Northeast Asia is at a crossroads. One road leads to continued economic growth, regional integration, and globalization, while the other leads to trade-wars, territorial disputes, and an arms race undergirded by resurgent nationalism. If history and geopolitics are our guide, the latter road will be taken. The region is riven by historical animosities, ideological tensions, and territorial disputes, as well as geopolitics, which seem to condemn it to perpetual conflict. Unlike in Europe, the post-WWII settlement in Northeast Asia failed to address the war-time grievances, engender a sense of community, or construct a multilateral security architecture. The region lacked any democratic or liberal traditions.