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Unified Korean Army Should Be in the 280,000 Range

Apr 23,1999
A suggestion, recently proposed, held that the size of the Korean army should be slimmed down to the 240,000 to 280,000 level after unification with North Korea.
Professor Lee Chol Ki of Dongkook University asserted the proposal in a forum called 'The Two Koreas' Reasonable Military Power Now and After Unification' at the Seoul Press Center on April 23.
He suggested that the proper size of military munitions after unification should be in the following ranges: 1,000 to 1,500 tanks, 1,000 to 1,500 artillery pieces, 80-100 helicopters, and 10-15 submarines.
After unification, the combined military forces should be comprised of 165,000 in the army, 56,000 in the navy, and 56,000 in the air force, which is about a 6:2:2 ratio.
Lee maintained that retrenchment should be gradually executed, although he strongly suggested that mutual trust must be guaranteed prior to reducing personnel or munitions.
Meanwhile, Kyongnam University's Ham Taek Young contended, 'The government is somewhat exaggerating North Korea's military power, even including old, outdated weapons. At present the South has surpassed NK 1.7 times in terms of military might.'
Hwashik Bong : trojans@joongang.co.kr


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