Many experts say that the North Korean conflict is not a conflict between Pyongyang and Washington, but a large-scale diplomatic game between China and the USA with a view of gaining control over the Korean Peninsula
Analysts from the Pentagon think that Chinese are getting ready for a military operation against Taiwan. Beijing is speedily increasing the missile potential of its armed forces and increases the army budget. The Pentagon says the main factor of this alleged operation must be "unexpectedness, cunning and shock". They also add that Chinese may use their missiles against the US base on Okinawa in case if the USA decides to help Taiwan.
The US Department of Defense thinks that making preparations for a military conflict in the Taiwan Strait, Taiwan is becoming the key driving force of military modernization of China. For the time being, China holds 450 short-range missiles, but it is expected to increase its missile potential by 75 missiles per year. At that, the Pentagon emphasizes that China has improved the operating performance and the precision of its missiles.
It is quite natural that Beijing will immediately react to this harsh statement in its address. Especially that the Chinese leadership already declared several times that it would seek peaceful settlement of the Taiwan problem. However, it is not clear why the Pentagon published the report now when US Undersecretary of State Jon Bolton is making a tour about China, South Korea and Japan. Bolton's tour is dedicated to the North Korea problem settlement. At first, the US undersecretary of state left for Beijing; as is known, China is one of the key figures in solution of the problem. Washington certainly needs China's support and assistance to be a success with solution of the problem.
It is strange that reports on the results of negotiations in Beijing just mention that North Korea, as John Bolton says, "disagrees with the US's suggestions concerning the N.Korean nuclear program." We should say here that Washington is ready to provide North Korea with economic aid and security guarantees only in case if Pyongyang gives up its nuclear program.
However that may be but to all appearances Bolton's visit to Beijing brought no results. Obviously for this very reason the US undersecretary of state said upon arrival to Seoul that Kim Jong-il was a tyrant and the life of ordinary Koreans was "a hellish nightmare". In a word, he sounded rather undiplomatic. North Koreans will certainly dislike Bolton's statements, although the man is widely known for his inclination to pronounce such words.
According to Chinese mass media, in the evening of July 30 Chairman of the People's Republic of China Hu Jintao and US President George W. Bush had a telephone conversation. In addition to common phrases on strengthening of mutual trust and progress in the cooperation, both parties also touched upon the North Korean problem. It is unlikely that details of the discussion will ever be published. The Chinese newspaper People's Daily only reported: "Both leaders exchanged their opinions about peaceful settlement of the North Korean nuclear problem through a dialogue." Nothing more was reported there on the subject.
Many experts say that the North Korean conflict is not a conflict between Pyongyang and Washington, but a large-scale diplomatic game between China and the USA with a view of gaining control over the Korean Peninsula. So, now we should focus not upon the possibility of a war with North Korea but upon the possibility of a conflict between the USA and China. If the countries fall out, it is not clear what consequences may occur.
It is not ruled out that the recent statement by the Pentagon is just an episode of this game. Is there anyone who seriously believes that China may deliver a missile attack against Okinawa? Mind that the economic relations between the two countries will be seriously damaged as a result of such an attack. Both, the USA and China will suffer if the relations are stopped. So, the game will continue further, and it may reveal lots of interesting details in the future.