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Park Jung-Hee Requested U.S. Attack on NK after the Kidnapping of the Pueblo in 1968

Park Jung-Hee Requested U.S. Attack on NK after the Kidnapping of the Pueblo in 1968

Posted January. 10, 2002 09:26,   


Cheong Wa Dae released 1032 unpublished materials including the autographed letters of former presidents.

The released Presidential documents include 123 diplomatic documents of former presidents, 719 tapes which recorded official events of former Presidents Chun Doo-Hwan and Rho Tae-Woo, and 460 documents related to former President Kim Young-Sam.

According to the documents, former President Park requested U.S. military action against the North during the 1.21 incident in which 124 North Korean units intruded into the South to attack Cheong Wa Dae and kidnapped the Pueblo in 1968. Park confronted the U.S. who tried to resolve the situation diplomatically and peacefully.

Former President Park sent a letter to then U.S. President Linden B Johnson on Feb. 5th right after the two incidents and requested military retaliation, writing "We should teach the Communists a lesson that their aggression will be evenly returned."

However, former U.S. president Johnson indirectly objected to a military retaliation in letters written on Feb. 9th and 28th which read "I am worrying about this incident as well but there are many related factors to consider."

In addition, John F. Kennedy expressed his negative opinion when then chairperson of the National Reconstruction Supreme Commission Park Jung-Hee revealed his intention to expand the military administration in 1963.

Former U.S. President Kennedy sent a letter to Park on March 16, 1963, right after Park expressed the necessity for extending the military government control, expressing the opposition to the extension saying, "We believe that the current political issues in Korea will be solved through negotiations between the Korean government and the political leaders, and reach an agreement on the process of transferring to a civil government that is acceptable to the whole Korean citizens.

Kim Young-Il, professor of Sungkyunkwan University who reviewed the documents, remarked that, "Even the U.S. State Department has not released the documents related to the incidents in the 1960s. The documents related with the Pueblo incident are very significant in that they show the different responses of the two countries to the incidents."