Wednesday, December 01, 2010

China's Chosen* One? The 51st State? Daydreaming.

After the UK's Guardian told us how China was losing patience with North Korea's dear leaders and was ready to abandon North Korean, it is now backing up a few steps for a reality check.

As you would, but not in such a schizophrenic, sycophantic way as this opinion piece by Chun Lin:

China's break with North Korea is overblown
At first it seems as if the WikiLeaks cables give us a glimpse of what is really going on around the Korean peninsula, hinting at Chinese exasperation at recent North Korean aggression. But as is often the case with this part of the world, the "facts" we take for granted are more complex than they appear.

North Korea's recent shelling of the South Korean island of Yeonpyeong is a case in point. ... the provocation was provoked.

This does not amount to a defence of North Korea.

The larger background consists of a historical cold-war climate in the region, and, more recently, an increase in military activity following the end of President Kim Dae-Jung's "sunshine policy" towards the North.

Current naval exercises have now been joined by American forces.

The confrontation on the Korean peninsula isn't "the last hangover from the cold war" (as Isabel Hilton has argued here) – the remaining US military bases around China and America's ongoing paranoia are. However obedient Beijing tries to be, America continues to declare it a "threat" that needs to be contained.

This year sees the 60th anniversary of the Korean war. The Chinese remember that conflict mainly for the heroic struggle of their volunteers in Korea

Meanwhile, back in the Land that time Forgot, the North Korean word seems to follow exactly the key points made in the Guardian piece quoted from above. Who's writing for whom?

S. Korean Puppet Group's Military Provocation Flailed
The United Confederation of Koreans in Russia in a statement issued on Nov. 27 accused the south Korean puppet group of committing such reckless military provocation as firing shells into the territorial waters of the DPRK around Yonphyong Island in the West Sea of Korea on Nov. 23.

In a word, the recent provocation was a product of the anti-DPRK and anti-reunification confrontation policy of the south Korean authorities, it noted.

The Federation of Korean Economic Workers in China said in a statement issued on Nov. 26 that it was quite natural that the Korean People's Army standing guard over the inviolable territorial waters of the country took such resolute military step as reacting to the south Korean puppet group's military provocation with a prompt and powerful physical strike. The statement went on:

Nevertheless, the puppet group is seeking to stage the largest-ever combined exercises by introducing latest war hardware including the U.S. nuclear carrier George Washington into the West Sea of Korea while crying out for "punishment" and "retaliation" against someone just like a thief crying "Stop thief!"

[Read the whole article and compare it to the whole Chun Lin piece in the Guardian, not just the extracts quoted above.]

In a flurry of bluster, North Korea continues:

US-S. Korean Maneuvers for War Aggression against DPRK Flailed
The U.S. warlike forces are escalating the military pressure upon the DPRK, talking about "strong military support" to south Korea.

This proves that the U.S. was behind the recent Yonphyong Island incident as was the case with the "Cheonan" case and the U.S. was the arch criminal who deliberately planned and wire-pulled the incident.

The "military threat" touted by the U.S. imperialists is nothing but sophism intended to justify their reckless military provocations and find a pretext for igniting a war.

US-S. Korea's Escalating Moves for War Aggression against DPRK Flayed
The DPRK-targeted adventurous war maneuvers kicked off by the U.S. and the south Korean war-like forces in the West Sea of Korea on Nov. 28 may spill over into an all-out war any time, warns Minju Joson Tuesday in a signed commentary.

If the U.S. and the south Korean war-like forces fire even a shell into the inviolable land and territorial waters of the DPRK, they will have to pay dearly for this.

They would be well advised to properly understand who their rival is and stop at once their moves for a war of aggression against the DPRK.

Interesting that. Just a day or so ago**, North Korea was bluffing that any incursion of any kind nor matter how small would trigger all out war. Now it will take a shelling to get their attention.

Sounds more to Guambat like North Korea may have suddenly lost its back.

See this quote from this story, quoted in this post:
"The army and people of the DPRK are now greatly enraged at the provocation of the puppet group while getting fully ready to give a shower of dreadful fire and blow up the bulwark of the enemies if they dare to encroach again upon the DPRK's dignity and sovereignty even in the least."

Guambat is more inclined to believe the Chinese story being peddled that they've no use for any more of North Korea's antics. Which is not to say that they will back away, if at all, in a hurry or undignified manner. The Pacific Way takes time and at least a strong effort at grace. Face is principle. It could get to be rough going before smooth sledding.

But, Guambat sees a much greater and more powerful North Asian economic bloc when North Korean gets folded into South Korea. It is good business for China, as well as Japan, and will have spill over effects for this whole region. Again, this too will take time. West Germany is still struggling to absorb East Germany.

And, whilst smoking that pipe, Guambat sees an opportunity for the US to draw down on its military presence in foreign Asian countries like Japan and Korea, with big savings in terms of the the expense of money and diplomacy that entails, should this come to pass.

It will certainly raise the need for a stable and robust US permanent sovereign presence on the Western Pacific. Could that be the key that unlocks the door to the 51st US State of The Marianas?

What's in that pipe, anyway?

*PS: "Chosen". "Chosun". get it?



Blogger Davo said...

Chosen? Chosun? you have a very peculiar understanding of languages .. heh. (have to admit that I would have missed it; must be getting old .. heh)

1 December 2010 at 4:47:00 pm GMT+10  

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