Korean War Memorial holds special meaning for some in light of new developments

PHOTO: Para-demolition bombs detonate on supply warehouses and dock facilities from Fifth Air Force's B-26 Invader light bombers in Wonsan, North Korea, Photo Date: 1951 / USAF via MGN Online

Some call it the forgotten war, even though the Department of Defense says more than 36,000 thousand U.S. troops died fighting in it, not to mention the more than a million military and civilian deaths each, in North and South Korea.

It’s why so many were shocked to see the meeting last week between Kim Jong Un of North Korea and Moon Jae In of South Korea. They took small steps but ones with major meaning and then, an announcement by the two leaders- the war there would be officially ending.

The significance was not lost on so many people visiting Washington DC, stopping by the Korean War Memorial and reflecting on what this change could mean.

“The people in the north are suffering and struggling and hopefully this will improve it,” said Gail Godley a tourist visiting the memorial Monday.

Diane Beres, a tourist from Ohio, said the visit to the memorial, her first, was deeply personal, since her brother is a Korean War veteran, having served there as a very young man in the navy.

“He told me stories- they would send them out to meet the enemy and they had nothing but some little guns. Luckily they never really had to use it,” she said.

“You look at any two countries that grew up together and then separated themselves over military conflict. it is good when families can be reunited,” said her husband, Mike Beres.

But some decision makers are not as optimistic, especially given Kim Jong Un’s past.

“He is a ruthless dictator that does public executions of anyone who disagrees. He has literally starved his own people to be able to help the elite,” said Sen. James Lankford, R-Okla.

As President Trump plans to meet with Kim Jong Un, the memorial serves as a reminder of our tumultuous and forgotten history and the promise of what lies ahead.

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