Could be worse… by mattsteinglass
September 22, 2009, 1:02 am
Filed under: Uncategorized

…to add the Vietnamese experience to Matthew Yglesias’s ruminations on reunification in Germany and the dire prospect of reunifying the Koreas: the lesson is that if you’re planning to reunify your cold-war-divided ethno-linguistically homogenous nation, be the poor Communist half and conquer the rich capitalist half, not the other way around.

Or maybe actually that’s the opposite of the lesson. I mean, for all the annoyance of persistent low socioeconomic indicators in the Eastern sections of Germany, things would presumably be a lot worse if the GDR had been trying to reintegrate the FRG.


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Hong Kong is probably the most useful model – it is ridiculous to simply suppose that South Korea could just raise the border and all would be fine and dandy. Instead the formation of a national government controlling foreign policy and defence, but with strict internal border controls, would be a reasonable solution whilst vast injections of cash were used to bring the North Korean economy into line with developed standards.

Comment by foarp

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