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Digital Archive International History Declassified

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North Korean Military Adventurism

This collection of documents provides a historical record of North Korea's brinkmanship and military-diplomatic campaigns since 1968, including the seizure of the USS Pueblo, attempted assassinations of President Park Chung Hee, and the murder of two U.S. Army officers in the axe murder incident.

  • June 04, 1968

    Military-Political Situation in the DPRK

    Despite tensions on the Korean Peninsula, the DPRK is calming down. Czechoslovak diplomats speculate what underlies the changes in DPRK tactics.

  • June 18, 1968

    Note on a Conversation with the Director of the 1st Department of the Foreign Ministry of the DPRK, Comrade Ri In-gyu, on 15 June 1968, from 4:00 p.m. to 5:30 p.m.

    Ri In-gyu criticizes United States policy towards the two Koreas and the actions of the U.S. government in Asia.

  • July 29, 1968

    Note on the Farewell Visit of the Polish Ambassador to the DPRK, Comrade Naperei, with Comrade Jarck on 26 July 1968 between 11:00 and 12:30 hours

    The German and Polish ambassadors in North Korea review clashes along the DMZ, the capture of the USS Pueblo, and the connections between Prague Spring and events in Korea.

  • July 29, 1968

    A Conversation with the 1st Secretary of the Embassy of the USSR in the DPRK, Comrade Zvetkov, and Comrade Jarck.

    With the lack of coal, coke, water, steel, and iron Kim Il Sung expresses the domestic problems in the DPRK to Comrade Novikov. He thanks the USSR for their aid and stresses the importance of the organization of Communist countries especially after the Pueblo incident.

  • August 08, 1968

    Note on a Conversation between the 1st Secretary in the USSR Embassy, Comrade Zvetkov, and Comrade Jarck on 7 August 1968 between 17:00 and 19:00 hours

    The East German Ambassador in the DPRK summarizes South Korea's revised and strengthened military policy in the wake of North Korea's provocations in 1968.

  • October 03, 1968

    Letter, William B. Buffum to Mr. Liu Chieh containing "Report of the United Nations Command to the United Nations"

    A letter from William Buffum containing a report on the continuation of serious North Korean violations of the Armistice Agreement.

  • November 15, 1968

    Report, Embassy of Hungary in North Korea to the Hungarian Foreign Ministry, 15 November 1968

    The Hungarian Embassy provides a brief on a visit by the Japanese Communist Party to North Korea.

  • April 16, 1969

    Record of Conversation between N.G. Sudarikov and Heo Dam, the leader of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of DPRK

    Heo Dam reports on the DPRK's recent shootdown of an American plane which violated North Korean air space.

  • April 16, 1969

    Record of Conversation between N.G. Sudarikov and Pak Seong-cheol, a Member of the Political Committee of the Workers' Party of Korea

    Sudarikov updates Pak Seong-cheol on the US and South Korean reactions following the shootdown of the American airplane. Pak Seong-cheol says that the DPRK should not forgive this imperialistic enemy.

  • May 09, 1969

    Letter, Ambassador Yong Shik Kim to UN Secretary-General U Thant

    Republic of Korea Ambassador to the United Nations Yong Shik Kim transmits to Secretary-General of the United Nations U Thant the 2 May 1969 ROK memorandum concerning the shooting down of the U.S. reconnaissance plane by North Korea.

  • July 01, 1969

    Letter, UN Chef de Cabinet C.V. Narasimhan to UNCURK Ambassador Kim Yong Shik, Concerning North Korean Infiltration

    Chef de Cabinet of the United Nations C.V. Narasimhan acknowledges his receipt of an ROK government memorandum sent from ROK Ambassador to the United Nations Kim Yong Shik to Secretary-General of the United Nations U Thant. Kim's letter outlines North Korean infiltrations from 8 June 1969 to 14 June 1969 and the need to halt further actions which violate the Armistice Agreement.

  • February 23, 1970

    Letter, Anti-Communist League Secretary-General Jose Ma. Hernandez, Concerning North Korean Aggressions

    Secretary-General of the World Anti-Communist League Jose Ma. Hernandez raises a call to arms to the Red Cross and United Nations in response to North Korean KAL hijacking and potential biological warfare.

  • October 16, 1970

    Letters, UNCURK Principal Secretary Kuzbari to UN Chef de Cabinet Narasimhan, Concerning DMZ Incidents and MAC

    Principal Secretary of the UN Commission for the Unification and Rehabilitation of Korea Zouheir Kuzbari updates Chef de Cabinet of the UN C.V. Narasimhan on the armed clashes between North Korean infiltrators and ROK Army soldiers and proposal of joint measures between MAC and DPRK to alleviate tensions in the Joint Security Area.

  • February 23, 1972

    Letters between Ahmet H. Ozbudun and C.V. Narasimhan

    Ozbudun sends Narasimhan a letter on the 19th ROK-DPRK Red Cross preliminary meeting, the first session of the Commission for 1972, a briefing for UNCURK, Japan-DPRK trade and other "relations", and statement of the ROK Foreign Minister on pre-conditions towards a Korean settlement.

  • February 23, 1972

    Letters between Narasimhan and Ozbudun

    Update on UNCURK committee meetings, 19th preliminary Red Cross negotiations, ROK statement on preconditions for Korean settlement, and expedition of Japan-DPRK trade relationship.

  • March 16, 1973

    ROK Foreign Ministry, "An Incident of Armed Agents Infiltration"

    A confidential note by the Secretariat on an incident of armes agents infiltration on March 4, 1973 and a shooting incident along the Military Demarcation Line on March 7, 1973.

  • March 21, 1973

    Letter, Ahmet H. Ozbudun to C.V. Narasimhan, "Briefing by the ROK Foreign Minister"

    Ozbudun sends Narasimhan a letter containing a briefing by the ROK Foreign Minister on the issue of security incidents, the German example and Korea, South-North dialogue, and policy of the ROK at the United Nations. Second session of the North-South co-ordination committee and commander of the Capital Garrison command being arrested for a coup d'etat attempt are also mentioned.

  • April 24, 1973

    Letters between Ahmet H. Ozbudun and C.V. Narasimhan

    Upadhya sends Narasimhan a report on North Korean infiltrators being killed by South Korean forces inside the DMZ on 18 April, 1973.

  • August 30, 1973

    Letter, Melih Ercin to His Excellency Kurt Waldheim containing 'Report of the United Nations Commission for the Unification and Rehabilitation of Korea'

    A report of the United Nations Commission for the Unification and Rehabilitation of Korea, covering the period from 19 August 1972 through 30 August 1973.

  • August 19, 1976

    Letter, W. Tapley Bennett, Jr., to Isao Abe

    W. Tapley Bennett sends a report of the United Nations Command on an incident in the Joint Security Area of the Demilitarized Zone in Korea.Two United Nations Command personnel were beaten to death and several others including UNC and Republic of Korea personnel were wounded by North Koreans.