Korean War Legacy Project

Ibrahim Gulek

Bio

Ibrahim Gulek served in the Turkish army as an infantryman during the Korean War. He was one of eight children born in Edine, Turkey. He enlisted in the Turkish military in 1952 and left for Korea in 1953. In Korea, Ibrahim Gulek was one of few who could read and write. He became a teacher for other Turkish soldiers to help them learn Turkish. His specialty in the Korean War was being a sniper. Ibrahim Gulek served along the Nevada Complex and at Sandbag Castle during the Korean War.

Clips

Desperation of the South Koreans

Ibrahim Gulek describes the people of South Korea. South Korea was war-torn. The people were desperate. He describes South Koreans as having no clothes and constantly begging for food. The conditions were heartbreaking. Ibrahim Gulek and his fellow soldiers would give food and supplies to the people in need.

Tags: Incheon,Seoul,Civilians,Cold winters,Food,Front lines,Living conditions,Orphanage,Poverty,South Koreans

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https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_dHiaUxOR1w&start=178&end=306

Sandbag Castle

Ibrahim Gulek describes the conditions at Sandbag Castle. War had stopped briefly due to a ceasefire, while negotiations were occurring. However, the Chinese attacked without warning. There was about two months of constant warfare in close combat. Ibrahim Gulek was a sniper and told to fire at a certain location where the enemy was located. At one point soldiers were told to consume alcohol in order to not feel death.

Tags: Panmunjeom,Chinese,Communists,Fear,Front lines

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https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_dHiaUxOR1w&start=310&end=620

Downtime

Ibrahim Gulek describes what soldiers did when the Armistice was signed. Many Turkish soldiers could not read or write. Ibrahim Gulek was one of the few who could and taught other soldiers how to also. He also describes a tug-or-war with the American soldiers. The Turkish soldiers won.

Tags: Panmunjeom,Living conditions,Pride,Rest and Relaxation (R&R)

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https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_dHiaUxOR1w&start=629&end=794