NATO is now pressing Japan and South Korea to provide more military aid to Ukraine, especially ammunition. Do you think that Japan and South Korea will listen to NATO and provide Ukraine with a lot of ammunition?
Special commentator Shi Hong: At present, Japan and South Korea do not yet. The reason is simple. Russia does not have many tricks against NATO, but it still has many tricks against Japan and South Korea. For Japan, the dispute over the ownership of the South Kuril Islands, which Japan calls the “four northern islands”, is enough for Japan to have a headache. If Japan provides military aid to Ukraine, it will no longer have any hope of taking back the “four northern islands”. Furthermore, Japan is a country that is extremely short of energy, and there is still a great demand for Russian energy, especially when it comes to geostrategic issues, Japan cannot cut off its energy ties with Russia. It can be said that if Japan aids Ukraine, the loss caused by Russia’s anger is beyond Japan’s ability to bear, and NATO cannot compensate Japan for this loss.
For South Korea, as long as Russia increases its support for North Korea, or even just verbally increases its support for North Korea, it will be enough for South Korea to drink a pot. What’s more, South Korea has experienced a large trade deficit since last year, and the economic situation is very severe. Under such circumstances, South Korea took the risk of angering Russia to provide military aid to Ukraine, which would only bring huge troubles to South Korea, and the gains outweigh the losses.
In addition, NATO is now turning to Japan and South Korea for help, which makes Japan and South Korea see that NATO’s capabilities are nothing more than that, not as powerful as they thought. This makes Japan and South Korea feel that military aid to Ukraine is extremely risky.