These factors were further aggravated by political and military conditions of both the northern and southern portions of Korea. In the south, there were reported cases of electoral violence, closely linked with the party of Syngman Rhee. He was purportedly responsible for assassinations on his rivals, and even close associates. In the north, the Soviet Union did not hesitate to crush political dissidents who wished to establish a democratic government in the north. This put a bad light as to the legitimacy of the general purpose/aims of the commission as well as the commission itself.
Nonetheless, military factors also contributed to the failure of the commission. The presence of Soviet garrisons in the north encouraged fear rather than self-determination among the native population. In the south, it was reported that US military personnel were pressuring the native population to vote for the party of Rhee. This condition was further aggravated by statements of the USSR in the General Assembly that it would use force if necessary to protect the sovereignty of DPRK, arguing that it was a legitimate government for the whole Korea.
Failure would not have resulted if the General Assembly voted to invite a delegation from DPRK, that is, the negotiation table would be composed of the major powers, China, Japan, the Republic of Korea and DPRK. In this way, a consent-based solution for Korea would have worked out without military intervention. Nonetheless, this might serve as the point of reference to future UN resolutions on Korea. Added to that, before any elections could be made in the whole country, occupation forces of both the USSR and US should have been withdrawn and replaced by UN peace-keeping forces composed of contingents from minor powers.
This would prevent a military showdown of north and south in the future (Korean War). Lessons learned: establishing a democratic government in a country rocked by ideological conflict is of no avail without the cooperation of the parties involved; military interventions in the political future of a country is a factor to e reckoned with. The UN peace-keeping efforts in other parts of Asia were markedly different from that of Korea. For example, during the war between Malaysia and Indonesia, the United Nations called on different countries to send military contingents in those countries. These contingents were known as “blue helmets.
” They were forbidden to make any offensives or engage in military operations. Their main role was to maintain peace in a war torn region. The case of Korea (prior to the war) and the establishment of UNTCOK was a matter of political courtesy for the major powers. The United Nations General Assembly and the Security Council did not intend to send any delegation force in Korea. Hence, the use of “blue helmets” to maintain peace and order originated from the failures of UNTCOK; from here the evolution of UN military methods began (Arif, 2007:URL cited).
Arif, Mohammad. 2007. UN Peace Keeping: Theory and Practice. URL http://www.defencejournal. com/apr99/un-peace-keeping. htm. Retrieved Septemer 25, 2007. Report of the United Nations Commission on Korea 1950. 1998. URL http://www. fordham. edu/halsall/mod/1950-korea-un1. html. Retrieved September 25, 2007. Smith, Raymond C. 2007. Peacekeeping without the Secretary-General: The Korean Armistice Arrangements. Royal Australian Air force. URL http://www. unitarpoci. org/en/media/smith. pdf. Retrieved Septemer 25, 2007. UN General Assembly Resolution A/790 – December 1948. 2007. The Permanent Mission of the Republic of Korea to the United Nations. URL http://www. un. int/korea/ga. html. Retrieved September 25, 2007.