As it did during the late nineteenth century, Korea-or two Koreas this timehave again emerged as the “center” of diplomatic attention, strategic importance, and security concern in Northeast Asia at the dawn of the new millennium. No elaboration seems necessary on the kind and level of attention the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (hereafter, North Korea) has received since the early 1990s for its nuclear brinkmanship, missile programs, dire economic conditions, illicit trafficking, and human rights violations. Irrespective of normative judgments, Pyongyang has indeed become a “center” of policy attention from all the major players in Northeast Asia.1