Denmark – Copenhagen

Veteran Stories

>> My name is Sven Yacht, and I joined the Jutlandia in 1951. No, that's not correct. That was the first trip, when the ship left Copenhagen. I joined the Jutlandia sailing from Copenhagen 19th of September in '52, and I had asked for a job on board the Jutlandia already in 1950, when it was decided from the Danish Foreign Ministry that Denmark would send a hospital ship to Korea. At that time, I was in India, but I sent a telegram back to East Asiatic Company, which owned the ship, that if they could need me, I was ready to volunteer for a job as engineer on board the ship, but as it was normal custom in the EAC at that time, I never heard an answer for it. So it took until September '52 before I all of a sudden was called in with about 3 days' notice. So I had to pack up all my clothes in a hurry and go to the ship, which was laying down at Langelinie, where the memorial, the Danish vigilance memorial, placed only a few meters from the place where the Jutlandia left Copenhagen. Strange enough, we sailed, and strange enough, we sailed 19th of September, and it was my birthday, 28th of September. So at that time, I joined that, call it short period, I met, very, very fast, we learned each other to know on board the ship, and one day, when I was on the deck, looking at what happened on the sea and so on, there were three nurses standing also just there. I guess they were standing there, and I walked there, probably the way we did it, and among them there were a young nurse, which I was going to learn later on, but we talked about it, and I told them it was my birthday the day after, and they said, "Oh, well, we'll come. We'll come." I said, "Oh, that's a very good idea. You can join me tomorrow morning. I'm finished in the engine room at 4 o'clock in the morning." "Oh, well, that's a little bit early," and, no, they couldn't do that. That would not be allowed, and they were very shy at that time. After a year or two, it had left most of them, but that was the first time I met this young ... She was the second youngest nurse which had signed on board the ship. There were very strict rules and very strict ... What do you call it? They should at least be 25 years old, and they should have been nurses for so-and-so long, and they have worked with operations and other things from a hospital. So it was very trained and very clever nurses that were on board, but then we sailed further on, and it was a fantastic experience for the crew, for the young doctors and for the nurses, when we came to the Mediterranean and later on through the Suez Canal, and because it was so close, after all, it was so close from the Second World War and the German occupation of Denmark that they had never been abroad from Denmark, all these, only very few. So it was the great ... Everything was new for all these people. When we came through Suez Canal and went to Sri Lanka or to Ceylon, was its name at that time, and then it happened that I went ashore for a few hours in Ceylon, and I met three nurses up there. That was, of course, the same nurses as I had met first time, and they were a little bewildered. They didn't know what to do. They had never been away. So I said, "Well, wouldn't you care for a drink or something in this heat down here?" "Oh, yes, yes, better." I said, "Well, I know there's a fine hotel here we can go and have a drink. What do you want to drink?" They didn't know because none of them were used to have drinks, but one of them had been ashore in Southampton, where we had called on the way out, and she said, "Oh, oh, I will have a gin and tonic," and so all of a sudden, all three wanted gin and tonics. So we got that, and we sat in this hotel and had a 1/2 an hour or so, and among them were also this nurse that came. We left Ceylon where we called for fresh water and oil and other kind of supports for the ship, and we came to Singapore where we also called in, and Singapore, there were possibilities for the nurses and doctors, for the hospital staff. They were allowed to go ashore as much as they wanted because there were no patients there at that time, and I was so happy I could have a few hours off, and I went ashore to buy a few things, and, of course, I met three nurses carrying parcels, and they were saying it was really an adventure for them to be in Singapore, and Singapore was a wonderful city, at least at that time. Well, it still is, and I said, "Have you been at Raffles Hotel?" "No, no." I said, "Well, you go to Raffles Hotel and have a drink. You can't be in Singapore without having been at Hotel Raffles." That was the most important hotel there, and it was from back to the colonials to the time from when Singapore belonged the Great Britain, but I said, "Well, I'm going on board now. I'm having a taxi. What about all these parcels and all these things? Shouldn't I bring them on board, and so you can go to Raffles and have a nice time?" So I did so, and that was good. That was the third time I met the same nurse, and, well, then we left Singapore and came to Yokosuka in Japan, which was the naval base for United States ships, and we didn't see much to each other then after that because from there, after a few days in Japan, we sailed to Pusan, and a few hours after arrival to Pusan, we got the first patients, first wounded soldiers, and so everybody had their business to do. So there were no shopping or no possibility to meet each other very much, but then New Year's Eve, we were invited, for the 1st of January, we were invited to a reception by the American commanding general in the place which the American soldiers and especially the officers, where they met very often. I don't know. It was called Old Ironsides. Why? I don't know, but that was the name of this place, and everybody who could leave the Jutlandia participated in this reception, and there were speeches and so on, and the day before, I met this young nurse, and I said, "Well, are you going to the reception tomorrow?" "Oh, well, yes, I think so." "Have you company? Are you meeting some of your friends or your colleagues from the cabin or so?" "No, no, I have ... No." "What about ... Shouldn't we join, and would you follow me?" "Oh, yes," she says, "I would like to." So that was, in fact, the first time I had a chance to sit. We came in to a big table, hundreds of people there, and we had a nice, a very nice reception, a very nice day there, and we had much fun because there were a lot of American officers at the same table, and Americans are very polite. So when later, after a few hours, one or two ladies needed to go outside for a few minutes, and every time, all the Americans stood up, and when they came back, they stood up and sat down, and these older chief surgeons from Denmark, they said, "Oh, what the hell? Are we going to stand up every time one of the nurses has to go out?" They were not used to so much politeness. So it ended up with the nurses tried to ... Oh, sorry, my brain and my English is not what it has been, but they stayed at the tables until the last minute. So that was actually the first time we had to speak together and have a nice time, but then, later on, we had our work, but when we were in Korea, in Inchon. We were anchored in Inchon. We started off the first two trips with Jutlandia, the ship were in Pusan, but then the second trip went to ... The first trip we called Jutlandia service in Korea in three different trips. The first trip was we were sent by Allied Command to Europe or actually to Ethiopia, to Turkey, Greece, France, Rotterdam with wounded, and it turned in Rotterdam and immediately back to Korea, but then the second time, Allied Command said, "Now you go to Europe again." We took the same route, but from Rotterdam, we went to Copenhagen because we should have a helicopter deck made on it, and we should have some air condition because the temperature in the operating rooms were up to 40 Celsius during the summertime in Korea, and that was the chance for me to join the Jutlandia. That was when it was finished with helicopter deck and all that. We started back to Korea 19th of September, and strange enough, that was the same date when this nurse, which I later learned to know, she also joined the ship. She had asked for it before, with Red Cross, but she was too young at that time. She was not 25, but now, the third trip, she had passed 25, and she was taken as a nurse on-board. At that time, she had been a military nurse in the Danish Army. So she was very well-equipped for the job on-board the Jutlandia, but it was strange that we had both asked before to join the Jutlandia, but first, the second trip, the third trip, we were allowed to join ship, and that was, I think, some strange coincidence that we both had sought for it and both were at first allowed to join it in September '52, but ... Well, we jumped a little bit in it, but later in Inchon, we didn't have much chance to meet each other or to speak or to, as you saw in the Jutlandia Hall Museum, there were not much possibilities, and in fact, the nurses were not allowed to go to the officers' area. I don't know why, but there must have been some reason that they wouldn't allow nurses to go there. So we had each our job after this 1st of January session in Old Ironsides, but, I can't remember, probably a Saturday or Sunday where we could go ashore, and we went to Kamakura. That was when the ship was in Japan. Every 6 weeks, the Danish and the American ships, one by one, were sent to Japan with a full ship of wounded soldiers which then were sent from Japan. The very much wounded soldiers were flown out either to Hawaii or directly to USA, and when we were in Japan, we had to take care of the engine, all the engines, because we were not allowed. We should be able to leave the road of Inchon with only 1/2 an hour's notice in case something happened or in case the North Koreans still found an airplane which could attack. So we had this chance, and while then I dared to invite this nurse for a trip to Kamakura, which is a huge Buddha figure not very far from Yokosuka in Japan, very impressive. We had a very nice day. That was the first time we had a full day on our own, and that was the 10th of January. Yes, I remember, still remember that because that was the first time that we felt sympathy for each other, and we were trained and bussed from this place down to the airbase in Yokosuka, but it ended at the gangway. There were no possibilities to go further on board the ship. So then we, from that time off, it was ... We didn't see much to each other. We met on the deck sometimes, but that was all, and we came home the 23rd of October when the war ... when the Armistice legislation had ended, not ended the war because the war is still existing, actually, but there is an Armistice, what do you call it, situation, but when we came home, I was still in East Asiatic Company, but we kept writing letters to each other. My wife was in a large Army camp as chief nurse, and we kept contact as well as we could. I was in the East Asiatic Company, and she was in her work, but after a year or there about, we found out that a marriage was the right thing to do, and we asked a former priest from Jutlandia who had served as ... What do you call it, vicar? >> Chaplain. >> On the Jutlandia, whether he would marry us, and he said, "With greatest pleasure," and we were married in [FOREIGN LANGUAGE], which we passed today. We were married, but the ship, at the time, when we found out the date and so on, but when the church was ready to receive us, we were in the second biggest city in Denmark, in Aarhus, in Jutland, and we phoned to the vicar and said, "Well, what about it? It's a Saturday. Can you take us?" "Well, any time," he said. "Yes, but while we are both of us in Aarhus at the moment, we don't know, if something happens or if the weather is bad or so we don't come, well, never mind. We'll find out," and now my wife, I think that was a little bit silly that she was going by train back to Copenhagen, and I was sailing. I said, "Why don't you stay and board? I'll lock you into my cabin so you can sail with me to Copenhagen." Okay, that was fine, as we found out, and we were married only very few because none of the family or anything ... I phoned my brother and said, "Well, just to tell you, I'm going to be married tomorrow and there and there in this church, and so couldn't you arrange some dinner or something for us?" Well, not he, but he and his wife. "Oh, yes, we'll fix everything." So there were only ... My wife had four sisters, and only one of them were able to reach our wedding, and there were ... I think we were six or seven or so to the wedding, but it was enough, and both parties said yes. So it was all right, and I still remember we walked out of the church. Now, I was an old ... My trousers were out because everything was so fast, and she said, "Oh, well, I've saved money for a wedding dress, and now, well, look what I look!" I said, "Well, that's not very important. The important is that we have said yes, both of us," and we walked out. We were still in the 777, walked down into the church and into the [FOREIGN LANGUAGE] I don't know, it's in Danish, but there was a small room just before you leave the church, and there was the church woman who take care of everything, and we were both high up, and she said, "Oh, congratulations, oh, wonderful," and then I used to pay some money for the problems I've have had. So I told the vicar after what she said. He said, "Oh, well, that's impossible," but we had to pay her a little bit for the wedding. She had not participated in anything. So that was our marriage, and since then, we were married for more than 50 years, and after ... When was that? Three, 4, 5 years after our marriage, we had our first son, and he wanted to join East Asiatic Company to be educated as a businessman, but normally that was not allowed because in the East Asiatic Company, it was not allowed that [FOREIGN LANGUAGE] >> The crew or the staff. >> The staff of the East Asiatic Company were not allowed any sons or daughters, or there were no women in East Asiatic at that time, but they were not allowed to let their sons into work in the same company, but at that time, our son, we gave him a trip to the United States to the ... >> College. >> To the university, and he asked me, "Would you prevent me to journey?" and so I said, "No, I would be happy, but you will not be allowed," but I was in shipping, and he was in the business department. So that was a meeting with them, from East Asiatic, that he should be in this part of the business, and they told him, "Well, we can tell you next year." "I can't wait for that," he said. They're not used to that way in East Asiatic Company. So he said, "Well, I'm leaving for United States for 1 year, and if I do not know whether I can join East Asiatic, I will have to, when I come home, I will have to seek some other places," but he was very, very well-educated. So he came back, and he joined East Asiatic Company, and he was educated there and finished and was ready to join some of our offices and all over the world, but he, unfortunately, he died when he was 22 years old by something, a brain aneurysm. It was the Latin name for it. So that spoiled a little bit. My wife never came over his loss. When we got 5 years, we had our second son, which I'm fortunate to have today, but unmarried, but heavy engaged in Stockholm, so ... >> Really? >> Yes. So I think we should take a stop, a pause now. Well, kind of impressed of the story, so that was the reason he made the song. The song is free. It's not correct, but that's never mind. He said it was in 1949, and nurses 16 years old. They had to be 25 years at least. >> Yeah. >> So ... but that's a freedom composer. >> The artistic freedom. >> The song was fantastic good at the time when it came, when he first made it and sung it because a lot of young people in Denmark said, all of a sudden, [FOREIGN LANGUAGE] "We must know a little bit more about Jutlandia," and my wife was, at that time, at her last job as a nurse. She was a nurse in Magasin Du Nord. That was the biggest warehouse in [FOREIGN LANGUAGE] >> Storehouse. >> Yeah, I don't know. >> Mm-hmm. >> I don't know whether you know, but that's something like Macy's or something like that, and she was the chief nurse there for whole Denmark. It has a lot of smaller places, and she said when this song came, all the young people in [FOREIGN LANGUAGE] at that time, 63,000 people working in this warehouse, this place, and they all came and said [FOREIGN LANGUAGE] "They tell me you have been in Jutlandia," and so she was, all of a sudden, she was top of this warehouse. >> Star! >> So it had a very good mission to it, to tell a new generation exactly the same. The picture is terrible, but it has been shown in television 12 times now. >> Oh. >> Twelve times they have, repeatedly. People phone me every time and say [FOREIGN LANGUAGE] but it also has a mission, this picture, because people that see it today, they don't know how it was in reality, really, in Korea. So it also has a mission, and I think there is no people in Denmark now which doesn't know what Jutlandia means. So both the Kim Larsen and this one is important, but they are not true. They are full of false things, but that doesn't matter because it's very important. Kim Ju Whan is on this film, and, well, I'm also, strange enough, on this picture, but ... Well, when the Korean War broke out, or actually when North Korea attacked South Korea, there was a meeting in the United Nations, and, of course, United Nations, thanks to a mistake from Russia, which had no vote at the security council at that time, the UN asked all countries in the world to work for South Korea, do something for South Korea, and 16 countries gave military support. Denmark had just finished the German occupation, which is not to compare with the Japanese occupation of South Korea, which was terrible and rough. It was hard in Denmark, but not to compare with the Japanese, but we were a rather poor country. We had no forces at all. We couldn't defend ourselves. It was on top of the Cold War at that time. So the foreign ministry took very much care about not to attack Russia in any way. So they said, "Well, we can't help with military forces," and United States were not quite support with that, but we had no soldiers. We couldn't even defend ourself at that time, and we had the Russian forces, they were 20 minutes away from Denmark, in Poland and Eastern Germany. So they could have attacked Denmark in a matter of a few hours. They had landing crafts already on the Polish and East German coasts, and we had to go very, very easy with the helping South Korea, but I called into Korean understanding or what you would ... I don't have the right word. Denmark was one of the first countries to give their support to South Korea, but we started off giving medicine. That was not enough. We started off kind of a support one way or another, but it was not satisfied enough for United Nations and especially understandable very well for USA forces. So finally we ended up with a chief doctor who was chosen by the foreign ministry, a chief doctor to handle the negotiations, and his name was Lehmann, and he grandson is ambassador in Korea today. That's strange, but that was ... Finally, well, foreign ministry and UN and US accepted that we promised to send a hospital ship, and then they had to work to find the ship which was able, in a short time, to be transferred from a normal freighter or so to a hospital. So they choose East Asiatic Company's ship Jutlandia, which was a combined passenger and cargo ship, and it was on its road to New York, and strange enough, they forgot to inform the ship, the captain on the ship, Captain Kondrup, who was later to be the captain on the hospital ship also. So when he came in and board at the keys in New York, there were hundreds of photographers and journalists, and he said, "What the hell is happening?" He didn't know why all these people were there because he didn't know that Jutlandia was chosen, and it was emptied immediately for passengers and cargo, and everything was just ended. It returned as fast as possible to Denmark and went straight down to the shipyard, NASSCO shipyard, which had built Jutlandia in 1934, and they worked day and night, and they knew the ship because they had built it originally. So they had all papers and all the work ready when the ship arrived from New York, and that was what made it possible to leave Denmark again, already the 23rd of January. They had built a new helicopter deck. They had given, as I was told, air condition and some other few repairs and things which they had missed when they were in Korea. So in that way, that we made the whole humanitarian help and Red Cross ship. So Russia couldn't be mad of that. So that was the beginning for it. Many has asked, a lot of people ask us, "Why did you volunteer for the Korean War for Jutlandia?" and I said, "That was not very strange." For instance, for my wife, she was from the southernmost part of Jutland, which for nearly 40 years of occupation, the southern part of Jutland, of German occupation, and she know what it means for a small country to be occupied by a big cog. So she had immediately volunteered for it, and as soon as I heard it, when I saw it in the news we received aboard the ship, where I was then. I was in the underground movement in Denmark, and I was arrested by Gestapo, the German Gestapo, during the war, but by my action during the German occupation, was very, very small because I was in Elsinore, and it was not allowed to make any sabotage or any killing or anything in that area because that was the main area for Jews to go to Sweden. So we were no heroes at all, but I had felt Gestapo enough to know that. We were only saved from the German occupation by the help of Allied forces, especially English and American forces. So it was my impression that we owed at least a little as a thanks for the help they gave us, and without their work and their mighty losses of soldiers, we could not be free. So now we couldn't say no when another small country asked for help. So many of the residents on-board had that impression, that we ought to join the Jutlandia, and we did. We did that, and that was very fine. When the ship was repaired and furnished and was all ready to leave Denmark, the journalists, the press, the media was very, very bad because they said, "Well, the ship will sink before they reach the Mediterranean," because with three chiefs and a lot of chief doctors and professors, they would fight, all of them, before they reached very far away. One captain, one expedition chief, one hospital chief, and all these professors and doctors, that was impossible, but they were clever. They became more clever because when we came home, there were no end to how beautiful it had been. So that was strange with the media, but it was the reason that the Jutlandia, in my impression and in most people's impression, that it ended up as a success was definitely because Imperials, when there were not any severe war between North and South Korea, all the nurses and the doctors, they couldn't go idle without no work, and they sent thousands of people ashore while in Pusan, where the ship was moored up. We want to be allowed to take a civilian's. Of course, Korean soldiers were welcome, but civilians and children were not allowed, but they said, "We will do that whether you like it or not." That was the Allied command which were against it, and Koreans has never forgotten that, never. Well, you have this saying which goes through everywhere, "We will never forget," and they have never forgotten anything. So that was the reason that we, in fact, are a success. I was a fresh lieutenant engineer, as I told, but the praise, the reason that we became such a success, that was, of course, the hospital part. We brought the hospital from here to Korea, and we served in all kinds of ways the hospital, but it was the doctors and the nurses who did the job, both for the soldiers, but also for the civilians as much. They had to sign that in case of heavy fighting, we had to send all civilians ashore, and children, of course, but we were not in that situation. We had very, very short, before the [FOREIGN LANGUAGE] >> Armistice. >> Armistice, yeah. [FOREIGN LANGUAGE] Just before the armistice, a few weeks before the armistice was signed, the Chinese, they attacked a part of the border, but unfortunately for the Chinese, they had just changed the Americans. All the American soldiers had been drawn back. They had been fighting very, very much in that area, and the Turks had taken over, and when they smell blood, they really fight. So they ran right into the Turk forces, and the Turks, they lost 700, if I remember clearly, and more than, I think, 8,000 Chinese were killed in that fight, and then all fighting stopped at that moment, but at that time, it was just before the hospital had broken down. They had helicopters as fast as they could bring wounded people in, and it was discussed whether they should send out doctors from Denmark, but the doctors on-board, although they knew that there was a risk, they worked up to more than 24 hours just operating and operating and operating. Then they had few hours sleep and then down again. Same with the nurses, they worked all the day and night, but they managed it until the fighting stopped, but there were many things which we have to thank the hospital department for because they performed miracles sometimes, and the old doctors or professors say, "Well, you can't operate anymore." "Well, then who's going to die? Which one are we not to operate on?" They said, "Well, yes, go on as long as you can." So they performed miracles, the doctors and nurses. So ... >> How many total doctors and nurses went? >> Well, strange enough, there were a ship's crew of between 96 and 100, and there were hospital staff between, I think it was 98 and 104, and so because it changed very much how many there was, especially the hospital staff had to change. Professors could only join the Jutlandia for maybe 3 months. So they were about 3 months, and some were 1/2 a year, and some were the whole trip, but there were many of them were practiced on-board all the time, and Jutlandia were on the UN flag for 999 days before the UN flag were taken down in Copenhagen. >> Did anyone die? Did any Danes die? >> Yeah, how many? >> Mm-hmm. >> I think we had, for all that time, I think we had 16 deaths, and that was a fantastic record. >> Sixteen Danish died. >> We had a visit. I was by phone one day ... >> No, no, no, how many Danish? >> No one died. >> No one died, okay. >> No, no, we fought a war on first class because no one died. >> That's good. >> We had nothing to do on the frontline. In fact, they were not allowed to it because they had Red Cross. So they were not to, but we were on-board a ship. So there were no reasons. We had nothing to do, and no one was killed on the way. As I told you, the trip, my wife and I were invited from Inchon to Seoul It took at that time ... I can't remember, but I know today, with six lanes, it takes just the same time to come from Seoul to Inchon that it took at that time on a very small road. So we had no casualties, in fact. Well, we had a doctor who fell down the stairs, and he was operated, and the commander was also operated on-board the ship, Captain Hammerich. I don't know what it's called. So I have to tell it in Danish. [FOREIGN LANGUAGE] >> Oh, hemorrhoids. >> Yeah, at that time ... but I have to continue in Danish. At that time, his wife was a guest on board the ship. She was traveling at the time, and she came up in the official big room for all the doctors [FOREIGN LANGUAGE] >> Where she ... >> So that was ... >> ... said thank you to everybody for helping her husband. >> But one of our patients in the dentist clinic was Syngman Rhee. He came very often, partly because he loved to come and board the ship, and then next tour, he had some trouble with his teeth. So he came there, but that was on the first trip. So I've never met him, but he was one of the first patients in the dentist's clinic. >> Speaking of him, how many times did you go back to Korea, and what do you think of Korea and the Korean people, feature of Korea? >> Yes, well, exactly as I said, "We shall never forget," the Koreans tell us, and they never do because they have arranged, although it's now more than 60 years, they still invite, every year, invite veterans to visit Korea or, as they say, revisit Korea, and I have been five times. I think I've been five times on revisit Korea, and that means that we ... The veteran himself pays for the transport forth and back, but everything during 1 week in Korea, hotels and all things are paid for us, and it's a very, very [FOREIGN LANGUAGE]. >> Sensitive. >> One feelings ... >> Sentimental. >> Sentimental, yeah, sentimental. >> Sentimental every time we have visited Korea. A few times, we have been through to visit Korean Veterans Association, but otherwise, we have been in pen with John, and they don't know how they do so much for the veterans which come. Americans and Ethiopians has been there. One from Columbia has been there as an honorary visit to Korea, and it's very, very impressive. I was there first time after the war in 1984. We were about 40 veterans at that time which joined the trip to Korea, and we were astonished when we came with the plane because there was a real airfield, when during the war, they had these iron plates they could land on, but now there was a real airport to receive us, and when we came around in Seoul, there were more than one bridge you could pass the river, and it was fantastic. There were already the first skyscrapers were built at that time, and then next time we came, we couldn't recognize it from the first time because now the adventure and everything, especially we must say under Dictator Park, President Park, during his reign. He promoted business and shipyards and everything. Many things happened during his ... He was a tough guy, but that was necessary because South Korea was full of Communist groups fighting, especially in the southwest part of South Korea. There were some terrible groups fighting. So, well, I guess he had to be pretty tough, but that was impressive to see, the diligence and the fantastic work the Koreans had made in this. Not to talk about now, when we were there, well, I was there last time in 2003. We couldn't recognize anything in Seoul. The time I told you before, when my wife and I was on the trip to Seoul, we should have something to eat. We could have eaten in the military camp, but we asked, and they said, "Well, that's probably the only civil house with two floors. There is a restaurant," and we went to that, and we had our first Korean dinner, and the rest of Seoul was flat. Nothing except some official buildings taken over by military or administration and always that were more, but that was a few houses only. So it was fantastic to see the way Korea recovered, and last time, in the last period of the war, when we were in Korea, they recorded it would take about 100 years for Korea to recover. They did it in, well, let's say 25 years and later. That was fantastic. I think all of our veterans has been in Korea one time after the war. They were extremely impressed, not to talk about the new airport in Inchon now. When we came there the first time after it was built, it was one of the biggest airports in the Far East. So you have really worked, but it's terrible that South Korea necessarily must use so extremely much money on defense, with a big army and with everything just because of this mad reign in North Korea. In North Korea, they don't take it very serious to use so much money for their army because people, they just die of hunger, but in South Korea, just imagine what they could make for the money they use for arms and the army, and when South Korea donates thousands of tons of rice to North Korea in bags or something of South Korea, they are not allowed to show that it comes from South Korea, but they have given very, very much help to North Korea, and all they get instead are missiles and atom bombs and spies or tunnels under Panmunjom area where they, I can't remember how many. I think it's eight tunnels they have found. So I think it's a completely mad situation in Korea. In fact, Denmark still has military in Korea because they have, what they call it, observation for the borderline, and I was in Korea in 2010, and I brought my son with me, and all his 50 years, he has heard about Jutlandia, lived with Jutlandia with both mother and father, and he was very, very impressed, and while we were there, while visit Korea, they celebrated the recovery of Seoul from North Korea, and we were at the Olympic Stadium, fantastic show they turned up there, and what was it, what was my ... Oh, well, yes, I was invited for lunch with the president. So I felt that was very until I ... We were 150 guests, but still it was an honor to be invited together with all the other people, and the day after, I and my son, we were invited to a dinner in the Danish Embassy, and there were, among other people, there were a Korean rear admiral. He was guest, and we were only 16 people invited for this dinner, and I had a very nice talk with, "I was in the Danish Navy, too," and he told me, "Well, but you don't think I've been in Denmark." I said, "That's impossible. What? Was your ship out of course, or what happened since you ended up?" No, he was inspecting. He was checking on a submarine which was built in Germany, but the water was too low to test the submarine. So they had to go out north of Denmark to test the submarine, and on that occasion, they had to go into a Danish city for something, a Danish city in Denmark to get some fuel or some other for the catering department, and I said, "Well, that's funny," I said, "because I was in England. I was in the submarines myself in England. I was in 6 months in the British submarine port." "Oh, you have been in the submarine, too!" and he took off, he had that I don't know [FOREIGN LANGUAGE] but, yes, for the ship. It was a submarine. So he take, and he gave it to me. It was nearly as big a medal as that one, and we had a wonderful evening, and another Korean, I can't remember what his job, but he was a seaman in my agency out here, that there is a small picture with ... What's it called, calligraphy? >> Calligraphy. That's the same word. >> Signed, and you can see something like ... It stands on the back of the picture, "One who strives for life in a situation will probably die, but one who dies, he will live forever," and that's the typical voice. I think that's about what I can tell you about. >> One last comment about future of Korea's peace and unification? >> I did not quite ... >> Korea's reunification, do you think it could happen? >> I will say I do not hope it will happen very fast. The best thing, in my poor occasion, I think if it could go very slow that they have a North Korea, but without all the Kim Il-sung dynasty. So by and by, they could open up for business communication as they started, but responded with this industrial area they had for a period, with South Koreans starting business in some area, but I think it would be a catastrophe if it happened like it did between East and Western Germany because the 20 million or how many they are in North Korea, at that time, if they would flow into South Korea and eat and steal or whatever they could find, I'm sure. I certainly do not hope it comes in a sudden way. It should be maybe 10 or 15 or even 20 years ahead that they get tired of it, and they kind of a democratic reign in North Korea, but still exist as a country itself, as North Korea and South Korea, but on friendly terms or moralist friendly terms, I would say, but I think that could be a way to start a new area in North and South Korea. >> I think it would be possible with the new generation. I hope so too. >> We have to hope for it. There's not much showing that way today, with his atomic and missiles and all this, but I don't know how it should happen. Hopefully, he dies within a few years, but then there will be some other one probably, one general or something like that who will take over. I think it's wonderful to be a dictator. >> No! >> So it's very, very difficult. >> Okay.

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    Memorial Site

    The Kingdom of Denmark participated in the Korean War from January 1951 to July 1953. The Kingdom of Denmark dispatched the hospital ship MS Jutlandia to Korea. In total, the Kingdom of Denmark deployed a crew of 187 as well as 91 doctors and nurses. Jutlandia was the only hospital ship during the war that also treated civilians, at the request of the Danish doctors on board.

    In 999 days during her service in Korea, Jutlandia’s hospital cared for 4,981 wounded allied soldiers from 24 different nations and over 6,000 civilian Koreans.

    The memorial located in the city of Copenhagen is built with stone from Korea and commemorates the departure location of the MS Jutlandia.