By: Cam and Eli
Causes of the War
Post world war two Korea was separated into two countries. The north was controlled by the Soviets who set up a communist government, and the south was controlled by America who set up a democratic government. When it time for reunification the north wanted to take the whole Korean peninsula and make it communist. They invaded the south by crossing the 38th parallel. This act of aggression sparked U.N. support backed by the U.S. The U.S. wanted to contain the communists to north of the 38th parallel, and the North wanted to spread communism with the backing of the Soviets and China.
The Effect of the War
The North and South remain separated with acts of aggression by the North. The U.S. fought their first war without an absolute victory. This was hard for the American people and soldiers to understand. It also set the stage for U.N. involvement as a police force for the world and defined their role for the upcoming decades. Many American citizens didn't know what was going on overseas therefore the war wasn't as celebrated as world war two. The veterans felt unappreciated.
The Human Toll
The U.S had around 37,000 troops killed, and around 100,000 wounded. South Korea lost 140,000 soldiers, and 990,000 civilians. North Korea lost 250,000 to 350,000. The exact numbers are not known. They also lost 1,550,000 civilians.
Battle of Inchon
This was an amphibious invasion planned by General Douglas MacArthur. It was designed to relieve pressure on the Pusan perimeter by opening a new front behind the communists, and catch them by surprise. The invasion began on the 15th of September, 1950 and ended on the 19th. The operation involved 75,000 troops and 261 naval vessels. It was code named Operation Chromite. The U.S. suffered 1033 casualties with only 222 killed. The North Koreans lost 1,350 soldiers.
General Douglas MacArthur
General MacArthur led us to victory in the Pacific theater of world war two and wanted to do the same in Korea. He took over as Commander and Chief of the UN forces in Korea. He committed U.S. forces to Korea while the U.N. was being forced to fall back to the Pusan Perimeter. He devised the plan for the Inchon invasion which was a big success. MacArthur could not deal with the idea of containment and wanted to be unleashed to fight the communists on his own terms. He wanted to use Atom bombs as a means to fight back the Chinese. Due to these extreme views and ideas, President Truman fired him to avoid straining relations with our European allies. He was replaced by General Ridgeway.