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Thanks to Secretary Chuck Hagel’s important visit to South Korea last week, the ROK-US alliance is on firmer footing, at least in the near-term. Hagel and other senior US defense officials spent an unprecedented four days in South Korea, attending ceremonies commemorating the sixtieth anniversary of the mutual defense treaty and ROK Armed Forces Day, presiding over the transfer of command of US Forces Korea (USFK) from General James Thurman to General Curtis Scaparrotti, and exchanging views with senior South Korean officials such as Defense Minister Kim Kwan-jin in their forty-fifth annual security meeting.

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