Second Korean War
Second Korean War
Clockwise from top left: Soviet plane on patrol next to the North Korean - Chinese border; United States air-force about to commence a bombing run; South Korean tank at the DMZ infiltration; South Korean tanks driving towards Pyongyang; North Korean Army marching through re-captured Pyongyang, Chinese tanks at the Battle of Wonsan
Date 18 April 1986 - 2 March 1989
Result North Korean, Chinese, Soviet victory
North Korea FlagNorth Korea

China FlagRepublic of China


Soviet Union FlagSoviet Union

South Korea FlagSouth Korea

United States FlagUnited States


North Korea FlagKim Il Sung

United States FlagRonald Reagan, George H. W. Bush

North Korea Flag2,000,000 soldiers, 500 aircraft, 50 ships.

China Flag3,000,000 soldiers, 340 aircraft, 30 ships.

South Korea Flag1,300,000 soldiers, 250 aircraft, 20 ships.

United States Flag700,000 soldiers, 600 aircraft, 60 ships.

Casualties and losses
1,456,325 soldiers, 342 aircraft, 35 ships.

Civilians: 20,133,340

1,190,050 soldiers, 240 aircraft, 40 ships.

Civilians: 7,457,500

*Casualties estimates
The Second Korean War, 18 April 1986 - 2 March 1989, was a war between North Korea and South Korea, with China and the Soviet Union assisting North Korea, and the United States assisting South Korea. The war arose from rising tensions between the two Korean nations, along with competition between Capitalism and Communism.

On the 19th of April 1986 South Korea launched an attack along the DMZ, Demilitarized Zone, and the United States launched an attack on North Korea's east coast line. As a result North Korea mobilized its troops and begun defensive operations. These operations were effective for sometime, however the United States begun 'operation blowout', a mass bombing raid against North Korean cities, infrastructure and military. This was really effective against North Korea, so much that the nation had to retreat back to Northern Pyongyang. The United States was in control of the east coast from north to south end. This had an political effect on China, North Korea's old ally, with the idea of capitalism next to China's border. China then began talks with North Korea on repealing the United States-South Korean invasion. The Chinese-North Korean counter operations began on the 19th of May 1987, which was a huge success on countering United States troops and South Korean troops. Eventually the border was set back to its original boundary and stalemate battlements have been exchanged. However on the 1st of July 1988 the United States dropped several napalm weapons on North Korean cities, distorting all but Pyongyang. China countered this by dropping bombs and launching terror attacks in South Korea and on the US mainland. On the 2nd of march 1989 peace was declared between the 4 nations.

As a result of the war North Korea became New North Korea, while South Korea rebuilt it's forces and cities.

Background Edit

North Korean depression Edit

North Korea during the early 1980s was in decline. The country's international loans were called back by several banks, however the country was still undergoing industrialization. North Korea defaulted on its loans, forcing to close national industries and international trade, causing it to loose around 20% of its GDP. Mass unemployment arose in 1984 and some areas faced starvation as a result. Kim Il Sung took desperate measures in order to ease the downfall of North Korea by taking personnel funds and introducing mass budget cuts to sectors, including the military. The Soviet Union sent food and financial aid to the country in order to keep the people from revolting against the North Korean government.

South Korean - American talks Edit

South Korea had noticed North Korea's decline, and the United States noted the Soviet Union's aid to the country. North Korea had previously launched terror attacks against the South Korean capital, Seoul, and it was feared that they would start to do so again as apart of a plot to start a revolt against the South Korean government because they caused North Korean depression.

As apart of the anti-communism campaign in the United States, Ronald Reagan proposed to the South Korean government two plans to combat their fears of growing tensions of the north. The first plan was to launch a secret staged revolt against the North Korean government. The second plan was to launch a full scale invasion of North Korea. South Korea first rejected these plans, but the United States promoted the second plan as a 'reunification cure' and 'a show of power for capitalism against communism'. South Korea agreed to the terms on the condition that they would receive UN and United States aid when South Korea had control over North Korea.

Soviet - North Korean relations decline Edit

From the first Korean War, Soviet Unions relations towards North Korea were in steady decline as the country become increasingly dependent on the Soviet Union. When North Korea requested aid from the Soviet Union during its 1980 decline, the Soviet government said to Kim Il Sung that they would prefer to only remain 'friends' not allies, in other words that they would only help out on a few things and not when the country is in disaster.

Course of the warEdit

Outbreak of the war Edit

On the 15th of April 1986 the US-South Korean plan to invade North Korea was put into action. However it was delayed due to severe storms over the Korean peninsula. On the 18th of April the operation was launched, which took North Korea by surprise as their intelligence service didn't report on plots to invade. South Korea with the help of the United States attacked across the DMZ, Demilitarized Zone, while the United States mainly attacked the east coastline of North Korea. North Korea scrambled to mobilize their ground, air and naval units to defend, however the bad weather caused mudslides on the roads blocking some ground convoys. In a matter of days South Korea managed to get past the DMZ and pushed Northward towards Pyongyang, and a few weeks later, on 17 May the United States took the mid to the southern ends of the east coast, including the port of Wonsan at the Battle of Wonsan. North Korea suffered huge losses of troops, aircraft and ships.

North Korean retreat Edit

Kim Il Sung ordered the retreat of the entire North Korean army to south of Pyongyang and to form a line of defence, east to west. However the United States managed to take Wonsan during the Battle of Wonsan, causing the North Korean line of defence to be incomplete. South Korean units stormed through the , Southern regions of North Korea, however they were met with resistance from the locals which slowed some units down. On 21 July US - South Korean forces bombarded the North Korean defence line with air-strikes and artillery fire, breaking through the line on 1 July. The North Korean government retreated to Northern North Korea and evacuated civilians from Pyongyang. On 2 July South Korean forces took Pyongyang with no resistance and finished off pockets of resistance on the North Korean defence line.

Chinese awareness grows Edit

China had been constantly informed by the North Korean government of events so far in the war. The Chinese government was surprised at how quick South Korea and the United States reached Pyongyang. Rumours spread of a US plot to overthrow the Chinese government with a capitalist - communist civil war, plots to invade the Soviet Union and turn Korea to full capitalism. Talks soon began between North Korea and China on Chinese assistance in the war, while the Soviet Union would provide medical aid.

Operation Blowout Edit

The North Korean army managed to defend the mid and northern regions of North Korea, and commence attacks south of the front line. The United States was growing bored of the war, and wanted to finish the war quickly. On 18 September the United States began Operation Blowout, a campaign against remainder North Korean cities, infrastructure and military forces. This proved to be extremely affective and slowly pushed back the North Korean defensive line, however innocent civilians were killed during this campaign.

By 2 May 1987, South Korean and US forces had reached the top end of the country. The North Korean government had retreated into China for protection. The North Korean army was told to retreat into China and the Soviet Union to prepare for a counter attack to take back North Korea. On 11 May North Korea was officially taken by South Korea.

Chinese-North Korean counter attack Edit

On 19 May 1987 China declared war against South Korea and the United States. Chinese and North Korean forces launched a mass counter attack against United States and South Korean forces along the North Korean northern border and North west coast. The attack was a mass success, mainly due to South Korean and US soldiers marching and fighting non-stop for the past year. Kanggye and Chongjin were taken on 27 June at the Battle of Kanggye and the Battle of Chongjin. By 8 July North Korea had its northern territories back.

South Korea-US retreat Edit

South Korean and US forces retreated southward, being pushed by Chinese and North Korean forces. On 4 August South Korean forces were left alone by US forces to defend Pyongyang, during the Battle of Pyongyang. On 16 July North Korean forces re-took Pyongyang. The United States had been pushed further down the east coast and evacuated the remaining troops via Wonsan. By december South Korean and US forces had fully retreated from North Korea.

Fire fights Edit

The United States put Operation blowout back into effect, but widened the North Korean city and infrastructure range. As a result China started terrorist campaign against South Korean cities and US mainland cities, targeting innocent civilians and important buildings.

On the 1 July 1988 the United States further extended Operation blowout with dropping several napalm weapons on North Korean cities. Most North Korean cities were fully destroyed as a result, killings millions of civilians. A few days after China launched several bombing raids against major South Korean cities, destroying half of Seoul and further killing millions of civilians.

Peace deceleration Edit

On the 15 February 1989 a crease fire was declared between the two sides. Peace talks soon began and on 2 March 1989 peace was officially declared between China, North Korea, South Korea and the United States.

Aftermath Edit

North Korea was almost fully destroyed, while South Korea, the United States had some damage and China wasn't harmed badly.

Shortly after the war Kim Il Sung decided to declare a new nation, New North Korea, with new policies and an ideology to improve the quality of life and to improve international relations. China and the Soviet Union funded this new nation with some financial support in order to start things off.

South Korea repaired the damage done during the war and went on to become less-reliant on the United States. The friendly relation between South Korea and the United States was badly affected due to the failure of the plan against North Korea.

The United States recovered and dismissed the war, blaming South Korea for not having a larger involvement

See also Edit

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