Manchurian Base Camp, Part III: The DPRK’s Northeastern Strategy

Manchurian Base Camp, Part I: In the 1930s Kim Il Song regarded Manchuria, or Northeast China, as an immense area into which to project anti-Japanese struggle and wherein he could hammer out the personal foundations for what would become the North Korean state.   Manchurian Base Camp, Part II: During the Korean War, North Korean elites moved back into Manchuria to escape from the horrific bombing … Continue reading Manchurian Base Camp, Part III: The DPRK’s Northeastern Strategy

Reformist Flirtations and Successor Politics: KCNA Tropes

While Chinese left-wingers insist upon the courage and worthiness of North Korea’s wealth-equalizing currency reforms, Kim Jong Il is out talking up profitability in the northern frontier province of Jagang. In a visit to a the Kanggye Wine Factory reported on December 10, the Dear Leader spake: He went round the newly-built beer shop…greatly satisfied to learn that the factory has not only steadily boosted … Continue reading Reformist Flirtations and Successor Politics: KCNA Tropes

News and Background on Sino-Korean Relations

The South Korean satellite launch is getting short shrift in American media, but the PRC’s Global Times gives it top billing. I think this indicates that China is, as it ought to be, still skeptical toward both Koreas and that rebuking the DPRK over its recent hard line does not automatically equate to full embrace of ROK imperatives. I’m finishing up a review for Korean … Continue reading News and Background on Sino-Korean Relations