From 1918 to October 1922, the Japanese and the FER (Far Eastern Republic) government joint-ruled the Russian Far East. During this period (called the Intervention), several Koreans such as Andrei Khan (Han), Khan Chan Gol (Grigorii Khan) and Afanasii Kim stood out as Bolshevik leaders. Unfortunately, the Japanese utilized Koreans from the Japanese empire as drivers, laborers, cooks and as support for their troops. Local RFE residents often did not distinguish between Soviet Koreans and the Koreans working for the Japanese. Soviet nationalities policies also did not readily differentiate between Koreans from Russia and those from Korea, China or Japan. Thus, they considered all to have “dubious” or mixed political loyalties. Yet, over five thousand Koreans fought against Japanese troops in Red Army units, as Red Partisans or in their own independent units in the RFE from 1918-1922.
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