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    Golden Boy in Middle Kingdom (or not)

    Myrick at Asiapundit and Hunter at East Asia Watch note that Kim Jong-Il recently made a state visit to the PRC that may have represented a CCP effort to keep his feathers smoothed over the nukes issue. Hunter says, “On Monday, the DPRK indicated an unwillingness to resume nuclear talks. Was the invitation to China an effort to persuade Kim to stick to a diplomatic path?” The article cited by Myrick indicates that that’s the most likely possibility:

    The secrecy makes it impossible to know what the exact purpose of Kim’s visit is. But a source in Beijing said Kim would spend four or five days in the country and meet with President Hu Jintao to discuss stalled six-party talks on North Korea’s nuclear program and expansion of economic cooperation between the two countries. The talks are in limbo as North Korea has said the U.S. must lift economic sanctions imposed over Pyongyang’s alleged counterfeiting activities.

    The Nikkei‘s Beijing correspondent also reports that the PRC has “evaded” giving any confirmation that Kim was visiting, with equivocations along the lines of “China and North Korea are friends that share a border”…and therefore, presumably, their heads of state sometimes wander into proximity like billiard balls…though whether Kim has wandered toward Hu this particular week is not a topic that would be appropriate to discuss just now. We’ll see what comes of it.

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