The South Korea-North Korea military agreement was signed on September 19, 2018 between Song Young-moo, the then-Minister of National Defense of the Republic of Korea (ROK) and No Kwang-chol, Korean People’s Army General, Minister of People’s Armed Forces, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK). The agreement was signed with Moon Jae-in and Kim Jong-un standing behind them.
Here are the English version (17 pages) and the Korean version (56 pages) of the agreement. The Korean language version has additional sections, such as “Forming a Bond of Sympathy with the Public…” The difference in the lengths raises questions, and it is another topic to be analyzed in the future. This report will analyze the contents of the English version of the agreement.
A. Is South Korea giving up the military as an instrument of national policy?
The two sides agreed to…preclude the use of military force under any circumstance. [italics added] Among the national instruments of policy are diplomacy, military, economy/finance, and information. South Korean president Moon Jae-in is reducing options by excluding the military instrument, a powerful tool. Paragraph 1.1 of the South Korea-North Korea military agreement signed in Pyongyang on September 19 states “The two sides agreed to…preclude the use of military force under any circumstance.” Thus, no matter what, the two sides are not to use military force. The Moon administration has touted this promise not to use military force as “peace,” but in reality, it takes away one of the key instruments of policy–the military.The agreement does not state how that promise not to use the military force would be monitored, and what would happen if one side, in this case, North Korea, does not keep its promise. In fact, the agreement takes away the capability to monitor military activity by preventing aerial surveillance along the Demilitarized Zone (DMZ) with greatly expanded No Fly Zones (NFZs). By dismantling the defensive posture of the Republic of Korea and pulling its forces to the rear, it leaves the area to the north of Seoul vulnerable and significantly weakens and destroys South Korea’s ability to defend should North Korea attack. The Moon administration already dismantled the Defense Security Command (which monitored North Korean infiltration and conducted investigations) and took away the counter-intelligence function from the National Intelligence Service. It is now pulling back its various units from the forward area. How can South Korea detect North Korean infiltration in such a situation?By designating large areas of the West Sea and East Sea “joint use” with North Korea, complete with a joint customs office, the Moon administration relinquishes its sovereign territory. It also gives up some of its sovereignty by agreeing to give North Korea a say in matters, such as giving North Korea advanced notice before South Korean Navy ship can enter its own territorial waters and agreeing to get North Korea’s permission before South Korea can enhance its military capability. Additionally, it risks South Korea’s economy by agreeing to sanctions-violating measures, such as South Korea developing roads and railroads in North Korea, which inevitably would require transfer of cash, equipment, and other resources to North Korea to build the infrastructure in North Korea.Besides the substance of the agreement, the process of ratification of the agreement also became a controversy. The National Assembly had not discussed nor ratified the military agreement (nor the Pyongyang Declaration); it was not even presented to the National Assembly. President Moon Jae-in, after a cabinet meeting, ratified the agreement himself on October 23, 2018. Perhaps he was in a hurry and wanted to ensure its “ratification.” Paragraph 6 of the agreement states “This Agreement is effective from the date of exchange of the signed documents, following the procedures required for ratification from each party.” There are criticism that this is against the constitution on many levels, which is a discussion for yet another paper. The Blue House spokesperson then said North Korea is not a state, so there is no need to go through the National Assembly for ratification. The Panmunjom Declaration, another agreement between the two countries, signed on April 27, 2018, however, is at the National Assembly currently going through the process of ratification. Clearly, there are inconsistencies. The South Korean constitution does not recognize North Korea as a state, which raises the questions of why Moon is calling his meetings with Kim Jong-un “summits,” why he is signing anything with a “rogue element” Kim regime, and why the Panmunjom Declaration is going through the National Assembly for ratification.The military agreement “can collapse the Republic of Korea itself…it’s a gift to Kim Jong-un,” said Lieutenant General Shin Won-shik (신원식), ROK Army Reserve, former ROK Joint Chiefs of Staff (JCS)…
Source: Is the Moon Jae-in Administration of South Korea giving up its Territory, Sovereignty, and National Security? The 2018 South Korea-North Korea Military Agreement Indicates as Such – East Asia Research Center