Korean War



Korea was divided in August 1945 at the 38th parallel (latitude 38° N). The Korean War began in June 1950 when North Korea launched a surprise attack on South Korea. North Korea was led by a communist leader Kim Ill-Sung. Kim Ill-Sung Wanted to unite Korea under communist rule. The war ended in July 1953 with Korea still divided.


North Korea

  • Communist
  • Allied with the Soviet Union and China
  • Wanted to end the division
  • State-owned industries and collective farms
  • Isolated
  • Communist Forces increased from 500,000 to 860,000 and more
  • Communist armored strength grew to about 520 tanks and more

South Korea

  • Democratic
  • Allied with the U.S. and helped by the U.N.
  • Has American advisers
  • Wanted to end the division
  • U.S. Forces remained at around 260,000
  • Forces from the U.N. stayed about 35,000
  • South Korean Forces grew from 280,000 to about 340,000 and more

The Spark That Started The War

On June 1949, the U.S. had with drawn their remaining forces from South Korea. Kim Ill-Sung took a trip to the capital of Russia, Moscow. There he asked for the approval to invade South Korea with their help. Joseph Stalin, leader of The Soviet Union, agreed to supply North Korea with their invasion. On June 25, 1950, North Korea launched a surprise invasion on South Korea.

Air warfare

There was a lot of air warfare going on in Korea. North Korea had MiG-15 aircraft and because of this, it let to the U.S. building the F-86 Sabre. MiG-15s stood no chance against the F-86 Sabres and it led to 800 MiGs destroyed and 58 Sabres lost during the war.
Korean war - Air action

Overview of the War

In June, after the surprise invasion by North Korea, General Douglas MacArthur recommended direct U.S. military action to stem the invasion. President Truman agreed.
In July, North Korea forces continued to press deeper into South Korea.
In September, MacArthur's Inchon Landing plan defeated North Korea's Army and put U.N. Forces on the offensive.
In October, South Korean Forces entered North Korea and kicked some major North Korean ass.
In October, U.S. Forces entered North Korea and also... kicked some major North Korean ass.
By May 1951, the war seemed to be going no where and it had settled into a costly stalemate. Both sides were ready to negotiate.
Meetings over a settlement began on July 10, 1951. Negotiations were delayed over the next 18 months as both sides were talking over things they wanted. As for the war going on, both sides limited their military actions.
In July 27, 1953, the Korean Armistice Agreement was signed. The war was over and both sides remained divided. North Korea was left isolated.


North Korea

  • Estimated Communist casualties were 2 million

South Korea

  • U.S. suffered some 140,000 casualties, including 36,516 dead
  • South Korea sustained 1,312,836 casualties, including 415,004 dead
  • U.N. Allies totaled 16,532 casualties, including 3,094 dead


The impact of the war didn't really effect the people of the U.S. but some even called it "The Forgotten War" and because of this, when soldiers return home, there wasn't a big celebration or anything big waiting for them. The soldiers did get a Korean War memorial service. Unfortunately some of the return soldiers developed Mental health issues. As for Korea, the damage of their nation was incalculable. Villages were destroyed by U.S. troops abuse of power and innocent civilians were killed.


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