Past eventInvitation OnlyResearch Event

US Policy Options on North Korea

2 February 2018 - 8:15am to 9:30am

Chatham House, London


Robert S. Litwak, Senior Vice President and Director of International Security Studies, Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars
Chair: Dr Jacob Parakilas, Deputy Head, US and the Americas Programme, Chatham House



What options does the Trump administration have to prevent a North Korean nuclear breakout? Last year saw the DPRK both increase the number of its warheads and improve its ability to deploy them. Unclassified projections suggest that North Korea could possess between 20 and 100 nuclear warheads by 2020. This renewed threat has prompted the Trump administration to signal a more proactive response. In Washington, two policy options have emerged that will shape the future of US engagement with North Korea and the wider region for years to come: preventive military engagement or a renewed framework of diplomacy.

Robert S. Litwak, a leading expert in nuclear proliferation and US security policy at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars will discuss the motivations, risks and likely outcomes of these approaches and identify the policies that would allow the US to navigate China’s objectives in the region, avoid military escalation and even achieve long-term denuclearization. Drawing on the publication of his Wilson Center monograph, Preventing North Korea’s Nuclear Breakout, he will examine the past, present and future of US policy towards North Korea. 

Attendance at this event is by invitation only.

The Chatham House Rule

To enable as open a debate as possible, this event will be held under the Chatham House Rule.