Communist-ruled Poland was one of the first states to recognize the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) in 1948. Less than two years later, Poland (together with other countries from the Eastern Bloc) joined the Korean War effort by assisting the DPRK and spreading anti-American propaganda domestically. After the war, Poland supported the reconstruction of North Korea and received 1,200 orphans as well as a considerable number of students.
The Wilson Center’s History and Public Policy Program and the University of North Korean Studies, at Kyungnam University, in cooperation with the Wilson Center’s Asia Program/Hyundai Motor-Korea Foundation Center, hosted a workshop this past fall to recognize the collaboration and partnership between the two organizations.
I have previously described how North Korea sent fighter pilots to fly MiG-17s and MiG-21s in combat against American aircraft in North Vietnam, as well as teams of psychological warfare specialists to help the North Vietnamese conduct propaganda operations directed against South Korean troops serving in South Vietnam.
During the Cold War era, North Korean leader Kim Il Sung saw the world as divided between small and big countries. According to Kim, the big countries, especially the United States, used the small countries in an exploitative fashion and engaged in ruthless imperialism.
On 12 June, 2018, after months of trading threats and fiery rhetoric, US President Donald Trump and Kim Jong Un of North Korea backed off from the precipice of war and held a historic summit in Singapore, the first high-level meeting between the leaders of the Korean War foes.