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21/04/2019 19:26pm

South Africa Medal For Korea

Conflict
 
Korean War 1950 - 1953.
 
Further relevant historical context can be found at the foot of this entry.
 
History
 
The South Africa Medal for Korea was a campaign medal of the Union of South Africa presented for service during the Korean War. It was instituted in 1953 and awarded to South African volunteers who served one day in the Korean War theatre of operations between 19 September 1950 and 27 July 1953.
 
It was issued to a small military staff serving with the British Commonwealth Division, and an air force squadron which served under U.S. command - 'The Flying Cheetahs'.
 
Description
 
The medal is circular, 38mm in diameter and was struck in silver. The obverse of this medal depicts a laurel wreath, the left branch spreading from the bottom of the medal to the top, the right branch is shorter covering from the bottom to half way to the top allowing space for the inscription; ‘KOREA’.
 
In the centre of the obverse can be found the following inscription; ‘VRYWILLINGERS VOLUNTEERS’ with outlines of the Korean Peninsula and South Africa (including South-West Africa). These are connected to one another by a line with an arrowhead at each end, and five wavy lines. Superimposed on the outline of South Africa is the inscription; ‘U. VAN S-A. / U. OF S.A.’
 
The reverse depicts the arms of South Africa and the Queens Crown. Between them are the initials; ‘E II R’ for Elizabeth Regina.
 
The ribbon suspender is a ring through an edge mount attached to the top of the medal.
 
The recipient's details can be found on the medal's rim impressed in sans serif capitals.
 
Ribbon
 
 
The ribbon is 33mm wide and is made up of five vertical stripes of orange, navy blue, air force blue.
 
Bars/Clasps
 
None were authorised for this medal, but a single bronze oak leaf emblem was issued to be worn on the ribbon to signify that the recipient had been ‘Mentioned in Dispatches’.
 
Further relevant historical context can be found at the foot of this entry.
 
Dealer Retail Value *
 
South Africa Medal For Korea
£500.00
South Africa Medal For Korea to pilot
£1750.00
 
* It should be noted that the values quoted above reflect the average price that a medal dealer may expect to sell this medal for - please see the ‘things you should know’ web page for more details about valuing medals.
 
Further Historical Context
 
This section contains information on:-
 
- South African Forces During The Korean War.
- The Korean War.
 
South African Forces During The Korean War - In the Korean War, the famous 2 Squadron ('The Flying Cheetahs') took part as South Africa's contribution. It won many American decorations, including the unusual honour of a United States Presidential Unit Citation in 1952 which read:
 
'…2 Sqn had a long and distinguished record of service in Korea flying F-51D Mustangs and later F-86F Sabres. Their role was mainly flying ground attack and interdiction missions as one of the squadrons making up the USAF's 18th Fighter Bomber Wing.
 
During the Korean conflict the squadron flew a grand total of 12 067 sorties for a loss of 34 pilots and two other ranks. Aircraft losses amounted to 74 out of 97 Mustangs and four out of 22 Sabres.
 
Pilots and men of the squadron received a total of 797 medals including 2 Silver Stars - the highest award to non-American nationals - 3 Legions of Merit, 55 Distinguished Flying Crosses and 40 Bronze Stars. 8 pilots became POW's. Casualties: 20 KIA 16 WIA…'
 
This information was taken from ‘Wikipedia’. The original article and details of the authors can be found here. It is reproduced on this web-site under the ‘creative commons’ licence which can be found here.
 
The Korean War - The Korean War (25 June 1950 – 27 July 1953) was a war between the Republic of Korea (South Korea), supported by the United Nations, and the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (North Korea), at one time supported by China and the Soviet Union. It was primarily the result of the political division of Korea by an agreement of the victorious Allies at the conclusion of the Pacific War at the end of World War II.
 
The Korean Peninsula was ruled by the Empire of Japan from 1910 until the end of World War II. Following the surrender of the Empire of Japan in September 1945, American administrators divided the peninsula along the 38th parallel, with U.S. military forces occupying the southern half and Soviet military forces occupying the northern half.
 
The failure to hold free elections throughout the Korean Peninsula in 1948 deepened the division between the two sides; the North established a communist government, while the South established a right-wing government. The 38th parallel increasingly became a political border between the two Korean states. Although reunification negotiations continued in the months preceding the war, tension intensified. Cross-border skirmishes and raids at the 38th parallel persisted. The situation escalated into open warfare when North Korean forces invaded South Korea on 25 June 1950.
 
In 1950, the Soviet Union boycotted the United Nations Security Council. In the absence of a veto from the Soviet Union, the United States and other countries passed a Security Council resolution authorizing military intervention in Korea.
 
The U.S. provided 88% of the 341,000 international soldiers which aided South Korean forces, with twenty other countries of the United Nations offering assistance. Suffering severe casualties within the first two months, the defenders were pushed back to the Pusan perimeter. A rapid U.N. counter-offensive then drove the North Koreans past the 38th parallel and almost to the Yalu River, when China entered the war on the side of North Korea.
 
Chinese intervention forced the Southern-allied forces to retreat behind the 38th parallel. While not directly committing forces to the conflict, the Soviet Union provided material aid to both the North Korean and Chinese armies.
 
The fighting ended on 27 July 1953, when the armistice agreement was signed. The agreement restored the border between the Koreas near the 38th Parallel and created the Korean Demilitarized Zone (DMZ), a 2.5-mile (4.0 km)-wide fortified buffer zone between the two Korean nations. Minor incidents still continue today.
 
This information was taken from ‘Wikipedia’. The original article and details of the authors can be found here. It is reproduced on this web-site under the ‘creative commons’ licence which can be found here.