North Korea is China’s deniable Ally for Global Nuclear Proliferation.
[Posted by Lara Keller 17/12/2017]
Acquiring nuclear armed intercontinental missiles, by regimes that are hostile to the West, is a big deal. Currently Russia and China are hostile to the West and they are the only nuclear states that belong to this category. When diplomatic and business niceties are stripped away, the reality is that Russia and China are aggressive competitors against the interests of ordinary people of Western democratic nations. The interests of Western elites are flexible and not necessarily divergent to those of Russia-China elites, which is a natural mechanism for the spread of authoritarianism to the West.
Other non-Western nuclear states are currently India, Pakistan, Israel and now North Korea. Neither India or Pakistan are hostile to the West, and they direct their weapons against each other. Clearly Israel is a semi-colonial Western state transplanted by Western antisemitism to the Levant.
The North Korean regime of Kim Jong-un is widely reported as an extremely repressive state, that is far more extreme than either of it’s superpower allies Xi Jingping’s China and Putin’s Russia. Both Russian and Chinese communist regimes, have a history of early utterly extremist authoritarian leaders (Stalin and Mao) who brought mass suffering and risked disaster to these one party dictatorships. On their deaths internal opposition within the inner cliques of the ruling parties lead to reform. In Russia Stalin was directly criticized, while in China Deng Xiaoping criticized the excesses of the Maoist era. Mao is still official revered as the father of the “revolution”, while Putin is attempting to resurrect Stalin’s reputation.
North Korea is not a satellite of China, but China is its only powerful ally, North Korea is internationally isolated, China’s population is 56 times greater than North Korea, and they share a border that is nearly 900 miles long. It is reasonable to suspect that China has the power to increase or decrease the influence of groups within the North Korean regime who struggle for power during successions. It is therefore easier for extreme dictatorships to survive succession crises with foreign superpower support.