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THE NOGUNRI MASSACRE
(Updated Tuesday, Apr 1, 2008, 04:58:08 PM)

he story first broke to an incredulous world in late September when reporters for the AP tracked down and interviewed former GIs who had fought in the early days of the Corean War. Near a village called Nogunri, about 100 miles south of Seoul, they were ordered to gun down several hundred unarmed Corean civilians, they said, mostly women, children and elderly men.
     A surreally horrifying picture of the Nogunri Massacre has been painted by the witness accounts of both Corean survivors and American G.I.s. The horror began when a group of between 300 to 500 Corean fleeing civilians were strafed by U.S. jets. They ran for cover under a rail bridge where they remained huddled together for over a day. A small and beleagured American unit had taken up position on a hillside overlooking the rail bridge. During the night they were given radio orders to machinegun down the refugees. As the civilians lay huddled or tried to run, the G.I.s carried out the grim order. A small number of Coreans managed to escape but most were slaughtered in a bloody heap under the bridge.
     The order was justified on the ground that some North Corean guerillas had been caught trying to slip behind allied lines disguised as Corean villagers. As to whether any North Coreans were discovered among the slaughtered Nogunri civilians, the ex-G.I.s have conflicting recollections. Some said that a few were discovered while others had no such recollection.
     The Nogunri massacre took place in late July of 1950, during the first month of the Corean War when the U.S. and South Corean armies were overpowered by swiftly advancing North Corean troops. The North Corean surprise invasion of June 25 was spearheaded by Soviet tanks against which the allies were, for the moment, ill-equipped to defend. Soon after the Nogunri incident the allies were pushed back down to a 75-mile square defensive perimeter around Corea's southeastern tip known as the Pusan Perimeter. It wasn't until the successful execution of the Inchon landing that the allies broke out and pushed back north.
     When the AP story broke Corean President Kim Dae-jung hesitated for four days before ordering the formation of an investigative task force, then asked it to coordinate a lockstep investigation with the U.S. Defense Department team approved President Clinton. Both leaders have expressed their wish to see the investigation uncover the full truth, no matter how difficult or embarrassing. In late October the U.S. Army's team arrived in Seoul to begin coordinating witness interviews, schedule for a joint site survey and the inspection of documents, most of which are in the possession of the U.S. Defense Department. So far neither side has agreed to expand the investigation beyond Nogunri or discussed compensation for its survivors and victims.
     If the investigation bears out witness accounts of a slaughter, should the U.S. provide upwards of hundreds of millions of dollars in compensation to survivors and victims or apologize and have it written off to the exigencies of a desperate military situation?

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WHAT YOU SAY

[This page is closed to new input. --Ed.]
I think it's very interesting what you wrote. I'm from Germany and I must say we didn't learn anything about the Corean War at school, and a half year ago I actually didn't even know that there was a war in Corea though I'm already 17 years old.
My opinion on the USA is that I dislike their politics and their view on themselves and their nation, but I think it's difficult to judge a whole nation for what a minority did years ago. I think it's also a problem when today Germans are judged for what Hitler and his supporters did in WW2. But in general I have to say that I think war can never be the answer and that I'm very angry on Bush because I think he's absolutely arrogant and stupid. I still hope there won't be no war in the Iraq but I don't really believe it anymore.
Cora263 Cora263@yahoo.de    Monday, March 17, 2003 at 03:58:47 (PST)    [145.254.98.12]
Actually, the facts are a little distorted. I interned last year for Michael Choi, who is a philadelphia-based korean attorney that handles high profile class action suits such as the Nogunri massacre. There is a class action suit pending, but it's going nowhere. The US Military at first denied the incident. However, it was hard to deny it after finding hundreds of American-calibered rounds from the location, and seeing the countless living but mutilated victims of the aftermath. Now the US is saying that the victims were actually North Korean spies and sympathizers, and is refusing to compensate the surviving victims. I held in my hand a list of all the victims, and the injury sustained to all of them. I've never seen the word "DIED" so many times on one publication before. Not all victims died right away however, others were paralyzed, lost limbs, or died later from injuries. Some of the survivors told their accounts of the massacre. Mental images of children clinging to the corpses of their parents, reverberating screaming drowned out by airstrike explosions and whizzing of bullets, all blinded by the splatter of blood.

I couldn't finish what I was reading.

So yeah. The U.S. is a great country, but damn, they sure did screw up the peninsula.
TY taco325i@hotmail.com    Wednesday, January 15, 2003 at 19:07:36 (PST)    [68.81.10.104]
COREAN,

Hi, I am Chinese and I agree. The words like 'Axis of Evil' and their provocative use of th4 word incites troubles in society and damages the dignity of Corea. It is as if they want everyone to bless America while causing all the trouble.
Chines dude    Tuesday, January 07, 2003 at 13:29:37 (PST)    [131.181.127.42]
I'm a Corean and am doing a research on the COrean war for my US history class. I just think that if this case and many other things contribute to the Coreans disliking Americans. I find them one of the most arrogant people in the world, and i have encountered many nationalities, inluding Russians, Germans, Australians, British etc. THey somehow believe that they are the best, which they are the most powerfull, but they never want to listen to anyone else. My American friends never listen if I tell them something. We're pretty close friends but still. If America keeps going like this, it will fall, Like Rome.

Thats cool that you wrote Corean instead of Koread. It at first was Corea but Japaneze changed it somehow so it could have an entrance in the olympic games before the Koreans. Since the letter K comes after J. Thats the theory anyway
Corean    Wednesday, December 04, 2002 at 06:45:28 (PST)    [212.13.167.1]
I'm a Corean and am doing a research on the COrean war for my US history class. I just think that if this case and many other things contribute to the Coreans disliking Americans. I find them one of the most arrogant people in the world, and i have encountered many nationalities, inluding Russians, Germans, Australians, British etc. THey somehow believe that they are the best, which they are the most powerfull, but they never want to listen to anyone else. My American friends never listen if I tell them something. We're pretty close friends but still. If America keeps going like this, it will fall, Like Rome.

Thats cool that you wrote Corean instead of Koread. It at first was Corea but Japaneze changed it somehow so it could have an entrance in the olympic games before the Koreans. Since the letter K comes after J. Thats the theory anyway
Corean    Wednesday, December 04, 2002 at 06:45:28 (PST)    [212.13.167.1]
Hmmm... If found to be true, then yes the US should apologize and pay some fine. However, this must be thoroughly investigated before a decision is made.

By the way, has any progess been made?
Corinthian    Monday, October 21, 2002 at 21:42:04 (PDT)
One atrocity among so many has a political issue of a minor kind in contemporary Corea because:
[1] The massacre was carried out by U.S. forces. If any R.O.K. forces were present, their part was minor.
and
[2]Many educated and articulate Coreans detest and resent the U.S. military presence, while most Coreans (the overwhelming electoral majority) are rightly apprehensive of the intentions of their Northern compatriots.

Pause and put this in its proper context: When the armed forces of the D.P.R.K. entered Yosu in Chollanamdo, and other cities of the south, 'class enemies' were simply rounded up and murdered in cold blood.
Bill Corr sonoekurimoto@yahoo.com    Friday, October 18, 2002 at 13:57:08 (PDT)
X-Box .
it was President Johnson.
you didn't get my point.
what American mass media portrayed Korean soldiers and so called the atrocity committed by them was nothing more than this logic" you did same thing in vietnam , so shut the f--up "
you know why I am angry about American media's sly attitude
sturgeon catch    Monday, June 03, 2002 at 19:13:20 (PDT)

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