The Korean War Essay

The Korean War Essay

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The Korean War


The Korean War is often referred to as the forgotten war. There exist no monuments in Washington D.C. to acknowledge the thousands of American soldiers who fought valiantly and died for their country's political interests. There are no annual parades, and little information in text books to shed light on the war. Korea was a bloody war. The United States sustained over 140,000 casualties with 33,000 killed in action, yet the U.S. never formally honored its fallen soldiers.1 The war was another chance to indirectly overpower communism in the beginning of the Cold War. Interestingly it was fought on Asian soil through Asian politics. The lack of interest by the American public following the war reflected a national desire to forget the events of the war as quickly as possible. However, the Korean War must be remembered in order honor those whose who died for their country's political convictions.
For hundreds of years Korea was dominated by the Chinese empire. During World War II, Japan seized Korea from the Chinese and used its natural resources to fuel its war effort. After Japan was defeated by the allies, Korea became occupied by the Russians in the North and the Americans in the South. Both the U.S. and the Soviets realized Korea was a strategic country; it was important to occupy because it lay in-between China, Japan, and the Soviet Union. North and South Korea was divided by the 38th parallel, it evenly split the country into two regions. Both Russia and America became politically involved in Korea, therefore, each set up strong military and governmental ties.2 The United States wanted Korea to be held under democratic rule, while the Soviets wanted communist rule. They took these conflicting views to...


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...ed States during and after the war, made the U.S. leaders stockpile nuclear weapons. The Soviets responded by stockpiling their own nuclear weapons, thus creating a "Balance of Terror".34 The world became much more dangerous after the Korean War because of the volume of nuclear weapons produced. High taxes were imposed upon the American people to keep up the nuclear race with the Soviets. Within a year or so, America had turned its back on the Korean War. No one wanted to remember a war which cost so much to accomplish so little. The dead were just simply forgotten in the fast modern world. The lessons of the war were also forgotten. As the last troops left Korea, another conflict started in a nearby Asian land, Vietnam. If we had learned from W.W.II, we would not have fought the Korean War. If we had learned from the Korean War, we would have not fought Vietnam.

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