I know….I usually concentrate my post o the Middle East….but the drama around North Korea is too compelling to ignore….
North Korea has been making news lately…..there was an assassination, more missile tests and the Trump people thumping their chest like sex crazed primates……
After the assassination of Lil Kim’s half brother in Malaysia there has been a bit of a blow-back internationally….
It’s not just North Korea’s relationship with Malaysia that may be splintering. In a rare move Thursday, the country appeared to accuse ally China of working with North Korea’s enemies to “bring down its social system,” reports Reuters. An editorial published by the state-controlled KCNA—with the byline “Jong Phil”—explained a country that “often claims itself to be a ‘friendly neighbor'” has “unhesitatingly taken inhumane steps such as totally blocking foreign trade” under UN sanctions, reports the Wall Street Journal. This is “mean behavior,” the editorial said. “This country, styling itself a big power, is dancing to the tune of the US.”
Despite the fact that the editorial didn’t name China, an expert on China-North Korea relations says it’s a rare “frontal assault” on its ally. The AP notes it “took a tone normally reserved for North Korea’s overt enemies.” The editorial has been widely viewed as a response to China’s announcement Saturday that it would block all coal imports from North Korea according to tightened UN sanctions, which the editorial claimed are “devoid of legal ground” and will “have a negative impact on the living of the people in the DPRK.” US officials say coal exports to China earned North Korea $1.2 billion last year, roughly one third of its total export income, the AP reports.
Is all this just “cousins” having a bit of an old fashion family feud?
Is there more to this “tiff” than the rest of the world is thinking?
China denied on Thursday that it had increased its troop presence on the border with North Korea after the murder of the estranged half-brother of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un in Malaysia.
Reports routinely circulate at times of heightened tension on the Korean peninsula of China sending troops to the border, which China always denies.
South Korean and U.S. officials say the North Korean leader’s half brother, Kim Jong Nam, was assassinated by North Korean agents. North Korea has not acknowledged his death.
Some Hong Kong media last week reported that China had sent more soldiers to the border after Kim was attacked at Kuala Lumpur airport on Feb. 13.
“As for the reports you mentioned of the People’s Liberation Army increasing troops on the Chinese-North Korean border, they are totally baseless and completely fabricated,” defense ministry spokesman Ren Guoqiang told a monthly news briefing.
China is reclusive North Korea’s most important remaining ally, but China has been angered by its missile and nuclear tests and has signed up for several rounds of U.N. sanctions against North Korea at the same time as pushing for a diplomatic resolution through talks.
Just how nervous is South Korea?