What caused the Korean War?

After World War Two, Korea had been divided at the 38th parallel into the Soviet-backed communist North Korea, led by Kim Il Sung, and non-communist, American-backed South Korea under the leadership of Syngman Rhee.

Neither leader in Korea had been elected nor did either recognise the legitimacy of the other.

However, Rhee was a corrupt and unpopular leader and did badly in the April 1950 elections when many in the south voted for reunification with the North.

In June 1950, with the support of China and the Soviet Union, North Korea launched an attack on South Korea across the 38th parallel.