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Why does North Korea routinely turn to provocation to achieve foreign policy goals? Are the actions of the volatile Kim regime predictable, based on logical responses to the conditions faced by North Korea? This book, an examination of the �Hermit Kingdom� over the past 50 years, explains why the Democratic People�s Republic of Korea uses hostility and coercion as instruments of foreign policy. Using three case studies and quantitative analysis of more than 2,000 conflict events, the author explores the relationship between North Korea�s societal conditions and its propensity for external conflict. These findings are considered in light of diversionary theory, the idea that leaders use external conflict to divert attention from domestic affairs. Analyzing the actions of an isolated state such as North Korea provides a template for conflict scholarship in general.

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