Search within this web site:

 
you are here ::

History, Syngman Rhee and the Second Republic

popular election, nationwide protest, significant economic development, Kim Il, Korean War

From the republic’s beginning, the main business of the government was the suppression of leftist groups, some of them independent but many supported by North Korea. The North Korean leader, Kim Il Sung, sought to unify the entire Korea Peninsula under Communist rule. To this end, Kim launched a full-scale military attack in June 1950, which began the Korean War. The war totally disrupted South Korean life and politics, and Rhee began to lose the support of the legislature. Rhee used troops to force the legislature to provide for popular election of the president, and he was then elected to a second term in 1952. Recovery from the war was slow. Rhee was unable to produce any significant economic development despite much U.S. aid. He won reelection handily in 1956 and 1960, but blatant manipulation of the 1960 elections led to a nationwide protest that culminated in Rhee’s forced resignation on April 27, 1960. The moderate government of John M. Chang followed with liberalizing reforms in many areas, but economic development still lagged. Military elements, fearing growing instability and wary of student agitation for talks with the north, staged a coup on May 16, 1961, ending the Second Republic.



Article key phrases:

popular election, nationwide protest, significant economic development, Kim Il, Korean War, reelection, Communist rule, coup, North Korean leader, troops, legislature, elections, Chang, talks, main business, Recovery, aid, president, end, term, politics, areas, support

 
 

Search within this web site: