Saturday, May 13, 2017
How Good Is The South Korean Military?
Kyle Mizokami, National Interest: The Military Powerhouse North Korea Won't Want to Fight (And It's Not America)
The Republic of Korea Armed Forces, South Korea’s military, is the second-largest military on the Korean Peninsula and yet it is the least well known. Not as widely discussed as the U.S. military or Pyongyang’s Korean People’s Army, the ROK military is probably the most powerful armed force on either side of the DMZ. South Korea’s armed forces have evolved from a prewar constabulary force to a dynamic, self-equipped military equal to most Western armed forces.
The original ROK Armed Forces were formed shortly after the creation of the Republic of Korea in 1948. The armed forces initially consisted of an army that was more of an armed police force, an air force of light observation aircraft and no real navy to speak of. Small and lightly armed, it was no match for the North Korean People’s Army that surged across the border in June 1950. The Korean War saw U.S. advisors and equipment flow to build the ROK military into a force that could defend its own country, and by 1965 the army and marine corps were strong enough to send two combat divisions and a marine brigade to Vietnam. Over a nine-year period, three hundred thousand ROK personnel were rotated through Vietnam, where they earned a reputation for being tough guerrilla fighters.
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WNU Editor: The focus is on the North Korean military and what the U.S. may deploy to the Korean peninsula in the event of war. But in the event of war .... it will be the South Korean military that will be doing most of the fighting and they will be a formidable foe.