Battlefield Tourism (Unique Battlefield Tourism)

Where have you been? Where are you going? This is the place for talking about chapters 1. 3, & 7 of Authentic English Readings for Advanced Students.
Post Reply
Posts: 1
Joined: Wed Mar 07, 2012 2:37 am

Battlefield Tourism (Unique Battlefield Tourism)

Post by (lab102)parksungjin »

There are a lot of renowned battlefield tourism sites where many fierce battles were once taken. However, there are only a few places in the world where people can tour around the battlefield, but the battle still hasn't ended yet. Panmunjeom is the one of the few battlefield tourism site where the tension of the battle still lingers and soldiers are standing face to face with their weapons held in arms.

Panmunjeom is located in Gyeonggi Province at the heart of the boarder between the North and South Korea. It is a village where the Korean Armistice Agreement that paused the Korean War was signed. There is also a Joint Security Area (JSA) nearby where the soldiers of the North and South Korea are facing each other right on the boarder between the two countries. This tour site is very renowned to foreign visitor and became one of the "must see" program when they visit Korea. However, there are some restrictions. Due to the diplomatic reason, the local citizen are prohibited from entering the site. Luckly for me, I was able to experience the Panmunjeom when I was servicing in the U.S. military.

The atmosphere of Panmunjeom is different from other regular battlefield tour site like Gettysburg. It is not casual and family oriented as its original purpose is to pause the war. Therefore, one can feel the tension of a war and the reality between the two countries. There are many strict regulations such as checking IDs and bannig photographs. Moreover, tourists will be escorted by actual army personal who is working at the Panmunjeom.

If you are tired of visiting many conventional battlefield parks or museum, Panmunjeom would be my definate recommendation that I would like to offer.

Posts: 18
Joined: Wed Mar 07, 2012 11:03 am

Re: Battlefield Tourism (Unique Battlefield Tourism)

Post by (lab102)jounghwanpark »

Of course. Panmunjeom is one of the most famous battlefield tourism sites in Korea!
Unfortunately, I've never been to Panmunjeom, so I'm quite curious about how it feels to be at the actual site. This is just a suggestion, but I think it might be a good idea if our class can all go and visit the site once during the semester (laughs). Oh yeah, a good friend of mine also served his time in the Army at J.S.A. as well and I remember him telling me about how he got paid extra in terms of life insurance cost. So, from that and also from what you've mentioned, I could see how dangerous and protected the site must be.

Posts: 16
Joined: Thu Mar 08, 2012 4:15 am

Re: Battlefield Tourism (Unique Battlefield Tourism)

Post by (starbucks)joungyoonchoi »

Sorry if I'm straying a bit off the point, but battlefields in Korea are a little unfamiliar to me because I've lived in Germany for a long time. I learned about European history mostly (like the two World Wars, and the Cold war, etc) so I'm more interested in battlefields in Europe. (I also thought that my talking about battlefields outside Korea may be interesting to some people. If not, sorry. Bear with me lol.)

I may be stretching the terms of 'battlefield' a little, but I've been to factories and jails where Jewish people have worked or have been confined in, and also some cemetries that were created in order to honor those who have fought in the second World War. I remember being shocked by the grief and misery that were still apparent in those places. There are German people who still grieve for their lost ones, and visit their graves often. I guess this is because these world wars were more recent and global than our Korean wars - people who have lived through this battles still live. But if anyone is interested in European history (and would like to experience the desolate atmosphere of war) I recommend visiting these places.

Also, the Berlin Wall (or more like the remainders of the wall) which is located in Berlin (obviously) is also an interesting place to visit. The Cold War was a war, though ideological... so I believe that the Berlin Wall is a battlefield in a way. There are parts of this wall all around the world in various museums so I guess it'd be easier to come across the wall than having to go all the way to Germany to see cemetries lol...

These are pretty unique battlefield recommendations huh? :)

(lab102)Sujin Shin
Posts: 5
Joined: Fri Mar 09, 2012 5:42 am

Re: Battlefield Tourism (Unique Battlefield Tourism)

Post by (lab102)Sujin Shin »

Yeah, I think Panmunjeom is one of the important battle field in korea.
I agree with your opinion that Panmunjeom is unique battlefield.
I am usually interested in Panmunjeom. So I searched it.
Today its name is usually used to refer to the United Nations'' Joint Security Area (JSA).
This is the place where, in about a dozen buildings that straddle the armistice line, all meetings between North Korea and the United Nations Command or South Korea, including those of the Military Armistice Commission, have taken place since the JSA’s completion.
The JSA is an important 20th-century historical site, symbolizing as it does the Cold War and the confrontation between Communism and the West.
From old times, I want to go there. However, I 've never been there.
So I want to visit there later with my family. :)

Post Reply