Belgian volunteers during the Korean War: 1950-1953, photo no. 15202 (Louis Verdijck Collection, in the Korean Volunteer Battalion), Rights reserved, Cegesoma/State Archives.

Wanted: photos, letters and other archives on Belgium and the Korean War!

It was seventy years ago last summer that the Korean War (1950-1953) ended in an armistice. A real peace never happened. In the summer of 2025, we will commemorate the 75th anniversary of the start of the war.

In late 1950, the Belgian government accepted a request from the United Nations to send troops to the Korean peninsula to fight communism there under the leadership of the United States. In all, more than 3,000 Belgian volunteers would serve in the Belgian United Nations Command for shorter or longer time periods.
In the framework of CegeSoma's research domain on the Cold War, we will pay extra attention to the history of the Belgian battalion in Korea over the next few years. Therefore, we are looking for photographs, letters and other documents (such as memoirs, pamphlets, copies of the soldiers' magazine De Stille Morgen / Le Matin calme, etc.) about the experiences of Belgian veterans that you would be willing to donate to CegeSoma. Indeed, as part of the State Archives, CegeSoma can guarantee the long-term preservation and accessibility of your sources. 

Over twenty years ago, our center launched a similar appeal which yielded more than a thousand photos at the time, including the album of battalion commander Albert Crahay and that of military prosecutor in the field Georges Schuermans. But we received just as valuable photos of "ordinary" soldiers and obtained valuable archives from Lieutenant Benoît Verhaegen. Through this appeal, we hope to match that success.
Do you have photos, letters or other items about the Belgians in Korea that you would like to donate? If so, please contact or