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"Sketching a War’s Toll" Topic


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97 hits since 18 Nov 2020
©1994-2020 Bill Armintrout
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Tango01 Supporting Member of TMP18 Nov 2020 8:51 p.m. PST

"Seventeen-year-old Kim Seong-hwan was sitting with a friend on a hill on the edge of Seoul and watching as a seemingly endless convoy of North Korean tanks approached the city on June 25, 1950. Although they could see puffs of gray smoke from artillery on the horizon, the two teenagers weren't worried. "We had heard over the radio that North Korea had invaded," Kim later recalled, "but were told that the South Korean Army was pushing them back."

In time Kim would grow bitter about the radio broadcasts because the false reports had misled the residents of the city. "Many people did not flee," he said, thus becoming easy targets for the invading North Korean forces. For the moment, though, Kim and his friend were sure they were safe. So sure, in fact, that Kim pulled out his art supplies and captured the moment in a pencil and watercolor sketch—the first in a series of extraordinary images in which the young artist recorded his experiences in the opening months of the Korean War, from the North Korean army's occupation of Seoul that June through the city's liberation by American soldiers three months later…"
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