The Korean Way of War: Within the Framework of the Strategy of Annihilation and Attrition
Technical Report,25 Jun 2018,23 May 2019
ARMY COMMAND AND GENERAL STAFF COLLEGE FORT LEAVENWORTH KS FORT LEAVENWORTH United States
Pagination or Media Count:
This monograph attempts to identify the Korean way of war by analyzing Korean military history through the framework of the strategy of annihilation and attrition. The paper assumes that Korea, a small state surrounded by strong neighbors during the last 5,000 years, was able to protect its identity, language, and culture due to its own way of war. Such a way of war was established and has been shaped by the interaction of various elements of Koreas strategic context. These elements range from geography, economic resources, history, civil-military relations, socio-political context, and strategic culture. On the contrary to the dominant discourse about achieving a quick and decisive victory within the Republic of Korea Army, such a victory does not seem to fit in the Korean historical context. Historical cases have proved that optimistic wishes of quick and decisive victory often became a delusion that was alien to reality on the ground. The author, thus, hypothesizes that the way of war Korea has pursued throughout history is tied to the strategy of attrition and not the strategy of annihilation. Such awareness is the foundation on which the development of the future Korean way of war must reflect.
- Military Operations, Strategy and Tactics
- Humanities and History