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Surprisingly, some observers challenged Truman's assessment even before the Korean War ended on 27 July 1953. For example, Wilbur Hitchcock published an article in 1951 asserting that Kim Il-sung, not Stalin, "pulled the switch" initiating the Korean conflict. He emphasized in particular the Soviet boycott of the Security Council that prevented Moscow from vetoing resolutions authorizing UN military action to defend the ROK. |
In addition, North Korea's attack sparked a number of unwelcome developments for the Soviet Union, including a massive US military buildup, rearmament of West Germany, and the strengthening of NATO. Thus, according to Hitchcock, Kim Il-sung "jumped the gun" and attacked the ROK before the Soviets were ready for the invasion. I. F. Stone, in contrast to Hitchcock, focused his 1952 study of the Korean War on South Korea's responsibility for the outbreak of hostilities.
ROK President Syngman Rhee was provocative, Stone contends, instigating many border clashes at the 38th parallel before 25 June 1950. In response to North Korean retaliation, Rhee portrayed the orderly retreat of his forces as a military debacle, thereby persuading Truman to commit troops.
General Douglas MacArthur, John Foster Dulles, and Chiang Kai-shek were participants in this conspiracy to reverse the process of US military disengagement from East Asia after World War II.