The Forgotten War Remembered


The Korean conflict often. Wounds in that story as one of presidential unilateralism as the erosion of constitutional checks, said an imbalance in our in our constitution the Korean War also. Avalanches, some other important presses, especially with regard to war powers in the way the constitution operates during. I'm Benjamin witness, and this is the Law Fair podcast July Twentieth, two thousand and twenty. This year marks the seventieth anniversary of the beginning of the Korean War which is. Last I checked still going on the Korean War is often called the forgotten war because we remember Vietnam so well. We remember World War Two so well and wedged in between. Is this conflict that we often overlook and yet much of our contemporary international politics? In East, Asia is highly conditioned by the Korean War, the people of Korea continue to live with its aftermath, both in the north and south, and the shadow of the Korean War looms large over one of the great debates. We often have on l'affaire, which is the subject of war powers, so we thought commemorating the seventieth anniversary of the US entry into the Korean War would be a really interesting little project. We got together quite A. A panel to do it Katharine. Moon is a professor of political science at Wellesley College. She's also a nonresident senior fellow at the Brookings Institution Center. For East, Asia Policy Matt Waxman is a Professor at Columbia University Law School, and is of course, a law, fair long timer, and of course Scott, Anderson Senior editor of l'affaire is a specialist on war powers among other things on the history of which Matt Waxman is also writing. A book recovered a lot of ground in this conversation. What happened on the Korean Peninsula during the war? How did it affect the way we talk about war powers, and what is the international law status of the conflict in Korea it's the law. Fair podcast July twentieth. The forgotten war remembered. So we have breaking news after seventy years. The Korean War is still going on. This is within a margin of error, the seventieth anniversary of the beginning of the international operation on the Korean Peninsula. Catherine get US started. Most people don't have a sense much historical sense of the Korean War anymore. What was it and to what extent is it still unresolved? You started off perfectly because the Korean. War is often. Dubbed the forgotten war it's been going on so long and it still live technically, even though there was an armistice that was signed in July of Nineteen, fifty three, and it was awarded. That was never called. A war technically called the Korean conflict for very long time. What was the Korean War simply the North Koreans the communist forces. They invaded the south. The border south of the thirty eighth parallel which divided the north and the south the north and south became divided in order to get the Japanese out of the Korean Peninsula, during the end of the Pacific portion of World War Two. And Northern, the northern part of the Korean Peninsula was supposed to be managed by the Russians who were our allies at the time in World War Two and the southern part below the thirty eighth. Where the division was drawn was supposed to be managed by the United States or the UN forces. What is really interesting, is that the Korean Peninsula from nineteen forty five toward the end of World War Two? To now has been in a constant and chronic state of dividedness, and I would say a nation state that is unfulfilled, even though South Korea's one of the most prosperous countries in the world, both the north, and the south see the project of Nation Building as incomplete because of the initial division in world, War Two and the Korean War that truly divided the entire society on the peninsula. The northerners had invaded the south by surprise even though there were warnings that such troop movements were going to take place of the Americans didn't take this seriously. They did not take the North Koreans very seriously as serious threat and strangely enough this week power had the ability to drive US forces and South Korean military forces on the southern part of the peninsula way down all the way to the southern tip, the port city of Pusan in a very short span of time. We nearly lost the southern half of the Korean Peninsula to the North Koreans at the initial period of the Korean War. The intervention which we are now at the point of the seventieth anniversary of. As you say was not described does a war, but it was I. think in body count terms. One of the most costly conflicts of the twentieth century I I I I. You know World War Two is far and away. The number one and were one is number two and I think the Korean War is sort of right there after these two there, maybe some others that are more costly, but it goes on for a relatively short period of time, and yet it is hugely hugely. Hugely consequential in the sense that when you know, when Donald Trump and Kim, Jong UN meet today, in Singapore or or the demilitarized zone. They're negotiating the consequences of the Korean War. Is that? Is that fair? I store for sure you're absolutely right. the Korean War had the had one of the highest civilian casualty rates, historically speaking at least in terms of US participation in wars. So the civilian death raid in the Korean War surpassed that of world, War Two and the Vietnam War. It involved millions of People Koreans on the peninsula from votes in north. South Americans Chinese as well as. U N troops meaning about sixteen countries who had contributed their forces to the United Nations Command. When we look at the tally of casualties, we are looking at a North Korean society that lost between twelve to fifteen percent of its entire population. It is considered one of the highest losses ever historically speaking in modern warfare. The North Koreans had about three, hundred, thousand, dead, another two, thirty, thousand wounded, and about ninety one thousand missing. And you know it's an astounding number who participated American soldiers from all of the different branches of the services. We can tally close to one point eight million US troops on the peninsula during the war, and the Chinese lost over a hundred eighty three thousand people battle deaths. And, then of course, there were hundreds thousands more wounded and another twenty five thousand, so who were missing. The South Koreans lost about one hundred, forty, thousand military debts, and another twenty, four, thousand, five, hundred, or so missing. You know when you think about missing soldiers, they are the embodiment of a war that did not end because we are still trying to negotiate the return of the remains of American soldiers. South Koreans would love to see some kind of negotiation with north. Crow seed, so that South Korean families could get back the remains of their loved ones. It was a tremendous loss. And of course, the economic costs were also high If I may I think. The lasting impact of the Korean War on the peninsula, it cannot be underscored enough. When we look at the rise of South Korea's economy, it had anything to do with the Korean War, and they continuing threat of the North Korean military, the fear that the North Koreans could invade again that fear led the South Korean government's on their authoritarian regimes as well as aspirin. Public's to conduct probably one of the most rapid economic rises in global history. The whole idea was we have to be a strong economy in order to protect ourselves and make sure that we cannot be vulnerable to North Korean attack. The North Koreans in impact there we see one of the most hyper militarized societies in the in the world, the continuing reign of the Kim Dynasty that has been able to emphasize to its public over generation. After generation that without the cans, the North would be vulnerable to the United States and to South Korea. All right so with that as background Scott, this podcast came about because you casually mentioned the other day that. The Korean War is important in the history of US war powers. Which of course the moment you set it, it's it's an obvious point and yet I hadn't thought about it. Katherine refers various times to the UN forced to this being a conflict, not a war or a sometimes, it's called a police action why the weird terminology associated with the Korean War. So. It's absolutely true that the Korean War really hangs very large in the imagination of lawyers who deal with war power, and really broader foreign relations questions to some extent, a bit of that reputation about how seminal an event it is a me be a little bit overstated I know Matt and I have talked about in this pass and and I would invite Matt in a second elaborate why that might be? Be But Korean War does usefully bring in a number of factors that have really proven instrumental in decisions about war powers later in complex, they're the kind of factors that for many people think either legal analysis should or does hinge in regards to whether a president can use military force. One of the Korean War, was not authorized by Congress at least not expressly, not initially, there was never a declaration of war. War that there was in world. War Two and had been in many prior other, not all prior conflicts to instead what they had was authorization from the UN Security Council which the Truman administration had been able to pursue insecurity in part because the Soviet Union had been boycotting the Security Council and therefore provided. There's a new treaty based international law based authorization which had a questionable degree of domestic authorization. Authorization as well that brought with it. Many people subsequently say that. In fact, Security Council doesn't automatically authorize anything under US law, but people at the time didn't necessarily feel that way, and the third factor is that in light of those two factors, the Korean War became as Catherine already noted a major conflict major large-scale deployment, and so insofar as there is an effort to say well, the president can pursue. Types of military action, but not others the Korean War as. To. Say that this is anything short of a full on war, a large scale conflict, and therefore in a way, implicates the most serious uses of the president's war powers, and because of those three major considerations, the Korean War is often seen as one of those key case studies, key data, points and tracking how? Were powers. Presidential war powers have evolved over time. Yeah so matt. Let's let's dive into a couple of those points you know. Arthur slesinger in his famous book. The Imperial Presidency Kinda traces the imperial presidency to the Korean War at least in the war powers contacts. Write that you know. Truman doesn't get a declaration of war. It's never directly authorized by Congress and Slesinger regards this as the watershed moment, after which the presidency is never the same to what extent is this good history? And to what extent is this I mean? Slesinger was a historian, not a lawyer, but kind of lawyers has story. Is it as big a watershed in war powers as we as we KINDA, imagine it in common law classes, or is the story more complicated than that? So I'd characterize it as A. Major step in the. Accretion of presidential powers, especially presidential war powers, but I think it's often overstated just how significant delete it was, and what the sort of the lasting precedential impact of the Korean conflict was. So you know this was? The largest instill is the largest foreign war that the United States has fought without. An express congressional. War, declaration or authorization of He's not at the at the front end, and it's a as you say in. War powers lower including in Slesinger is famous imperial presidency book it's it's treated as a watershed event and I do think that the legal argumentation of a justifying Truman's intervention without congressional authorization becomes a template for later executive branch justifications unilateral action there really a few arguments that I think are elaborated by the Truman Administration for unilateral action that hadn't been fully briefed in this way before. One is to elaborate a very broad understanding of the president, self-defense powers that whereas previously sort of unilateral power to use force in self-defence, was defined in terms of mostly in terms of protecting territory or American people. Now we, the president is asserting. That sort of defensive systemic interests, including stability and international legal system soon after that American allies there were elements of this type of legal justification in some previous military interventions, but the Korea memos take them to a new level of there's also a big. Historical argument that the president does the Truman administration argues, and and tries to detail through a long list of that the president has often acted unilaterally to prevent violence and other unlawful acts by other states, and produces a very very long list of of dozens of such interventions, and that again serves as a template for future executive branch administrations to justify later interventions I do think though a few caveats are in order, I at the moment of intervention. Truman certainly didn't expect this to be a three year war with tens of thousands of Americans killed. It's a much bigger war in hindsight that was expected in nineteen fifty and. And it's also important to keep in mind that at that, at that time, the point of reference for what a war is was the world wars and possible war with the Soviet. Union and compared to those as the baseline. The Korean intervention seemed small by comparison second. You know sometimes the emphasis on the Korean War in the story of the growth of the imperial presidency and unilateral war powers obscures just how much power previous presidents had asserted in using limited force, and the degree to which checks on unilateral presidential moves that were envisioned at the founding had already erode in my view. Those checks started eroding almost immediately. In the early republic and you get dramatic sort of uptick in in that erosion with the Korean War and the onset of the Cold War, but that's part of a long trend, not something that's entirely new in one, thousand, nine, hundred fifty, and then I I'd I'd say that looking back since Korea, we haven't had a repeat of of such a dramatic assertion of unilateral powers, even when presidents have asserted the power to start wars or conflicts unilaterally. They've gone to Congress for the big. Big Ones Vietnam is complicated, but you have the Gulf of Tonkin resolution both Iraq wars had authorization from Congress, Afghanistan and the war against Al Qaeda had had an authorization, so career remains these something of of an outlier Louis career produced a precedence or at least a road map for legal argument, but politically I think the lesson that most administrations have learned, was you? If you're going to enter a major conflict, you're much better off going to Congress for authorization at the Front End. All right, so Scott I want to ask you to reflect a little bit on the dichotomy between what Catherine is describing, which is a forgotten war. That's really critical in shaping the Korean Peninsula and yet people don't even remember that it happened, or at least have it only as a sense of the the other conflict than happened involving US troops in Asia and this history that both you and match just described in which this event loom so large in this discrete. Of Lawyers Talking about war powers? Is it the forgotten war except by lawyers? That may be one way to look at it or describe the situation but to some extent there is a little bit despite of the dominant role that Korean work plays in war powers, thinking in some of the its is also one of these issues that's kind of not talked about as frequently or directly as one might expect. An important. That's because it plays weird sort of dual role both as Canon in an anti cannon sort of precedent this idea that it's right on the periphery of what's legally acceptable most subsequent. Opinions about presidential war powers from the executive branch we associate with legal counsel, and most of them approached the Korean War Pretty Cagey. They will occasionally make reference to it particularly if they are saying that you know, the United States can take certain action because they're relying upon the security, council, Resolutions or other international law, or if foreign policy interests tends to weigh a little heavier there for the reasons that Matt noted because it was new in that regards the first case where the president is relies so heavily on that. But when it comes to the idea that this conflict that the president could pursue own constitutional power separate apart from that question, it's always a tricky case. One Thousand Nine hundred seventy opinion that future chief justice William, Rehnquist wrote which is kind of the I. I think of as the first in the line of modern. We'll see opinions about were powers. He really addresses in says this is probably he strongly implied lease. It's kind of a peripheral case. And he says well essentially ultimately Congress more or less acquiesce to what the president was doing, so it became less of A. A problem and that acquiescence was in the form of funding, was in the form of simple awareness without cutting off support or ending others which of activities or installing any statutory prohibitions That may have pose an issue. Ultimately, he's got a implies although it's really just in a sentence that that was just not that big an issue ultimately Congress and therefore Congress did ultimately sign off if not in a conventional. Format Upfront more recent opinions don't really deal with it that squarely. Don't bring it on and look at it directly or rely on it heavily and again. I think it's because a lot of people have that view that this was because it was such. A major conflict doesn't fit very neatly in the framework that's often applied to war. Powers conventionally partake. That's often associated with. With the two thousand eleven Libya opinion that opinion said essentially the president can use force where the actual conflict itself falls below the level of quote, unquote war for constitutional purposes basically means it's a limited conflict. That's not the case here, and then that there's some people say there's an exception to that four cases of self defense where United States and the president can. Can Act more broadly and self defense. That's also a bit of a harder case in the Greek. As it's certainly not conventional self-defense, there's a broader idea. Well, maybe a serving US interests in that's self, its own former self defense that Matt alluded to, but that's like a slightly dodger idea I. Think most people associate that view of interest with a different scale. Scale of presidential authority than an actual threat to the homeland or to US forces, and for that reason, it's just not a comfortable case to work into these arguments, and you don't see lawyers invoking as often as they might. Even though, from a historical perspective was clearly one of these data points that you have to account for in describing the evolution of this thinking. Katherine. Do you have thoughts on this? Yeah I do. I. This is really fascinating and very enriching I'm thinking that when we talk about the forgotten war, there is one state that has not forgotten the war, and that's North Korea live an intact E. N. act. They live out the Korean War. Every single day through various types of propaganda through art posters, propaganda art posters that always hearken back to the Korean War the statues that are all over the country. War that war is a lived experience. It's a daily reminder. Everywhere you go North Korea I, was there in two thousand thirteen and it was astounding. How visually the collective memory of the war lives on, and people are not allowed to forget the war. Why is it so important for North Koreans? We cannot understand North Korea's nuclear development without understanding and accepting that the Korean War lives on. It rages every day in the north. We can't understand the belligerent rhetoric the constant sense of mobilization capacity of the people without understanding what North Korea went through in the war, it was a devastating experience the Korean war their cities were wiped out completely. No building was left. Because of US air power got demolished these places. So many debts so many losses and the North Koreans. Why are why are they also so crowded and so obstinate? Why do they try to go it alone significantly because they take great pride in having rebuilt their society, after the devastation of war and many people don't know this around the world, even on the Kristen Salah, but until the late sixties possibly the early seventies. North Korea had higher GDP rates higher rates of Industralization, higher rates of literacy at as well as other indicators like longevity reduced numbers of infant mortality relative to their arch enemy South Korea. So when you talk about the south, Korean explosion, as sort of one of the world's most explosively growing economies. You're actually not talking about really since the Korean War, but since nineteen seventy. It's faster even than that. Yes South Korea struggled in the in the period after it became established as an independent republic at the end of world, war two in nineteen, forty eight, it became its own nation state, and it really struggled to find an economic pass that was viable stable, and only starting in the early seventies, did the export regime takeoff before the early seventies The North Koreans were doing very well. The North Koreans actually did quite well into the seventies, and then through the eighties, and of course, the nineties and the famine and the end of the Cold War and the Soviet Union's backing of their economy, subsidizing them heavily. That's the stuff that led to the downfall of this very proud So called self sufficient regime, but the the history of the Korean War is absolutely vital to understanding so much of the foreign policy issues that govern north-south relations on the peninsula of course and the US commitment in terms of us. Commitments to South Korea, they stem from the Korean, war and its aftermath show many aspects of today's policy issues, regarding the peninsula and East Asia. We can go right back to the Korean War as having put down the seeds. There's another aspect that I wanNA raise in addition to what my colleagues are saying about the legal aspects of the Korean War. there are two things here one is that the armistice agreement that was signed in July of Nineteen fifty three to end the hostilities, but not end the war that it raises some really interesting legal questions, and I have always hoped that I would get to meet lawyers to talk about these things with the armistice was not signed by south, Korean authorities it was signed by a North Korean general and. The US UN commander and The, North Korean general signed also on behalf of the so-called Chinese volunteers, not the technical people's Army, but the volunteer army even though you had millions involved. So if there is to be a peace treaty, which people talk about from time to time, who signs who becomes a party to the negotiations, who becomes responsible for our enforcing for watching over the peace treaty? The it was a UN action. Even though the UN is no longer considered active player on the peninsula, so it raises a bunch of interesting questions, and then you have the status of forces agreements that govern the rights, duties, obligations, and the limitations of such of for both the US military and the South Korean government, regarding the stationing of. Troops on South Korean soil, the US forces have been there since nineteen fifty seven on a permanent basis. We still have about twenty eight thousand five hundred troops in the nineteen sixties. We had about seventy thousand three divisions of the US military, especially the army place there and they so far, the status of Forces Agreement is a highly politicized document. We have one with just about every country that houses US faces US facilities US troops, and what's interesting. Is that the South Korean Sofa as well as the US Japan Sofa? Stand in as templates. For other countries that want to either improve their status enforces agreements vis-a-vis the United States. Or want to critique some aspect of the status of Forces Agreement so Iraq in two thousand seven when it was trying to negotiate a sofa with the United States, they looked at the Japanese the South Korean the German the US NATO and other such documents, so you've got this legal template in the Sofa that is an outgrowth of the Korean War, the fact that there was never any piece that was settled, and the fact that the US had to promise a US troops and US protection for South Korea's national security because of the constant North Korean threat. So. That's a really interesting, so let's take those issues in sequence. Do you. A view of given who the parties to the armistice are, if the US and North Korea were ever to come to an understanding as Donald Trump and Kim Jong Hoon. Suggested at Singapore that they would they would. Come to an end of the war, understanding, who's a party to that treaty given that? Technically it was not it was. The UN is the belligerent South Korea was not a party to the armistice. Treaty to end the war work. those are great questions. I'll actually I defer to Scott because he dealt with some of these international legal issues I in his own experience on the ground in Iraq, and then I can comment on a Scott Steak. Well sure, let me start with this issue of the end of the war, because that's kind of interesting question, but it's interesting, not just in the Korea context, but also in kind of broader armed conflicts, the traditional international law you and I mean traditional in terms of an eighteenth or nineteenth century, international law practice was always that armed conflicts tended to end in a treaty some sort of agreement that laid out the terms by which the conflict would come to an end, by which the grievances would be addressed and restore some sense of the rights. Rights of the parties that kind of ties to an old idea that when states entered a state of war, they suspended a lot of their mutual international legal obligations. I would apply if they were otherwise states that were not at war with each other. That is really kind of faded into the background right now we see all sorts of armed conflicts that don't have a fixed ending. If you want a great example of this think about which has happened earlier this year in Iraq with the killing of Qassem. Soleimani, in that case we saw. Saw The United States rely upon in authorization for the invasion of Iraq in two thousand and three that what had been lying latent for most of the prior decade, except providing some may be secondary authorization for counter isis operations, but they're resurrected because there was no formal end. Let Alone de Authorisation of kind of what activities the United States could pursue their. So in this case you know what would the party's be to an agreement like this? Probably would I think sensibly will be the united, nations and North Korea again. Probably involving South Korea's well as As, they are kind of the parties, but at this point, the United States is early in South Korea at the invitation of the South Korean government, not under U. N. auspices so far as those are the activities that North Korea wants to address a quote. Unquote peace agreement might not be a peace agreement at all. It might be an agreement about a mutual understanding about their activities, which flows from the Korean War, but probably isn't structured as an end of that war. Although no doubt, it will contain a rhetoric that kind of implies as much. The point about Iraq is a really interesting one and all address there without getting into too many details. Is that the Korea and Japan Sofas and particularly the Korea Sofa really have gone under this evolution because Korea and Japan are now close allies they have very functional rule of law systems, and there've been a number of high profile incidents where you servicemembers a have been caught doing things that are obviously criminal things like sexual assault, sometimes physical assault or an accident that killed Korean and Japanese citizens arising out of the service members that have proven politically controversial, and there has been efforts to accommodate that by giving more opportunities for Korean and Japanese officials to have some say in how some of these matters are handled. A South Korea was actually the very. Very first foreign country I ever visited other than Canada as a kind of starry eyed freshmen in college. and I was there right after one of these incidents, where if I recall correctly I think was a case where some Korean citizens have been run over by a US military vehicle and it was a a degree of tension substantially around the US presence there and to ameliorate that they've entered into these agreements that provide that asked of Rights and that's what kind of Iraq I think was angling at in their negotiations, saying well, we WanNa have a better degree of control over the foreign forces in our borders like Japan have. Yeah I I agree with what Scott said, especially with regard to the international law dimensions of these questions I would just add a comment about the domestic law aspect which is. What happens to the idea of constitutional war powers being turned on by the onset of conflict. What what happens at the back end? When you don't have a formal peace treaty, you know at the time of the founding. that. If you are in a in a major conflict, the way it came to an end was going to be a treaty, and that treaty was going to come to the Senate for advice and consent when that way of ending wars goes away. You have this new kind of constitutional issue of when when do constitutional war powers or domestic war powers up perhaps triggered by wartime statutes. Turn back off. This is an issue that arises in the civil war where the war doesn't really end with the surrender of Lee's Army I've. Goes on for several more years in a in a sort of insurgency, like sense World War. One is probably the one of the most important examples because the Senate rejects the peace treaty that Wilson comes back. In with carrying his hands from from Europe and domestic war, powers continued for several years beyond the armistice So this is an interesting constitutional puzzle that I'm reminded of by the career case. Yet such an interesting point because we think of Korea as in the war, powers context as at the front end, posing this really interesting question of when of when and how legally wars start, but this point, when and how do they end? It also really poses in the sense that seventy years later we could be having this conversation at all Ben I. Agree with that and I'd actually I had. The. Korean War if you think about war powers as being mostly about who gets to decide to initiate conflict, Congress or the president, the Korean conflict often rooms in that story as one of presidential unilateralism as the erosion of constitutional checks, said in balance in our in our constitution, the crane were also establishes some other important precedents, especially with regard to war powers. In the way, the constitution operates during war one of. Of those is of course, the famous Youngstown case there's this deal seizure case which stands out as one of the rare cases I think in which the court rebukes a a sort of a wartime or claimed wartime conflict time emergency power by the president. It's also it's also the conflict in which we have one of our greatest at a crises in civil military relations, where Truman ultimately relieves macarthur of command. And I think there's an important moment I in in emphasizing civilian control of the military, both of those cases both those instances episodes I, the MacArthur, a firing and the steel seizure case are important to consider that in the historical context here. This is early in the Cold War when there is worry that the permanent state of military emergency is going to the to garrison state we're seeing the conflict of the Cold War as a battle between two systems. I'm having defeated. Fascism is democracy going to be able to survive and survive intact against global communism, and so both of these ideas of sort of judicial checks on a presidential emergency powers and presidential supremacy over military commanders, those are those are pretty important parts of our overall bundle of constitutional checks and balances. It's pretty interesting. Now that you mention it, so it's not just the beginning of the war, the end of the war it's also the conduct of the war, although at least the replacement of Macarthur has precedent in Lincoln cereal replacement of the Union General Leadership until he gets his hands on Ulysses. Grant Right. Absolutely? I don't mean to suggest that. This is the first time in which a president asserts that kind of control and and poke. During the Mexican American war exerts a lot of control over officers who are in in various types of command, if not entirely new, but I think it's an issue that really comes to a head in the in the Korean War with a level of of sort of special urgency, because there was real worry that an extremely popular military commander might be sort of unilaterally and against the wishes of civilian leaders. Marching the United States down a path of superpower escalation. Okay so catherine I want to finish with you because you got as far as the North Koreans down at the south of the peninsula, which I think a lot of people forget that at the time of the international intervention you know the South Korean state was basically finished, and so you know kind of the in brief tell us the rest of the story. The UN Security Council passes a resolution with Russia. Kind of having gone to the bathroom and. What happens? For The Korean War is fascinating because there were so many mistakes that were made and assumptions that proved to be so incorrect, especially those made by General Macarthur. And he is lauded as a hero by many in the United States. Who still remember him of course, an indefinitely in South Korea, among the older generation, the Korean War, generation who looked at him as a savior as weirdly do a lot of Japanese at least a. Just going to say that they're in Japan and South Korea. There are clubs that that have been established to commemorate the life end heroic deeds of General Macarthur apparently. There are Shamans in South Korea. Who tried to embody the spirit of General Macarthur to give a wisdom and. An life advice to people who are paying It's very strange, but you know my own readings. Studies have taught me. That Macarthur was such a flawed man. Of course we know that in many ways one of which was his having challenged the civilian power, the commander in chief of the United States Mr Chairman, but more so on a military level that he in many ways embodied. What seems to have gone on during the Iraq war that. He wanted only intelligence that would give him certainty in terms of his own assumptions it his own intentions, so he worked with a very small coterie of people that he trusted in South Korea, he ignored the commands as well as the advice and intelligence from the Pentagon. This is the war office at the time. And he basically was trying to run his own show, which led to huge flaws in judgment, he was not prepared. He also is lauded for the Inchon landing that actually brought the first wave of US troops to South Korea that later pushed the North Koreans northward. Relieving the pressure on the south, but the Inchon landing was completely a matter of luck to tell you the truth. There were so many aspects of decision making regarding the until landing that didn't hold a muster. It just was not rational. Environmental issues climate issues the terrain, all sorts of things. He was hell bent on choosing Inchon the landing venue, so he got really lucky and then there's also the reality that the American troops suffered so much under his watch. The American troops were deprived of uniforms, warm clothing in the horrifically cold weather of. South and North Korea in the wintertime, not enough rations, and the worst part of it in some ways was not enough and not properly outfitted weaponry. This was a time when the US had de mobilized from World War, two, and trying to get all of the supplies to the Korean front proved to be such a challenge, so his men suffered tremendously during the of the war. There are more people who died of frostbite than actual bullet wounds. So it was a horrific experience as far as the legacy of the Korean War, both the North and south still talk about reunification. If you recall the two thousand eighteen winter, Olympics that was held in south, Korea it was the venue of a grand diplomatic effort by the south. Korean, President Moon Jae in who invited a North Korean leader, the sister of Kim jong-un in particular and a small delegation to the Winter Olympics partly to show off South Korea and partly to say look, we can be in on this together. We can be a unified nation in the future if your country can reorient itself. And, so we are always hearing this word reunification out of Koreans mouths from the north and the south. Why is that? It's because of the division of the peninsula. The bloodshed a civil war. It was a civil war. That is the primary importance that we need to keep in mind it. We learned in American at in college as an international police. Action Ben you had referred to that phrase, but for the Koreans on both sides, this was a civil war where millions of people lost lives where millions of people lost families, the division of the peninsula meant that millions and millions of families left behind loved ones on both sides. So I WANNA. Ask You all about one other aspect of the legacy which is. On the American side, which is the imprint that the Korean War created for ten twelve years later when we started to get involved with Vietnam Vietnam that I think the imprint that the Korean War left for many Americans was that you could have an amphibious landing? You cut the peninsula in half. You beat the the communist invaders back, and then you Kinda hold the line, and you get an armistice and the southern half of the state lives. Lives and maybe you don't wipe out the northern half, but at least you protect the southern half and I think that was what was in the minds of a lot of people in the Kennedy and Johnson administrations during the Vietnam war think they were thinking about Korea, and did not realize how bad a model correa was for what they were trying to do. I'm interested for any of your thoughts on that. That might have thoughts on it. I think it's a really really important observation on that's in some ways they were the wrong lessons learned, but the more provided enough of a classroom experience that Americans should have learned in Oh. We always ask why. Why don't we learned lessons of war? So one thing is topography climate as I mentioned before American military forces suffered a lot because of the harsh winter climates in on the Korean Peninsula. And the the terrain, the Korean Peninsula is basically a mountainous terrain, so U. S.. Troops had been trained. They had not been trained rather to fight in such mountainous terrain, and it proved very very difficult for them. You can't move tanks up and down mountain trails. In Vietnam that it's a similar situation where jungle warfare, guerrilla warfare, and of course, the the crazy, hot humid climate. Were situations that American troops had not been used to, and that you just slip into a foreign country that you really know nothing about which is true in both Korea and Vietnam. As far as Americans are concerned at that time, you just can't slip into a foreign country and decide that you're going to be able to whip people up north. Your past the the demarcation line, so I think the these were very. They're very facile assumptions that had been made both in in Korea and Vietnam, and then of course in both cases, they came back to roost. We're GONNA leave it. There Katharine Moon Scott Anderson Matt Waxman. Thank you all for joining us. Thank you. Thanks for having me. The law. Fair podcast is produced in cooperation with the Brookings. Institution this episode of the Law. Fair podcast was recorded by the one the only Zachary Frank of Goat Rodeo you need to do your part to promote warfare podcasts so tweet US share us on facebook up. Vote us on. Read it and pin us on Pinterest. Leave a rating and review wherever you found us, and of course visit the law fair store dot com to buy your l'affaire merch so that you can advertise US wherever you go. The law. Fair podcast is produced an edited by Gen PACI Howell arm. Music is performed by Sophia Yan, and as always. Thanks for listening.

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