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Digital Archive International History Declassified

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  • July 11, 1948

    Record of Conversation between Kim Gu and Liu Yuwan

    Kim Gu (Kim Koo) and the Chinese Nationalist Minister Liu Yuwan discuss Kim's participation in the South Korean government, his attendance at a conference in Pyongyang, and the possibility of a Russian-led attack on southern Korea.

  • May 02, 1949

    Telegram from Shtykov on Preparations for an Attack on North Korea

    Soviet Ambassador to North Korea Shtykov reports that South Korean forces were being expanded with US assistance and that the government of President Syngman Rhee was taking steps to increase the combat readiness of its army.

  • May 18, 1949

    Telegram from the leader of the group of Soviet specialists in Northeast China to the Chairman of the USSR Council of Ministers about the results of the Chinese-Korean talks on military cooperation

    A telegram from the leader of the group of Soviet specialists in Northeast China to the Chairman of the USSR Council of Ministers about the results of Chinese-Korean talks on military cooperation.

  • September 03, 1949

    Telegram from Shtykov to Vyshinsky

    Kim Il Sung, having recieved intelligence suggesting South Korea intended to seize the Ongjin Peninsula, requests Soviet permission to move further into South Korea.

  • September 11, 1949

    Telegram from Gromyko to Tunkin at the Soviet Embassy in Pyongyang

    The Soviet Union sends a set of questions to Kim Il Sung on about the South Korean army and North Korea's war plans.

  • September 14, 1949

    Telegram from Tunkin to the Soviet Foreign Ministry in Reply to 11 September Telegram

    North Korea plans to attack South Korea, but the Soviet Foreign Ministry is skeptical about North Korea's actual military capabilities and generally disproves of North Korea's plans.

  • September 24, 1949

    Politburo Decision to Confirm the Following Directive to the Soviet Ambassador in Korea

    The Soviet Politburo argues that North Korea is not ready to launch a successful overthrow of the South Korean regime and suggests North Korea should concentrate its efforts on developing partisan groups in South Korea.

  • December 29, 1949

    Telegram to Mao Zedong from Nie Rongzhen concerning the Repatriation of Ethnic Korean Soldiers to North Korea

    Lin Biao asks for instructions on whether to send ethnic Korean officers and soldiers to North Korea.

  • 1950

    Register of Letters Received from China

    A list of letters of support from China received by the North Korean government during the Korean War.

  • January 11, 1950

    Cable, Central Military Commission to Lin Biao, Deng Zihui, Tan Zhen, Xiao Ke, and Zhao Erlu

    To the question of whether to send back the ethnic Korean officers back to Korea, the Central Military Commission answers in the affirmative and writes that CMC has already asked for Korean officers to come to China to reorganize the troops and bring them back home.

  • January 19, 1950

    Telegram Shtykov to Vyshinsky on a Luncheon at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the DPRK

    Shtykov reports a meeting with Kim Il Sung, along with Chinese and Korean delegates. Kim Il Sung expresses his view on the prospect of a liberation of the South Korean people that is to follow the Chinese success in liberation. Kim expresses his view that the South Koreans support his cause for reunification which the South Korean government does not seem to purse, and that he desires to ask Stalin for permission on an offensive action on South Korea.

  • January 22, 1950

    Telegram from Liu Shaoqi to Mao Zedong

    Liu Shaoqi reports to Mao Zedong that the ethnic Korean officers have arrived to bring back the ethnic Koreans to Korea. To the request of the North Korean officers in bringing back the weapons ethnic Korean officers had used, Mao responds in the affirmative.

  • January 30, 1950

    Telegram from Stalin to Shtykov

    Stalin asks Shtykov to relay a message to Kim Il Sung about North Korea's proposed offensive against South Korea and Soviet Union's request for lead from North Korea.

  • January 31, 1950

    Telegram from the USSR Ambassador to the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea to Stalin

    As a response to Stalin's willingness to talk to Kim Il Sung on the issue of offensive attack to South Korea and on Stalin's request of lead, Kim Il Sung, according to Shtykov, responded that he would like to set up a meeting with him, and that he would take necessary measures for the lead to be delivered to the Soviet Union.

  • May 12, 1950

    Telegram from Shtykov to Vyshinski regarding meeting with Kim Il Sung

    Shtykov reports of a meeting with Kim Il Sung, in which Kim Il Sung tells Shtykov the questions he means to ask Mao Zedong in a following meeting in Beijing the next day.

  • May 13, 1950

    Cable from Roshchin to Stalin, Relaying Mao's Request for Clarification on North Korea Taking Action Against South Korea

    The telegram relays a request from Mao, conveyed via Chinese Foreign Minister Zhou Enlai, seeking Stalin’s “personal clarifications” of his stand on a potential North Korean action to reunify the country. Mao sought the information after hearing a report from Kim, who had arrived that day in the Chinese capital for a secret two-day visit and clearly claimed that he had received Stalin’s blessing.

  • May 14, 1950

    Telegram from Roshchin to Stalin

    Soviet Ambassador to China N.V. Roschin relays a Chinese assessment of the armed forces in North Korea and South Korea and the possibility of China and North Korea signing a treaty of friendship, alliance, and mutual aid.

  • May 14, 1950

    Cable from Vyshinsky to Mao Zedong, Relaying Stalin's Stance on Permission for North Korea to attack South Korea

    The cable contains Stalin’s personal response to Mao's 13 May telegram. Using the code-name “Filippov,” Stalin confirms his agreement with the North Korean proposal to “move toward reunification,” contingent on Beijing’s assent.

  • May 16, 1950

    Telegram from Filippov (Stalin) to Mao Zedong via the Soviet ambassador

    Stalin notifies Mao Zedong that he believes the signing of a treaty pact between China and North Korea should only come after Korean reunification.

  • May 30, 1950

    Telegram from Soviet Ambassador in Pyongyang, Report on a Meeting between Shtykov and Kim Il Sung

    Terenti Shtykov reports on Kim Il Sung's military planning for an invasion of South Korea and signals Soviet approval for the invasion.