Generals Warn “War On the Korean Peninsula Might Break Out Anytime”
China and Russia appear to be preparing their military for war breaking out on the neighboring Korean Peninsula, according to two former military officials.
Lieutenant General Wang Hongguang, the former deputy commander of the western Nanjing Military Region, warned “the war on the Korean Peninsula might break out anytime between now and March next year”; his comments came during a conference hosted Saturday by ruling Communist Party newspaper The Global Times.
The following day, the government news outlet expanded on the retired general’s remarks with insight from Chinese military expert, commentator and author Song Zhongping, who said China would almost certainly engage U.S. forces if they posed a threat.
“China should be psychologically prepared for a potential Korean war, and the Northeast China regions should be mobilized for that,” Wang said Saturday, according to The Global Times. “Such mobilization is not to launch a war, but for defensive purposes.”
Song, himself a former member of the Chinese military’s Second Artillery Corps, which was later transformed into the Rocket Force, told The Global Times on Sunday that such “defensive purposes” would likely include contingency plans to retaliate against any breach of China’s border by U.S. forces invading North Korea.
In another interview about the possibility of war, Song said that high-tech anti-missile drills held that same day by China and Russia in Beijing were actually a joint effort by the U.S.’s two leading military competitors to defend against a potential attack order by President Donald Trump, who has tightened the screws on North Korean supreme leader Kim Jong Un since taking office .
China and Russia have joined the U.S. in condemning North Korea’s nuclear and ballistic weapons arsenal, which the country argued was necessary to defend against a U.S. attempt to overthrow Kim, but Beijing and Moscow have staunchly opposed an expansionist U.S. military in the Asia-Pacific.
“The main target of the joint drills between China and Russia is the U.S., which has both ballistic and cruise missiles that could pose a real threat to both Beijing and Moscow,” Song told the South China Morning Post.
“Both China and Russia wanted to use these joint anti-missile drills for strategic deterrence. They want to push the U.S. to withdraw its Terminal High Altitude Area Defence (THAAD) from the Korean peninsula,” he added.
The U.S’s THAAD anti-missile system became fully operational in South Korea earlier this year. The Pentagon has argued such missile defense is necessary to shield the U.S. ally from a potential missile attack by its northern rival, but China and Russia have criticized the apparatus for apparently undermining their own national security.
As Trump’s stance toward North Korea grew more militant, the U.S. leader has sent more military assets and has conducted more drills in the tense region, further infuriating China and Russia.
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