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Korean War

Essay by review  •  February 16, 2011  •  Essay  •  301 Words (2 Pages)  •  769 Views

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The Korean War has often been referred to as the "forgotten war" because it came on the heels of World War II and was overshadowed by the Vietnam War. Korea like Vietnam, was part of the Cold War to stop the advancement of Communism in Southeast Asia. When the Communist troops of North Korea invaded the democratic Republic of South Korea, the United States became involved through a promise of support given to the president of South Korea. It was feared that this tiny peninsula would be the setting for the eruption of World War Three. When the United Nations joined forces with the United States and the Republic of South Korea to stop the invasion, this fear was justified. North Korea not only had the support of the Soviet Union government, but also the military support of China. The stage was set for a bloody three years.

In 1945 the United Nations established the 38th parallel as the boundary dividing North and South Korea. It was the 38th that the North Koreans crossed to invade and unite South Korea under a Communist government. The United States entered the conflict under an assumption that this would be like a police action to drive the North Koreans back across the 38th. The two armies criss-crossed the dividing line several times. When the Chinese feared that their own borders were threatened, they became involved on the side of the North Koreans. The conflict then escalated further into war.

Because the Korean War only lasted three years (1950 - 1953) it is not thought of as significant, and often not even mentioned. However, if one compares the statistics of the Korean War (54,246) to those of Vietnam (58,226) which lasted over sixteen years, by ratio the Korean War was far bloodier than Vietnam.

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