China has pretended to support our position on N. Korea. now they have done a dramatic flip flop. It is 1950 all over again. We could very easily be fighting the Chinese as well as the N. Koreans.
Why does China still protect North Korea?
Ah. To understand why China is still supporting North Korea, you need to go back to the School of Hard Knocks. And you need to understand this one thing:
In the School of Hard Knocks, a.k.a. international warfare, the US is playing for Dominance. All other countries are playing for Survival.
Now you need to go back and take a look at the history of North and South Korea. The Korean peninsula has been dominated by a unitary kingdom for at least a thousand years. The Koreans are the same people, speak the same language, follow the same customs, for a couple thousand years. There is no significant geological, cultural, religious, or racial significance to the 38th parallel that separates North Korea from South Korea, other than this accident of being occupied separately by the US vs. USSR at the end of WWII.
But the separation of North Korea and South Korea was more than just the occupation. Korea was invaded by Japan prior to WWII, and had fallen to become a Japanese colony. This was the reason that Korea was occupied by the Allied troops post WWII, not because the country Korea did anything, but because it was a Japanese colony, where the Korean language was banned, young men were drafted to serve in the Japanese Imperial Army, and young women were “recruited” to become “comfort women”, a.k.a camp prostitutes, servicing a hundred men a day. Where there is oppression, there is rebellion. Some Koreans chose to fight, and some chose to collaborate with the Japanese invaders. After the end of WWII, the North Korean government was led by former guerrilla fighters against the Japanese invaders, and the South Korean government was mostly composed of Japanese collaborators. ROK’s military was mostly staffed with graduates of the former Military College of Japan. The father of the current South Korean president,, was such a graduate of the Japan military school, who rose to become the President of South Korean later on. The chief economic adviser was one of the most notorious Japanese collaborators, Pak Hung-sik, who in 1950 went to Japan to try to revive the with Japan.
So you have to understand, the Korean War was largely inevitable. And just like the Vietnam War, the primary impetus was not about communism but about de-colonization, about whether Korea should be an independent nation, or a colony of Japan. What has this got to do with the US? Nothing really. What has this got to do with China? Nothing really significant, except a natural sympathy to de-colonization, considering how much they’ve been screwed by Japan during WWII. You should also keep in mind that the US decided to intervene in this civil war on behalf of their ally ROK, and China did not raise a finger until the US decided to push the war all the way to the Chinese border, and with MacArthur threatening to invade China repeatedly.
China’s decision to keep the US away from her borders was pretty straight forward. Because the US war machine was formidable, and only counted Americans as human. The yellows, the blacks, and the browns didn’t count as people in a US war scenario, at all.
“Over a period of three years or so, we killed off — what — 20 percent of the population,” Air Force Gen. Curtis LeMay, head of the Strategic Air Command during the Korean War,.
And keep in mind, neither American lives nor American territory was on the line here. So with the US, China was really looking at the potential extermination of Chinese people, over some rather trivial reason. Thus the desire to keep the US away from the Chinese border. But it does not mean that China has any illusions about North Korea. If there were, that illusion was shattered since 1956, barely 3 years after the end of the Korean War.
So what happened in 1956? Well, you see, when a country is under stress, it tends to fall back to the last time it was viewed as “glorious” by itself. The way the Iranians fell back to theocracy, the Arabs fell back to the Caliphate as described in the, Russia looking back longingly at Autocracy, and Trump with his America First – they are emotionally the same thing, which is to return to the past glory. Well the past glory of Korea was the Dynasty from the 13th to the 19th century, and that’s what Kim the First took as his inspiration, including the fondness for the homicidal palace intrigue.
The North Korea government was initially set up in a similar way as China and USSR, with a Politburo where all different opinions and factions were represented. Being the inveterate palace intriguer, Kim soon started scheming to get rid of his own comrade-in-arms, especially those who had been to either China or Russia. He basically had anybody who attended schools in either China or Russia shot. Thousand of them. People who had fought with him and risked their lives for him. Both China and Russia were totally pissed. Some of the high-ranking officials fled to China and asked China to intervene. China offered them protection, and then did something that is very typically Chinese, which was to tell North Korea:
“I’m not your dad. I don’t owe you a thing. You are an asshole. I’m done with you.”
The instinct of the Chinese, for centuries, has always been to withdraw and slam the door in your face when they are pissed at you. Thus China withdrew all of her forces back to China and was done with North Korea. That’s why there are 30,000 – 50,000 US troops in South Korea, and not a single Chinese soldier in North Korea, in the last 60 years. So much for “Chinese support of North Korea”.
So you see, the Kim family has always been little scheming palace intriguers. It’s like this is one of their “core competence”. Just look at how Kim the Third dealt with his own uncle and his own brother. 60 years, and the little homicidal palace intriguer is still the same little homicidal palace intriguer. And China never had any illusions about that.
So you must wonder, why in the world would China still protect North Korea? Because if you are concerned with your survival, and you have to choose between a homicidal palace intriguer, vs. a genocidal invading asshole, who would you choose?
The homicidal palace intriguer, because he mostly just kills his own family and his own supporters, and he’s not that into killing you.
Life is tough.
In gratitude to Rovin Daverman