In China, Criticize North Korea at Your Peril
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  • China’s relationship with NK is quite complicated. On the one hand, throwing the current leadership under the bus clearly appeals to a lot of younger people, who regard the NK leadership as just as silly and bizarre as we do, and Chinese support as a blight and a hindrance to any strategy to enhance “soft power”. (Nontrivial numbers of people in China think NK’s nukes could be a threat to China itself, as there is a fairly strong anti-Chinese faction in NK.) On the other hand, NK exists because of Chinese blood, and the Korean War, which in Chinese is called “The War to Resist America and Help Korea”, is the first war in which China did anything but unambiguously lose to non-Chinese armies for several hundred years. China takes this sort of thing very seriously.

    Also, many generals made their bones in the Korean War, and while most of them are dead, their children don’t want their reputation weakened by ending support for NK.

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