Author: Adam Cathcart

Revisiting Mao’s Role in the ‘Three-Anti’ Campaign

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China / Chinese communist party / Manchuria / Mao Zedong / political violence

If there is one thing that appears certain about contemporary China and Chinese historical studies, it is that Mao’s role in sparking and sustaining violence during the period of his rule (1949-1976) will invariably provoke controversy and contention. On this blog, we have  previously delved into Mao’s interactions with the ultra-hardline Tao Zhu in Guangxi in the early 1950s, and made reference to Frank Dikotter’s work in the context of ostensible brutality in the countryside. […]

Chinese Aid to Flood-Hit Areas in North Korea

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North Korean border region / Sino-North Korean relations

The PRC’s National Day (1 October) celebrations were muted in Pyongyang, but they did provide an opportunity for Li Jinjun, the Chinese Ambassador to North Korea, to make a few remarks. Reading the rhetoric for such occasions is often not terribly useful; North Korean speakers are not there to announce a change in bilateral policy, nor is their purpose to reveal much of anything by giving lip service to “the Chinese dream” or stating that […]

Youth Work and Class Education under Kim Jong-un

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Chinese communist party / North Korea / Propaganda / Sino-North Korean relations

The following is my original intro to a piece I just published in Seoul after some substantial carving down. In other words, the intro was cut, but I think it still stands up, so now you can read that particular argumentative flourish here on SinoMondiale with no paywall, and accompanied by my preferred images and links. Youth Work and Class Education under Kim Jong-un Certain messages in English get repeated so often with respect to North Korea that to write […]

Recent Histories of (Local) Violence in the Korean War

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American Foreign Policy / Korean War / North Korea / War Crimes

Today I received a stunning new text: Su-kyoung Hwang’s monograph Korea’s Grievous War (Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 2016). A link to the publisher’s description of the book is here. Dr. Hwang received her Ph.D. from the University of Chicago, teaches at the University of Sydney, and has put together a very impressive work. She appears to go well beyond the issues laid out in Kim Dong-choon’s book from 2000/2009, and possibly even Kim Dong-choon’s new c0-authored book  (In the 2009 […]

Corruption, Sanctions, Dandong

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Chinese communist party / Chinese foreign policy / North Korean border region / People's Republic of China / Sino-North Korean relations

In two essays which I anticipate publishing this week (in NK News and CPI Analysis, respectively), I question the connection between Xi Jinping’s anti-corruption activity and the implementation of sanctions on North Korea. Here are some of the data points I’m dealing with, in no particular order. Sadly, in pulling my research materials together, I found that the Hongxiang firm appears to have wiped its website of most of the good stuff. Likewise, a handful […]

The Fifth North Korean Nuclear Test: Impacts on the US and China

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Sino-North Korean relations

On 9 September, North Korea (the DPRK) set off a nuclear test, its fifth. I was in London for an academic conference, but managed to write an op-ed for CNN international. I also shared some thoughts with AFP on the China angle which had overlooked by others, namely, that the Chinese Foreign Ministry had probably been forewarned by the North Korean side of the test. Tom Phillips, the Guardian reporter in Beijing, asked me for […]