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15

That's an interesting bit of ridicule, but I think the truth goes deeper than that. The fact is that for most North Koreans, if the women quit working on the black market (aka "free market"), they and their familes would have no money and no food. This isn't a historical thing, but an everyday thing. The choice there today is to work in the black market, or ...


11

Frankly, Korea's history has been so defined by external powers that it would be difficult to imagine what things would have been like without them. You are getting seriously into realms of speculative history. For the most part, the reason people band together into large states or countries is so that they can deal with other such large entities. So it is ...


8

I think what your teacher may have been referring to is not the start of the Korean War in 1950, but the later axe murder incident, a serious border incident in 1976 which involved the deaths of two U.S. soldiers. The tree that was the object of the 1976 axe murder incident (photo 1984). Deliberately left standing after 'Operation Paul Bunyan', the ...


8

You make the mistake of thinking the South Korean economy was as strong as it is today before around 1970. It wasn't. Effectively the country was still an agricultural economy no different from what it had been under Japanese occupation. In the 1960s the South Korean government started massive industrialisation projects, building factories, shipyards, ...


5

I'm sorry to throw a PhD dissertation at you. But I believe Food shortages and economic institutions in the Democratic Peoples' Republic of Korea addresses your concerns. From page 168 (179 on the freely viewable pdf). Addresses whether there was a famine using the accounts you have hinted at as well as UN figures, with comparison to official DPRK figures. ...


4

Following KIMH's magisterial Korean War, republished in English by a US academic press: The Korean War began when alternative anti-Japanese (or in the Southern case, some pro-Japanese) factions of Korean nationalists [and some socialists] fell out and aligned with the respective great powers occupying their country. Both groups of nationalists wished to ...


3

Arguably, the Korean War was started when the then Secretary of State, Dean Acheson, drew a U.S. "defense perimeter" through the Sea of Japan, leaving South Korea outside it. That may have caused North Korea's allies, Stalin's Soviet Union, and Mao Tse-tung's China, to give North Korea the "go ahead" to invade South Korea.



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