Philly Korean War vet remembers start of conflict, reflects on Kim Jong Un

'I don't trust him,' he said.

Steve Tawa
June 25, 2018 - 3:26 pm
Philadelphia's Korean community gathered at a memorial commemorating the 68th anniversary of the Korean War.

Steve Tawa/KYW Newsradio

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PHILADELPHIA (KYW Newsradio — Philadelphia's Korean community gathered at a memorial commemorating the 68th anniversary of the Korean War.

Both American and Korean veterans honored the fallen soldiers, while remembering the historical significance of the conflict. Over a three-year period, beginning June 25, 1950, more than 5 million soldiers and civilians, including 610 people from the Philadelphia region, were killed.

The fight pitted communist North Korea, subsequently backed by China and the Soviet Union, against the U.S.- and the United Nations-backed South.

John Rim, president of the Korean War Veterans Association, Philadelphia
Steve Tawa/KYW Newsradio

As the Rev. Jinmo Cho translated, 87-year-old John Rim, the president of the local Korean War Veterans Association, reflected on President Trump's recent summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un.

"It is always good to see the peace on the peninsula, and the removal of nuclear war," Rim said. 

What about trusting Kim's North Korean regime?

"Knowing him as a dictator, I do have this concern ... that is, he might want to try to take an opportunity to extend his time of regime, and strengthen his own power," Rim said. "I don't trust him."

In addition to the denuclearization and unification of the Korean peninsula, veterans at the memorial exspressed hope that recovery operations for U.S. servicemen missing from the Korean War would resume. The Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency estimates that the remains of 5,300 American are still located there.