Finally received Taegukgi on DVD that I ordered earlier from deepdiscountdvd.com last week. The movie was about two brothers whose lives were changed by the early years of the Korean War. Certain things I noted from the film:

North Koreans used Scorched Earth tactics when they are falling behind the frontline. They would burn all crops, kill all livestock and anti-Communists. What was even worse was they would sometimes booby-trap corpses with landmines for the UN forces. When they occupy a town or city, they would force all able-bodied males 18 to 30 to join the DPRK forces or die as well as closing all businesses. The only way people can get food or support is if they join a newly formed chapter of the Korean Workers' Party; this usually gets them killed when UN forces retake territory.

The Korean War started in June 25, 1950 and UN forces reached the Chinese border near the end of the same year. It was unfortunate that the Soviets and Red Chinese intervened with an Air Force and Ground Troops, which dragged the war for another 2 years. The Russians were never shown in the movie, but the Chinese "Volunteer Army" were portrayed as a unstoppable horde just like how US and ROK veterans described it. Then, there were the mass of war refugees who marched below the 38th Parallel just to escape Communist rule.

I would have been nice if Park Chung-Hee followed through with his plan to send Commandos from Shilmido to wipe out the Kim Dynasty instead of liquidating them for unreliable peace talks…


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