Korean War (37)

President Eisenhower having a meal with the troops

President Eisenhower having a meal with the troops

 

As of 1 February 1953, the communists added another division to their ranks and at this point totaled approximately 841,000.  The new President Eisenhower issued an order directing Task Force 72 to cease the blockade of Formosa.  It was on 2 February that he announced the 7th Fleet would no longer prevent Nationalist Chinese attacks from hitting Communist China.

5 February, in the Marine records for the 1st Division on this date were described as a typical day:  By 0510 hours, elements of the 1st KMC Regiment forced enemy squads to withdraw after a brief exchange of small arms and automatic weapons fire.  At 1510 and 1525 hours, the 3rd Battalion/1st Marines fired on enemy groups with 81mm mortars; the 7th Marines with 4.2″mm mortars inflicting 7 enemy casualties.  Division tanks destroyed or damaged 50 bunkers and 2 gun emplacements with direct fire during the day.

USMC - 3rd Battalion/1st Marines

USMC – 3rd Battalion/1st Marines

Artillery fired 54 observed missions, 16 on troops, 12 on bunkers, 11 on mortars, 4 of propaganda, 2 on observation posts, 3 against enemy artillery, 2 on supply points, ine on each command post, a machine-gun fired on an antiaircraft emplacement and a personal shelter.  74 harassing and interdiction missions were fired during that period.

Routine rear area patrols in the corps reserve were without enemy encounter.  The day’s result:  Friendly casualties – 1 KMC was WIA and 1 Marine WIA.  Enemy casualties were 9 KIA, 28 estimated WIA and 2 POW.

1st Marine Division

1st Marine Division

7 February, the report was worse than a “typical day” as mixed mortar and artillery fire hit the galley tent of I Company/1st Marines repeatedly.  And, a light Bell helicopter exploded in mid-air, killing the pilot as he approached to remove the wounded.

AntiSubmarine Mounting "Squid"

AntiSubmarine Mounting “Squid”

9-10 February, HMNZ ship, the Hawae, reported sonar contact with a possible submarine traveling at a max speed of 20.  They attacked the sub with a “squid”, but did not observe any results.

Task Force 77, after attacking supply routes in the past 3 weeks by night pilots, reported 80% of the trucks were destroyed.  Van Fleet visited the 1st Marine Division on an inspection tour of the front line installations near Sokcho-ri.

The 1st Marines and the 1st KMC Regiment continued to feign withdrawals in the 8th Army’s plan of Operation Clam UP.  The enemy demonstrated their curiosity by concentrating their attention to Hills 930, 812 and 854 by firing their guns randomly, talking loudly and blowing bugles.

LGen. Maxwell Taylor (w/ bouquet) upon arrival in Korea; Van Fleet (left), Gen. Paik Sun Yup (Chief of Staff ROK) & Gen. Clark (right) 3 Feb., 1953

LGen. Maxwell Taylor (w/ bouquet) upon arrival in Korea; Van Fleet (left), Gen. Paik Sun Yup (Chief of Staff ROK) & Gen. Clark (right) 3 Feb., 1953

11 February, an enemy patrol of 14 approached Hill 812 and attacked with grenades.  The once-silent 1st Marines fired and the Chinese withdrew, leaving 10 killed and 2 wounded who were captured.  At night, the enemy made 3 attempts to penetrate and 16 were killed.  General Van Fleet Fleet was replaced in EUSAK by General Maxwell Taylor, who had led an airborne division under Ridgeway in WWII.  He wanted to build up ROK forces to replace the UN troops.

12 February, 15 of the enemy attempted to penetrate the tactical wire in front of the Marines who killed 3 and wounded 9 in the 15 minute battle.  The same action transpired in the KMC and 7th Marines sectors.

Pres. Eisenhower & Gen. Van Fleet

Pres. Eisenhower & Gen. Van Fleet

A total of 28 rounds of enemy shore battery fire was received by the islands in Wonsan Harbor: Hwangto-do had 8 of 81mm mortars and 1 of 75/76mm;  Sin-do received 3 rounds;  No-do had 4 of 10mm and Tae-do was hit by 8 of 10mm and 4 of 8mm mortar fire.

The month’s most intensive enemy artillery and mortar fire was received on 2 February, when 299 rounds of artillery and 882 mortar rounds fell in the division’s zone.

Click on images to enlarge.

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WWII Update – 

With the release of George Clooney’s film, “The Monuments Men,” the Smithsonsian magazine has honored the Monuments, Fine Arts and Archives (MFAA) unit within the AMGOT (Allied Military Governement for Occupied Territories) with an article titled “The Venus Fixers” by Ilaria Dagnini Brey.  I felt the original men of that unit should be displayed here for their contribution.

Men of the MFAA

Men of the MFAA

 

Searching the ruins

Searching the ruins

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Farewell Salutes – 

William Anderson – Chicago, IL & Cape Coral, FL; US Navy in WWII & US Army for Korea

June Cooke – Cordova Bay, BC, Canada; WREN, WWIIWREN

Richard Fleishman – Lansing, IL; US Navy, Korea

Paul B. Malone III – Annandale, VA; US Army (Ret.) COlonel

James Milligan – Christchurch, New Zealand; Brigade Band (BCOF), 2 NZEF, No. 172486

Gerald Paisley – Great Bend, KS; US navy, Signal Corps, WWII

Edward Preston – Springfield, VA; US Army, WWII

Stephen Thomas – Homerwood, IL; US Army Engineers, Korea

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About GP Cox

Everett Smith served with the Headquarters Company, 187th Regiment, 11th A/B Division during WWII. This site is in tribute to my father, "Smitty." GPCox is a member of the 11th Airborne Association. Member # 4511 and extremely proud of that fact!

Posted on January 13, 2014, in Korean War, WWII and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 33 Comments.

  1. I enjoy your historical posts, what brings them to life is your great historical pics.
    Regards
    Aussie Ian

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    • Since so few of us were taught anything about the Korean War in school and very few of us were in WWII, I find the pictures add perspective and actually tell half the story.

      Like

  2. Interesting post. Good of you to honor the men and women of the Armed Forces. I’m planning to see The Monuments Men. Thanks for the reminder!

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  3. Thank you for the info on the MFAA…

    And Ike… Wow, he looks weathered and apparently, this was soon after he was elected? But I give him great credit for being there and chowing down with them in that cold environment. And the 1st Marines… One helluva a history…

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    • Yes, you were able to tell it was about that time for the photo. After the death toll of D-Day, I think Ike needed to be closer to the men. I was very happy to have located the 1st Marine info! Thanks for the read and comments, Koji.

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  4. Startling to think that there were going on for a million enemy troops put in the field by the Communists.
    The limitations of action were quite ridiculous

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  5. Have you seen The Monuments Men?

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  6. I like the photos , especially the Chesty Puller grimace .

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  7. Eisenhower doesn’t appear to be enjoying his meal…but I’ll bet the men appreciated his appearance. Thanks for including the real “Monument Men”.

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    • Well, I have never heard anyone rave about the cuisine in the field, so I’d say you’re correct. Yes, no problem, I wanted people to see the real Monument Men, not just the actors.

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  8. Everytime I read Farewell Salutes, I wonder how the parents and siblings and other loved ones got through it. By now, 60 years later, maybe the pain has dulled.

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  9. Another informative post but I have to ask – what is a ‘squid’?

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    • That’s why I included the photo of one, I knew many people wouldn’t know. A way to fire shells at submarines – click the pix and take a closer look at it.

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  10. If my memories serve me correctly, my dad thought Ike Eisenhower was the best! 🙂

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  11. What a compelling post, and so informative. The photographs, in themselves, speak volumes. I like the fact you displayed the WWII men of the MFAA.

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  12. Reblogged this on Sachems word of the day and commented:
    I was not quite old enough to vote for him I was just wear his pin with pride?

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  13. What a great capture of history this is!

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  14. What was degree involvement Nationalist Chinese in war and to what effect ?

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    • I can not give you exact percentages, but with their enormous population and vast military equipment supply, I would say the impact was beyond my calculation.

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