“China should no longer try to test the limits of the D.P.R.K.’s patience,” the commentary said, adding ominously, “China had better ponder over the grave consequences to be entailed by its reckless act of chopping down the pillar of the D.P.R.K.-China relations.”
The commentary was published as a rebuttal to a series of commentaries and editorials in the state-controlled Chinese news media, including The Global Times, which criticized the North’s nuclear weapons program and called for Beijing to cut off oil supplies if the North conducted another nuclear test.
The commentary accused the Chinese news media of carrying “lame excuses for the base acts of dancing to the tune of the U.S.” and “calling for slapping harsher sanctions against the D.P.R.K. in order to avert a war which would bring danger to China.”
It also argued that China should recognize North Korea’s value as a buffer against American military influence in the region.
“China should acknowledge in an honest manner that the D.P.R.K. has just contributed to protecting peace and security of China, foiling the U.S. scheme for aggression by waging a hard fight in the front line of the showdown with the U.S. for more than seven decades, and thank the D.P.R.K. for it,” it said. “Some theorists of China are spouting a load of nonsense that the D.P.R.K.’s access to nukes strains the situation in Northeast Asia and offers the U.S. an excuse for beefing up its strategic assets in the region.”
In February, KCNA carried another commentary bitterly critical of China after Beijing announced that it was suspending all coal imports from North Korea for the rest of the year. But at the time, it did not mention China by name. Last month, another KCNA commentary, again without mentioning China by name, attacked it for “dancing to the tune of the U.S.”