News junkies, including journalists, are aware that the U.S. currently is involved in three military actions --- in Iraq, Afghanistan and Libya --- but most overlook a fourth, rather silent, that remains open-ended after 58 years, reminds Grumpy Editor.
That’s the Korean War. Battles ended with a cease fire on July 27, 1953.
So it’s interesting to note that North Korea this week, on the 58th anniversary of the truce, is "eager" to sign a peace treaty that puts the cap on the 1950-1953 conflict that, for the U.S., resulted in 36,940 military deaths, 103,000 wounded, 8,142 missing in action and 3,746 prisoners of war.
The Korean War, also labeled the “forgotten war,” erupted when 135,000 communist North Korean troops crossed the 38th parallel into South Korea in pre-dawn hours of June 25, 1950.
The conflict was extended with the entries of communist Chinese soldiers battling U.S. troops on the ground and Russian pilots in Soviet-built jets fighting U.S. airmen.
Chinese troops killed or captured thousands of U.S. military personnel and managed many prisoner of war camps in North Korea.
North and South Korea technically remain at war with no peace treaty.
A North Korea-U.S. diplomatic meeting that continues today in New York is slated to include discussions on signing a peace treaty that ends the Korean War.
In addition, talks are expected to focus on a resumption of six-nation (China, Japan, Russia, South Korea, North Korea, U.S.) nuclear disarmament talks, something that has been going on for years.
Don’t count on progress.
Over the years, North Korea’s routine has been to talk, followed by pauses, then more talks, followed by no final action.