[KS] Brian Hwang's Discussion Question (Tae Gyun Park)

tae gyun park tgpark3 at gmail.com
Mon Apr 16 23:02:46 EDT 2012

One of very impressive remarks on the Korean War by Cohen is "[i]n
addition to Japan, the winners were the likes of Syngman Rhee, Chiang
Kai-Shek, and all the other merciless dictators who, professing
anticommunism, could count on American support. In the United states,
the winners were the advocates of rollback, of rolling back the
Communists abroad and programs of social justice at home."
Sending combat troops to Vietnam by ROK government could not be
rationalized. The war crime by Korean soldiers was not definitely
inevitable. There was no reasonable rationale to send except ideology
and strengthening Park government. There were so many problems due to
sending troops.
1) security crisis on the Korean Peninsula in the late 1960s
2) tensions in US-Korean Alliance since the early Nixon Administration
3) trauma and disease caused by defoliant of Korean veterans
4) Vietnamese victims by Korean soldiers
5) notorious reputation among the Third World countries
and so on...
With regard to Korean soldiers, they were offenders, on the one hand,
while they were victimized by state, on the other hand. Killing
Vietnamese common people which happened where Korean soldiers should
not be sent could not be rationalized. Only what Koreans memorize
about the Vietnam War is just special procurement unfortunately...
Probably Korean troops guerrilla warfare strategy was derived from its
legacy from Manchuria before 1945 and the Korean War period.
Even all of Korean soldiers were forgotten not only in any literature
written in English, but also in Vietnamese war museums.

Tae Gyun Park

More information about the Koreanstudies mailing list