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The Impossible State: North Korea, Past and Future (Hardcover)
Former White House official Victor Cha has written the definitive volume on North Korea, arguably the world's most menacing and mysterious nation. In The Impossible State, Cha, a singular expert on the region, exposes North Korea's veiled past; sheds light on its culture, economy, and foreign policy; and explores the possibilities of its uncertain future in the post-Kim Jong-il era. A timely and engaging insider's look at a volatile, and isolationist Asian juggernaut, The Impossible State will carry readers far deeper into this frighteningly adversarial country than they ve ever traveled before.
“An up-close, insightful portrait. . . . The Impossible State is a clearheaded, bold examination of North Korea and its future.”
“Essential reading for all North Korea watchers. . . . An informative and enjoyable read.”
-Library Journal (starred review)
“Cha demonstrates an intimate familiarity with the regime’s contradictions. . . . The thesis is clear: the world’s most closed-off state needs to open up to survive, but breaking its hermetic seal may well precipitate its demise.”
-The New Yorker
“An eye-opening view of the closed, repressive dictatorship of North Korea. . . . A useful, pertinent work for understanding the human story behind the headlines.”
“Ask those who deal with national security what worries them most and at the top of the list or near it you’ll always find North Korea, a place about which we know little to nothing. That’s why Victor Cha’s book is so valuable.”
-Bob Schieffer, CBS News Chief Washington Correspondent
“A powerful portrait of one of the world’s most troubled and troublesome countries [and] a fascinating, behind-the-scenes account of recent American foreign policy by a leading official. . . . A must-read combination for anybody interested in Korea, east Asia, or global security more generally.”
-Gideon Rose, Editor, Foreign Affairs
“The Impossible State is provocative, frightening, and never more relevant than today as an untested new leader takes charge of the world’s most unpredictable nuclear power.”
-Andrea Mitchell, NBC News Chief Foreign Affairs Correspondent