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AS RUSSIA SEES IT

Series

Series Name
The March of Time 15th Year

Issue

Issue No.
7
Date Released
26 Oct 1950
Length of issue (in feet)
1450
Stories in this Issue:
  1. 1AS RUSSIA SEES IT

Story

Story No. within this Issue
1 / 1
Summary
The March of Time synopsis: The latest March of Time "As Russia Sees it", presents an analysis of the world situation today from the viewpoint of the Krelin, and shows why Korea was chosen as the scene of action for the first major act of military aggression since World War II.

Deterred on the one hand by American superiority in atomic weapons but encouraged by his won military might, Stalin weighed the cost of aggression in a half dozen coveted areas adjacent to the Soviet Union’s sphere of control. The big question was, "Where could he strike without starting another World War, and where could he get away with it?" Germany had already proved an unsatisfactory prospect, as the Western Powers’ stand over the blockade of Berlin had shown. Open Russian attack in Yugoslavia or Greece would most likely result in a large-scale war, and either of these countries might easily prove too much for Soviet satellite forces alone to crack. Conquest of Turkey would give Stalin control of the strategically important Dardanelles - but Turkey, certain of United Nations’ support, had promised to fight such aggression. And though the rich oil deposits of Iran were an especially enticing prize, Russia’s need of them was not sufficiently immediate to risk precipitating a general war.

In Southeast Aisa, Stalin visualized a completely Communist-controlled sweep of territory extending almost to the Equator. The dissension between the natives of Indo-China and the Frenc was still keeping busy some hundred and fifty thousand French troops, and large sections of the country had already been yielded to native Communist forces. Seizure of Hong Kong would not only completely alienate Britain, perpared to fight to the last in defence of this possession, but would close this valuable outlet for Communist China’s trading with the outside world. Though Formosa was a most tempting target, even a succesful landing by Communist forces would have to be large enough to overcome the determined resistance of almost half a million trained Nationalist Chinese troops, and Stalin also sensed that American opinion was veering to General MacArthur’s long-held view that the US must defend the island. Looking for a safer bet, Stalin shifted his aim to the target Korea. In August 1948, the nation south of the 38th parallel had gained its independence, and to protect itself against possible aggression South Korea mustered a small army. But though its soldiers drilled enthusiastically and were given basic training in modern warfare techniques by the small group of US soldiers still in Korea, they had been left with no heavy armament - either in tanks or artillery. Moreover, the US Army Far Eastern Forces in Japan consisted of only four divisions, most of them tied down in occupation duties.

His evaluation made, Stalin gave the green light to the North Korean Communists, whose sudden attack dealt the slender forces of the South a mortal blow. The Communist’s certainty that the South Koreans would be pushed back easily and the country soon over-run by the attacking forces seemed quickly vindicated. But within forty-eight hours of receiving news of the Red aggression, the US Government called for precedent-breaking action. At Lake Success, the United Nations’ Security Council, after first condemning the invasion in an emergency session, then convened to endorse the US stand and called upon all member nations to support the embattled republic of South Korea. "As Russia Sees It" shows how the US met the challenge in Korea - the mobilization of manpower and industry; the reactivation of planes, tanks and ships laid up since the end of World War II; and it also shows how American troops, supported with fighting forces from Britain and the Dominions, have united in repelling the aggression of Stalin and his Communist satellites.
Researcher Comments
This story was included in Vol.16 No.5 of the US edition.
Keywords
Foreign relations; Diplomacy
Written sources
The March of Time Promotional Material   Lobby Card Draft, Used for synopsis
Credits:
Production Co.
Time Inc.

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