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Commitment Remains: U.S.-ROK Defense Cooperation

Dialog and cooperation: U.S. Secretary of Defense Robert M. Gates talks with Republic of Korea President Lee Myung-Bak at the 9th International Institute for Strategic Studies, June 2010. (U.S. Air Force photo)

Dialog and cooperation: U.S. Secretary of Defense Robert M. Gates talks with Republic of Korea President Lee Myung-Bak at the 9th International Institute for Strategic Studies, June 2010. (U.S. Air Force photo)

KUNSAN AIR BASE, Republic of Korea -- Mr. Un-chan Chung, Prime Minister of South Korea, greets Col. Robert Givens, commander of the 8th Fighter Wing, during his arrival here March 18. The prime minister met with the governor of Jeonbuk Province and the other city officials and toured the Gunsan area. (U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt. Darnell T. Cannady)

Allies in harmony: South Korean Prime Minister Chung Un-Chan greets U.S. Air Force 8th Fighter Wing Commander Col. Robert Givens at Kunsan Air Base in early 2010. (U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt. Darnell T. Cannady)

Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. Norton A. Schwartz greets Airmen outside the 25th Fighter Squadron during his tour at Osan Air Base, Republic of Korea on May 11. After his greeting, Gen. Schwartz receives a tour of the 25th FS facility from the 51st Operations Group Commander Col. Michael E. Newman. The CSAF was here as part of his Pacific Air Force tour, visiting and talking to the Airmen.   (U.S. Air Force photo/Senior Airman Stephenie Wade)

Commitment to South Korea: U.S. Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. Norton Schwartz visits Airmen of the 25th Fighter Squadron at Osan Air Base, Republic of Korea, May 2009. (U.S. Air Force photo/Senior Airman Stephenie Wade)

Generations connect: Air Force Korean War hero, POW and double ace Col. Harold Fischer greets 51st Fighter Wing personnel at Osan Air Base, Republic of Korea, in 2007. Fischer's story is highlighted in the Korean War Gallery at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)

Generations connect: Air Force Korean War hero, POW and double ace Col. Harold Fischer greets 51st Fighter Wing personnel at Osan Air Base, Republic of Korea, in 2007. Fischer's story is highlighted in the Korean War Gallery at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)

Airmen and partners: Korean Lt. Gen. Lee Han-Ho and USAF Brig. Gen. William Holland meet at Osan Air Base, Republic of Korea, 2003. (U.S. Air Force photo)

Airmen and partners: Korean Lt. Gen. Lee Han-Ho and USAF Brig. Gen. William Holland meet at Osan Air Base, Republic of Korea, 2003. (U.S. Air Force photo)

F-15K Slam Eagles from the South Korean air force's 11th Tactical Fighter Wing out of Daegu Air Base, fly with an F-16 Fighting Falcon March 11 over Kunsan Air Base, South Korea. The three aircraft were participating in the Buddy Wing program, an operation designed to increase U.S. Air Force and South Korean air force interoperability. (U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt. Jason Colbert)

Training together: Republic of Korea Air Force F-15 fighters on a joint training mission with a USAF F-16 Fighting Falcon over South Korea. (U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt. Jason Colbert)

"The Republic of Korea today was made possible by the noble sacrifices of the Korean War veterans."
-Statement from Republic of Korea Prime Minister Chung Un-Chan and Former Prime Minister Lee Hong-Koo

The legacies of the Korean war are lasting commitment to democratic ideals and steadfast action to stop aggression. In the decades since the war, the Republic of Korea has grown into a modern, free and vibrant industrial nation. The foundation of South Korean freedom lies in the sacrifice of its people, and in the strong support of fellow democratic nations in war and peace.


American defense and political commitment to South Korea remains strong. As communist North Korea has demonstrated through the years, it still poses a threat to peace and democracy in the region. Serious incidents including murders in the Demilitarized Zone and the illegal capture of the American naval vessel USS Peublo -- plus innumerable threats of military action -- have proven that North Korean hostility is still a grave danger. Strong U.S. forces therefore remain in partnership with the Republic of Korea's defense establishment.

The United States Air Force maintains a robust presence on the Korean peninsula. The 7th Air Force's 51st and 8th Fighter Wings operate from Osan and Kunsan Air Bases, with support units at several other South Korean locations. Bolstering U.S. air power in the region, Pacific Air Forces also are present in Japan, Hawaii, Guam and Alaska. Overall, the U.S. has around 28,500 service members stationed in South Korea, including about 20,000 U.S. Army Soldiers. Naval and Marine forces that also play key roles in Pacific regional defense.

Click here to return to the Korean War Gallery.

 

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Silver Wings, Golden Valor: The USAF Remembers Korea (Provided by AFHSO)
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