Foreign Policy Blogs

Korea Update: Doing the diplomatic twist

Winston Churchill and Neville Chamberlain.  Source:

Winston Churchill and Neville Chamberlain. Source:

Pretzel contortions are part of the diplomatic game.  In the Rising Powers Year in Review (read here), we called North Korea’s violence against the South and advanced uranium enrichment program the biggest surprise of 2010.  South Korean President Lee Myung-bak’s New Year’s message today (see BBC article) has kept up the West’s diplomatic contortions — stand tough against the North’s aggression, while calming the waters and extending a hand for talks.  Since 1938, no one wants to be seen as an appeaser, blindly waving a piece of paper high above one’s head, declaring “Peace for our time.”  It’s hard to be at once Winston and Neville.

Happy New Year to all!

Image:  Winston Churchill and Neville Chamberlain.   Source:



Roger Scher

Roger Scher is a political analyst and economist with eighteen years of experience as a country risk specialist. He headed Latin American and Asian Sovereign Ratings at Fitch Ratings and Duff & Phelps, leading rating missions to Brazil, Russia, India, China, Mexico, Korea, Indonesia, Israel and Turkey, among other nations. He was a U.S. Foreign Service Officer based in Venezuela and a foreign exchange analyst at the Federal Reserve. He holds an M.A. in International Relations from Johns Hopkins University SAIS, an M.B.A. in International Finance from the Wharton School, and a B.A. in Political Science from Tufts University. He currently teaches International Relations at the Whitehead School of Diplomacy.

Areas of Focus:
International Political Economy; American Foreign Policy