I don’t believe the US and China will go to war. Why?
Despite all our huffing and puffing, China and the US have what I believe is a mutually beneficial relationship. We want to buy, they want to sell. We want to outsource, they want jobs. Normally this is a bad thing for us.
Enter North Korea. After today’s shelling I wondered if this was going to end in the second Korean war. Here’s what I decided.
China isn’t going to bite the hand that feeds her. This is especially true when you consider they’d be doing it for country that is as poor as North Korea. Historically, the Chinese are very practical. It’s impractical to fight on behalf of a barren country to keep it Communist at the expense of over 300 million paying customers.
Beyond that, China likes land. As we’ve seen with Tibet and other similar areas China would like more… well… China. Assisting North Korea gains China nothing. That is impractical. They spend resources, they gain negative resources. Assisting the South Korea could gain China both more respect from world leaders and additional land or influence in North Korea.
It’s also of no benefit to China to assist a lunatic who shows the worst parts of Communism. North Koreans are starving under the Stalinist brand of Communism. The Chinese, Cuba and other places fighting to keep Communism as a viable form of government after the fall of the USSR have no particular interest in highlighting that to the world, the same way we don’t talk about the worst Democracies.
So before we start theorizing that this is the beginning of World War Three, take a deep breath, look around your house and see how much of your stuff is made in China, and remember:
China has too much to gain and it’s best customer to lose by getting involved on the side of North Korea.