KOREA

KOREA
1950 - 1953
In the Korean War, the Indians responded favorably to still call their country as soldiers. Again, the number of enrollment exceeds all percentages by race and once again, the number of voluntary close to 90%.

  One of the largest Native American of the war was Joseph J Clark, Cherokee Indian. Ordinary seaman in the U.S. Navy during World War I, he served with distinction during World War II and after leaving the army served during the Korean War with the rank of admiral of the U.S. 7th Fleet.

 

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Most Indian soldiers involved did not follow a warrior tradition but a family tradition. Either the soldiers in Korea were veterans of war or they were the son and grand- son of Soldiers both world wars . Find a job and pay were also the main reason for their involvement in this war.

By signing the Charter of the United Nations (UN) at the end of the Second World War, Canada reaffirms its commitment to peace and international cooperation. This new organization, born of the certainty that all nations share a common interest in peace and security , economic development , social justice and fundamental rights and freedoms , raising hopes . After fighting to defend these values during the two world wars , Canadians hope to create in them a "new world order ". The world is now at peace and Aboriginal returning home after serving overseas brought back with them the dream of a more just society where they would become partners rather than mere " wards" . On aboriginal veterans speak to parliamentary hearings to defend their rights and insist on mutual respect . The change will be slow , but their efforts attract the necessary attention to the plight of indigenous peoples in Canada.

The diplomat John Holmes describes the early years of the post-war "period of hope and fear ." Canada 's armed forces were significantly reduced once the war ended , but the growing tension in Soviet- American relations in the late 1940s, pushing Canada to replenish . There were not many Aboriginal members in regular services such as the Royal Canadian Navy , the militia or the Royal Canadian Air Force before the war, but some remained in the armed forces or are rehired when the Cold War moved . They will serve in the Far East when fears of Communist aggression will be substantiated .

The invasion of South Korea by communist North Korea on June 25, 1950 represents an important test for the collective security provisions of the UN and shows that the Cold War did not engage bloodless . The UN was able to adopt a resolution in support of the defense of South Korea and the U.S. are quick to commit significant resources to the military conflict. Canada and many other Allied countries contribute to the establishment of the multinational force assembled to defend the principle of collective security . Although technically it is called a " police action " of the UN , the Korean conflict , officially called " United Nations Operations in Korea, 1950-1953 ," led to a reorganization of economic and social life of the nation Canadian .

 

The first Canadians to serve in the Korean theater of operations are part of the Royal Canadian Navy . Three Tribal class destroyers set sail for the Far East in July 1950: Canadian Ships (HMCS ) Cayuga, Athabaskan and Sioux . The HMCS Nootka , Iroquois, Huron and Haida will follow later. All the ships are named after Indian tribes and their crews include indigenous sailors. Chief Petty Officer 2nd Class George Edward Jamieson, of the Upper Cayuga Six Nations , the Indian was probably the most senior officer of the Royal Canadian Navy during the Korean War. Veteran of World War II, Jamieson participated in missions to escort convoys during the Battle of the Atlantic and he remained in the Navy after the war. He is the chief instructor of anti- submarine torpedoed HMCS Iroquois when the ship is sent to Korean waters in 1952. Three years later , he was promoted to Chief Petty Officer 1st Class , the highest among the rank and rank in the Navy. Russ Moses , too Six Nations , is on board the Iroquois October 2, 1952 when he was involved in a firefight with North Korean coastal battery which 13 people on board. "I was glad to get out " , does he recalls. In all, Moses will serve five years in the Royal Canadian Navy and 10 years in the Royal Canadian Air Force.

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Ronald Lowry - a Mohawk of the Bay of Quinte - enlisted in the Navy in 1949. "My friend wanted to join the Navy to learn a trade , he later said . I was for two years apprentice plumber in Oshawa, Ontario , and I went with him to keep him company . [ ... ] Once there, they asked me if I wanted to try my luck with the tests. I was told there would be a couple hours of waiting , so I tried [ ...] I passed the tests and the rest followed. " In August 1951 , Lowry was assigned to HMCS Nootka , who returned from his first mission in Korea there is always found six months later when the vessel leaves for his second mission in the Far East . Sonar technician , the young man has, however, received training to destruction, so it is seconded for six months with British and South Korean Marines conducting lightning raids against North Korea in order to destroy bridges , railways and other strategic objectives. The war ended, Lowry is in the Navy, where he became a petty officer , and there is for 10 years, including three as attached to the service of submarines of the Royal Navy . He is head of an authentic seafaring family : his wife Joan , a Mi'kmaq of Nova Scotia, also enlisted in the Royal Canadian Navy in the early 1950s and four of their five son follow in the footsteps of their parents.

  
" My grandfather enlisted in the Navy and I, in the Sea Cadets at the age of 12 years ... Since I had a Scottish uncle who had served in the Royal Navy and served in the RCN, I wanted to become a sailor . As for my great native father, he preferred the Army - you could dig a hole and hide ... My Scottish grandfather had also served in the First World War and all it said was " mud , mud , mud and corned beef - at least in the Navy, you have a warm bed at night , my guy . If your boat is sunk , it will happen quickly. " Because I liked his way of thinking , I wanted to become a sailor . "

Canada's contribution goes to a higher level in August 1950 , when Prime Minister Louis St. Laurent responds to public pressure and announced that Canada will send ground forces in Korea to support the UN forces . Special Force of the Canadian Army ( FSAC ) is organized , its members recruited in haste, and the first unit arrived overseas before the end of the year. The infantry brigade has about 5,000 soldiers and is built around a framework of veterans of the Second World War. It is not known how many Aboriginal soldiers fought in Korea , but the division of Indian Affairs noted the names of 73 Status Indians who enlisted during the first year. In 1952, the same source reported 175 Indians who are enrolled in the FSAC . These figures have not been validated , but some estimates suggest that " several hundred Aboriginal people have fought on the battlefield and at sea in an area called , in more peaceful times , the Land of Morning Calm ". In all, Canada provides more than 20,000 troops to the UN forces in Korea - a small number compared to the numbers during the two world wars, but nevertheless an important force where there are hundreds of military Métis and First Nations and Métis who served during World War II or that the military provides an opportunity for new experiences and improve their economic situation.

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Sergeant Tommy Prince , a veteran of the highly decorated Second World War , joined again in the 2eBataillon , Princess Patricia's Canadian Light Infantry , to serve in Korea. There deserves three campaign medals , bringing his total to 11 to 1 at the top Canadian Indians . If his prior service have enabled him to gain valuable experience, they have taken a heavy physical toll : at 35, he suffers from arthritis in the knees , and his pain is exacerbated by the fact that he suffered cartilage damage during his service in the paratroopers . Patrols in the rugged hills of Korea are very trying for him and tells him, despite his protests, less strenuous tasks before assigning it to an administrative position at Camp Borden, Ontario. The warrior does not , however, yet to resurface and Prince believes that his knees are well enough to ask to resume service with the 3rd Battalion, Princess Patricia's Canadian Light Infantry. His request was approved and he returned one last time on the battlefield . He finished the war afflicted with a marked limp and will be demobilized in 1954 with a disability pension . He died in 1977 at age 62 .

 

Stephen Simon , a Mi'kmaq from Big Cove , New Brunswick , came to the front in Korea with the 2nd Battalion The Royal Canadian Regiment in the fall of 1951. Radio operator in the infantry, he is plunged into more dangerous situations. In June 1952, he is in a bunker in front of Hill 133, where officers come to observe enemy positions . One of the doctors campaign turned a deaf ear to the warnings of those who tell him to keep his head down . "I think it was the third time he raised his head, says Simon , the shell [ ... ] tore off his head. Things like that occurred and [ ... ] the survivors continued to fight until they are killed in turn . " Simon was fortunately not a victim of the war. However, it takes little there leaves her Indian status . While he was overseas , he received a letter from the Indian agent , who advised him to give up his Indian status and seek emancipation to become a Canadian citizen :


I do not know what to do , there was no other Indian in the neighborhood that I could ask for advice . I thought my commander . I said that as a soldier he had anything to do with Indians but anyway as I need advice, I requested an interview. I asked him what he would do . He glanced at my form and he looked at me for a moment. "You my advice requests , here's what I want to do ." He took the form and he tore into pieces and threw it in the wastebasket , saying: " I advise you not to sell your status . Do not let anyone steal or take your status - keeps your status , this is what I advise . You can always get another form if you ever change your mind . " I never forgot that advice. I never went looking for another form and I 've never sold my status.

 

Métis community is well represented in Korea. Poor economic prospects and poverty lead some to enlist in the Special Force . Maurice Blondeau a trained engine mechanic , but when he finds that he can not find work, " hitchhiked from Fort Qu'Appelle to Regina at six in the morning with a temperature of 36 ° below zero enlist . " With a grade nine education , Blondeau results in the artillery . While in Korea, he was hit in the ankle by a piece of shrapnel which seriously damages the ligaments , he remained in the army until 1957 before being appointed executive director of the Saskatchewan Indian and Native Friendship Centre. Wes Whitford also enlisted in 1950 because " it is difficult to find work ." It also continues a proud family military tradition :

Nine of my uncles served in World War II and I wanted to be like them. They told me all these stories about the good times they had in England and Holland and I longed to be used too, but I was too young at the time. So when the Korean War broke out, I told myself , this is your chance to see the country, to gain experience and, of course , have medals. I wanted medals.

When his uncles tease him later saying in Korea , " it was not really a war," he will reply : " There were real bullets and people were killed [ ... ] I was proud , very proud . And I still am. "

Ron Camponi falsified his birth certificate to enlist in 1942 , at age 16 . Fired when authorities discovered the deception , he enlisted again as a boy band and used in Canada until the spring of 1946. Eight months later , he again enlisted , this time in the Regular Force, the 2nd Armoured Regiment , Lord Strathcona 's Horse (Royal Canadians) , and served in Korea with the "B" Squadron of the regiment in 1952. He says:

 

Korea , it looked like the First World War. Everyone was cut along the 38th parallel and it seemed the trenches 1914-1918 [ ... ] There was a lot of bombing and numerous patrols . The infantry was going on patrol and we provide them with support , entrenched in our tanks . The bombing was exasperating , because we could not go anywhere , we could not move our tanks . We took note of the targets during the day and we arrosions bombs overnight [ ...] It was a bloody war were fired at us , they bombed us and guys were killed .

On 13 August 1952, the Chinese mortars touch tanks Squadron "B" on the Hill 159 and destroy one of the turrets. Under enemy fire , Sergeant Camponi drove a tank replacement and returns the damaged tank. His brothers also serve in the armed forces : in August 1952, the cover of the magazine The Legionary ( the official journal of the Royal Canadian Legion) adorned with a photograph of three brothers Camponi perched on a tank in Korea.

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Differences in culture and language make it particularly difficult for northern Aboriginal service in the armed forces. However, the Annual Report 1952 of Indian Affairs reported "a number of young Indians" of the Northwest Territories who enlisted in the active force , "including a very representative group of bands and Hare Loucheux . Initial reports of this group of young men indicate that most of them do well in their new vocation. " Eddie Weetaltuk , Inuit born near the Eastmain River in Quebec high schools in northern Quebec and Ontario , is among the enlisted. After working as a cook and maneuver in pulp and paper in Timmins , Ontario, and in various logging camps of the upper Ottawa Valley , he joined the Special Force of the Canadian Army in 1952 under the name of Eddie Vital. He fights with the Princess Patricia's Canadian Light Infantry in Korea , and on his return to Canada , he follows a paratrooper training and instruction to war in the Arctic with the Mobile Striking Force , part of the Regular Army responsible for the defense of Canada . He then made two tours of duty in West Germany before leaving the army to go Poste-de- la-Baleine (Great Whale River ) in James Bay .

"It is not easy when a soldier goes to war and comes back, the war does not end there," [t] says Stephen Simon . "It's like the Korean War , they said it had ended in 1953, but [ for ] the majority of us , it does not end there , it [ ... ] accompanied us [ ... ] for the rest of our lives. " That is why Simon continues to participate in Remembrance Day : " We show our gratitude to all veterans , without exception, who fought and sacrificed their lives to the dark days of the war. "
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