Russia, China, North Korea Work Together

Russia, China, North Korea Work Together

The most important global issue of the still-young 21st Century is the growing military axis of Russia and China.  Unlike the NATO alliance, this is not a defensive partnership.  It is one which squarely has the United States in its cross-hairs, and it is actively to demolish the concepts of national sovereignty and individual rights that were won at such great costs during the prior hundred years.

Both nations have pursued territorial claims considered unlawful by most nations. Beijing’s assault on the Philippines’ Exclusive Economic Zone was condemned by the World Court at the Hague.  The Kremlin’s invasion of Ukraine has been widely opposed.

The South China Morning Post reports that the two nation’s Defense chiefs have agreed to expand cooperation through strategic exercises and joint patrols in the Asia-Pacific, according to the Russian Ministry of Defence.

Eric Jacobson, writing for the Center for Strategic and International Studies reports that the early 2000s rise in oil and energy prices and the growth of the PRC’s economy allowed for increased investments in the militaries of both Moscow and Beijing. He notes that “The U.S. military dominance in the 1990s sparked interest in Russian and Chinese military circles on how to develop theories of victory that would enable them to achieve their objectives against the United States.”

Developments are progressing rapidly. American Military News reports that in August China sent troops to Russia to participate in joint military drills.

According to the report, “The Chinese Ministry of Defense states that the aim is to deepen practical and friendly cooperation with the armies of participating countries, enhance the level of strategic collaboration among the participating parties, and strengthen the ability to respond to various security threats.” Russia’s military announced the latest iteration of its Vostok drills last month. The operations come even as Russian forces are heavily focused on the ongoing invasion of Ukraine.

China has purchased some of Russia’s most advanced military equipment, while also developing its own naval weapons systems, some of which are unmatched anywhere, including a missile which, launched from land, can disable ships almost 1,000 miles away.

There are reports that China, along with North Korea, may be preparing to assist Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. According to the Associated Press, Secretary of State Anthony Blinken has warned that China’s support for Russia’s Ukraine aggression is complication relations with Washington.

Japan is also specifically targeted by the Moscow-Beijing Axis.  The United States Naval Institute notes that “Japan is concerned with the activities of both countries’s ships in its vicinity. Japan’s recent 2022 defense white paper, released on July 22, detailed the threats posed to Japan by Russia, China and North Korea. Japan Defense.” Minister Nobou Kishi has said several times that Japan would continuously monitor the three countries’ military activities in its vicinity.

North Korea is emerging as a junior partner in the Axis. According to Russia’s semi-official RT news agency Russian President Vladimir Putin had exchanged letters with Supreme Leader Kim Jong Un. both countries had agreed to “expand their comprehensive and constructive bilateral relations with common efforts.” There have been as yet unsubstantiated reports that North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un has offered the use of North Korean troops for use in the Ukraine.

Former U.S. State Department official Daria Novak, writing for the New York Analysis of Policy and Government, explains that “The Russo-Chinese relationship, once filled with mistrust from earlier times, is presently tactical and highly opportunist. Controlling the flow of oil and gas means money for Russia’s failing economy and more Russian missiles and technology in support of China’s aggressive foreign policy agenda.”

Frank Vernuccio serves as editor-in-chief of the New York Analysis of Policy and Government

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