The Korean War was a unique war, as it was the first military action which took place under the United Nations. Sixteen UN nations came to the aid of the Republic of Korea. The Soviet Union, while providing material support for North Korea, did not officially fight in the war. They also abstained from the vote of the security council authorizing the allied forces to enter the conflict.
After Douglas MacArthur’s landing at Inch’ŏn, the tide turned decisively. At one point, the Republic of Korea and her allies had managed to occupy P’yŏngyang, the capital city of North Korea. In the War Memorial in Seoul, there is a painting of Rhee Syngman, first president of the Republic of Korea, speaking to the crowds there.
The Chinese People’s Liberation Army entered the war. Without them, one wonders whether or not North Korea would exist today. Chairman Mao Zedong (毛澤東) launched the “Movement to Resist America and Aid Korea”. One of Chairman Mao’s own sons, Mao Anying (毛岸英), was killed in the Korean War.
In today’s Korea Times, Andrew Salmon writes about how Chairman Mao and the People’s Liberation Army saved North Korea. You can read more by clicking here.
“Mao’s fateful intervention on the Korean peninsula ensured the survival of what is, in the 21st century, arguably the most odious regime on earth. It is ironic that leftist nationalists in South Korea, who berate Washington for bisecting the peninsula at the 38th parallel in 1945, fail to acknowledge that Beijing’s intervention in 1950 prevented re-unification under U.N. auspices.” -Andrew Salmon