Role in WW2
Main articles: Provisional Government of the Republic of Korea and Korea under Japanese rule
Korea was under Japanese rule as part of Japan's 50-year imperialist expansion (22 August 1910 ~ 15 August 1945). Formally, Japanese rule ended on 2 September 1945 upon the Japanese defeat in World War II in 1945.
Independence movements during the colonial era included the March 1st Movement. Koreans created an official, formal government to prepare for independence. The Provisional Charter of Korea was declared on April 11, 1919, about a month after the March 1st Movement. Two days later, the Provisional Government of Republic of Korea was established. They created the Korean Liberation Army (KLA) on September 17, 1940 and declared war against the Empire of Japan on December 10, 1941.
The KLA failed to initiate Operation Eagle, a plan to liberate the Korean Peninsula by first attacking the capital region (Seoul and Incheon), on August 18, 1945. The Office of Strategic Services of the United States also promised to assist the KLA with warplanes, submarines, and airborne troops during the operation. However, the plan failed due to the early surrender of Japan on August 15, 1945. The Provisional Government also faced heavy oppositions against the United States military government in Korea after World War II. The government of the Republic of Korea was established on August 15, 1948, and the Provisional Government was disbanded officially.
During World War II more than 100,000 Koreans were mandatorily drafted into the Imperial Japanese Army.
After the surrender of Japan to the allied forces on August 15, 1945, Korea was jointly occupied by Soviet and American forces, with political disagreements leading to the separation of the peninsula into two independent nations. This eventually escalated into the Korean War.