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Published on November 7, 2007

Author: Tarzen

Source: authorstream.com

Slide1:  THE FORGOTTEN WAR THE KOREAN WAR Learning Objectives:  Learning Objectives List the phases of the war. Describe the strategic situation leading up to the war. Describe conditions in the US Armed Forces prior to the Korean War. Discuss the decision making process (risks vs potential benefits) that went into the Inchon landing. Describe the the Chosin Resevior campaign. Discuss the decision to pursue a limited war in Korea. Background:  Background Japanese in Korea surrender to US and USSR. Sets up division of Korean peninsula. USSR takes N of 38th parallel and installs communist government led by Kim Il Sung People’s Democratic Republic of Korea (DPRK). US takes S of 38th parallel and eventually supports nationalist government of Syngman Rhee. Republic of Korea (ROK). US Post-WWII Policies:  US Post-WWII Policies Gradual pull back from Korea from 1946-1949. Jan 1950 – In Washington, DC speech, Secretary of State Dean Acheson includes Japan, Okinawa, and the Philippines in US defense perimeter, but not Korea. Rapid US downsizing after WW II leaves us unprepared for war in 1950. Only US occupation force in Japan is “ready”. Majority of development and procurement $$ go to air power (Air Force). Won last war by strategic bombing and atomic weapons, so we should be able to win the next one the same way…. COMMUNISM:  COMMUNISM 1949: The balance shifts Soviets detonate nuclear weapon. People’s Republic of China established by Communists on mainland. signs “friendship” treaty with USSR, creating a second front in the cold war. Truman criticized for “losing” China. Sung wants to unify all Korea and asks Stalin for OK to invade. Stalin refuses due to Berlin Crisis. In April 1950, Stalin agrees to let Sung invade. 25 June 1950 NK launches surprise invasion of ROK at 0400. Two Koreas:  Two Koreas NK Army 135k WWII combat experience 120 Soviet tanks Variety of Soviet A/C ROK Army 95k Originally a constabulary/police force No training above company level No tanks, limited arty No TACAIR 15 DOS US Army:  US Army Most units at about 60% strength w/ severely limited training. Two regiments of 25th ID had < 250 men each. Divisions had a tank company instead of battalion. RCTs had no tank company and only 2 of 3 infantry bns. Soft and HQ heavy from occupation duty. Equipment was mostly leftovers from WWII 80% of 60-day ordnance reserve was unserviceable on 25 June. Of 226 recoilless rifles on T/E, had only 21 on hand. Only 4 DOS of ammo in theater. Marine Corps in similar condition. Phases of the Korean War:  Phases of the Korean War August-September 1950 Defense of the Pusan Perimeter September-October 1950 Assault on Inchon-Seoul November-December 1950 Chosin Reservoir Campaign January 1951-March 1952 The East-Central Front March 1952-July 1953 The Western Front July 1953-February 1955 Post-Armistice Period Initial US Situation:  Initial US Situation Commitment of ground forces OK’d on 30 June. UN condemns NK and sends 20 nation force (mostly US) to fight as the United Nations Command (UNC). Command still exists today CINCUNC/CFC. US and S Koreans pushed back quickly to Pusan. Seoul is lost (for the first time) by D+3 (28 June). Forces commited piecemeal, trading space for time. Task Force Smith: A Case Study in Unpreparedness:  "We have a little action up here. All we need is some men up there who won't run when they see tanks. We're going to move you up to support the ROKs and give them moral support." General Church to LtCol Smith Task Force Smith: A Case Study in Unpreparedness "The fly boys really had a field day! They hit friendly ammo dumps, gas dumps, the Suwon air strip, trains, motor columns, and KA [Korean Army] Hq." comments by Korean Military Advisory Group officer Operating a bazooka from the ditch along the east side of the road, 2d Lt. Ollie D. Connor, fired twenty-two rockets at approximately fifteen yards' range against the rear of the tanks where their armor was weakest. Whether they were effective is doubtful. From US Army history of TF Smith Task Force Smith:  Task Force Smith 5 July, Suwon, ROK Two rifle companies + one artillery battery + cats and dogs = 540 men. NK division attacks, led by 33 T-34 tanks. “Anti-tank” rounds bounce off T-34s Only six rounds of arty anti-tank ammo. TF is routed. 150 casualties. Loss of all equipment, including most small arms. Remaining 24th Div. units “achieve” similar results. Division CG gets lost and is captured. Most Ready When Our Nation is Least Ready…:  Most Ready When Our Nation is Least Ready… MacAurthur requests Marines on 2 July. Five days later, the 6,500-Marine 1st Marine Provisional Brigade is formed around 5th Marines and Marine Air Group (MAG) 33. Brigade sails from San Diego on 12 July, arriving at Pusan on 2 August. Aviation units fly into action from carriers on 3 August; ground units see first action on 7 August. Inchon:  Inchon "I can almost hear the ticking of the second hand of destiny. We must act now or we will die. . . . We shall land at Inchon, and I shall crush them." General Douglas MacArthur, USA, at a meeting with his commanders, Tokyo, August 23, 1950. "The amphibious landing of U.S. Marines on September 1950 at Inchon…was one of the most audacious and spectacularly successful amphibious landings in all naval history." Bernard Brodie, A Guide to Naval Strategy Operation Chromite:  Operation Chromite Macarthur envisions amphibious envelopment to achieve decisive, strategic victory over NK. Inchon lightly defended; Seoul psychologically and politically significant. 1st Marine (-) and 7th Infantry (-) Divisions will land at Inchon; Marines will retake Seoul, Army will attack southeast to link up with forces from Pusan. Almost unanimous opposition. 30 foot tidal range gave three day window of opportunity. Must take island (Wolmi-do), then wait several hours to attack mainland. Attack over a 12-14’ high sea wall into a built up area. Required commitment of what had been the reserve, most of which was still en route to Korea. Assault is launched on 15 Sept. Big (strategic) risks bring big (operational?) gains. Seoul retaken on 27 Sept. Politics and Strategy:  Politics and Strategy UNC met terms of UN resolution authorizing force… restoration of 38th parallel. Truman concerned about US inability to respond to Soviet aggression in Europe if operations in Korea continue. But…. Decisive victory seemed to be within easy reach, and would meet longer term goal of reunifying Korea. CHINA:  CHINA China warns that it will not tolerate UN troops in NK. As US crosses Yalu River, MacArthur is meeting Truman on Guam. MacAurthur assures Truman that China will stay out and that “the boys will be home by Christmas.” Even as they talk, 300,000 Chinese launch surprise attack. Truman won’t allow recon flights above Yalu. UN driven back south of 38th Parallel. Counterattacks regain and hold vic 38th Parallel. Chinese Tactics:  Chinese Tactics Surprise Moved extensively at night and along concealed routes. Infiltration Once discovered, launched human wave attacks. Speed Lightly equipped. Not reliant on supporting arms or logistical trains. Mass Chinese manpower mass vs. US “technological mass” With the exception of airpower, US technology/weapons not as effective in mountains. The Frozen Chosin:  The Frozen Chosin Retreat Hell! We're just attacking in another direction. Attributed to Major General Oliver P. Smith, CG of the 1st Marine Division in Korea (1950), regarding his order for Marines to move southeast to the Hamhung area from the Hagaru perimeter. We've been looking for the enemy for several days now, We've finally found them. We're surrounded. That simplifies our problem of getting to these people and killing them. Attributed to Colonel Lewis B. "Chesty" Puller during the Chosin Reservoir campaign in Korea No other operation in the American book of war quite compares with this show by the 1st Marine Division in the perfection of tactical concepts precisely executed, in accuracy of estimation of situation, in leadership at all levels, an in promptness of utilization of all supporting forces. Brigadier General SLA Marshall, Military Historian, describing the Chosin Resevior withdrawal Chosin Nov 1950:  Chosin Nov 1950 CFC HQ refuses to believe reports of Chinese in NK. One reinforced Marine division (1st) vs eight Chinese divisions. Units dispersed over 300 x 50 mile area. 3 Chinese divisions attack 5th and 7th MAR vic of Reservoir; remainder cut MSR to Wonson. 5 day, 78 mile fighting withdrawal in temps 20-30 degrees below zero. Infantry battalions leapfrog from key terrain to key terrain, while vehicles and wounded wind their way along road. Davis MoH 4k US casualties vs. 25k+ Chinese. Fox Company 2/7:  Fox Company 2/7 Tasked with keeping Toktong Pass open. 8k Marines N of pass, 3k below Attacked by Chinese regiment on 28 Nov. Capt Barber requests to stand fast when given option of fighting to link up with relief. Knew losses would be greater if pass had to be retaken than if his unit continued to hold. Refused to leave wounded. Battle rages for five days and six nights. Over 1k Chinese known killed. Only 82 of 220 Marines able to walk away. Barber and PVT Cafferata awarded Medals of Honor. Slide30:  “The 1st Marine Division, fighting its way back from the Chosin reservoir in December of 1950, was embattled amid the snows from the moment the column struck its camp at Hagaru. By midnight, after heavy losses throughout the day, it had bivouacked at Kotori, still surrounded, still far from the sea. The Commanding General was alone in his tent. It was his worst moment. The task ahead seemed hopeless. Suddenly he heard music. Outside, some Marines on their way to a warming tent were softly singing the Marines’ Hymn. All doubt left me… I knew then that we had it made.” MajGen O.P. Smith, CG 1st MARDIV Total War in the Nuclear Age:  Total War in the Nuclear Age USSR detonates atomic weapon in late 1949. US now has to consider Soviet response to US use of nuclear weapons. US strategy of “nuclear mass” is less viable. USSR/China nuclear possibility forces some US decisions to be timid. US not sure how willing USSR is to go nuclear. MacArthur wants to blockade China and bomb bases in Manchuria, possibly even nuke NK or China. Relieved by Truman for insubordination. Truman elects to fight limited vice total war. Stalemate:  Stalemate Both sides dig in along DMZ. NK/Chinese launch unsuccessful attacks. Truce talks open in July 1951. Talks hang up over admission of Communist China to UN and repatriation of POWs. Eisenhower elected in Nov 1952. Secretly threatens to use nukes and take fight to China if talks keep dragging on. Aviation Innovation:  Aviation Innovation Introduction of “vertical envelopment”. Marines use rotary wing a/c extensively for troop lift, resupply and medevac. Over 10k medevac missions greatly improve survival rate. Marines continue to develop Close Air Support (CAS) procedures. Aviators assigned to ground units to act as Forward Air Controllers (FAC). CAS is decisive as only supporting arm for most of Chosin campaign. First jet vs. jet combat. STRATEGIC RESULTS:  STRATEGIC RESULTS Communist strong hold in Asia. US commitment to Asia-Pacific region established in earnest. Continues today Establishes precedent for US intervention to prevent spread of communism. Reaffirms civilian control of military. Military independence reigned in following MacArhtur’s dismissal. Japan becomes economic powerhouse. Others??????? For Further Study:  For Further Study Breakout Russ This Kind of War Fehrenback Chosin Hammel Marine: The Life of LtGen Lewis B Puller Davis Victory at High Tide: The Inchon-Seoul Campaign Heinl Reading for Thursday:  Reading for Thursday http://students.vassar.edu/~vietnam/overview.html http://www.ttu.edu/~vietnam/96papers/marwar.htm http://www.thehistorynet.com/Vietnam/articles/1997/0897_text.htm

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