“The editorial in the military-focused Global Times tabloid, owned and operated by the Communist Party’s People’s Daily newspaper, said that North Korea’s nuclear activities must not jeopardize northeastern China, and that if the North impacts China with its illicit nuclear tests through either ‘nuclear leakage or pollution’, then China will respond with force… ‘China has a bottom line that it will protect at all costs, that is, the security and stability of northeast China… If the bottom line is touched, China will employ all means available including the military means to strike back. By that time, it is not an issue of discussion whether China acquiesces in the US’ blows, but the Chinese People’s Liberation Army (PLA) will launch attacks to DPRK nuclear facilities on its own’.”
The above is taken from the ZeroHedge article “China threatens to bomb North Korea’s nuclear facilities if it crosses Beijing’s bottom line” appearing today (*).
Although we are told that the CPC’s Global Times article was subsequently taken down, that may simply have been to give the impression that the CPC “accidentally” revealed its plans.
In any event, it provides China with a credible reason to take action against North Korea without appearing to be bending to U.S. pressure. Kim Jong-un should definitely get the message, camouflaged by concern about “nuclear leakage”, that he will not be allowed to put China in jeopardy of a U.S. strike right on its borders.
China may well wish to challenge America militarily at some point, but that time is not now.
Then again, that may not be the case at all, as we are also told that “…what may be the most notable part of the oped is the mention in the Global Times editorial that North Korea will not be (sic) ‘not allowed to have a government that is hostile against China on the other side of the Yalu River’…
“This implies that if and when the US initiate strikes on NK, the Chinese PLA will likely send out troops ‘to lay the foundation’ for a favorable post-war situation… In other words, China may be just waiting for Trump to ‘decapitate’ the North Korean regime, to pounce and immediately fill the power vacuum.”
President Trump’s prompt military response to Syria’s chemical weapons usage was risky, but necessitated by eight years of President Obama’s destruction of America’s military and political credibility.
China has taken note, and is either trying to get Kim to stand down, or perhaps hoping to reap the harvest if that fails.
(*) – See “China threatens to bomb North Korea’s nuclear facilities if it crosses Beijing’s bottom line” here.