A Chinese Soldier’s Memoir in Korean War
In May 1952, my grandfather participated in the Korean War as a soldier and courier for the Chinese People's Volunteer Army. The final stage of the battle was extremely brutal with both sides fiercely competing for strategic positions. Entire companies fell in the relentless struggle and countless soldiers lost their lives. However, through the fires of the war, fate favoured a few survivors - my grandfather was one of them.
On the evening of December 5th, 2015, my grandfather unfolded this unforgettable journey and personal stories from Korean War to my mother. She, in return, recorded his narratives and preserved them in the form of audio recordings.
"The wrong war, at the wrong place, at the wrong time, and with the wrong enemy" is the renowned accusation made by General Omar Bradley in his testimony to the U.S. Congress on May 15, 1951, while serving as the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. Widely quoted by politicians, this statement appears to resonate across all nations involved in the Korean War.
As of now, numerous historical documents have been released by various states, with some being adapted into films. However, in the United States, South Korea, and China, those films often tend to reflect distinct political perspectives of each nation. It appears that, after 70 years, there is a diminished focus on the Korean War.
As designers, we cannot stop wars, but we can strive to authentically portray every detail during the wars by leveraging both old and new media. With this in mind, I decided to showcase my grandfather's narratives in an interactive illustration format, seamlessly combining moving images and sounds to provide a more immersive and engaging experience.
©2024 Ailun Jiang