Russia Vs America: America, the world’s superpower, has started getting apprehensive about Russia. He does not like to increase Russia’s closeness with the autocratic countries of the world. Western countries are taking Russia’s proximity as a warning. A recent US intelligence report has revealed that Russia is planning to buy “millions” of Soviet-era weapons from North Korea. Britain’s defense intelligence has also confirmed that Russia is already using Iranian-made drones in Ukraine.
Why does America object to Russia’s journey?
Last month, on August 15, on the occasion of the celebration of North Korea’s Liberation Day, talks were held between Russian President Vladimir Putin and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un. The diplomatic outcome of this came in the form of Russia’s plan to buy “millions” of Soviet-era weapons from North Korea. During this, both these leaders agreed on new strategic and strategic cooperation. Along with this, emphasis was also given on increasing friendship between the two countries. Just a few days ago, Putin met Chinese President Xi Jinping and Iranian President Ibrahim Raisi.
Russia promised to send an important business delegation to Iran. He also promised to make every effort to make Iran a full-time member of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO). This political and security alliance includes Russia, China, Uzbekistan and Pakistan. Significantly, since the invasion of Ukraine, Russia has become isolated from the West. Since then, its emphasis has been on increasing its cooperation with the autocratic countries of the world, especially North Korea and Iran. China can also join this alliance. The western countries are scared of this. They feel that this alliance will emerge as a real threat to Western countries in the coming years.
Pyongyang is closer than the time of the Cold War
Moscow has had close diplomatic relations with Pyongyang during the Cold War. The Soviet Union has been one of North Korea’s most important economic partners. This relationship changed dramatically in 1991, when the Soviet Union disintegrated. Russia ceased to be a communist country and focused on building positive relations with Western democracies. He gave preference to economic relations rather than ideological relations. As a result, the closeness with America and South Korea started increasing. Because of this, its relations with Pyongyang deteriorated and North Korea focused on building closer ties with China.
North Korea’s isolation
When Putin came to power in 2000, efforts were made to restart Russia’s diplomatic ties with North Korea. Kim Jong-un’s father Kim Jong-il also went to Russia on some occasions. However, the relationship soured due to Russia’s deeply pragmatic approach to foreign policy. The Kremlin continued to condemn Pyongyang’s nuclear program in order to maintain friendly relations with the West. Now Russia has also been isolated after Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. In such a situation, Russia, which is economically and politically isolated, has now got an opportunity to improve relations between the two countries.
North Korea’s closeness to China
After the dissolution of the Soviet Union, North Korea has become largely dependent on Beijing for trade and energy. But even this relationship is not free from political tensions. China’s main objective in the Korean Peninsula is to save the autocratic government of North Korea from falling and prevent reunification with South Korea. This will not be acceptable to China because it fears that the unification of the Korean countries will increase US involvement in the region. This is the reason in the relationship between China and North Korea that compels Kim Jong Un to increase his proximity to Moscow. North Korea can get energy at cheaper rates by keeping close ties with Russia. Therefore, it can increase its technical, scientific and commercial cooperation with Russia.
Russia’s inclination is positive
Some, such as Lancaster University lecturer in international politics Barbara Yoxon, say Russia’s leaning toward North Korea is a positive sign. He claimed that Russia’s request for weapons meant military and economic sanctions were working against the Kremlin. Unable to buy weapons from other countries, Putin is turning to North Korea and Iran, whose weapons are considered unreliable. It is true that the close ties between the world’s most dangerous autocratic countries are a dire warning to the Westerner. Russia’s interests in North Korea and Iran may be selfish, but it also indicates that Moscow is not concerned about maintaining diplomatic relations with the West. It can position the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) as a rival to NATO (North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO).