Brothers at War: The Unending Conflict in Koreaby Sheila Miyoshi Jager
“The most balanced and comprehensive account of the Korean War.”—The EconomistSixty years after North Korean troops crossed the 38th parallel into South Korea, the Korean War has not yet ended. Sheila Miyoshi Jager presents the first comprehensive history of this misunderstood war, one that risks involving the world’s/p>/em>
“The most balanced and comprehensive account of the Korean War.”—The EconomistSixty years after North Korean troops crossed the 38th parallel into South Korea, the Korean War has not yet ended. Sheila Miyoshi Jager presents the first comprehensive history of this misunderstood war, one that risks involving the world’s superpowers—again. Her sweeping narrative ranges from the middle of the Second World War—when Korean independence was fiercely debated between Roosevelt, Stalin, and Churchill—to the present day, as North Korea, with China’s aid, stockpiles nuclear weapons while starving its people. At the center of this conflict is an ongoing struggle between North and South Korea for the mantle of Korean legitimacy, a “brother’s war,” which continues to fuel tensions on the Korean peninsula and the region.
Drawing from newly available diplomatic archives in China, South Korea, and the former Soviet Union, Jager analyzes top-level military strategy. She brings to life the bitter struggles of the postwar period and shows how the conflict between the two Koreas has continued to evolve to the present, with important and tragic consequences for the region and the world. Her portraits of the many fascinating characters that populate this history—Truman, MacArthur, Kim Il Sung, Mao, Stalin, and Park Chung Hee—reveal the complexities of the Korean War and the repercussions this conflict has had on lives of many individuals, statesmen, soldiers, and ordinary people, including the millions of hungry North Koreans for whom daily existence continues to be a nightmarish struggle.
The most accessible, up-to date, and balanced account yet written, illustrated with dozens of astonishing photographs and maps, Brothers at War will become the definitive chronicle of the struggle’s origins and aftermath and its global impact for years to come.
- Norton, W. W. & Company, Inc.
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Meet the Author
Sheila Miyoshi Jager earned her PhD in anthropology from the University of Chicago. She has written extensively on modern and contemporary Korean politics and history and is the author and coeditor of two previous books on Korea and East Asia. She is an associate professor and director of the East Asian program at Oberlin College in Ohio, where she lives with her husband and children.
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Dr. Jager did a great job in weaving together the various elements and viewpoints to create a compelling insight into the Korean War and its continuing impact on Korea and the international community. She starts from the Korean War where she vividly portrays the palpable tension between President Truman and the mercurial General MacArthur, the ever-present danger of escalation with China, and, of course, the traumas suffered by soldiers and Korean civilians. Then she continues to trace the rise of the modern Korean from the ashes of war under the leadership of President Park Chung-Hee and his successors. Also daftly woven in are the domestic situations in China, Russia, and the U.S. that influence their relationships with the two Korean regimes. Very well-researched but also eminently readable. For those interested in the Korean War, I also recommend David Halberstam's "The Coldest Winter: America and the Korean War."