Letters of the Cold War: (June 1950)

To: The Republic of Korea

From: The Democratic People’s Republic of Korea

These past five years have been a mix of brutal, tiresome trials and impossible victories. I don’t think either of us could have fully predicted this in 1945, nor can we pinpoint the exact day when we both knew this was inevitable. I think that from the start we both understood there would be sacrifice, but… well, maybe, in that way, we did know it was coming.

I’m going to tell you something that I haven’t told anyone else. I don’t want this. I know that you don’t want it either. We’re both victims,used as pawns for more powerful countries and forced to play by their rules. It’s been that way since 1910, and it will continue. That is, until someone breaks the cycle. In 1945 we both vowed to never let something like that happen to us again. For five years we struggled, and suffered, and persevered, and endured pain, and fought for glory. Now, in 1950, we’re both ready to do whatever is takes to preserve the dignity of our former nation. But no longer can we fight for Korea as brother and sister.

I didn’t write this letter to berate your ideologies or to scrutinize your relationship with the Westerner. You’ve already heard everything I have to say. I wrote this letter to tell you that whatever happens in the coming months will break us. Without a doubt, one of us will be destroyed. Everything that has been worked for since we rose up from the ashes of our former nation will crumble. But this will be true only for one of us. Like the cycle, one of us must break. But only one.

I am fully prepared to do whatever I have to in order to see my vision for Korea prevail. I will hold no bars, I will have no mercy. Until this is over, I am your adversary. If blood is the price for victory, one of us will pay in blood .

South, I said I didn’t want this and I don’t. But part of me does. That’s what scares me the most.

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