China sending Special Envoy to North Korea… but still no meeting between Kim and Xi

Beijing announced it will send Song Tao, a special envoy of China’s President Xi Jinping, to North Korea on November 17. A Chinese spokesperson Geng Shuang said that Song’s is travelling to North Korea to give a briefing on the 19th National Congress of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP).

Song Tao, a special envoy of China's President Xi Jinping to visit North Korea Source: Yonhap News

Continue reading “China sending Special Envoy to North Korea… but still no meeting between Kim and Xi”

Russia’s alternative vision for Asia: accommodating a nuclear North Korea?

Russia and North Korea share a short border but a long history.

Source: http://www.csmonitor.com

When the United States and the Soviet Union drew the seemingly innocuous line dividing the Korean peninsula in 1953, it was regarded as a temporary administrative division for processing Japanese forces after World War II.

However, since then, Russia (and its Soviet Union predecessor) have been ensnared in the fate of the hermit Communist state.

Continue reading “Russia’s alternative vision for Asia: accommodating a nuclear North Korea?”

Seoul-Beijing detente on THAAD is win-win for China [LINK]

 and , writing in their 7th November piece for 38north.org, discussed some potential corollaries of the the recent de-escalation between China and South Korea over the contentious THAAD issue.

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Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD), US anti-ballistic missile defense system for shooting down ballistic missiles in their terminal phase. Source: http://www.defensenews.com/

Continue reading “Seoul-Beijing detente on THAAD is win-win for China [LINK]”

China’s “Silk Road” initiative – an excuse to impose China’s soft power across the globe or an attempt to placate discerning domestic audiences? [VIDEO]

When media around the world mention China’s new “Silk Road” initiative, it is often portrayed as a sinister strategy by the Chinese to pull various countries in Asia, Africa and Europe out of the West’s sphere of influence and under the patronage of China. Through extensive infrastructure projects and generous loans, many fear that  China is aspiring to create a proxy Empire that can rival the global hegemony of the US-led Western world order.

Continue reading “China’s “Silk Road” initiative – an excuse to impose China’s soft power across the globe or an attempt to placate discerning domestic audiences? [VIDEO]”

China’s Ruling on the Legislative Council in Hong Kong: Implications for Hong Kong’s democracy

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Hong Kong protesters demonstrating against Chinese intervention Photo Credit http://www.rfa.org

The political fallout from the raucous oath-taking ceremony at the Hong Kong Legislative Council last October 12 is causing concern among pro-democracy advocates in Hong Kong. For many, Beijing’s reaction to the event have set a worrisome precedent. Continue reading “China’s Ruling on the Legislative Council in Hong Kong: Implications for Hong Kong’s democracy”

Is North Korea the main benefactor of South Korea’s current political scandal?

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Widespread public backlash has been surging throughout South Korea since it was uncovered that Park Geun-hye, President of South Korea, had been seeking the advice of a woman named Choi Soon-sil, the daughter of an alleged shamanistic cult leader (!) Continue reading “Is North Korea the main benefactor of South Korea’s current political scandal?”