• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Assess the reasons why the USA intervened in Korea 1950 to 1953.

Extracts from this document...


Assess the reasons why the USA intervened in Korea 1950 to 1953. The Korean War was the USA's first major military venture following the Second World War. From 1950 to 1953 the USA alongside many allies fought under the auspices of the United Nations to resist aggression and then to roll back the encroachment of communism in the Korean Peninsula. The USA could justify their claims to be fighting in the interests of 'collective security' in resisting aggression from North Korea, this enabled the close cooperation of the USA with the UN, keen to avoid the taint of failure attributed to its predecessor the League of Nations. As a willing participant in the United Nations, the USA was showing its resolve not to remain isolated and to confront potential threats to global security. The USA was helped by the boycott of the UN by the Soviets following the failure to recognise the government of Chairman Mao, the People's Republic of China in 1949. ...read more.


There is no substantial evidence that Moscow supported and approved of Kim Il Sung's actions, this is clearly indicated in the limited military support provided to North Korea by the Soviets. The perception of Soviet malfeasance spurred the US into taking more decisive action. The US military establishment and defence department pounced on Korea as the means to expand US 'peacetime' defence spending, the proposals of NSC-68 to increase spending on nuclear and conventional forces had a limited impact on Truman and Congress until Korea provided the pretext for escalating US military commitment. Korea also came at an appropriate time for politicians keen to play on the 'Red Scare' like Senator McCarthy, in an atmosphere of intimidation, it was vital for the US government to be seen to be acting tough in the face of communism. It is uncertain whether the US intervened in Korea in order to contain communist North Korean expansion or to eradicate communism from the peninsula, a policy of 'rollback'. ...read more.


The US had grown weary of their involvement, unsure of what their role or purpose had been. US involvement in Korea stemmed from the desire to contain communism, had non-communist aggression been involved then it is inconceivable for Truman to take the action that he did. The involvement of the UN did little more than provide a legitimate pretext for US action and allow it to show moral leadership. US concerns were not about the inhabitants of Seoul or Pyongyang but rather in the interests of preventing, what it feared was the inexorable, expansion of communism in Asia. Once containment had been achieved then the US sought to push the frontiers of communism back in response to domestic pressures and military interests. The failure to strike this decisive blow against Korea, China or the Soviet Union then led to disenchantment and US desire to disentangle itself from its commitment. These were the reasons why the USA intervened in Korea 1950 to 1953. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level International History, 1945-1991 section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level International History, 1945-1991 essays

  1. Why did North Korea invade South Korea in June 1950, and why did USA ...

    the Second World War, had fought against the Japanese as a guerrilla in Manchuria. With the help of the Soviets the North Korean Communist party was formed in July 1946. Kim established authority over prominent figures in the party with the help of the Soviets.

  2. North Korea and South Korea after the Korean war.

    Therefore in 1993 the United States directly spoke with the DPRK about the situation by sending Jimmy Carter.16 Former President Carter helped resolve the issue by making a "good will" visit to Pyongyang. Surprising many, Kim Il Sung agreed to work with the US and the ROC to come to a solution on this issue.

  1. A Divided Union? The USA, 1941-80

    The same policy continued during the Second World War. In 1941 Philip Randolph organised a march of 100,000 on Washington, with the slogan "We loyal Americans demand the right to work and fight for our country". In 1942 the Congress of Racial Equality (CORE) was set up. Black Americans were recruited into all three armed services, but had to serve in separate units.

  2. History of the United States

    Then mining corporations took over, using hired laborers and eastern- trained engineers. Indians were either brutally exterminated or placed on small reservations. Warfare with the Great Plains Indians broke out in 1864; these INDIAN WARS did not entirely subside until after the slaughtering of the buffalo herds, the basis of Indian life, which had occurred by the mid-1880s.

  1. Analyse and Discuss the Reasons Behind the Breakdown in the Relationship Between the United States a

    The area of trade proved another source of disagreement, Roosevelt's " lend lease" scheme that had been of enormous influence throughout the conflict. to all Allied nations, more or less came to an end on the ascension of Truman to the Presidency.

  2. The Illuminati Conspiracy Manifesto.

    The 'freedom fighters' are not infrequently assembled from a local criminal element (i.e. KLA, drug traffickers). In the spirit of true Machiavellian deceit, the same NWO strategists are equally involved in covertly arming and advising the leader of the established power as well (the Illuminati always profits from any armed

  1. Red Scare and USA domestic policy in the 50´s.

    They had visions of the communists overrunning all of Asia. Their fear increased when in September 1950 all except a small corner of Korea was under communist control. USA response to this was making the UN pass a resolution in which said that the UN was now committed to using

  2. Why did Truman commit the USA to a war in Korea in June 1950?

    Also post-war events in Europe had highlighted the real dangers of the expansionist Communists. Their methods of election rigging, intimidation and murder, had seen Europe "trampled underfoot" by the USSR. Thus if Truman was able to counter the Soviet-inspired thrust in Korea, he would tip the balance back in the favour of the West, the protectors of democracy and freedom.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work