The stakes are very high for newly-elected South Korean president Moon Jae-in. He faces the dangers of Kim Jong-un of North Korea, who has increased the pace of his missile and nuclear tests, and is seeking to show us in the United States that he could put a nuclear warhead on a missile capable of hitting our homeland. That’s not just a threat to us; it’s a threat to the entirety of the alliance system in Northeast Asia. We’ve been working closely with our allies in Japan and South Korea on increased defense cooperation. We need strong allies working together, but Japan and Korea have had difficulties in the past. However, given the sobering nature of the threat, Moon has indicated he will continue with this defense cooperation, even if cautiously. He is walking into a new policy by the Trump administration that’s seeking to put maximum pressure on North Korea – and on China – to isolate the Hermit Kingdom. We cannot succeed, though, if the Korean president puts brakes on this campaign. Given the sobering nature of Kim’s danger, I think Moon will continue with the tougher policies of his predecessor. To learn more about my take on US/North Korea policy, check the links in the description below. Also, let us know what other topics you want a AEI scholars to cover in 60 seconds.