Thursday, January 24, 2013

Clinging to North Korea: A Chinese Traditionalist View

An interesting Chinese view on the relationship.  The author hits a lot of topics.  Note the comments on Air Power as well as aircraft carriers; US forces "occupying" both Afghanistan and north Korea and the threat that poses to China, the comparison with WWII, and the US superpower status and foreign aid.  The author makes the case for the importance of north Korea to China but does not state the Chinese "Three No's" policy:  No War, No Collapse, and No Nukes. The emphasis of this article has to be on the "Traditionalist View."  I look forward to the comments of "China Hands" on this perspective. Conclusion:
The U.S. ability to become the world’s only superpower and U.S. foreign aid are inseparable.  The U.S. (use of) foreign aid, prevented war from destroying the U.S. and also strengthened the control of every country in the world. U.S. assistance to the world not only did not cause the U.S. to lose money, but even earned not a little [美国不仅没有赔,而且赚了不少]. 
The current situation on the Korean Peninsula and pre-World War II situation have many similarities. The relationship between North Korea to the safety of the Chinese nation can in no way be questioned.  Protecting North Korea’s security is protecting China’s security.  Those “elite experts” calling to abandon North Korea should understand North Korea’s significance to China; the purpose of their call is all too clear. Didn’t China learn during World War II that the British and French policy of “appeasement” led to a diametrically opposed struggle? China once again stands at a crossroads that will determine its fate.
Clinging to North Korea: A Chinese Traditionalist View

North Korea and China in better, pre-Nixonian, times. | Image courtesy Stephan Landsberger
Positive signs of the old “blood alliance” between China and North Korea have been few and far between in the past ten weeks. Rodong Sinmun wrote a barely veiled allegory of how China was giving in to imperialist betrayal, and the PRC got even nastier with its mockery of Kim Jong Un. But scratch the enamel of recent Chinese anger hard enough and you might just find some lingering memories of the Korean War, not to mention admissions that China might need strange friends in strange times. The following apologia for the PRC-DPRK alliance, published as a featured blog editorial on the Huanqiu Shibao website, is a rather unusual direct attack on the growing scholarly consensus in China that the old reasons for the alliance with North Korea have become outmoded.  Thanks to Roger Cavazos, the essay is able to speak for itself. — Adam Cathcart, Chief Editor

Tang Ge [唐歌], “Why China Clings to North Korea: Finally Clarifying North Korea’s Importance [为什么中国要死守朝鲜:终于明白朝鲜重要性],” Huanqiu Shibao (featured blog post), January 12, 2013. Translated by Roger Cavazos

If one were to carefully research a map of China, one discovers that if the United States wanted to forcibly enter China, the most logical place through which do so is North Korea, followed by Vietnam. Therefore, North Korea’s safety [安危] is related to the safety of China.
In spite of this some Chinese “experts” and “elites” say that the concept of North Korea as a strategic buffer is outdated. They shout that North Korea has no meaning for China’s security, that China should abandon North Korea, and that China can no longer be abducted by North Korea [中国不能再被朝鲜绑架了]. I have a few responses:

Viewing things from a purely military aspect, no matter if in the past or now, North Korea’s significance to China’s security cannot be doubted.

Considering the Role of Air Power | These so-called experts and elites say that because of technological advances — such as long-range weapons and the development of naval and air power — foreign countries wishing to attack China will no longer need a land springboard to do so, and that therefore North Korea has no strategic meaning to China. Is that really the case?
Long-range weapons originally were not  the main weapon and despite a great deal of development, even in the future war, long range weapons will still not play the decisive roles played by short range weapons and ground troops.

Production costs for long range weapons are high so they can’t be produced in large batches because of the cost.  Second, the enemies being fired at have sufficient time to prepare and a high probability of intercepting the long range weapons because of their long flight time.  Even if the weapons are not intercepted the ones fired upon still have time to react.  The reality of modern war is that short range weapons play the main role even among the most advanced U.S. weaponry, whether in the former Yugoslavia, or the war in Iraq and Afghanistan.

China is preparing a third-generation surveillance craft to cope with new US technology | Via Huanqiu
In order to defeat a country, even though the Air Force is unquestionably significant to modern war, through its roles in surveillance, bombing and precision strike, air forces have never been a substitute for ground forces. Only when the Air Force and ground troops are paired together can they defeat a country.  The Air Force alone must have ground troops to really achieve the goal of controlling a country.
(Continued at the link below)

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