides an introduction to the history of Korea and its geopolitical situation since the late nineteenth century.



Stephen Gowans

Stephen Gowans is an independent political analyst whose principal interest is in who influences formulation of foreign policy in the United States. His writings, which appear on his What’s Left blog, have been reproduced widely in online and print media in many languages and have been cited in academic journals and other scholarly works.