North Korea Reportedly Sending Shipments Of 5 Million Artillery Shells To Russia

North Korea Reportedly Sending Shipments Of 5 Million Artillery Shells To Russia

North Korea has recently sent containers to Russia that could hold as many as 4.8 million artillery shells, South Korean Defense Minister Shin Won-sik said in an interview with Bloomberg published on June 14th.  Seoul spotted at least 10,000 containers being shipped from North Korea to Russia, according to Won-sik. Pyongyang has also sent dozens of ballistic missiles that Moscow troops have launched against Ukraine.

To put this in perspective, the US has sent only 300,000 artillery shells to Ukraine (most of them maintained since the 1980s in a reserve stockpile meant for Israel) and is straining to meet a manufacturing quota of 100,000 shells per month by 2025.  The disparity between the production of armaments between NATO and Russia (and its allies) has proven to be immense.  From artillery to armor to ammunition, NATO simply cannot keep up.

In exchange for the ordnance Russia is allegedly giving North Korea oil, satellite technology as well as tech to improve their tanks and aircraft.  North Korea’s cheap labor, while ethically abhorrent in nature, is proving useful in the fast manufacture of weapons.

Critics argue that artillery coming from North Korea is “substandard” and far less advanced than western produced artillery, leading to a decrease in effect on target.  However, 5 million rounds is an incredible arsenal regardless of technology – That’s more than enough boom to support a large scale offensive. 

Beyond the typical and completely unsupported claims by Ukrainian officials that Russia plans to invade Europe should Ukraine fall, they have been surprisingly honest about the dire situation they face.  Ukrainian ordnance is running out fast while Russia’s production increases exponentially.  It’s a recipe for defeat, but Ukraine seems to be under the impression that this weaponry is simply waiting to be shipped from the US or EU – It’s not.  Supplies are slim and manufacturing is slow.

The new information comes nine months after Kim Jong Un reportedly traveled to Russia to meet with Vladimir Putin, and Putin is expected to travel to Pyongyang in the next few days.  Agreements with North Korea for armaments are in violation of UN sanctions, though it’s easy to understand why Putin would care little about the UN’s position.

It’s not clear if South Korea believes all the artillery has already arrived in Russia, but the timing of the report coincides with rumors that Russia is preparing for a major offensive action sometime this summer.  Russia has been engaging in an “attrition warfare” strategy in Ukraine, something which the US and Europe have not dealt with since the Vietnam War over 60 years ago.  It’s a method that most NATO military experts, accustomed to maneuver warfare against low-tech insurgent targets, have never encountered outside of a classroom.

A key element of Russia’s strategy involves the use of artillery as a shield to protect offensive units as they advance against Ukrainian bunkers and trenches.  With Russia already breaking through Ukraine’s defenses in several regions there may be a major push in the next two months designed to exploit their artillery advantage.       

Tyler Durden
Sun, 06/16/2024 – 11:05