China's strategy in Korean peninsula

Phead128

Junior Member
I'm writing this in response to this video by CNN:
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and this video:
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China views North Korea's independent nuclear deterrent in two major signifcant ways.

  1. Independent nuclear deterrent safeguards North Korea sovereignty from threats and and regime change by foreign nations.
    • (Benefits for China: Deployed nukes reduces probability of U.S. invasion, redirect PLA resources elsewhere, such as Taiwan or Naval buildup)
  2. Extensive penetration of Chinese espionage and cyber warfare units in North Korean nuclear infrastructure (Chinese version of Stuxnet virus) means only China has access to North Korea's nuclear materials in the event of regime collapse.
    • (Benefits for China: Under an UN mandate, China gets international support to intervene in North Korea to restore order, recover "rogue nuclear materials", and distribute humanitarian aid, before U.S. can unilaterally challenge China by exploiting NK situation)


It seems pretty clear to me that the North Korea PAL system (nuclear launch code authorization) is extensively penetrated by Chinese version of Stuxnet virus given the economic dependence and close military relationship between China and North Korea.
  • (Benefits for China: Rogue leader cannot nuke Seoul on an whim because nuclear launch codes are infiltrated by Chinese hackers, so they are defacto in control of Beijing)



In the event of rebellion, military coup, or regime instability, China can acquire an United Nations mandate to intervene to restore stability, recover "rogue nuclear weapons", distribute aid, etc...

U.S. can try to challenge China by sending in special forces to occupy nuclear sites before China can, but that would require crossing the DMZ, potentially escalation the situation into full-scale war. U.S. should trust that China can secure the nuclear sites of North Korea, and should not challenge China's attempt to restore order/peace/nuclear weapons in North Korea.

U.S. may try to exploit this situation by sending in special forces to pre-empt Chinese troops in Pyongyang capital region. However, PLA divisions can be deployed to Pyongyang capital region within two (2) years of notification of instability in North Korea, and set up a line between Nampo and Wonsan along the Taedong river (greatest extent of Tang era Protectorate General to Pacifiy the East) as a red line that US/ROK troops should not pass above the Taedong river. Also, China can send a division of troops to secure the DPRK border to deter movements of refugees, and another division towards Shiniju (opening of Tumen river) to prevent US/Japan naval blocade of the vital river opening which northeastern China depends on for access to the Sea of Japan.
 
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How would China respond if regime change came to North Korea?

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C4iSR: Joint & Common Equipment
Annual US/South Korean drills include targeting of North Korean leadership
Sebastien Falletti, Seoul- IHS Jane's Defence Weekly
08 March 2016



The United States and South Korea are staging a mock pre-emptive strike against the top North Korean leadership during the biggest war games they have ever conducted, fuelling the risk of military escalation on the Korean peninsula.


Republic of Korea Army K9 self-propelled howitzers in Paju, near the border with North Korea, on 7 March during the annual US/South Korean 'Foal Eagle' exercises. (AP/PA Images)

The joint exercises 'Foal Eagle' and 'Key Resolve', launched on 7 March, incorporate the so-called OPLAN 5015, which includes a pre-emptive strike against the North Korean nuclear arsenal and the top leadership in Pyongyang, according to sources in Seoul.

"This is a factor that increases risk of local conflict or possible skirmishes on the Yellow sea," Cheong Seong Chang, an analyst at the Sejong Institute in Seoul, toldIHS Jane's.

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(108 of 403 words)
 

AndrewS

Captain
Registered Member
Here goes:

1. China guarantees the security of North Korea

It supports the successor to Fatty Kim, or installs his brother as the new leader. That brother is currently being kept for such a contingency by China and Singapore.

In either case, the new NK leader will be beholden to China for his survival, and should be more amenable to calls for economic reform on the Chinese model and denuclearisation.


2. Allow North Korean to collapse.

The Chinese military moves into Yongbyon and other border areas to secure the nuclear materials and also create a Chinese occupied buffer zone. China might not even need a UN mandate, as it might be "invited" by whoever is left in control of NK.

Those troops serve as a stabilising force because China keeps the really anti-US North Koreans from causing further trouble, by offering the prospect of a comfortable retirement or sanctuary.

The Chinese troops stay pending the termination of the South Korean - US military alliance and the removal of all US troops from Korea. Then a neutral and reunified Korea gets on with rebuilding the desperately poor North. However this job is beyond the financial and industrial capacity of South Korea alone (see the strain of East Germany integration), but China is right next door and has good reasons to build infrastructure in North Korea, as it will connect China with the prosperous south of Korea.

Eventually we end up with a single Korea-China trade zone, and given how much trade South Korea does with China already, a reunified Korea should find China a more important trading partner than the rest of the world combined.

Note that this scenario applies generally to any NK collapse scenario, and I think is probably the best win-win scenario for everyone involved.


My view is that it could go either way, depending on the leadup of events, the eventual goals of SK/US and the negotiations on what happens to the US if Korea is reunified.
 

taxiya

Major
Registered Member
I'm writing this in response to this video by CNN:
Please, Log in or Register to view URLs content!

and this video:
Please, Log in or Register to view URLs content!


China views North Korea's independent nuclear deterrent in two major signifcant ways.

  1. Independent nuclear deterrent safeguards North Korea sovereignty from threats and and regime change by foreign nations.
    • (Benefits for China: Deployed nukes reduces probability of U.S. invasion, redirect PLA resources elsewhere, such as Taiwan or Naval buildup)
  2. Extensive penetration of Chinese espionage and cyber warfare units in North Korean nuclear infrastructure (Chinese version of Stuxnet virus) means only China has access to North Korea's nuclear materials in the event of regime collapse.
    • (Benefits for China: Under an UN mandate, China gets international support to intervene in North Korea to restore order, recover "rogue nuclear materials", and distribute humanitarian aid, before U.S. can unilaterally challenge China by exploiting NK situation)


It seems pretty clear to me that the North Korea PAL system (nuclear launch code authorization) is extensively penetrated by Chinese version of Stuxnet virus given the economic dependence and close military relationship between China and North Korea.
  • (Benefits for China: Rogue leader cannot nuke Seoul on an whim because nuclear launch codes are infiltrated by Chinese hackers, so they are defacto in control of Beijing)


In the event of rebellion, military coup, or regime instability, China can acquire an United Nations mandate to intervene to restore stability, recover "rogue nuclear weapons", distribute aid, etc...

U.S. can try to challenge China by sending in special forces to occupy nuclear sites before China can, but that would require crossing the DMZ, potentially escalation the situation into full-scale war. U.S. should trust that China can secure the nuclear sites of North Korea, and should not challenge China's attempt to restore order/peace/nuclear weapons in North Korea.

U.S. may try to exploit this situation by sending in special forces to pre-empt Chinese troops in Pyongyang capital region. However, PLA divisions can be deployed to Pyongyang capital region within two (2) years of notification of instability in North Korea, and set up a line between Nampo and Wonsan along the Taedong river (greatest extent of Tang era Protectorate General to Pacifiy the East) as a red line that US/ROK troops should not pass above the Taedong river. Also, China can send a division of troops to secure the DPRK border to deter movements of refugees, and another division towards Shiniju (opening of Tumen river) to prevent US/Japan naval blocade of the vital river opening which northeastern China depends on for access to the Sea of Japan.
My understanding is that there is no need for China to obtain an UN mandate to enter NK. Remember the Sino-NK friendship and mutual assistance treaty which stipulate that both side will provide any means to each other in case one of them is under threat of a third country or alliance. The invitation from NK is preferably from the top leader (that is Kim) but not necessarily if he is incapable (that may happen for whatever reasons). After all the treaty is between two states, not two people, and I believe finding a person or faction within NK to extend that invitation to China is easy for anybody's own sake after Kim is gone.
 

taxiya

Major
Registered Member
Here goes:

1. China guarantees the security of North Korea

It supports the successor to Fatty Kim, or installs his brother as the new leader. That brother is currently being kept for such a contingency by China and Singapore.

In either case, the new NK leader will be beholden to China for his survival, and should be more amenable to calls for economic reform on the Chinese model and denuclearisation.


2. Allow North Korean to collapse.

The Chinese military moves into Yongbyon and other border areas to secure the nuclear materials and also create a Chinese occupied buffer zone. China might not even need a UN mandate, as it might be "invited" by whoever is left in control of NK.

Those troops serve as a stabilising force because China keeps the really anti-US North Koreans from causing further trouble, by offering the prospect of a comfortable retirement or sanctuary.

The Chinese troops stay pending the termination of the South Korean - US military alliance and the removal of all US troops from Korea. Then a neutral and reunified Korea gets on with rebuilding the desperately poor North. However this job is beyond the financial and industrial capacity of South Korea alone (see the strain of East Germany integration), but China is right next door and has good reasons to build infrastructure in North Korea, as it will connect China with the prosperous south of Korea.

Eventually we end up with a single Korea-China trade zone, and given how much trade South Korea does with China already, a reunified Korea should find China a more important trading partner than the rest of the world combined.

Note that this scenario applies generally to any NK collapse scenario, and I think is probably the best win-win scenario for everyone involved.


My view is that it could go either way, depending on the leadup of events, the eventual goals of SK/US and the negotiations on what happens to the US if Korea is reunified.
Generally agreed with logics. But two comments though.

1.
China might not even need a UN mandate, as it might be "invited" by whoever is left in control of NK.
I am sure "not need" is a certain thing because the existing treaty. Whoever is left in control is one of the existing members of the current government who can only survive with China's backing, forget about surrendering to SK or U.S. They will be throw in prison the minute they handover their weapon.

2. Because the left-in-controls are from the current government who must and surely will have Chinese backing, the "regime" will not collapse. Only Kim himself and his close allies in the leadership will be gone, cleansed, purged. The institution will stay because the majority of the ruling people will stay. It would be more akin to PRC's purge of the gang of four in 1976.
 

Blackstone

Brigadier
I'm not sure what's a greater threat to the US-alliance in the Asia-Pacific, no-THAAD missile defense system in South Korea to ease regional concerns with DPRK nuclear saber rattling, or yes-THHAD system and make Beijing insure about its nuclear deterrence, leading to possible countermeasures like better ballistic missiles or even building more nuclear weapons.

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A senior U.S. diplomat said on Tuesday he hopes China will accept an offer for a technical briefing on a new missile defense system the United States wants to deploy in South Korea, a prospect Beijing sees as a threat to its national security.

U.S. Deputy Secretary of State Antony Blinken said the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) system was necessary for the United States to protect itself and regional allies from North Korean missile attacks.

"We realize China may not believe us and also proposed to go through the technology and specifications with them ... and prepared to explain to what the technology does and what it doesn't do and hopefully they will take us up on that proposal," Blinken told Washington's Brookings Institution.

Blinken spoke ahead of a visit by Chinese President Xi Jinping to Washington for a nuclear security summit that will have concerns about North Korea high on the agenda.

The United States and South Korea agreed to begin talks on possible THAAD deployment last month after North Korea tested its fourth nuclear bomb on Jan. 6 and launched a long-range rocket on Feb. 7.

China backed tough new sanctions on North Korea following the tests but has voiced opposition to THAAD as its radar has a range that would extend far beyond the Korean peninsula and into China.

Asked whether China would accept a U.S. briefing on THAAD, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Hong Lei would not directly reply, repeating China did not view the matter "as simply a technical one".

"The THAAD system exceeds the normal defensive needs of the Korean peninsula, threatens China's reasonable national security interests and damages regional strategic stability," Hong told a news briefing in Beijing on Wednesday.

South Korea's military said on Tuesday that North Korea test fired a short-range missile on its east coast in the latest of a string of launches that Pyongyang has characterized as a response to the sanctions.

U.S. President Barack Obama will meet South Korean President Park Geun-hye and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe on Thursday to discuss North Korea's nuclear program, ahead of a bilateral meeting between Obama and Xi later that day.

Blinken said THAAD deployment was a necessary step until Pyongyang's behavior changed.

"None of these steps are directed against China but we have also been very clear that as long as this persists ... we will have to take steps," he said.

Obama's deputy national security adviser, Ben Rhodes, said China had stepped up pressure on North Korea, but this had to be shown to change Pyongyang's calculus.

"We've had good support from China, but we clearly believe that there's more that will continue to have to be done, including on enforcing the sanctions we have put into place," Rhodes told reporters.
 
why the US want China to agree of deployment of new missile defense system in South Korea?
To ratchet up tensions even more by offering China a false choice then demonizing China with it and deploying THAAD to neutralize China's military capabilities and much reduce its diplomatic leverage anyways.

In proclaimed intent THAAD in South Korea is supposed to target North Korea but in practical capability THAAD in South Korea also works against China, and to a lesser extent Russia, no matter what anyone says. THAAD capabilities will not only be available to South Korea and the US, but also Japan.

China's conventional forces in NE Asia are no match for the conventional forces the US can bring to bear in the area, especially adding in at least South Korea in any scenario involving North Korea if not adding in Japan as well in any scenario. China's conventional and nuclear ballistic missiles go a long ways to counter this imbalance but THAAD neutralizes this counter.

Strategically this allows the US, Japan, and South Korea, in this order of significance, to be involved in military conflict with China anywhere including outside NE Asia, such as in any Taiwan, SCS, or even attack on China's mainland scenario, with much reduced to almost minimal threat to their own military bases and/or home territory.

China will never agree to THAAD for these practical reasons just as THAAD is a trump card for Japan, South Korea, and the US, in this order of significance for practical reasons. With the offer to talk the US can cast China as complicit (if it agrees to talk) yet unreasonable and insincere in terms of reining in North Korea, uncaring towards South Korea, and threatening towards everyone (when China maintains it is against THAAD in South Korea) despite actual Chinese vulnerability if THAAD is deployed.

This also threatens to go in the unlikely but not actually that extreme direction of both South Korea and Japan obtaining their own nuclear weapons which will significantly weaken China much more than the US, despite still weakening the US relatively.
 

Equation

Lieutenant General
To ratchet up tensions even more by offering China a false choice then demonizing China with it and deploying THAAD to neutralize China's military capabilities and much reduce its diplomatic leverage anyways.

In proclaimed intent THAAD in South Korea is supposed to target North Korea but in practical capability THAAD in South Korea also works against China, and to a lesser extent Russia, no matter what anyone says. THAAD capabilities will not only be available to South Korea and the US, but also Japan.

China's conventional forces in NE Asia are no match for the conventional forces the US can bring to bear in the area, especially adding in at least South Korea in any scenario involving North Korea if not adding in Japan as well in any scenario. China's conventional and nuclear ballistic missiles go a long ways to counter this imbalance but THAAD neutralizes this counter.

Strategically this allows the US, Japan, and South Korea, in this order of significance, to be involved in military conflict with China anywhere including outside NE Asia, such as in any Taiwan, SCS, or even attack on China's mainland scenario, with much reduced to almost minimal threat to their own military bases and/or home territory.

China will never agree to THAAD for these practical reasons just as THAAD is a trump card for Japan, South Korea, and the US, in this order of significance for practical reasons. With the offer to talk the US can cast China as complicit (if it agrees to talk) yet unreasonable and insincere in terms of reining in North Korea, uncaring towards South Korea, and threatening towards everyone (when China maintains it is against THAAD in South Korea) despite actual Chinese vulnerability if THAAD is deployed.

This also threatens to go in the unlikely but not actually that extreme direction of both South Korea and Japan obtaining their own nuclear weapons which will significantly weaken China much more than the US, despite still weakening the US relatively.
So...China could always counter that with an HQ-9 in the DPRK and so forth.
 
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