north and south



Korea, before 1950





koreaBack to Main


The Korean War was an event that drawed many nations' attention to the small peninsula. Minor and major causes that contributed to the outbreak of the war were continuously developed, starting from 1910, the year of Japanese Regime, untill June 25th, 1945, the start of the war.

What can be first examined as one of the causing factors is the conflict between the korean nation. Koreans began to socially divide themselves into two separate groups, each serving different leaders: Kim Il-Sung from North and Syng-Man Rhee from South. The role of foreign involvement can be also examined while examining the split of one nation as certain responsibilities lie on the United States and USSR. The Americans are greatly responsible for independently dividing the land - without Korea's opinion - and for appointing pro-Japanese soldiers to the South's government. Considering the circumstances of Korea post liberation from the long period of Japanese regime, USSR and United States only worsened the disorganized political situation by each support contradicting leaders. The reason for supporting two opposing men is relevant to the issue of the Cold War which was encompassing Korea through the period of war time. United States and USSR were in opposing relationship with different ideologies. In this sense, although the Korean War had the characteristic of a civil war, it can be argued that the involvement of foreign countries overshadowed the civil conflict with more internationally conflicting ideas.

Even so, the initial action for the commencement of Korean War is considered to be happened by the North, more specifically by Kim Il-Sung. And this emphasizes that even though the foreign intervention was overwhelming Koreans, the direct motivation of the war comes from the struggle of one nation. It is not incorrect for readers to view that the origins of the Korean war began since the conflict among Koreans during the Japanese empire era. To provide an answer for the question of the origins, it can be concluded that the Korean War was a combination of civil and international conflicts, yet with more weight on the collision of one nation that began the Korean War.


The war is still not over yet. Above is the picture of present demilitarization zone, the 38th parallel.