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Ambassador Donald Gregg



January 11, 2010

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Ret. American Ambassador to Yemen

Back to the table in Pyongyang - will it work this time?


Amb. Donald Gregg has spoken in Worcester twice before, in 1998 and again in 2005. He thinks that now, after years of unsuccessful efforts, we have a good chance to stop the N. Korean nuclear weapons program. Last August Gregg met with S. Korean president  Lee Myung-Bak and urged him to be less defensive and critical of the North.  When they met again two weeks later (at the funeral of former S. Korean president Kim Dae-Jung - which was also attended by representatives of the North!) Lee had softened his rhetoric,and seemed more sympathetic to the Northern regime.  In Sept. when Gregg met with two representatives of the North at the UN,  they said they would welcome American diplomat Stephen Bosworth (who is also Dean at the Fletcher School at Tufts) to come to Pyongyang and discuss de-nuclearizing the peninsula.  The North is also hopeful, according to Gregg, that the new Japanese prime minister Hatoyama, will be more inclined to such discussions.  Finally Kim Jong-Un, age 26, who is heir apparent to succeed his father and was educated partly in Switzerland, knows the West much better than his father or grandfather did.  These positive factors give Gregg hope that the Korean war, which started 59 years ago and has never been officially ended, may finally be resolved, and that a more healthy N. Korea will emerge thereafter.   



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