The US and China can find the other side a powerful and determined allay. The formidable US military power in combination with China’s economic and trade leverage would force North Korea back to negotiation table.


Ren Zegang


In a panel show on the current crisis of Korean peninsula of Phoenix Television, a Hong Kong–based pro Beijing broadcaster, Dr Kim Sang Chun, a South Korean scholar made comment that the US has been ready for a full scale assault on North Korea.


Since 2015 the US has repeatedly conducted attacking war games of all levels targeting North Korea. Revealed by Dr. Kim, the American’s first round attack is to fire 8000 missiles of different types on 800 North Korean targets in a period of 40 mints; The US fighters and bombers will follow in the second round attack finishing any survival North Korean positions through overwhelming bombardment.


The North Korean targets to be attacked are divided into 4 categories: the launching sites of long and medium range missiles and radars; military headquarters; conventional military targets; and the last, nuclear facilities.


Those targets fall into first to third categories are to be attacked  simultaneously. The attack on the nuclear facilities can only be conducted if a controlled outcome can be assured.


In accordance with Dr. Kim’s revelation, the war on North Korea would be bloody, brutal, decisive and extremely intensive from beginning. The attack led by the US and its allies is expected to leave North Korea with no chance of having any effective counter-attack.


However in suspicion if the US can achieve such a “clean” operation, many commentators have brought into attention of an assessment on a war against North Korea prepared by the Clinton administration in 1994.


It was accessed that within 90days of the war, the US military personal as well as their families living in South Korea would lose lives up to 52 thousands. Seoul, capital of South Korea would be attacked and fallen into the hands of the north army in three days. South Korea would suffer a heavy causality as much as 490 thousands. The US military bases in South Korea and Japan would be attacked and resulting in a rate of destruction about 80%. The total cost of the war would be US$100 billion.


Though the situation now has become vastly different from 1994, it makes no difference that the war on North Korea will be still extremely dangerous and uncertain simply because North Korea has well prepared for a major war for long time and obtained nuclear weapons. If the war should breakout it would  be the first in human history that a nuclear nation is to be attacked.


Obviously negotiation should be and will be the best solution to the crisis in Korean peninsular.


There is one outstanding factor making situation significantly different from what was in 1994; that is China’s determination to carry on denuclearisation in Korean peninsular.


It is of fundamental interest to China to stop North Korea from developing nuclear weaponry.


First, the possession of nuclear weapon by North Korea will only stimulate South Korea, Japan and even Taiwan to pursue nuclear weapon, a scenario that China does not want see.


Second, the nuclear tests done by North Korea could produce devastating impact on neighbouring China’s northeast such as volcanic eruption and other types of nuclear contamination.


Third, as a rising power China is endeavour to build up sphere of influence in East Asia, the nuclear proliferation in the region, which will result in confrontation between China and the US and its allies is against China’s geopolitical interests.


For instance, the deployment of Terminal High Altitude Area Defence (THAAD)) missile defence system as a result of development of nuclear weapon by North Korea, which enables the US to monitor military projects in northern, north-eastern and eastern China and results in deterioration of the relationship between China and South Korea  is a perfect testimony to China’s strategic worries.


To China, both war on Korean peninsular and possession of nuclear weapon by the North are unacceptable. To a degree China is more eager to solve the North Korean nuclear issue than the US.


However, except for total madness of Kim Jong-un, China is in opposition to a military option to the issue as it is China that could bear severe consequences of a bloody war. Therefore China will throw all its weight to mediate between North Korea and the US.


Though having yet clearly outlined, a strategic consolidation is wildly believed to be the keynote of President Trump’s foreign policy. Under such a guideline, which involves reduction of the US commitments overseas, it will be illogical to expect President Trump will wage a war on North Korea which is of great complexity and unpredictable implications, especially without the support of major powers such as China and Russia.


Therefore in dealing with North Korea nuclear crisis the US and China can find the other side a powerful and determined allay. The formidable US military power in combination with China’s economic and trade leverage would force North Korea back to negotiation table.


Furthermore, it could be the case that the US and China are making denuclearisation of North Korea an element in a deal between the two countries.


While China and the US will join force ( at certain stage carrots will also be offered to North Korea) to ensure a denuclearisation of North Korea, the US will secure its dominance in north Asia. In return China will reinforce its position in south China sea and Taiwan strait.


In addition, the deal should include the trade between the two countries. Upon President Xi Jinping’s recent trip to the US, the leaders of the two countries agreed to a 100-day plan addressing the trade imbalances. China is supposed to increase its import from the US and provide a more open environment to the US investment.    nucleartest_031317_01