“The Chinese have been so annoyed by North Korea and by Kim Jong Il personally … China wants reform and opening. It has expectations for Kim Jong Un. But it’s going to be more pragmatic in its approach in how to deal with Pyongyang. Because to the Chinese, it’s, ‘we don’t want to go through what happened with Kim Jong Il, he was a pain.’ As for the North Korean leadership, it despises China. They believe, ‘The Chinese think they’re so great. They think they can determine Korea’s fate. We are not Chinese. We are Korean.’ So these guys don’t want to be holding hands with Beijing. They are more interested in developing their nuclear weapons to keep their status quo going. The last thing they would want is Chinese-style reform.”
–Jang Jin-sung, a North Korean author and former member of Kim Jong-il’s inner circle who defected to South Korea, discusses China’s relationship with the Hermit Kingdom in an interview with NBC News’ Adrienne Mong.
Jang claims to have been one of Kim Jong-il’s favorite propaganda poets, and his upcoming book Dear Leader: Poet, Spy, Escapee — A Look Inside North Korea is due out this month.
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