Korean War Memorial


bloom county war
Cartoon by Berke Breathed (Bloom County Babylon: Five Years of Basic Naughtiness)

The cartoon kinda sums up my confused state of mind.    When I was a wee lad, I grew up  on a diet of television series like “Combat”, movies like Chuck Norris’ “Missing in Action” and Commando War Comics. All of which tended to give a glorified and sanitized portrayal of war, in that, the bad guys are usually clearly viciously bad and deserve to be killed by the virtuous good guy heroes who almost always just get flesh wounds.

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And so, I grew up playing soldier and even cowboys and Indians.  Only later did I begin to understand that war is almost never clear cut black and white and it’s not just the bad guys that get killed.  I learned about “collateral damage”, “civilian casualties”, “killing fields” and “genocide”. I began to see that war wasn’t cool.

Today, I consider myself to be firmly in the peace-loving, pacifist, flower-power camp.  Or at least, that’s who I grew up to be.  And yet, I confess that I was excited to have the opportunity, with my brother,  to visit the Korean War Memorial and their open air collection of war machines.  Please forgive this relapsing war-junkie as I guiltily present some photos from that visit.

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Enter Korean War Memorial (Photo by LGS)
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The front of the Monument showing the brave and valiant fighters (Photo by LGS)
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The rear of the Monument showing perhaps the suffering of the people (Photo by LGS)
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F86L Sabre (Photo by LGS’ brother)
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F-51D Mustang (Photo by LGS)
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The opposing MIG 19 (Photo by LGS)
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LGS valiantly defending against air attack (Photo by LGS’ brother)
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The Hardware of War (Photo by LGS)
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American Tanks (Photo by LGS)
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Cool-looking attack boat (Photo by LGS)
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This Patrol Boat actually took place in the Second Battle of Yeonpyeong and still carries the scars of the battle to repel a North Korean naval incursion in 2002 in which 6 South Koreans lost their lives. The red holes are battle damage. (Photo by LGS)
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11 thoughts on “Korean War Memorial”

  1. Only 2002, achach … If I remember correctly some islands were attacked & burnt, but I may be wrong.
    I would rally around and climb on every tank. I really want to visit the European tank museums like Bovington, Musee des Blindes and Kubinka. I think once a year the machines get started in England and they take them out for a ride in the sandbox. And of course there is the Russian tank biathlon.

  2. Mago,
    There were some islands attacked but not sure when that was. So you have a liking for tanks. I wonder what it is like to drive a tank cross country. What is a Russian tank biathlon? I only know biathlon as a sport on skis.

  3. Mark,
    I have been to the US Korean War Memorial and I posted about it here. Of all the memorials, I like it the best because of exactly the fact that its focus was on the war weary troops and the faces of the ordinary soldiers and civilians that were caught up in it. Simple but remembering the people as it should.

    Oh! Oh! Oh! And I don’t care….my gun is B..I…G…G…E…R!!!!! Too bad the barrels have been jammed. Sigh.

  4. I’m a peace-lover myself, but I grew up in a military family so I do find that sort of thing fascinating, too. I have toured many a battlefield here in the States!

  5. Secret Agent,
    I haven’t done much of battlefield tours. I know it is silly but I think I would be a bit overwhelmed by the realisation that many lives were lost where I would be walking. On a much happier note, congrats on your new not-so-secret assignment.

  6. Tank biathlon (Eng.) is drive & shoot at various obstacles. Time and accuracy count, pretty challenging tasks. Crews have to use the same model and make.

  7. Mago,
    Sounds like fun. I remember an old computer arcade type game which I think was called tanks. One tactic that always worked was to drive the tank as fast as possible to the opposing tank. The computer controlled tank will have difficulty adjusting to a moving target. But as you get closer, eventually the other tank will be directly in your gun sight an you can fire and kill. Probably doesn’t work with real tanks on real ground.

  8. RK,
    Ummm…….I can’t help noticing that your kitty alter ego blasts away with a machine gun! Just kidding.
    Unfortunately, in the world we live in, the peace that some of us enjoy is only there because of the willingness of others to fight for it. My thanks for all those that fought for those who couldn’t fight for themselves.

  9. What you describe is exactly a tactic used during WWII by various tank platoons in different armies. The Russians f.e. used this when facing technically superior German tanks : Fast attack in a bunch and then shoot the can to pieces. Same did American troops.

    When the distance for them to attack was too wide the German gunners could use their stronger fire power and wider range, point and take out even a numerically stronger attack group one by one.

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