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Gulf Security through the Lens of the ROK-US Alliance


An analysis of South Korea’s independent deployment of the Cheonghae Unit to the Strait of Hormuz sheds light on the fragmentation of media and political discourses in the country. Empirical evidence from five major South Korean newspaper outlets reveals that the South Korean government’s pre-emptive securitisation presents a wide gap in manifest and latent security interests between the state and society. Securitisation is debated with regard to the two interconnected questions of South Korea’s military deployment to the Middle East and the future of the Korean Peninsula – both of which are ultimately tied to the question of Seoul’s commitment to the US alliance.
Keywords: securitisation; Republic of Korea; United States; Strait of Hormuz; Gulf security