Representatives of the People’s Republic of China and the Democratic People’s of Korea (DPRK) held a meeting in Pyongyang, North Korea, Jan. 26, that they described as productive. The meeting indicated growing solidarity between the two socialist countries.
Sun Weidong, Vice-Minister of Foreign Affairs, and Chinese ambassador to the DPRK Wang Yajun represented People’s China, while Foreign Minister to the DPRK Choe Son Hui and DPRK Foreign Affairs vice-minister Pak Myong Ho were present on behalf of People’s Korea.
The Korean Central News Agency reported: “During their talk, they expressed the stands of the two sides to significantly commemorate this year marking the 75th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between the DPRK and China as the ‘year of DPRK-China friendship,’ true to the noble intentions of the top leaders of the two parties and the two countries and continue to strengthen tactical cooperation and keep pace with each other to defend the common core interests.” (KCNA, Jan. 27)
The strengthened ties between China and the DPRK mark an important development, especially since the U.S. and the current regime of South Korea (ROK) are openly displaying increased hostility towards People’s Korea.
Imperialist media whip up hostility against DPRK
War provocations against the DPRK have increased tremendously since the 2022 presidential elections in South Korea. The pro-imperialist media has been running outrageous headlines in the last month designed to instill fear and anxiety regarding changes in the deteriorating relationship between socialist North Korea and capitalist South Korea. The corporate press slanders the DPRK government as “totalitarian,” while using words like “democratic” to describe ROK leaders.
Numerous U.S. news headlines have accused General Secretary of the Workers Party of Korea Kim Jong Un of “provoking a war” with the capitalist south. Additionally, they have highlighted the DPRK’s recent decision to publicly announce current changes in their approach towards “reunification.”
The Western press deliberately omits the fact that the U.S. and its client regime in South Korea are solely responsible for the war provocations on the Korean peninsula. It is also the U.S. and its puppet ROK regimes that have kept Korea divided for the last 79 years. The DPRK’s people have demanded peaceful reunification for eight decades, but the governments in Washington and Seoul have made that request impossible to achieve.
Upon assuming office in May of 2022, one of South Korean President Yoon Suk-Yeol’s first actions was to reinstate joint ballistic military exercises with the U.S. and Japan that were discontinued five years earlier.
President Yoon is among the most reactionary and chauvinistic South Korean leaders, comparable to the first U.S. hand-picked puppet, Syngman Rhee. Yoon ran for president on an anti-worker, anti-socialist and sexist, anti-woman platform. In 2023, Yoon attempted to increase the country’s maximum weekly legal working hours from 52 to 69 but was forced to withdraw his proposal after a strong mobilization from young, militant workers.
In November 2023, Yoon suspended his country’s participation in the Comprehensive Agreement Pact, which had lowered tensions between the two Koreas. The current South Korean president’s program reverses most positive steps taken by his predecessor, Moon Jae-In, who developed friendly relations with the DPRK.
U.S. and South Korean leaders have made it impossible for the DPRK to continue a détente style relationship or to reasonably expect peaceful reunification anytime soon. Kim Jong Un recently made it clear that People’s Korea “has no intention to unilaterally start a war but has no intentions to avoid one either.” (NBC News, Jan. 15, 2024)
Anti-imperialist solidarity as a strategy for survival
The Western media reacts with immediate hostility to every missile the DPRK launches as a simple test. Corporate news articles describe every detail of each missile. On the contrary, the bourgeois media is typically silent when the U.S. and South Korea conduct war exercises through the use of missile “tests” in an attempt to bully and intimidate the people of the DPRK.
The White House and President Yoon have also made it a point to work more closely with the government of Japan, a U.S. military ally and staunch opponent of DPRK. This threat to Koreans is barely mentioned in the corporate media. Japanese imperialism occupied Korea from 1910 to 1945, and the Korean people, north and south, still remember the Japanese rulers’ brutality.
Yoon is a staunch supporter of NATO and ardent proponent of the proxy war against Russia. Much like Washington, Seoul pledged to provide material and financial aid to Ukraine. Leaders of the DPRK, on the other hand, are consistent anti-imperialists who proudly oppose U.S. and NATO warmongering in the region.
Representatives of the DPRK have developed a rapport with the leaders of Russia and Belarus in the last couple of years. Russia and Belarus, along with the DPRK, are opponents of NATO. Kim Jong Un attended a summit with Russian President Vladimir Putin in September 2023. A major focus of their conversation was over military matters, including the proxy war against Russia, as well as a possible satellite program.
The capitalist South Korean regime is also pushing for major privatization on a domestic level. Socialist Korea, on the other hand, has been busy developing projects promoting solar energy and building new housing units for coal miners in the Komdok region, according to the Korean Central News Agency.
DPRK’s right to self-defense
It should be clear to anyone who opposes imperialism that the leaders of the DPRK are not trying to initiate a war. They do, however, have a right to defend themselves against the capitalist gangsters threatening them.
As U.S. war hawks fund genocide against Palestinians and throw the U.S. government budget at their proxy war in Ukraine, the global working class and oppressed peoples are collectively uniting. Such unity can be seen, for example, in the massive support for South Africa’s charges against Israel in front of the International Court of Justice at The Hague.
The DPRK has every right to defend itself against military provocations and to build alliances with other anti-imperialist forces as a strategy for self-defense and self-reliance.