Description - Arming the Two Koreas by Taik-Young Hamm
Taik-Young Hamm's book is a critical inquiry into the dynamics of the armament of North and South Korea from the Korean War period to the 1990s. The author's controversial findings reveal that North Korean military superiority is a myth, used by South Korean governments to legitimise military expenditure. Moreover, defence spending has been used to consolidate authoritarian regimes and mobilise popular support. This close analysis describes and explains the armament processes of the two Korean states from a more objective, critical perspective. Hamm considers defence expenditure as the best indicator of armament, rather than bean counts or firepower scores. Finding most offical sources unstable, inconsistent or biased, this book generates more valid, credible data; it reestimates the North Korean defence budget, taking foreign aid and depreciation into account. From this material, the author argues that, contrary to popular opinion, the South has been superior in military capital since the mid-1980s. Arming the Two Koreas provides a holistic, rather than reductionist, explanation of armament.
Following the Grasmscian conception of state power as the sum of coercion and hegemony/consent, the book argues that armament depends upon state power in its internal and external dimensions. Students and researchers in Asian studies, international relations, of strategic and security studies and international politics will find this book a comprehensive resource.
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(234mm x 156mm x mm)
Publisher: Taylor & Francis Ltd
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Book Reviews - Arming the Two Koreas by Taik-Young Hamm