New South Korean President Moon Jae-in begins a four-day U.S. trip for difficult talks on THAAD deployment and the North Korean threat with an emotional visit Wednesday to the "Frozen Chosin" exhibit at the National Museum of the Marine Corps in Quantico, Va.
Moon shares a special relationship with the Marine Corps and Joint Chiefs Chairman Gen. Joseph Dunford, the former Marine commandant.
Dunford's father, then-20-year-old Joseph F. Dunford Sr., fought with the 1st Battalion, 5th Marines, in the brutal sub-zero 1950 battles against the Chinese around the Chosin Reservoir in what is now North Korea.
Moon's parents were among about 100,000 refugees who were evacuated from the area to the south as the Marines fought their way to the sea at Hongnam in what became known as the "Christmas Cargo" campaign, or the "Miracle of Christmas."
Moon's visit to the museum "will highlight the special meaning of the Korea-U.S. alliance, while also emphasizing an important part of the alliance in the history of the president's own family," Chung Eui-yong, the head of the South Korean presidential National Security Office, said Monday, according to South Korea's Yonhap News Agency.
Vice President Mike Pence, whose father is a Korean War veteran and whose son, Michael J. Pence, is a Marine 1st Lieutenant, was to accompany Moon to Quantico and to meetings with business leaders.
On Thursday, Moon was meeting with House and Senate leaders on plans to confront erratic North Korean leader Kim Jong Un and his drive for nuclear Intercontinental Ballistic Missiles. Moon and his wife, Kim Jung-sook, will later join President Donald Trump and First Lady Melania Trump for dinner at the White House.
On Friday, Moon will hold crucial summit talks with Trump at the White House to air their differences on the way forward against North Korea. The two will then hold a joint news conference and Moon later will speak at the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington, D.C., before returning home Saturday.