How far was the Korean War a militant and political success for the US?
The world was by taken by surprise when North Korean forces crossed the 38th parallel in June 1950. The war that followed soon snowballed out of proportion, spreading out to involve China, the Soviet Union, and the UN and is said by historians to have shaped US foreign policy as it is today. But was the war a success, or was it merely another black whole swallowing the lives of American, Korean and Chinese soldiers?
From a militant point of view it may be said that the war was a success. General MacArthur, who was appointed by President Truman as Commander of UN forces in Korea in 1950, is said to be the one saving the war from being completely lost by the Americans. General MacArthur’s brilliant strategies, willfulness, egomania and refusal to obey orders dramatically influenced the outcome of the war in both positive and negative ways. He was the one launching the Inchon-landing, and even though the landing was full of risks because of the geographical factors, it was a major success for the US. This attack, together with the breakout of Walker’s troops forced back into the Pusan area, trapped more than half of the North Korean’s NKPA troops. However, in the months that followed with the expanding victories by the US and with the troops pushing closer and closer to China, China itself sent major numbers of troops, unwilling to let the US come closer to their doorstep. The outcome of the war turned, and again, the enemy was literally standing on the 38th parallel. But MacArthur was fierce full and threatened with the use of nuclear weapons. Suddenly both political and moral discussions threatened the war. However, President Truman and his Joint Chiefs of Staff, who were confident they had won a major victory and had seen the end of the war, had already contemplated in changing their foreign policy from one of the containment of communism to the roll back of communism in the north...
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