THAAD as a totem

Watching recent reporting about the planned US missile-defense system THAAD being deployed in South Korea,  the debate is completely absent any attempt to consider what exactly the function of THAAD is and what its role is in the true security of South Korea. In fact, there is almost no discussion about whether a missile attack from North Korea is likely at all, or what other security threats might be out there. It seems rather that THAAD has become a totem (bad or good) before which one prays in the hope that it will bestow magical powers.





3 responses to “THAAD as a totem

  1. 강승기 July 19, 2017 at 6:05 pm

    Dear Professor Pastreich, my name is 강승기, one of your many undergraduate students who graduated a couple of years ago. I come here to ask for your advice as I am now pursuing a career in academia, in the field of Psychology. I am starting to notice that the ability to articulate my reasoning and develop my assertions in logical steps is just as important as specific, specialized knowledge in my particular niche, if not more. Upon research I found out that the only method for honing writing skills is reading articulate writers. However, I am also aware that there are some charlatans out there from whom I cannot learn much. You are one of the very few professors during my time in Kyunghee University that I admired and respected, so I come here to ask… which writers do you personally recommend in order to fulfill my goal? Could you offer me some advice?


    • Emanuel Pastreich July 19, 2017 at 11:08 pm

      I appreciate your thoughtful note and I suggest that we organize an Asia Institute seminar on this very topic. I am happy to meet with you to talk about this rather complex issue. I would say that we need to go beyond the passive act of reading another book, however. A good book to start is “Full Catastrophe Living” which gives some sense of how to take control of one’s life. But we must admit that so much of what we read is simply not honest.

      • 강승기 July 20, 2017 at 5:56 am

        thanks for the invitation to hold a seminar at the institute. I can organize general things for gathering student audience, although this is not my forte. I look forward to further communication to decide specific schedule.

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