Local expert, South Korea native talks about conflict


Reporter - Elizabeth Fields
Photographer - Mason Watkins

MURRAY, Ky. - Murray State Professor Choong-nam Kang's teaching specialties are "causes of war and peace" and "interstate relations of North and South Korea" which means he's been paying very close attention to the situation on the Korean Peninsula. Not to mention, Kang's from South Korea and most of his family is still living there.

Still, Kang's not extremely worried about war breaking out.

"The probability of war or actually militarized conflict between North and South Korea or North Korea and U.S. is very low," said Kang. But that doesn't mean he's not concerned at all.

"The biggest concern of most Koreans is actually not North and South Korea situation as much economy issues," he said. That concern is growing, especially since the Korean Factory Complex was just shut down when North Korea pulled all of its workers out.

Kang is optimistic that Chinese leadership will actually come to the rescue, but that could be weeks away. In the meantime, his biggest concern is that there aren't even any plans for peace talks.

"We need to try to understand what's actually in their mind and what, why they the North Korea leaders are doing these things," he said. He added, simply dismissing Kim Jong Un is a mistake.

Ultimately, the professor said he thinks the Chinese government will play a crucial role in calming the situation back down.