Asia Report - Koreas - Historic Map : Koreas in 1953 AD
A historic geographic Map dated to the year 1953 AD, the year of the Armistice in the Korean War that is still in force today.
This Geographic Map depicts the entire Korean Peninsula and parts of neighboring regions of Shandong Province, Liaoning Province and Jilin Province of China (P.R.C.), Primorky Krai Province of the Russian Federation and last Japan. Included on the Map are main Cities, Towns and villages, main road, connections, railroads and sites of historic or other interests.
Browse the map to explore the historic situation at the end of the Korean War (1951 - Armistice 1953) and the connections between Liaoning Province and Jilin Province of The Peoples Republic of China and the Democratic Peoples Republic of Korea (North Korea). Click and follow the links to further information, photos and maps.
March 5, 1953 - The R.O.K. National Assembly carries an amendment of the Constitution, allowing Syngman Rhee to seek a third term as President of the Republic of Korea. Undertones of cronyism and corruption become clear in the R.O.K.
December 1954 - Leading "Yanan Group" (연안파, 延安派) Leaders are purged from the Korean Workers Party in North Korea (D.P.R.K.) as they are accused of factionalism and "weak class consciousness". The move initiated and carried through by Kim Il-Song deminishes Chinese Influence in North Korea and eliminates a possible political threat to the "Great Leader". Mu Chong and a number of other North Korean military leaders with strong Chinese ties were expelled from the party and Mu was forced to return to China (P.R.C.) where he spent the rest of his life. Kim Il-Song also removed Pak Il-u, the Minister of the Interior and reputedly the personal representative of Mao Zedong.
December 28, 1955 - Juche ideology begins to take shape as North Korean Leader Kim Il-Song delivers a landmark speech titled "On Eleminitaion of Dogmatism". The speech and earlier political moves in 1954 mark a new direction in North Korean politics, turning away from its two powerful neighbors and allies.
January 4, 1956 - Pak Ch'ang-Ok is removed as Chairman of the Economic Planning Commission in North Korea (D.P.R.K.) bringing an end to pro-Soviet influences in the field of economic planning.
February, 1956 - Soviet Communist Leader and Generaly Secretary of the Russian Communist Party Nikita Khrushchev denounces former Soviet Leader Stalin during a secret session of the 20th Congress of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union (U.S.S.R.). The speech has a ripple effect on other Communist States around the world, enraging Mao Zedong in the Peoples Republic of China, but leading to similar political moves towards a "De-Stalinization" in other countries including North Korea (D.P.R.K.).
April 23 to 29, 1956 - The 3rd Congress of the Korean Workers Party convenes in the North Korean Capital of Pyongyang.
May 15, 1956 - Syngman Rhee is re-elected President of South Korea (R.O.K.) starting his 3rd term in Office in the Capital Seoul.
August 30, 1956 - An emergency planning session of the Korean Workers Party Politburo attacks Kim Il-Song's personality cult and leadership. With this event the newfound trend of "De-Stalinization" becomes evident within North Korean politics. As in the Peoples' Republic of China, the attempts to vote down and remove the Supreme Leader fail and afterwards the leading dissenters are attacked themselves. In North Korea they are arrested.
September, 1956 - The Korean Workers Party is purged of "Anti-Kim-ists", a drive which continues throughout the year 1957.
March 3 through 6, 1958 - The First Korean Workers Party Purges remaining "Anti-Kim-ist" Politburo members.
May 2, 1958 - Fourth R.O.K. National Assembly elections are held in South Korea (R.O.K.). The Votes for the Liberal Party of President Syngman Rhee decline to a mere 38.7 procent (versus 74% in the second elections) as dissent with the autocratic and corrupt Government run by Syngman Rhee grows.
The Great Leap (Forward) - Communism in China, find out about it and see the Documentary !
In August of 1972 - North Korean Leader Kim Il-Song pays a visit to the "old revolutionary friends" Mao Zedong and Zhou Enlai in Beijing, trying to sense the direction of future Chinese policies including those towards the D.P.R.K. and the remaining "Korean question (I.e. the involuntary division of Korea by outside powers as 1st established in 1945)".
October 17th, 1972 - General Park Chung-Hee initiates a Coup against his own military backed regime. Martial Law is declared throughout South Korea, followed by the enactment of the "October Revitalizing Reforms" (Law) and the installment of the "Yushin" Constitution amendments. It is the beginning of the so-called "Yushin Reign" in South Korea.
December 1972 - The D.P.R.K. announces the enactment of a new State constitution.
February 13, 1973 - Organization of the "Three Revolutions Teams Movement" introducing Son of Kim Il-Song, Kim Yong-Il as a key leader working within the Korean Workers Party state framework. The major ideological campaign of the Three Revolutions was a political as well as economic campaign aimed at "re-invigorating" revolutionary spirit among the core industry workers in mining, heavy industry and other major production sectors in the hope of increasing production and thus stimulate economic growth. Although his position as such was not revealed to the outside world until 1974, Kim Yong-Il was a key leader of the "Three Revolutions Team Movement" and major ideological works associated movement were associated with Kim Yong-Il, a fact that laid the foundations for his claim to be an important theoretical thinker in his own right.
As the three revolutions teams movement progressed, over time a miniature personality cult started to build around Kim Yong-Il's person, featuring quotes from his revolutionary writing, songs of praise and ardent study of his core works of theoretical thinking.
Richard Nixon and Zhou Enlai toasting the international breakthrough in February 1972 at the Great Hall of the Peoples.
July 1961 - Kim Il Song, Leader of the Korean Workers Party of the D.P.R.K. visits the U.S.S.R. as well as the Peoples Republic of China signing mutual defense treaties.
September 11, 1961 - The 4Th Korean Workers Party Congress opens in Pyongyang, North Korea (D.P.R.K.).
October 17 through 31, 1961 - During the 22nd Congress of the C.P.S.U. in Moscow, U.S.S.R. high Soviet Cadres increase their attacks on the Chinese Leadership and Policies further widening the so-called "Sino-Soviet split". In the aftermath of this Congress, during the year 1962 the Korean Workers Party began to side openly with the P.R.C. not only on issues such as the personality cult and anti-revisionism but also against Khrushchev's theory of peaceful coexistence. The new attitude sends a clear message of North Korea's defiance against its
You Tube Video: North Korean supreme Leader Kim Il-Song's visit to China between 1961 and 1964.
former supposed Soviet overlords.
November 1961 - The D.P.R.K. sends an official congratulatory message to the Albanian Communist Party on its Twentieth anniversary, marking a public split with Moscow on the equality of all Communist Parties. After this event, relations between the D.P.R.K. and the Soviet Union (U.S.S.R.) quickly deteriorate.
October 22, 1962 - When U.S. President John F. Kennedy reveals the existance of Soviet Ballistic Missile sites in Cuba, the so-called "Cuban Missile Crisis" begins. After a U.S. Plane is shot-down while overflying the Island of Cuba and a Naval Blockade of Cuba is enforced by the U.S. the world is plunged into crisis that may lead to a global nuclear war.
The Cuban Missile Crisis Ends on November 2nd, 1962 when Soviet Leader Nikita Khruschev announces the dismantling of the missile sites in Cuba (in return for dismantling of (older) U.S. short range ballistic missile sites in Turkey). The D.P.R.K. openly critizes the "backing down" by Soviet Forces.
December 10, 1962 - The Fifth Plenum of the Fourth Congress of the Korean Workers Party enunciates the "Equal Emphazis" Policy", which puts the military needs on par with the needs to rebuild and develop the National Economy. This policy rapidly transform the North Korean state policy and as a result its society.
December 17, 1961 - A National Referendum approves a new Constitution in the R.O.K. enabling a strong position for the Presidency, while weakening the Legislative Branch by installing a one Chamber Parliament with a proportional representation component.
January 1963 - After publicly attacking the D.P.R.K. as being pro-Chinese, the Soviet Union abruptly cuts of Military and Economic Aid to the D.P.R.K. North Korean isolation grows leading in time to further radicalization of Communist Policies within the D.P.R.K.
February 26, 1963 - Finding himself under pressure from the Kennedy administration in the United States, in the South General Park Chung-Hee intitutionalizes his power through the formation of the Democratic Republican Party, establishing a (semi-)civilian branch and publicly more acceptable front for his illigitimate Military Regime. The "Democratic Republic Party" will remain in power as the largest political party within South Korea (R.O.K.) until the year 1980, albeit against considerable public discontent.
October 15, 1963 - General Park is elected President of the "Third Republic of South Korea" (R.O.K.).
May 1, 1964 - Lyndon B. Johnson requested South Korean participation in the War in Vietnam. Former South Korean president Syngman Rhee, an outright anti-Communist, had offered to send troops to Vietnam as early as 1954, but this initial proposal was turned down by the U.S. Department of State for various reasons. In November 1961, General Park Chung Hee, head of the military backed autocratic R.O.K. Government, proposed South Korean participation in the war to John F. Kennedy, but Kennedy disagreed. In the aftermath of the Kennedy murder, the war in Vietnam escalated with U.S. Combat troops deploying in Vietnam in 1964 and '65, at which time President Lyndon Johnston requested the help of the vehimently anti-communist South Korean military Government.
The first South Korean army personnel to land in Vietnam in 1964, were non-combatants: ten Taekwondo instructors, along with thirty-four officers and ninety-six enlisted men of a Korean Army hospital unit. However, not much later in 1965 (See below) the first contigent of R.O.K. troops, some 20.000 were sent to Vietnam for Combat Duty.
October 1964 - The ouster of Nikita Khruschev as Secretary and Leader of the Communist Party of the U.S.S.R. North Korea sends a congratulatory message to the newly emerging Leadership of the U.S.S.R. hoping for a more hard line approach to Cold War issues.
February 1965 - Relations between the D.P.R.K. and the Soviet Union are restored as is shown by a personal visit to Pyongyang by the new Soviet Premier Alexei Kosygin.
June 22, 1965 - Normalization of R.O.K. - Japan relations is effected with the R.O.K. - Japan Basic Treaty. Although publicly unpopular, the decision to normalize relations with Japan opens a whole series of economic opportunities for the R.O.K. and its ruling Elite.
August 13, 1965 - The R.O.K. Government resolves to send combat troops to Vietnam. However, the first contigent of troops, some 20.000 were sent to Vietnam for Combat Duty. In total, between 1965 and 1973, an official number of 312,853 South Korean soldiers fought in Vietnam.
The Vietnam war provided a large boost to the South Korean (R.O.K.) economy as large South Korean Companies (Chaebol) were assigned lucrative contracts for base construction, infra-structure projects and the like. Furthermore, the United States paid South Korean soldiers USD 236 million for their service in Vietnam. South Korean GNP increased five-fold during the Vietnam war allowing further development and reshaping of its centrally led economy.
November 1965 - Mao Zedong sets in motion what will later be recognized as the first beginnings of the "Cultural Revolution", a movement againt revisionism and internal opposition within the Chinese Communist Party and its Centrally led Government.
May 1966 - The Peoples Republic of China withdraws their delegate from the Military Armistice Commission talks at Panmunjon not to return until July 1971, just previous to the official Nixon visit to China.
May 1966 - In late May 1966, the North Vietnamese 324B Division crosses the Demilitarized Zone (DMZ) and encounters a battalion of the U.S. Marines. The NVA holds their ground and the largest battle of the Korean conflict in history breaks out near Dong Ha. Most of the 3rd Marine Division, some 5,000 men in five battalions, head north to meet the North Korean incursion.
July 15, 1966 - The start of Operation Hastings, in which the U.S. Marines backed by South Vietnamese Army troops, the heavy guns of U.S. warships and their artillery and air power drive the NVA back over the DMZ within about three weeks time.
October 5 through 12, 1966 - The 2nd Congress of the Korean Workers Party (K.W.P.) is held in Pyongyang in the D.P.R.K.
In his opening speech to the Korean Workers Party (KWP) Conference on 5 October 1966, Kim Il Song gave warning that the status quo since 1953 between North and South Korea was about to change, and the overall strategy would be linked to the war in Vietnam. As stated in the opening speech by Kim: "In the present situation, the US imperialists should be dealt blows and their forces dispersed to the maximum in Asia and Europe and Africa and Latin America . . . and they should be bound hand and foot everywhere they are...."All the socialist countries . . . should oppose the aggression of US imperialism in Vietnam and render every possible support to the people of Vietnam . . .
"as the DRV (Democratic Republic of Vietnam) is being attacked by the US imperialists, the socialist countries should fight more sharply against them . . . there can be no vacillation or passivity on this point."
Thereafter Kim Yong-Il, personally initiated military and diplomatic actions that would affect the entire Korean peninsula for the next four years.
During the 2nd Congress an estimated 20% of Central Committee members are removed from office ("purged"). Five Polit-buro members, among whom Pak Kum-Ch'Ol and Yi Hyosun were "Vice-Chairmen" (under Kim Il-Song), are also removed from their position.
November 2, 1966 - During a State Visit by the newly appointed U.S. President Lyndon B. Johnson, North Koreans attacked a United Nations (UN) patrol south of the DMZ not too far from Walker Hill Resort near Seoul, where the U.S. President was staying (During the early morning hours of 2 November 1966,). The ambush signaled the beginning of a "Second Korean Conflict" that would last through to 1969.
Throughout 1967 - Incidents and Armed Skirmishes along the so-called "Demilitarized Zone" (D.M.Z.) rise spectacularly, opening the possibility of another North Korean invasion of the South.
March 1967 - Former "Vice-Chairmen" of the D.P.R.K.' Korean Workers Party, Pak Kum-Ch'Ol and Yi Hyosun are purged from the Party (K.W.P.) entirely.
April 1967 - Artillery fire was used by ROK troops to repel a communist incursion across the D.M.Z. in a battle that involved more than 100 men.
May 3, 1967 - General Park Chung-Hee is "re-elected" as President of the Republic of South Korea in a general consensus that his Government can offer the best guarantee of continued economic growth, political continuity and defense against military pressures applied by North Korea (D.P.R.K.).
June 1967 - North Korean attacks and infiltration attempts into South Korea continue with a US 2d Infantry Division barracks dynamited North of Seoul.
September 1967 - In separate incidents two South Korean trains, one of them carrying US military supplies, are bombed.
October 1967 - North Korean artillery fire sounded for the first time since 1953 when more than 50 rounds were fired at a South Korean army barracks.
January 21, 1968 - A K.P.A. army unit successfully infiltrates through the U.S. Sector on the D.M.Z., enters Seoul and launches an attack on the Presidential Compound, the "Blue House" in the City.
January 23, 1968 - Almost at the same time that an attack is launched against the South Korean Military Government in office in Seoul, the North Korean Navy seizes the U.S. Surveillance Vessel and spy-ship U.S.S. Pueblo in International Waters off the Korean East Coast in the East Korean Sea (Sea of Japan).
In the months thereafter thousands of U.S. troops originally earmarked for duty in Vietnam were diverted to Korea.
January 31, 1968 - The Viet Cong and the North Vietnamese Army (supported by both China (P.R.C.) and the D.P.R.K.) launch what has become known as the "Tet Offensive" attacking key military and civilian targets within South Vietnam. The move breaks an agreed 2 day cease-fire agreement between the North and the South.
November 4, 1968 - a 120 men Korean peoples Army unit land on the South Korean (R.O.K.) Eastern shores soon taking to the mountains to conduct a guerilla style war against the South Korean Army. Possibly this military move aims to liberate popular leftists resistance from Government suppression, however no pro-Communist uprisings arise inside South Korea (R.O.K.).
April 1969 - a North Korean MiG fighter shoots down a US Navy EC-121 intelligence aircraft, killing the 31-man crew. A few months later in August, A US helicopter is downed when it strayed across the DMZ into North Korean airspace. In a strong response U.S. President Richard M. Nixon ordered a special naval task force of 23 warships into the Sea of Japan (East Korea Sea) off the Korean coasts.
October 17, 1969 - A National referendum approves a constitutional amendment which allows General Park Chung-Hee to run for a third terms as President of the R.O.K.
March 26, 1970 - The U.S.A. advises the R.O.K. of its intention to withdraw 20.000 U.S. troops from South Korea, which amount to roughly 1/3 of its overall troop strength.
This diplomatic move enhances anxiety within the R.O.K. about U.S. safety guarantees and commitment to the defense of South Korea in the event of an invasion from the North.
April 5 to 7, 1970 - Trends of better D.P.R.K. relations with the Peoples Republic of China are made official by Premier Zhou Enlai's official visit to Pyongyang, which are the first high level exchanges since the year 1964.
July 1970 - Opening of the Seoul to Pusan highway in the R.O.K.
November 2 through 13, 1970 - The Fifth Congress of the Korean Workers Party is held in Pyongyang, North Korea (D.P.R.K.). At the congress "Great Leader" Kim Il-Song announces the completion of the first 7 Year Plan (1961 to 1967) and announces the beginning of the 2nd Seven Year Plan seeking to maintain high economic growth rates and extending the heavy industrialization policies of the 1960's.
Only four of the leading 16 members of the Politburo are re-elected during the 5Th Korean Workers Party Congress. 39 of the total of 172 members of the Central Committee elected in 1961 maintain their postings marking a silent -re-establishment of the Korean Workers Party and opening o period of domination by the so-called "Manchurian Faction" of old Guerilla Colleagues of Kim Il-Song, their families and children.
April 27, 1971 - "General" Park Chung Hee is re-elected for a third term as President of the Republic of Korea (South Korea).
July 16, 1971 - U.S. President Richard Nixon announces an official International visit to take him to Beijing. It is the official beginning of U.S. - Chinese rapprochement, with direct implications for the strategic situation of both North (D.P.R.K.)- and South-Korea (R.O.K.).
August 20, 1971 - Under growing pressure from the Peoples Republic of China, the U.S. and its allies North and South Korea agree to dialogue. The first session of Red Cross talks between North and South take place on August 20, 1971.
November 20, 1971 - Dialogue between North- and South Korea intensifies with the beginning of "secret talks" concerning humanitarian matters and the eventual unification of the Korea's.
February 21 through 28, 1972 - U.S. President Richard Nixon traveled to Beijing, then Hangzhou and Shanghai in the Peoples Republic of China on an official State Visit, altering the landscape of Chinese-U.S. Relations and starting a global transformation that last until today.
Among things due to Mao Zedong having nearly died only a month or so earlier, there was only one brief historic meeting of the two top world leaders. Regardless, a diplomatic breakthrough was achieved leading to a still controversial agreement which included full recognition of the Peoples Republic of China's standpoint on the issue of Taiwanese independence, seemingly for little in return.
July 4, 1972 - North & South Korea joint communiquee is signed between the two separate Korea's, establishing basic principles for eventual re-unification.
May 5, 1958 - Mao Zedong and the Chinese Communist Party declare the "Great Leap Forward" a National Policy and movement that aims to modernize China at break-neck speed and bring it on par with powerful western Nations within the coming 10 years.
August 5, 1958 - The D.P.R.K. announces the completion of its drive for collectivation of agriculture.
September, 1958 - North Korea launches the "Chollima Campaign" to maximize agricultural output, a miniature copy of China's more ambitious and all encompassing "Great Leap Forward".
December 26, 1958 - The R.O.K. Government secures passage of amendments to the National Security Law which impose wide-ranging
restrictions on political activity. backed by the military the Syngman Rhee regime continues on its path.
June 1959 - The "Sino-Soviet" split, which had been building since the 1930's, and becomes more acute to Chairman Mao Zedong after the denunciations of Stalin and his personality by Nikita Khrusthchev, reaches the surface when the Soviets refuse the signing of an agreement delivering crucial nuclear technology (and the A-Bomb) to the Peoples' Republic of China.
December 14, 1959 - Large scale repatriations of Koreans living in Japan to the Democratic Peoples Republic of (North) Korea begin.
March 15, 1960 - Syngman Rhee is re-elected President of the Republic of Korea in the south but wide-spread vote rigging, fraude and manipulations lead to nationwide protests and demonstrations against his rule and the Liberal Party (of the R.O.K.).
April 19, 1960 - Police shootings in Seoul and other cities kill an estimated 400 demonstrators, most of them students. The effect is not to twart further protest but on the contrary leads to National Outrage. The Syngman Rhee Government finds itself totally discredited and falls apart in short time.
April 26, 1960 - President of the R.O.K. Syngman Rhee resigns from Office. 3 days later on the 29th of April he flies to the U.S. Hawaiian islands to go into exile.
June 16, 1960 - The Constitution of the 2nd Republic of Korea is promulgated.
July 29, 1960 - National Assembly election in South Korea bring victory to the Newly formed Democratic Party, which wins 175 of 233 seats in the Assembly (Parliament). New Democratic Party leader Chang Myon (장면) becomes the Prime-Minister of the R.O.K. Although the position of the President continues to exist, Chang Myon effectivaly functions as the head of the South Korean government.
September 22, 1960 - The Democratic Party in South Korea splits into two rivalling factions. 68 of the members start the New Democratic Party (N.D.P.) shattering confidence in the success of the newly arrived Democratic Movement and Party in South Korea (R.O.K.). At the end of October Prime-Minister Chang Myon (장면) is left controlling 118 seats of 233 in total, seriously undermining his position.
December 12, 1960 - A 38% percent turn out in Provincial elections held in South Korea reveal the alarm of the general public and its disenchantment with the current Government. The political situation within South Korea becomes very unstable as all hopes in the Democratic Movement seem to be dashed.
December 1960 - Cuban Revolutionary Che Guevarra visits Kim Il-Song in Pyongyang on an international tour which includes Czechoslowakia, the Soviet Union, Hungary and the East German Republic, but not China showing continued Cuban adherence to Soviet Guidance and patronage. Agreements reached the North Korean and Cuban economies to a certain degree but also had the disadvantage of a growing economic dependency on the Eastern Bloc.
January 1961 - Soviet Premier Nikita Khrushchev pledges support for "wars of national liberation" throughout the world. His statement greatly encourages Communists in North Vietnam to escalate their armed struggle to unify Vietnam under Ho Chi Minh. This further escalation of the Cold War stimlates hope in North Korea for the cause of unification of the Korea's.
May 16, 1961 - The Government headed by Chang Myon (장면) is overthrown in a Military Coup D´Etat led by General Park Chung-Hee (박정희). The following day General Park installs a military regime of 30 Colonels and Brigadier-Generals, disolving the National Assembly and banning political activity.
May 19, 1961 - The general Park military regime names itself `Supreme Council for National Reconstruction`, starting what has become known as "The Third Republic" of South Korea.
June 6, 1961 - The Military Regime established under Leadership of General Park promulgates a "Law for National Reconstruction", which gives it effective control of all branches of the National Government and the National Economy. It is the beginning of a period of a cebtrally led economy in the South.