Why Did the Korean War Last so Long?

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The Korean War, started by Kim Il Sung in 1950, was only expected to last a few weeks but actually turned into a vicious and bloody struggle lasting 3 years. By 1951, it had become a war of attrition – each side wanting victory and wearing each other down until 1953. There are many reasons that could be argued as to why the war lasted for so long, which include: cold war ideology that led to ‘see-saw’ fighting; the fact that no-one could come to an agreement about armistice; UN/America’s involvement in the war and China’s involvement in the war. One of the reasons that the Korean War lasted for 3 long years was because of the reoccurring stalemate and ‘see-saw fighting’ – this was where if North Korea managed to push South Korea back a little, then consequently it would only be a matter of time until South Korea pushed back North Korea and so on. This was mainly all because of the Cold War ideology; neither side wanted to back down. The North Koreans, under the power of Kim Il Sung wanted to reunify Korea and make it all Communist. The South however, under the anti-Communist ruling of Syngman Rhee (who detested Kim Il Sung) was obviously against this. An example of this ‘see-saw’ fighting was near the beginning of the war – troops in the South were unprepared and were pushed back into a small corner of South Korea when North Korea attacked. This situation was very quickly reversed when the United Nations landed in North Korea and cut off their supply lines, which caused the North Korean armies to flee back north. This ‘see-saw fighting’ and stalemate situation clearly prolonged the war, as a lot of time was wasted doing pretty much nothing. Another reason that the war lasted for so long was because no one could come to an agreement about armistice. The negotiations at Kaesong in the summer of 1951 dragged on for about one-and-a-half to two years, and this was
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