February 24, 2024

North Korea and China: Don’t bite the hand that feeds you

Pyongyang should be careful about testing Beijing's patience

Resentment of China, despite claims of a relationship as close as “lips and teeth,” has been an undercurrent in North Korean ruling circles from the earliest days of the DPRK. 

The fact that Mao’s People’s Volunteer Army had to ride to the rescue of North Korea’s founding father, Kim Il Sung, after his costly miscalculation that the United States would not intervene in Korea, was a source of deep humiliation. Dependency breeds resentment, as the United States has learned only too well in its position as senior partner in the more than six-decade-old U.S.-ROK alliance.