Kim Jung Un’s visit to Russia and meeting with Vladimir Putin has caused consternation in the West. Most commentators are assuming that Russia is running out of munitions for its Armed Forces fighting in Ukraine and therefore is looking for alternative sources to replenish its diminishing stocks.
While it is true, that North Korean stockpiles account for several millions of artillery shells and other munitions compatible with Russian weaponry, the assumption that Russia is running out of munitions or that North Korea can offer some technology that Russia lacks is patently wrong and is typical of a western media that is totally out of its depth at analyzing all matters concerning Russia.
This is after all the same media that since February 2023 has been assuring us that Russia would soon run out of missiles and that it was cannibalising washing machines for microchips. This is a media that has been assuring us that Vladimir Putin was soon to succumb to one of his many terrible illnesses and that the Russian economy was on its last feet.
This is a media full of amateurs parroting each other’s contrived infantile myths.
The truth is that far from running out of material, Russia has been ramping production by orders of magnitude. As far as munitions (missile and artillery) are concerned, even by certain Western estimates, Russia is producing seven times the amount of the entire combined West.
From other open sources, we learn that Russia prior to the war was producing up to 1000 new tanks a year and is now producing a mind-boggling 5 new main battle tanks and upgrading a further 5 per day (for a total of 3500 per year). Uralvagonzavod alone is by far the largest tank producer in the world with more output than all the world’s other tank factories combined excluding those in China and North Korea. Recently Rostec, the company that oversees the vast Russian military-industrial complex has announced in June 2024 that it had already produced double the number of Infantry fighting vehicles, helicopters and combat aircraft as it did in the entirety of 2023.
The production of missiles, drones and loitering munitions has been increased by even greater orders of magnitude with the production of just to mention the lethal lancet kamikaze drone increased by at least 50 times.
As I have stated before this focus on production is not solely due to the military operation in Ukraine, but is intended to ensure that if push had to come to shove, and NATO enters into direct confrontation, Russia has the means to attrit the entirety of NATO and its allies. Recently, Russia increased the headcount of its armed forces to 1.5 million people. It has formed two new military districts (Moscow and Leningrad) and announced the creation of a further two combined arms armies as a response to Finland’s and Sweden’s entry into NATO. These armies need to be armed and supplied accordingly. And they will be.
So no, Russia doesn’t actually need anything from North Korea – either in terms of technology or in the supply of munitions. But it is rather the other way around.
Russian analysts are all of the same mind. Putin’s meeting with Kim Jung Un shouldn’t be understood in terms of what North Korea can do for Russia but what Russia can do for North Korea.
This is a direct message to the United States. As State Duma deputy Lieutenant General (retired) Andrei Gurulev, stated (machine translation):
“All the time since the beginning of the acute phase of confrontation with the United States and its satellites, we have been following the enemy’s scenario. They increased the supply of weapons, dictated conditions, it all started with helmets and body armor, and ended with Storm Shadow. The possibility of supplying ATACMS missiles is being considered. And today we made not check, but checkmate. Today Russia dictates the terms for the further continuation of this whole story,”
“It’s very clear why there is such panic in the West. They didn’t expect it, and if they did, it was not in this format, certainly not at the cosmodrome, where the advanced rocket technologies of the Russian Federation are located. The point is not about the nuclear submarines that Russia will help North Korea build, the point is that multifaceted cooperation is much broader and more important. Interests in Southeast Asia are clearly stated. It is clear that US hegemony is under threat. It’s very clear that it’s not us who need to answer, but the Americans, they need to think about what to do next, how to supply weapons to Ukraine,”
“The visit of the North Korean leader is directly related to Ukraine. This moment is key. Guys, do you want to install ATACMS? Then you will receive a nuclear threat across the United States. This is something we talked about a long time ago. With a direct threat to US territory, its leadership (not the senile self-propelled grandfather, but behind the scenes) will think that it’s time to do something further. America really recognizes that the unipolar world is over, they have to think,”
Besides providing North Korea with food, and agricultural equipment – indeed anything of civil use including commercial airliners – Russia can supply North Korea with anything from satellites and nuclear submarines to advanced combat jets, unrivalled air-defence systems and hypersonic weapons.
This is to reiterate, a direct threat to the United States and its vassals – that anything it can provide to Ukraine, Russia can do better if and when it wants to – and thereby the US especially needs to think extremely carefully about its next steps in its confrontation with Russia.
This much should be obvious when one studies the itinerary of Kim Jung Un’s visit – it was surely not a coincidence that Putin met him at the Vostochny Cosmodrome – and that then Kim proceeded to visit the Komsomolsk-on-Amur industrial plant that produces Russia’s most powerful fighter jets or visiting Vladivostock – the seat of the Russian Pacific fleet.
One needs to remember, that whatever one thinks of Kim Jung Un – the guy unlike most Western politicians has an engineering background – and understands full well what Russia can offer him in his country’s struggle with the United States.
Hopefully, there are some people in the Pentagon who understand the implications too.
At least it did not take long for the Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida to understand the implications. After years of threatening North Korea with repercussions – he suddenly stated that:
He is willing to meet North Korea’s Kim Jong Un “without preconditions”, a top government official said Friday. The prime minister has previously said he was ready to hold talks with Kim, but the reiterated invitation comes after the North Korean leader travelled to Russia to met President Vladimir Putin this week.
It is stated that Al Capone once said that: “that one can get much further with a kind word and a gun, than just with the kind word alone”
Sadly this is the only method of communication the combined West understands. Let’s hope, for our sake that we get it.
This is the real significance of the visit and not silly notions that Russia needs North Korea’s help!