Geopolitics – North Korea and China

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Chilling relations between China and North Korea are becoming more evident. It’s North Korea’s game at this point and they can choose how it ends. 
The Korean People’s Army (KPA) celebrated its 85th anniversary today. Reuters reported that North Korean forces staged a massive live-fire artillery demonstration at a military base near Wonsan. The Party daily, Rodong Sinmun, reported, “There is no limit to the strike power of the People’s Army, armed with our style of cutting-edge military equipment including various precision and miniaturized nuclear weapons and submarine-launched ballistic missiles.” 
All open source news services reported that only conventional weapons systems participated in the display.
According to the Daily NK, North Koreans in the China border region were disappointed that China did not send a delegation to North Korea on Kim Il-sung’s birthday on 15 April. They interpreted that as a portent of difficult times ahead.
This is the first credible report that did not send a delegation to Pyongyang to honor Kim Il-sung. The Chinese Foreign Ministry press spokesperson has been asked on multiple occasions whether China sent a delegation to watch the North Korean military parade on the 15th. The spokesperson always replied that China and North Korea are friendly neighbors. The two sides always maintain friendly exchanges.
On 24 April, the spokesperson was asked whether China sent a delegation to watch the military parade. The spokesperson again replied that China and North Korea are friendly neighbors. The two sides always maintain friendly exchanges.
A Chinese official snub of Kim Il-sung’s birthday means that relations with North Korea are extremely strained. If the Chinese also boycotted the KPA anniversary, relations might be at an all-time low.
China Daily is an English language daily newspaper owned by the China Daily Information Company. The BBC describes it as state-owned, meaning that it carries official views. They published an editorial today on China’s assessment of the confrontation with North Korea. Excerpts follow:
“… the situation is still inflammable.” 
“For as the sanctions imposed by the United Nations begin to bite deeper, the possibility that the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea might become reckless out of desperation has never been higher….” 
“Judging from their recent words and deeds, policymakers in Pyongyang have seriously misread the UN sanctions, which are aimed at its nuclear/missile provocations, not its system or leadership. They have unfairly misrepresented Beijing’s role in the process, disregarding its preoccupation with peace, humanitarian concerns and non-interference in the DPRK’s domestic affairs. And they have greatly underestimated the international community’s-not just any individual stakeholder’s political will to denuclearize the peninsula.” 
“They are at once perilously overestimating their own strength and underestimating the hazards they are brewing for themselves.” 
“They need to reassess the situation so they do not make any misjudgments.” 
“Likewise, Washington should continue to exercise restraint and pursue a peaceful resolution to the issue.” 
“There have already been enough shows of force and confrontation, it is time for Pyongyang and Washington to take a step back from their previous rhetoric and instead heed the voices of reason calling for peaceful denuclearization of the peninsula.”
The editorial praised the President Trump for using “impressive patience” after announcing the end of “strategic patience.” It also praised him for agreeing with “peace-minded China.” It said tension has eased, but the situation is still dangerous. (Don’t expect the corrupt, lying, smug, elite mainstream media in the USA to report the praise.)
The editorial restated themes from an earlier Chinese commentary that the North Korean policymakers are misreading their situation and that they have overestimated their strength and underestimated their peril.
The message is that UN sanctions and Chinese enforcement actions are not directed at overthrowing the North Korean government and system. They are designed to persuade North Korea to halt specific programs that China opposes. 
Kim Jong Un personally identifies with the missile and nuclear programs. Chinese advice and wisdom probably are unwelcome and, thus far, unheeded. At the same time the Chinese are exerting more pressure during this confrontation – including sanctions enforcement and use of blunter, more critical language — than in any past crisis.
Brief Summary
You can make of this what you will. This blog does not tell you how to think or what to think, but simply provides the information with a little analysis that may or may not be correct. I don’t think that anyone can tell you how this will end. Doing that would require that we crawl into the muddy, mushy minds of the power elite who rule North Korea and into the mind of the fat, near-sighted Dear Leader, bad haircut and all.   
China likely has spies close to the throne. Their reaction tells us things that we may not have direct knowledge of. All that is disturbing.
China has repeated to the US that North Korea is their problem and that they will deal with it. President Trump said that North Korea is China’s problem and that they should deal with it. China is praising President Trump for impressive patience and agreeing with China.
Things are coming to a head with the Norks.

13 thoughts on “Geopolitics – North Korea and China

  1. “They are at once perilously overestimating their own strength and underestimating the hazards they are brewing for themselves.” Tin pot dictators who have been in power for any length of time seem to follow this path.

    Recall Saddam Hussein's boasting and crowing of the invincibility of his feared Republican Guard, and that should they see an attack by the US and its allies, the result would be 'the Mother of All Battles.'

    And then the attack came, and these puny pretend units withered and were routed within hours. Scenes from the 'Highway of Death' saw burnt husks of feared Republican Guard tanks littering the sides of the road like beer cans at a Sigma Alpha Epsilon frat party.

  2. Who can forget "Baghdad Bob" and his daily press briefings about the early demise of the US military? They served to entertain a generation of Americans. Saddam had the 4th largest military in the world and things didn't end well for him. As you suggest, the Norks believe their own press and the Chinese are reminding them that doing that makes things end badly.

    My sense of the current situation is that China understands that its reputation rests on how it handles its creature. If it halts or falters, the US will handle them for China – and people like President Trump, SECDEF Mattis and SECSTATE Tillerson are not their weak predecessors.

    Scenes from the 'Highway of Death' saw burnt husks of feared Republican Guard tanks littering the sides of the road like beer cans at a Sigma Alpha Epsilon frat party. hahahaha – exactly.

  3. Sometimes I wonder if the Norks are for real, then I look at Kim's hair and know that they aren't but, somehow, they are.


  4. It's strange that in this time and age, that there is a vast swath of the world where there is no electricity and 25 million people live in what is described as a vast prison camp, with no understanding of the outside world.

    The haircut is…exotic.

  5. Hopefully the Chicoms will take of this, and the little twerp will cease to be a problem in the area.

    I just hope they don't try and pull a "Super Mighty Attack" on our carrier battle groups we have in the area….I'd just hate to see the little twerp get injured…..

  6. There is a lesson from Iraq. 4th largest Army in the world with 11 years of combat experience gets smashed by the US Armed Forces.How? The military was allowed to run the operation without a lot of interference from civilians whose idea of roughing it is flying in an unpressurized airplane without cabin attendants. The Bush/Cheney team got that one right.

    Eight years of Obama has taken any luster our forces have in the world's eyes and pissed it away, IMO. It would behove tinpot dictators to recognize Trump is no Obama. He will tell the military to get the job done, SWJ pussies be damned. They will get the job done.

  7. The big question of the US troops is hope widespread the politically correct corps has infiltrated down to and into the non-com ranks

  8. The only reason that they'd try a "super mighty attack" on the CVBG is in the hope that China would stand up for them while we take out missile sights and their navy. If they take out Seoul, the problem goes nuclear and China will have to grin and take it.

  9. The US Army and Marine Corps in particular are battle hardened. There is a lot of combat experience from wars since 2001. With the right people on top, I think that we're as hard as we were at the end of WW2. The Navy can hold its own as can the USAF as well, but infantry, armor and artillery combat arms are well seasoned. China knows this.

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