Stalin’s decision: the origins of the Korean War
Monger, Bradley M.
Moran, Daniel J.
Weiner, Robert J.
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Despite an initial denial in 1949, in 1950 Stalin decided to support Kim Il-sung’s request for military operations to unify Korea. This historical approach into the origins of the Korea War explores how Stalin’s role in manipulating both Mao Zedong and Kim into conflict in Korea. His approach allowed for two critical strategic and political victories for the Soviet Union in the early stages of the Cold War. First, with the revolutionary success of the Chinese, Stalin could use the communist movement in East Asia to further secure the Soviet buffer zone. Second, in approving Kim’s war plans, Stalin forced Mao to abandon his desire to capture Taiwan and instead divert military efforts toward the Korean peninsula. Thus, Stalin was able to successfully use the Korean War as a means for his more important objective: the continued isolation of China from the United States.
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