Korean War

Korean War
In South Korea: (한국전쟁, 6·25 전쟁)
In North Korea: (조국해방전쟁)
Part of the Cold War and the Korean conflict
Korean War Montage 2.png
Clockwise from top: A column of the U.S. 1st Marine Division's infantry and armor moves through Chinese lines during their breakout from the Chosin Reservoir • UN landing at Incheon harbor, starting point of the Battle of Incheon • Korean refugees in front of a U.S. M46 Patton tank • U.S. Marines, led by First Lieutenant Baldomero Lopez, landing at Incheon • F-86 Sabre fighter aircraft
Date25 June 1950 – 27 July 1953[note 1]
(3 years, 1 month and 2 days)

Military stalemate

  • North Korean invasion of South Korea repelled
  • Subsequent U.S.-led United Nations invasion of North Korea repelled
  • Subsequent Chinese and North Korean invasion of South Korea halted
  • Korean Armistice Agreement signed in 1953
  • Korean conflict ongoing
  • Korean Demilitarized Zone established
  • North Korea gains city of Kaesong but loses a net total of 3,900 km2 (1,500 sq mi) to South Korea.[9]
  • Belligerents
     South Korea
    United Nations[a]
    Commanders and leaders
    Peak strength:

    Together: 972,334

    Peak strength:

    Together: 1,742,000

    Casualties and losses

    Total dead and missing: 178,405 dead and 32,925 missing (162,394 South Koreans, 44,499 Americans, 3,867 others)
    Total wounded: 566,434

    Total dead and missing: 398,000–589,000 dead and 145,000+ missing (335,000-526,000 North Koreans, 208,729 Chinese, 299 others)
    Total wounded: 686,500

    • Total civilians killed: 2–3 million (est.)[42][43]
    • South Korea: 990,968 killed/wounded
      373,599 killed[15]
      229,625 wounded[15]
      387,744 abducted/missing[15]
    • North Korea: 1,550,000 killed/wounded (est.)[15]

    The Korean War (in South Korean Korean한국전쟁; Hanja韓國戰爭; RRHanguk Jeonjaeng, "Korean War"; in North Korean Korean조국해방전쟁; Hanja祖國解放戰爭; MRChoguk haebang chŏnjaeng, "Fatherland Liberation War"; 25 June 1950 – 27 July 1953)[44][45][b] was a war between North Korea (with the support of China and the Soviet Union) and South Korea (with the support of the United Nations, principally from the United States). The war began on 25 June 1950 when North Korea invaded South Korea.[47][48][49][50]

    At the end of World War II, the Soviet Union and the United States liberated Korea from imperial Japanese colonial control on 15 August 1945. After the war had ended, Korea was divided at the 38th parallel into two zones of occupation, the Soviets administered the northern half and the Americans administered the southern half. With the border set at the 38th parallel in 1948, two sovereign states were established as a result of geopolitical tensions of the Cold War (between the Soviet Union and the United States). A socialist state was established in the north under the communist leadership of Kim Il-sung and a capitalist state in the south under the anti-communist leadership of Syngman Rhee. Both governments of the two new Korean states claimed to be the sole legitimate government of all of Korea, and neither accepted the border as permanent.

    The conflict escalated into warfare when North Korean military (KPA) forces—supported by the Soviet Union and China—crossed the border and advanced into South Korea on 25 June 1950.[51] The United Nations Security Council authorized the formation of the United Nations Command and the dispatch of forces to Korea[52] to repel what was recognized as a North Korean invasion.[53][54] Twenty-one countries of the United Nations eventually contributed to the UN force, with the United States providing around 90% of the military personnel.[55]

    After the first two months of war, South Korean Army (ROKA) and the US forces rapidly dispatched to Korea were on the point of defeat. As a result, the ROKA and US troops retreated to a small area behind a defensive line known as the Pusan Perimeter. In September 1950, an amphibious UN counter-offensive was launched at Incheon, and cut off many KPA troops in South Korea. Those who escaped envelopment and capture were forced back north. UN forces invaded North Korea in October 1950 and moved rapidly towards the Yalu River—the border with China—but on 19 October 1950, Chinese forces of the People's Volunteer Army (PVA) crossed the Yalu and entered the war.[51] The surprise Chinese intervention triggered a retreat of UN forces back below the 38th Parallel by late December.

    In these and subsequent battles, Seoul changed hands four times, and the last two years of fighting became a war of attrition, with the front line close to the 38th Parallel. The war in the air, however, was never a stalemate. North Korea was subject to a massive U.S. bombing campaign. Jet fighters confronted each other in air-to-air combat for the first time in history, and Soviet pilots covertly flew in defense of their communist allies.

    The fighting ended on 27 July 1953, when the Korean Armistice Agreement was signed. The agreement created the Korean Demilitarized Zone (DMZ) to separate North and South Korea, and allowed the return of prisoners. However, no peace treaty was ever signed, and the two Koreas are technically still at war, engaged in a frozen conflict.[56][57] In April 2018, the leaders of North and South Korea met at the DMZ[58] and agreed to work towards a treaty to formally end the Korean War.[59]

    The Korean War was among the most destructive conflicts of the modern era, with approximately 3 million war fatalities and a larger proportional civilian death toll than World War II or the Vietnam War. It incurred the destruction of virtually all of Korea's major cities, thousands of massacres by both sides (including the mass killing of tens of thousands of suspected communists by the South Korean government), and the torture and starvation of prisoners of war by the North Korean command. North Korea became among the most heavily-bombed countries in history.


    Korean War
    South Korean name
    North Korean name

    In South Korea, the war is usually referred to as "625" or the "6–2–5 Upheaval" (6.25 동란 (動亂), yook-i-o dongnan), reflecting the date of its commencement on 25 June.[60]

    In North Korea, the war is officially referred to as the "Fatherland Liberation War" (Choguk haebang chǒnjaeng) or alternatively the "Chosǒn [Korean] War" (조선전쟁, Chosǒn chǒnjaeng).[61]

    In China, the war is officially called the "War to Resist America and Aid Korea" (simplified Chinese: 战争; traditional Chinese: 戰爭; pinyin: Kàngměi Yuáncháo Zhànzhēng),[62][63] although the term "Chaoxian (Korean) War" (simplified Chinese: 朝鲜战争; traditional Chinese: 朝鮮戰爭; pinyin: Cháoxiǎn Zhànzhēng) is also used in unofficial contexts, along with the term "Hán (Korean)[c] War" (simplified Chinese: 韩战; traditional Chinese: 韓戰; pinyin: Hán Zhàn) more commonly used in regions such as Hong Kong and Macau.

    In the US, the war was initially described by President Harry S. Truman as a "police action" as the United States never formally declared war on its opponents and the operation was conducted under the auspices of the United Nations.[64] It has been sometimes referred to in the English-speaking world as "The Forgotten War" or "The Unknown War" because of the lack of public attention it received both during and after the war, relative to the global scale of World War II, which preceded it, and the subsequent angst of the Vietnam War, which succeeded it.[65][66]

    Other Languages
    Afrikaans: Korea-oorlog
    Alemannisch: Koreakrieg
    aragonés: Guerra de Coreya
    asturianu: Guerra de Corea
    azərbaycanca: Koreya müharibəsi
    تۆرکجه: کوره ساواشی
    Bân-lâm-gú: Hân Chiàn
    беларуская: Вайна ў Карэі
    беларуская (тарашкевіца)‎: Карэйская вайна
    български: Корейска война
    bosanski: Korejski rat
    brezhoneg: Brezel Korea
    čeština: Korejská válka
    Cymraeg: Rhyfel Corea
    Deutsch: Koreakrieg
    español: Guerra de Corea
    Esperanto: Korea milito
    euskara: Koreako Gerra
    فارسی: جنگ کره
    Fiji Hindi: Korean War
    føroyskt: Koreakríggið
    français: Guerre de Corée
    客家語/Hak-kâ-ngî: Hòn Chan
    한국어: 한국 전쟁
    hrvatski: Korejski rat
    Bahasa Indonesia: Perang Korea
    íslenska: Kóreustríðið
    italiano: Guerra di Corea
    ქართული: კორეის ომი
    қазақша: Корей соғысы
    Kiswahili: Vita ya Korea
    kriyòl gwiyannen: Lagèr di Koré
    Кыргызча: Корей согушу
    latviešu: Korejas karš
    Lëtzebuergesch: Koreakrich
    lietuvių: Korėjos karas
    македонски: Корејска војна
    მარგალური: კორეაშ ლჷმა
    Bahasa Melayu: Perang Korea
    Mìng-dĕ̤ng-ngṳ̄: Hàng Ciéng
    မြန်မာဘာသာ: ကိုရီးယားစစ်ပွဲ
    Nederlands: Koreaanse Oorlog
    नेपाल भाषा: कोरिया
    日本語: 朝鮮戦争
    Nordfriisk: Koreakrich
    norsk nynorsk: Koreakrigen
    oʻzbekcha/ўзбекча: Koreys urushi
    Patois: Korian Waar
    Plattdüütsch: Koreakrieg
    português: Guerra da Coreia
    Scots: Korean War
    sicilianu: Guerra di Corea
    Simple English: Korean War
    slovenčina: Kórejská vojna
    slovenščina: Korejska vojna
    српски / srpski: Корејски рат
    srpskohrvatski / српскохрватски: Korejski rat
    svenska: Koreakriget
    татарча/tatarça: Корея сугышы
    тоҷикӣ: Ҷанги Корея
    Türkçe: Kore Savaşı
    українська: Корейська війна
    文言: 韓戰
    Winaray: Gera Koreano
    吴语: 韩国战争
    粵語: 韓戰
    žemaitėška: Kuoriejės vaina
    中文: 朝鲜战争