As the Obama administration works to bring Japan and South Korea into better relations, China casts a large shadow over the efforts.
The administration points to North Korea as the ostensive impetus for these efforts, but fear of China’s growing influence “over the Korean peninsula” is reportedly the motivator behind the scenes.
According to the Nikkei Asian Review, “a former U.S. official close to the Obama administration said the Chinese regime under President Xi Jinping is ‘trying to draw South Korea to its side at an alarming rate.'” He also said that China is using “disputes” with Japan to do it, adding, “If we do nothing, South Korea will be ripped away (from the U.S. and Japan) and placed in China’s sphere of influence.”
Furthermore, the official described this as a “development that worries the Obama administration.”
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