North Korea’s successful detonation of a hydrogen bomb may have just lit the fuse for the next world war.
If you recall, World War I was sparked by the assignation of Archduke Franz Ferdinand in Sarajevo by a Serbian terrorist outfit called The Black Hand. The single death triggered a chain of events that drew dominate military forces from around the world and tallied 18 million deaths and 23 million wounded. World War II grew out of the Nazi political takeover of Germany and sanctions imposed by the allies from WWI.
In Asia, oil sanctions imposed by the U.S. over the Japanese invasion of China expanded the aggression to a global scale. It’s impossible to not hear history’s echoes as North Korean dictator Kim Jong-Um rattles his nuclear saber.
Asia Is One Big Powder Keg
Many of the same players in previous worldwide conflicts appear to be involved in the recent escalation of tensions in Asia. North Korea has fired missiles at and over Japan in an effort to draw the U.S. into a fight. South Korea has issued edicts that it may become the next nuclear-armed nation to create a stalemate with its northern neighbor and long-standing fears of a Chinese invasion.
Chinese aggression already seized control of Tibet and bullies Taiwan into submission. China claims to stand against North Korea’s “Crazy Fat Kid,” as Sen. John McCain calls him, having the bomb. But in a hot war, it’s unlikely they would stand idly by as South Korea, Japan and the United States swept through the peninsula.
Remember, it was China that launched massive counterattacks against American and South Korean forces during the Korean Conflict. All told, the Chinese People’s Liberation Army deployed more than 300,000 soldiers in that war. The Russians, who also share a border with North Korea, played a more covert role. The then-Soviet air force deployed MiG-15 fighters for air support against U.S. and South Korean forces. One spark, and six countries could be embroiled in a ferocious Asian struggle overnight.
The Russia Problem
Moscow has worked against American interests in just about every modern era war. Even becoming “allies” in WWII led to the construction of the Berlin Wall and a Cold War that nearly brought both nations to economic ruin and nuclear Armageddon.
Under President Vladimir Putin, Russia meddles in political affairs around the world and has its hands in every military cookie jar. The latest round of sanctions and diplomatic expulsions have the pair of superpowers in the most hostile state in decades.
From the Middle East to Cuba, Russia and the United States are a simmering pot that could boil over if the fire is lit. If this comes to blows, Moscow may even end up support North Korea unless its relationship with Washington drastically changes.
Is It Just Business for China?
North Korea imports approximately $3.5 billion in goods and services each year. China sells the rogue nation 85 percent of that number. In return, China is the primary recipient of its $2.8 billion annual exports that were predominately coal and crude oil. Despite the recently proposed sanctions by U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley and China claiming economic pressures are being brought to bear on the rogue nation, China has not fully opted out of the coal or oil trade.
As North Korea’s main trading partner and one of the few nations able to maintain reasonable communication, the relationship provides China with a strategic advantage. The world’s most populated nation doesn’t have to rely on international peers for its massive fossil fuel operations. President Trump’s threats to sanction any and all countries that do business with North Korea have upped the ante on this high stakes H-Bomb game of chicken.
On the surface, the numbers seem to point to China’s backing of North Korea as bad for business. The U.S. remains China’s largest trading partner at $521 billion. China-Japan trade tops $300 billion and South Korea accounts for another $275 billion. The business issue isn’t the numbers, it’s China’s ability to maintain the economic high ground that North Korea helps provide.
Reliance on crude and coal from America would significantly reduce China’s economic negotiating power. If the business relationship ends up on equal footing, Beijing will find itself in a position of weakness. The question the international community needs to be asking is: Will Chinese troops and firepower support the rogue nation if the Crazy Fat Kid blows up a Japanese city with one of his misguided missiles? You betcha.
The world has stood by and watched North Korea go all-in to develop nuclear capabilities and fashion them to ICBM missiles with the intent of hitting an American target. To say the technology has been make-shift and shoddy would be an understatement. An errant missile or some North Korean soldier shooting an American is all it would take have multiple Asian nations at each other’s throats and Americans and Russians slaughtering each other in the Middle East. The world has a crazy fat kid with a match, a fuse and an H-Bomb.
~ Liberty Planet