The recent trip to North Korea by Defense Minister Shoigu of the Russian Federation can be regarded as very eye-opening. On many occasions, Shoigu was full of praise for North Korea’s armaments.

It is almost obvious that next, the two countries will most likely carry out “military cooperation” in some fields.

Simply put, Russia may import North Korean armaments.

Then, many people feel very puzzled. North Korea, a country that has not yet achieved full food for all, is only about 1/139 of Russia in terms of territory. How can it “aid” Russia??

Of course, looking at the GDP figures, North Korea is considered a relatively backward country in terms of total volume and per capita. All priority is given to the military.

For many years, North Korea has always been the country with the highest proportion of military expenditure in the world; the ratio of population to army has also ranked No.1 in the world for a long time (22:1).

Looking at it this way, the life of North Koreans is generally difficult, and there is not always enough food. In addition to the isolation and continuous natural disasters in the international community, it may also have a lot to do with the influence of “military politics”-money is used to prioritize military development. Everyone is going to join the army.

North Korea's Artillery
Pyongyang Subway – Even in this capital, where North Korea’s best resources are concentrated, it is rare to see a fat man on the street.

However, although North Korea has spent 12 percent of its strength in military affairs, compared with China, due to its limited strength, it is still unable to develop all-round development of sea, land, air and space networks like ours.

Therefore, we can see that most of the most powerful things in North Korea are concentrated in the army. The North Korean Army is best at its artillery power. In terms of scale, it can even rank among the top three in the world.

In addition to the intercontinental ballistic missiles designed to scare the United States, this artillery force is mainly conventional artillery that wins by quantity, especially long-range rocket launchers.

According to the recent US media rankings of rockets from various countries, North Korea occupies two of the top five. This also shows the extraordinary strength of North Korea’s artillery.

For example, it is reported on the Internet that the KN25 missile North Korea wants to export to Russia is not a missile but a large long-range rocket launcher with a caliber of 600mm and a range of 400 kilometers.

Is North Korea's Artillery a Game-Changer for Russia?

As long as it is used properly, it is as powerful as a missile, but its launch cost is roughly only about 1/10 of a missile’s.

To talk about the power of this KN-25 super-large-caliber rocket launcher, the American “Military Watch” website once ranked it as the second highest in the world, second only to the PHL-16 long-range rocket launcher of a certain eastern power.

The “experts” in the United States concluded after speculation that the KN25 blurred the concepts of long-range rocket launchers and ballistic missiles; In the copy guide mode, the strike accuracy is comparable to that of tactical missiles, which can be used for surface-killing or point killing.

Is North Korea's Artillery a Game-Changer for Russia?

What’s even rare is that it is powerful and very cheap as a high-volume rocket launcher. The Russian side should also like this.

The Russian artillery system is inherited from the Soviet Union’s artillery doctrine and has always advocated saturation strikes.

On the front line of the Russo-Ukrainian war, according to foreign media speculation, the total consumption of Russian artillery ammunition is at least 4-5 times that of the Ukrainian army.

Behind the Ukrainian army, there is the entire NATO for continuous blood transfusion. But over time, many European countries that have already fought have exhausted their ammunition stocks and even reached the point where they cannot maintain their own minimum defense needs. The United States has ushered in the year with the highest production capacity of artillery shells since the Korean War-American arms dealers even directly contracted some railway factories, transformed them into military factories, and worked overtime to produce ammunition.

President Biden also visited the arsenal to “cheer and encourage” the workers’ efforts to “defend democracy.”

Looking at it this way, Russia has survived for over a year by gritting its teeth, which is not easy. After all, Russia today is no better than the former Soviet Union, and its artillery industry can no longer support the continuous saturation consumption of the Soviet army.

As a result, Russia turned its eyes to the east wittily—North Korea, a country that has been inheriting the Soviet Union’s artillery doctrine combat concept very seriously.

North Korea has always attached great importance to artillery power. On the one hand, it has something to do with its learning from the Soviet Union, but more, it may be that North Korea’s special geographical environment is indeed very suitable for the development of artillery power.

It can be measured from the map that the distance from Panmunjom to the suburbs of Seoul is about 41 kilometers, and the straight-line distance to the center of Seoul is about 61 kilometers. The average distance from downtown Seoul to the 38th Parallel is no more than 50 kilometers.

So, don’t ask North Korea whether it can fight correctly; South Korea is right at the door, and it doesn’t matter too much if it is not right. As long as the fire is strong enough and the saturation bombing is strong, no one can escape.

For example, the Gushan Cannon (pictured below), with a diameter of 170 mm and a range of 50 kilometers that came out in the late Cold War, was specially built by North Korea for Seoul/Seoul.

North Korea's Artillery

Moreover, after careful research, North Korea has tinkered with a large-caliber rocket launcher with a range of hundreds of kilometers. It can cover almost all major cities in South Korea.

In addition, North Korea has a mountainous terrain (during the Korean War, the US military commander once described that if the mountain folds here were smoothed out, it could cover the entire earth), and the cannons were usually hidden in the caves and pulled out during wars; Using a variety of ranges and heavy artillery groups of various calibers to carry out comprehensive firepower strikes on the frontline and deep targets.

After the fight, the vehicle is maneuverable, can be quickly deployed and withdrawn, and there is no need to pre-position. Survivability and flexibility are not mentioned.

North Korea's ArtilleryNorth Korean artillery in training

In addition, North Korean artillery is almost of the same origin as Russia in terms of technology and tactics. They all pursue powerful, long-range, and saturated strikes, but they don’t pay much attention to accuracy.

Therefore, Russia uses a train to pull it from the Far East, and it can be used with a little training, and it is also very suitable for the army’s attrition war mode on the Russian-Ukrainian battlefield today.

Of course, Russia did not come empty-handed. Its surplus energy, food and fertilizers are exactly what North Korea urgently needs.

Therefore, it now appears that in view of such a high degree of complementarity, the means of trade between Russia and the DPRK is likely to be in the form of barter to avoid dollar transactions as much as possible.