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Digital Archive International History Declassified

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Korean War, 1950-1953

A collection of primary source documents related to the Korean War. Obtained largely from Russian archives, the documents include reports on Chinese and Soviet aid to North Korea, allegations that America used biological weapons, and the armistice. (Image, NARA, ARC 541822)

  • October 08, 1950

    Telegram from Shtykov to the Soviet Council of Ministers

    Telegram of the ambassador of the USSR in the DPRK to the Chairman of the Council of Ministers of the USSR with information from the North Korean government about the decision of China to send a volunteer army to Korea

  • October 08, 1950

    Telegram from Shtykov to USSR Council of Ministers

    Telegram from the Ambassador of the USSR in the DPRK to the chairman of the Council of Ministers of the USSR about the reaction of the North Korean leadership to his letter containing the announcement about the support for the war of the Korean people by the PRC and the Soviet Union.

  • October 08, 1950

    Letter from Feng Xi (Stalin) to Kim Il Sung (via Shtytkov)

    Stalin sends Kim a copy of his October 1950 letter to Mao Zedong. Stalin describes the US inability to engage in a "big war" and encourages Kim in his fight against the US.

  • October 09, 1950

    Telegram from Kim Il Sung to Stalin (via Shtykov)

    Kim Il Sung requests that Koreans living in the Soviet Union be trained there for service in the Korean Army, explaining that the strong presence of the American military in Korea will not allow for on-site training. Shytkov attached his support of Kim’s request in this telegram to Stalin.

  • October 10, 1950

    From the Journal of Gromyko, Memorandum on Conversation with Chinese Ambassador Peng Dehuai

    Talks about Ambassador Peng Dehuai's request to send 738 Korean students, of higher education, to Soviet summer schools.

  • October 13, 1950

    Memorandum, Golovko and Fokin to Stalin

    Report of U.S. naval activity in the vicinity of Cheongjin.

  • October 13, 1950

    Ciphered Telegram from Feng Xi (Stalin) to Kim Il Sung (via Shtykov)

    A telegram from Stalin to Shtykov for Kim Il Sung relaying the decision of the Chinese to support North Korea with their troops. This decision is a marked reversal of the negative message sent 3 October by Mao.

  • October 13, 1950

    Telegram, from Gromyko to Stalin

    Account of the reception of the Chinese Ambassador Peng Dehuai. He requested that all Korean undergrad and graduate students be admitted to the Soviet summer schools, as well as Korean specialists who receive production and technical training in industrial settings the USSR (a total of 738 people). Gromyko notes that there are differences between the requests of Dehuai and Kim Il Sung, and that Dehuai has been asked to speak to Kim Il Sung, and clear up the differences.

  • October 13, 1950

    Ciphered Telegram, Roshchin to Filippov (Stalin)

    Message to Stalin from Roshchin relaying the rationale for Mao's reversal of his earlier hesitance to send Chinese troops to the aid of the North Koreans. General plans for the deployment are stated as well as a request for arms on credit from the Soviet Union.

  • October 14, 1950

    Ciphered Telegram, Shtykov to Feng Xi (Stalin)

    Shtykov describes the reactions of Kim Il Sung and Pak Heon-yeong to Stalin's telegram to postpone the evacuation of the troops to the north. (see also)

  • October 14, 1950

    Ciphered Telegram, Feng Xi (Stalin) to Kim Il Sung (via Shtykov)

    Telegram from Stalin to Kim Il Sung informing him of the finalization of China's decision to send troops to North Korea's aid.

  • October 14, 1950

    Letter from Zhou Enlai to Stalin

    Zhou Enlai requests military equipment and support for Chinese operations from the Soviet side, and asks for instructions on solving the issue of command relationships between the North Korean, Chinese, and Soviet forces.

  • October 19, 1950

    Telegram from Zhou Enlai to Chai Junwu

    Zhou Enlai gives instructions to the Chinese embassy in North Korea, stating that the main purpose of the embassy’s work is keeping in contact with the North Korean government and following the North Korean government’s actions.

  • October 20, 1950

    Telegram, from Golovko to Stalin

    Dispatches around 8:00 on October 20 reported that three Korean boats, a big hunter (trapper), a torpedo boat, and a patrol boat crossed the Soviet border with Korea and requested permission to take refuge in the bay.

  • October 25, 1950

    Central Committee Politburo decision with approved directives to Foreign Minister Vyshinsky (at the United Nations in New York) and to Soviet Ambassador in Washington

    Memorandum from the VKP(b) CC to Vyshinksy and the Soviet Representative to the Far Eastern Commission ordering them to protest to their respective bodies in support of the DPRK, the use by the US of Japanese servicemen and military units in combat against DPRK forces.

  • October 29, 1950

    Telegram from I.V. Stalin to Mao Zedong

    Stalin agrees to receive Chinese naval advisers.

  • October 29, 1950

    Letter from Zhou Enlai to Mao Zedong and Liu Shaoqi

    Zhou Enlai informs Mao Zedong and Liu Shaoqi on agreements made with the Soviet side regarding pilots and air defenses at Andong.

  • November 01, 1950

    Telegram from Stalin to Shtykov

    Stalin wants to know in the North Korean government wants Soviet advisers, or if they would prefer to invite the Chinese.

  • November 02, 1950

    Ciphered Telegram from Shtykov to Fyn-Si [Stalin], Transmitting a Letter to Stalin from Kim Il Sung

    In agreement with the Chinese comrades, Korean reserves are to be withdrawn to Manchuria, including nine infantry divisions, and officers school, a tank regiment-in-training, and an air division with an aviation regiment-in-training. Six combat divisions will be preparing in Korea.

  • November 02, 1950

    Ciphered telegram, S.E. Zakharov, Soviet Military Representative in Beijing, to Feng Xi (Stalin)

    Telegram to Stalin reporting on the status--operational readiness and losses incurred--of North Korean air forces.