“Russian rapprochement with North Korea is a golden opportunity for Kim Jong Un”

internationalAugust 20 ’22 08:17author: Jasper Dams

Russia wants to strengthen relations with neighboring North Korea. North Korean state media reported that Vladimir Putin wrote in a letter to his counterpart Kim Jong Un that it is in the two countries’ interests to seek further rapprochement. The alliance between the two countries will certainly not bode well for North Korea, which is recovering from two years of isolation from Corona.

The cooperation between the two countries will mainly provide military support to Russia. It is about practical assistance, assistance and more people in the occupied Ukrainian regions. North Korea is one of the few countries in the world that officially recognizes these republics. They need to build and strengthen. When Putin deploys Russians there and they die, it’s not good for Putin. That is why it is more appropriate for him to deploy workers from North Korea. It’s cheaper and does a good job, and you don’t see it in the statistics of fallen soldiers in Russia,” says Professor of Korean Studies Rimko Brooker of Leiden University.

training mission

North Korea has much to gain from improving relations with Russia. For North Korean soldiers, this is a very valuable training if they go this way. It may be paid for and processed by Russia. It wouldn’t be the first time, since the Yom Kippur War in Syria, that North Korean soldiers have been fighting all along. However, according to Brooker, Putin does not have to rely on arms supplies. I find it hard to imagine, because North Korea is counterfeiting Russian weapons. It must be very bad if Russia wants to fight with it.

against the United Nations

For North Korea, cooperation is also financially attractive. North Korea needs foreign money and access to foreign markets. If Russia and North Korea strengthen relations, it will open doors for the Kim Jong-un regime, which can benefit from access to Russian markets and markets in other parts of the world.” In addition, according to Brooker, the country will not stand alone. North Korea can become a partner In a kind of unofficial anti-UN, with countries like Russia, Syria, Belarus, China, and other countries that are not free.That would be a huge boost to the North Korean regime.

Read also | North Korea ‘defeated’ Corona

South Korea example

An alliance may mean that the North follows the example of the South. After the Korean War, South Korea was one of the poorest countries in the world, even poorer than North Korea. One of the ways to rebuild this economy was by sending workers abroad, but also by supplying mercenaries to the US Army in Vietnam: about 350,000 during the war there. So much money has been made that it was one of the main factors in South Korea’s economic miracle. This cannot go unnoticed in Pyongyang.

China

North Korea has a more difficult relationship with China. The country is highly dependent on China, which regards North Korea as an important buffer zone between China and South Korea. With the new president, Yoon Seok-yeol, that country has become more and more pro-American than its predecessor, so South Korea is the geographical beginning of the Western world of China. Brooker finds it difficult to predict what China would do in the event of intense cooperation between North Korea and Russia. ‘It could be two ways. Either China is not satisfied with this and the relationship cools down, or there is a more mature relationship between the three countries. In fact, I suspect it will be so.

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the West

Brooker speculates that North Korea, bolstered by improved relations with Russia, could use tougher rhetoric against the West. They learned a clear lesson from the Russian invasion, that if you have nuclear weapons, you can go very far without anyone being able to harm you. North Korea has nuclear weapons, so I think the tone is harsher. North Korea is often mocked in the West, but according to Brooker, it is wise to take the Kim regime seriously. A funny country like North Korea could certainly wield some serious political influence. What they do works, I’m afraid. The party in North Korea has been in power for more than 70 years. It is a successful model and causes a lot of suffering. It is important not to underestimate what is going on there.

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