Dilemma Between Definition and Morale: Were Korean Independence Fighters under the Japanese Colonial Rule Terrorists? Case Studies of the Korean Provisional Government and Kim Il-Sung’s Korean People’s Restoration Army
This paper concentrates on two specific Korean independence movements to analyze if they can be defined as terrorist groups. It is a very controversial and emotionally sensitive topic of discussion within South Korean society. The two selected groups are the Korean Provisional Government (KPG) and the Korean People’s Restoration Army. The historical context in which the two groups emerged will be explained in detail, since a clear historical context must be provided to help the reader achieve a good understanding of Korea’s unique historical setting. The two groups will then be analyzed in the light of political analyst Bruce Hoffman’s definition of terrorism and the distinction between old and new terrorism and state-sponsored terrorism. The groups’ endings will be dealt with by some of the ideas set forward by Audrey Cronin. The paper will end with a brief case study on George Washington to see if he can be defined as a terrorist. A comparison between George Washington and Kim Ku of the KPG shows how emotionally, and intellectually, it is uncomfortable to consider the Korean freedom fighters as terrorists. History is written by the victors. I accept the international norm of terrorism, first to create a starting point for an alternative view to the characterization of the KPG as a terrorist group.
"Dilemma Between Definition and Morale: Were Korean Independence Fighters under the Japanese Colonial Rule Terrorists? Case Studies of the Korean Provisional Government and Kim Il-Sung’s Korean People’s Restoration Army,"
Proceedings of GREAT Day: Vol. 2014, Article 6.
Available at: https://knightscholar.geneseo.edu/proceedings-of-great-day/vol2014/iss1/6