Sino-US Military Agreement Could Tip Factional Struggle

On August 15, U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff General Joe Dunford and his Chinese counterpart Fang Fenghui signed an agreement aimed at improving communications between the militaries of the U.S. and China in times of crisis.

Context: North Korea leader Kim Jong Un wants his rogue regime to be a nuclear power, and has stepped up intercontinental ballistic missile testing this year.

Why it matters:
The new Sino-US military agreement could serve several purposes:
• A more stable Sino-US relationship allows Xi Jinping to focus on internal matters.
• Deter Jiang faction military sabotage.
• Increase pressure on the North Korean leadership and the Jiang faction
before the 19th Party Congress.
• De-escalate border clashes and military tension between China and India.