Doing Without Mr. Kim

The Chinese don’t really believe North Korea will collapse after Kim Jong Il passes from the scene:

Beijing isn’t alarmed about North Korea’s stability should Mr. Kim pass from the scene and believes Washington is overplaying the security implications, they said.

“Acting on a belief that Kim is ill and North Korea will descend into chaos invariably affects domestic outcomes in Pyongyang, and that violates China’s own principle of noninterference” in other’s internal affairs, said Zhuang Jianzhong, vice director of the Center for National Strategic Studies at Shanghai’s Jiaotong University. Based on those considerations, Beijing’s default response will be to do nothing, he said.

They’re probably right. Just as the regime in Cuba has shown no signs of falling apart now that Fidel’s on the sidelines, I suspect the Norks can figure out a succession. The Sovs and their satellites collapsed as a result of demoralization, which there’s not much sign of in the holdouts.

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