North Korean leader Kim Jong-un waves to the people during a parade to commemorate the 60th anniversary of the signing of a truce in the 1950-1953 Korean War, at Kim Il-sung Square in Pyongyang July 27, 2013.
Jason Lee / Courtesy Reuters

If the rumors are true, North Korean leader Kim Jong Un will visit Russia in May during a commemoration of World War II in Moscow. Russian Ambassador to North Korea Alexander Matsegora also recently confirmed that “Kim Jong Un and Vladimir Putin exchange messages on a regular basis.” On the surface it seems that a revitalized Russian–North Korean alliance could be in the offing. Observing this trend, many strategists have argued that Russia’s interests in North Korea are overwhelmingly economic, including a transcontinental railroad and gas pipeline that would run through the nation. But Russia’s dalliance with

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