Weather

Korean Climate

Mean Temp 24.6°C 76.28°F at Taegu [note]

Rainy, windy weather [note] [note] [note]

1950 Pacific Typhoon Season

Korea Temps - 1950-1953 - Station 143 (Taegu)

Overview

 

week 1

Today begins the third week of the Korean war 728 American Servicemen will have been killed by the end of this week Saturday July 15, 1950 (Day 021)

 

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July 9-18 - Arrival of 25th Infantry Division in Korea.

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July 9
Sen. Walter F. George, D-Ga., chairman of the Senate Finance Committee, says the Korean War could cost the country $5 billion. If U.S. involvement grows the bill will balloon to $10 billion.

-- A Berlin socialist newspaper quotes East German communists that Soviet satellite countries in Eastern Europe are planning to form "international brigades" to support the North Koreans.

[note]

July 8-12
Airstrips are built in South Korea, enabling short-range F-80 Shooting Star jet fighters to support American soldiers. On July 10 U.S. and Australian aircraft fly 300 missions.

8, 9,10,11, 12

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July 6 (continued through the 12th)


Newly arrived 24th Infantry Division troops are thrown against advancing North Korean forces. Outnumbered and outgunned, they are only able to slow down the communists.


-- The 34th Infantry Regiment fights delaying actions in P'yŏngt'aek and Ch'ŏnan on July 6. Two days later, the 34th engages the North Korean Army in a five-day battle at Choch'iwŏn.


-- There were many reports of green American troops breaking and running just like South Korean troops when they couldn't stop tank-supported North Korean troops with bazookas, rifles and grenades. In their fear and frustration, they complained about the "slaughterhouse."


-- An unidentified officer was quoted July 12,

"You don't fight two tank-equipped divisions with .30 caliber carbines. I never saw such a useless damned war in all my life."


-- U.S. tanks that went into action against Russian-built tanks July 10-12 were no match for the heavier enemy armor. There were many counts of bravery among the outgunned Americans. One was Sgt. J. R. Glaze, Dallas, who couldn't stop a heavier Russian tank after hitting it 13 times from 30 meters. He dismounted his tank and knocked out two North Korean tanks with a bazooka.

6, 7, 8, 9, 10,11,12

[note]

9 July 1950

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Two aircraft were utilized this date for weather recon and orbit missions. Nine hours and forty minutes (9:40) flying time logged on these flights.

Two SB-17s were used this date to search the area 60 miles north of Fukuoka at the northern tip of the southern island of Tsu-shima (34° 30' N 129° 15' E) where a pilot was reported to have bailed out. These ships logged a total of fourteen hours and fifty minutes (14:50). Negative results.

A C-47 was dispatched to Bofu (34° 02' N 131° 33' E) to evacuate a patient from Bofu to Itazuke Air Base. At Itazuke the patient was turned over to personnel from the 118th Station Hospital.

At 0900/K ADCC called that a flight of F-80s were coming in to Ashiya low on fuel. Another flight will be in soon. The flight of F-80s landed with one aircraft missing. The above search was initiated for the pilot. Approximately five false alerts this date.

Meanwhile personnel at Flight "C" were called on to rescue two airmen from a small boat that had overturned on Ogawaranuma Lake, adjacent to Misawa Air Base.

The motor launch maintained at the lake for such occasions was found to be out of commission so an H-5 was dispatched at 1120/K.

Airmen were rescued at 1125/K and returned to Misawa Air Base. Mission entirely successful.

[note]

July 9: Forward air controllers began using L-5G and L-17 liaison airplanes to direct F-80 airstrikes in support of ground forces.

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Army Policy

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By 9 July, the 2nd Division, the 2nd Engineer Special Brigade, an RCT from the 11th Airborne Division, the 378th Ordnance Heavy Maintenance Company, the 15th and 50th Antiaircraft Artillery Battalions (AW), the 68th and 78th Antiaircraft Artillery Battalions (90-mm.), and the 6th, 70th, and 73rd Tank Battalions had been approved for shipment to General MacArthur. [05-47]

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On 5 July (the day Task Force Smith got clobbered) General MacArthur had ordered the 25th Infantry Division into combat, and by 9 July its first RCT had cleared Japan for Korea.

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Dean's first-hand account, coupled with graphic evidence of enemy successes on the situation maps in his own war room, brought General MacArthur to the conclusion that he had been much too conservative. On 9 July 1950 he doubled his estimate of the forces needed.

"The situation in Korea is critical," he told the Joint Chiefs. "It has developed into a major operation." For the first time he expressed doubt that the Americans could stay in Korea. To build up... sufficiently to hold the southern tip of Korea is becoming increasingly problematical. I strongly urge that, in addition to those forces already requisitioned, an army of at least four divisions, with all component services, be dispatched to this area without delay, and by every means of transportation available. [05-16]

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To lend validity to this sudden revision, General MacArthur re-emphasized his growing respect for the North Korean Army. He credited the North Korean Army and its employment as being as good

"as any seen at any time in the last war." Enemy infantry was first class. There were unmistakable signs of Soviet leadership and technical guidance and of Chinese Communist participation. The attack could no longer be viewed as an indigenous North Korean military effort. "To date," he admitted, "our efforts against his armor and mechanized forces have been ineffective." This failure, galling as it was, was not the fault of the fighting men "Our own troops," he. pointed out, "are fulfilling expectations and are fighting with valor against overwhelming odds of more than ten to one." [05-05-17]

This appeal to Washington for an additional army of four divisions climaxed a series of detailed requests for men and units and marked the upper limit of MacArthur's requests for Korea.

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The fighting for Ch'ŏnan continued and, by midmorning, the remaining American forces began to withdraw and abandon the town. [01-15]

In Company A's area, the day was quiet until early afternoon,
when enemy artillery rounds suddenly exploded in the battalion's area.

Within a few minutes after the first shell landed, Captain Osburn gave the order to pull out. The entire battalion moved, part of it on three trucks still in its possession, but Company A marched, Captain Osburn in the lead and again setting a fast pace. This time he kept his company together.

About the middle of the night the company stopped and took up positions on a hill adjoining the road,

[note]

On 7 July, Kunsan, a seaport about 120 miles south of Inch'ŏn, was identified as an alternate objective and incorporated in the planning. Only two days later, however, events on the ground made P'ohang-Dong, on the southeastern coast, the most probable objective, and “intensive research on that area [was] started.”

P'ohang-Dong was definitely selected as the objective on 8 July, and the draft plans for Inch'ŏn were filed for possible future use.[cmdctl-15]

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One of four Americans of the 21st Infantry Regiment found between the forward observation post and the front line. The men were probably captured the night of July 9th, and shot thru the head with their hands tied behind their backs.

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Intergration



But as the months went by even the most cautious commander, learning of the success of the new policy in other commands, began to reassign his black airmen according to the recommendations of the screening board. Despite the announcement that some black units would be retained, practically all units were integrated by the end of the first year of the new program. Even using the Air staff's very restricted definition of a "Negro unit," that is, one whose strength was over 50 percent black, statistics show how radical was the change in just one year. (table 5)


table 5—Racial Composition of Air Force Units

Month Black Units Integrated Units Negroes Assigned to Black Units Negroes Assigned to Integrated Units[1]
1949
June 106 167 Not available Not available
July 89 350 14,609 7,369
August 86 711 11,921 11,977
September 91 863 11,521 13,290
October 88 1,031 9,522 15,980
November 75 1,158 8,038 17,643
December 67 1,253 7,402 18,489
1950
January 59 1,301 6,773 18,929
February 36 1,399 5,511 20,654
March 26 1,476 5,023 20,938
April 24 1,515 4,728 20,793
May 24 1,506 4,675 21,033

tablenote 1: Figures extracted from the Marr Report[7/9/50]; see also monthly reports on AF integration, for example Memo, Dir, Pers Plng, for Osthagen (SecAF office), 10 Mar 50, sub: Distribution of Negro Personnel, SecAF files.

Osthagen 50° 2' 26.9982" 8° 15' 21.9996"

Latitude 50° 2' 26.9982"
Longitude 8° 15' 21.9996"

Despite (p. 405) the predictions of some analysts, the effect of integration on black recruitment proved to be negligible. In a service whose total strength remained about 415,000 men during the first year of integration, Negroes numbered as follows (table 6):


table 6—Black Strength in the Air Force

Date Officer Strength[1] Enlisted Strength[1] Percentage of Air Force Strength
December 1948 Not available Not available 6.5
June 1949 319 (47) 21,782 (2,196) 6.0
August 1949 330 (32) 23,568 (2,275) 6.5
December 1949 368 (18) 25,523 (3,072) 7.2
May 1950 341 (8) 25,367 (2,611) 7.1

tablenote 1: Includes in parentheses the Special Category Army Personnel with Air Force (SCARWAF), those soldiers assigned for duty in the Air Force but still administratively under the segregated Army, leftovers from the Department of Defense reorganization of 1947. Figures extracted from Marr Report.

The Air staff explained that the slight surge in black recruits in the early months of integration was related less to the new policy than to the abnormal recruiting conditions of the period. In addition to the backlog of Negroes who for some time had been trying to enlist only to find the Air Force quota filled, there were many black volunteers who had turned to the quota-free Air Force when the Army, its quota of Negroes filled for some time, stopped recruiting Negroes.

[note]

The preoccupation of high officials with the effects of integration on a soldier's social life seemed at times out of keeping with the issues of national defense and military efficiency. At one of the Fahy Committee hearings, for instance, an exasperated Charles Fahy asked Omar Bradley, "General, are you running an Army or a dance?"[16-45]

Footnote 16-45: This off-the-record comment occurred during the committee hearings in the Pentagon [Mar 29, 1949] and was related to the author by E. W. Kenworthy in interview on 17 October 1971. See also Memo, Kenworthy to Brig Gen James L. Collins, Jr., 13 Oct 76, copy in CMH.

Yet social life on military bases at swimming pools, dances, bridge parties, and service clubs formed so great a part of the fabric of military life that the Air Force staff could hardly ignore the possibility of racial troubles in the countless social exchanges that characterized the day-to-day life in any large American institution. The social situation had been seriously considered before the new racial policy was approved. At that time the staff had predicted that problems developing out of integration would not prove insurmountable, and indeed on the basis of a year's experience a member of the Air staff declared that

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Jet Mechanics
work on an F-100 Supersabre, Foster Air Force Base, Texas.

at (p. 411) the point where the Negro and the white person are actually in contact the problem has virtually disappeared. Since all races of Air Force personnel work together under identical environmental conditions on the base, it is not unnatural that they participate together, to the extent that they desire, in certain social activities which are considered a normal part of service life. This type of integration has been entirely voluntary, without incident, and considerably more complete and more rapid than was anticipated.[16-46]

Footnote 16-46: Marr Report[7/9/50].

The Air staff had imposed only two rules on interracial social activities: with due regard for sex and rank all Air Force facilities were available for the unrestricted use of all its members; troublemakers would get into trouble. Under these inflexible rules, the Fahy Committee later reported, there was a steady movement in the direction of shared facilities. "Here again, mutual respect engendered on the job or in the school seemed to translate itself into friendly association."[16-47]

Footnote 16-47: Freedom to Serve, p. 41.

Whether it liked it or not, the Air Force was in the business of social change.

[note]

XXI. The Tactical Air Controller
Air Force leadership soon determined that the Air Force needed another element to maintain effective contact between the Joint Operations Center and the Tactical Air Control Parties and to direct the F–80s to a target before the aircraft ran out of fuel. That component was the Airborne Tactical Air Controller, which, in the absence of enemy air opposition, could conduct tactical reconnaissance over the battlefield and immediate enemy rear areas and provide air-to-air direction for tactical aircraft arriving from Itazuke. 82

82
Hist 5AF, Vol. II, Chap. IV, pp. 149-150;
Hist Study #71, p. 26;
Hist 6147 TCS (A), July 1950 , pp. 2-3.

93

A control team tested the L–5G liaison aircraft on July 9, 1950 , but the aircraft proved too slow and its power generator fitted the SCR-522 airborne radios poorly. The next day, a T–6 with an eight-channel AN/ARC-3 radio worked successfully. 83

83
Hist 5AF, Vol. II, Chap IV, pp. 151-155;
Hist Study #71, p. 26;
Hist 6147 TCS (A), Jul 50, pp. 45;
Air Technical Service Command, “Graphic Survey of Radio and Radar Equipment Used by the Army Air Forces,” 1 Mar 45, AN/ARC-3.

[note]

South then North

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Despite losses and low morale among its troops, officers drove the 2nd Division southward toward Chinch'ŏn, twenty miles east of Ch'ŏnan.

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There on 9 July, one day after Ch'ŏnan had fallen, the ROK Capital Division and South Korean police ambushed one of its battalions capturing four pieces of artillery and twenty-seven vehicles. This began a three-day battle between the enemy division and the ROK Capital Division.

9, 10, 11

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By 9 July an antiaircraft company also was at P'ohang-dong and heavy engineering equipment was en route by LST to improve and extend the Yŏnil air strip by 3,000 feet. [08-10]

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Reports of strong unidentified enemy or guerrilla forces moving south along the Taebaek Range now reached the ROK Army and 24th Division headquarters. They assumed that these forces intended to attack P'ohang-dong in conjunction with the main enemy force moving down the coastal road.

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Colonel "Tiger Kim," feeling the force of the N.K. 5th Division for the first time, requested that he be sent reinforcements. Colonel Emmerich, senior KMAG adviser with the ROK 3rd Division, in turn requested that the ROK Army release immediately the ROK 1st Separate Battalion and the Yŏngdŭngp'o Separate Battalion from their anti-guerrilla operations in the Chiri Mountains of southwest Korea. This was granted and the two battalions, numbering about 1,500 men armed with Japanese rifles and carbines, moved by rail and motor transport to the east coast. [08-11]

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Meanwhile, Capt. Harold Slater, KMAG adviser with the ROK 23rd Regiment, sent to Colonel Emmerich at Taegu a radio message that the ROK situation near P'yonghae-ri had grown critical. Emmerich started for that place accompanied by the G-3 of the ROK 3rd Division.

Some fifty miles below the front, at P'ohang-dong, they found retreating ROK soldiers. They also found there the regimental executive officer in the act of setting up a rear command post. Emmerich, through the ROK G-3, ordered them all back north to Yŏngdök and followed them himself.

Already U.S. naval and air forces had joined in the fight along the coastal road. Ships came close in-shore on the enemy flank to bombard with naval gunfire the North Korean troop concentrations and supply points on the coastal corridor.

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The newly arrived 35th Fighter Group at Yŏnil Airfield joined in the fight. Weather permitting, aircraft bombed and strafed the N.K. 5th Division daily. Capt. Gerald D. Putnam, a KMAG adviser with the ROK 23rd Regiment, served as an observer with the fighter group in identifying targets and in adjusting naval gunfire. Heavy monsoon rains created landslides on the mountain-flanked coastal road and helped to slow the North Korean advance. [08-12]

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The next day, 9 July, General MacArthur considered the situation sufficiently critical in Korea to justify using part of his B-29 medium bomber force on battle area targets. He also sent another message to the Joint Chiefs of Staff, saying in part:

The situation in Korea is critical...
His [N.K.] armored equip[ment] is of the best and the service thereof, as reported by qualified veteran observers, as good as any seen at any time in the last war. They further state that the enemy's inf[antry] is of thoroughly first class quality.
This force more and more assumes the aspect of a combination of Soviet leadership and technical guidance with Chinese Communist ground elements. While it serves under the flag of North Korea, it can no longer be considered as an indigenous N.K. mil[itary] effort.
I strongly urge that in add[ition] to those forces already requisitioned an army of at least four divisions, with all its component services, be dispatched to this area without delay and by every means of transportation available.
The situation has developed into a major operation. [09-28]

[note]

24th ID

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Beginning on 9 July [thru 7/25] a succession of American units had performed security missions at [K-3] Yŏnil Airfield below P'ohang-dong; first the 3rd battalion of the 19th Infantry [24ID],

Then sometime latter.....

25th ID

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then the 2nd Battalion of the 27th Infantry [25ID], next the 1st Battalion of the 35th Infantry [25ID], and that in turn gave way to the

1st CD

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1st Battalion of the 7th Cavalry Regiment [1CD]. Thus, in the course of two weeks, battalion-size units of all three United States divisions then in Korea had constituted a security force in the P'ohang-dong area behind the ROK 23rd Regiment.

[1CD 1st Battalion, 7th Cavalry Regiment arrived at P'ohang-dong on South Korea's east coast on 9 July 1950 ]

[24ID "Task Force Smith" which deployed from Itazuke Air Base on 2 July 1950. ]

[25ID began deploying to Korea on 10 July and all units were there by 18 July]

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the brigade began loading at San Diego and Long Beach, Calif., two days later.

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Citations

Medals   

Distinguished Service Cross

19500709 0000 DSC BOLEN

19500709 0000 DSC LEWIS

19500709 0000 DSC STEPHENS

 

Silver Star

Cano, Raul V. [2ndLt SS I21stIR]

Cooper, Curtis [Maj SS 1stBn34thIR]

French, Daniel L. [1stLt SS Hq1stBn34thIR]

Lewis, Warren G. [2ndLt SS M21stIR]

Loflen, Lester A. [MSgt SS Hq1stBn34thIR]

Parks, William M. [PFC SS B63rdFAB]

Stephens, Richard Warburton [Col SS CO 21stIR]

 

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The Forgotten War

Today was MGen William B.("Bill") Kean's, birthday.

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In contrast with Bill Dean, Bill Kean had an ADC who was fully qualified and physically able to replace him. He was Vennard Wilson (Tulane University, 1917), fifty-four, who had been in the job since 1948. A cavalryman/tanker and ordnance specialist who had served with the AEF in World War I, Wilson had ably commanded the independent 106th Cavalry Group in the ETO from Normandy to Germany. Bittman Barth wrote:

"He was so unassuming that few people realized the scope and quality of his work. He not only knew his infantry but also was an expert in armored tactics."[6-4]

The three regiments of Kean's division - the 24th, 27th, and 35th - had been stationed in the southern part of the main Japanese home island of Honshu. The 24th Regiment, which served as a collecting unit for blacks, had three over strength battalions; the 27th and 35th, but two. The latter two outfits had been gutted to provide part of the levy to beef up the 24th Division. William Dick remembered:

"We were not well prepared to fight. . . . We were short units and short key officers and noncoms and short of equipment. Most vehicles were old and in bad shape, having been salvaged from Pacific battlefields and rebuilt in Japan."[6-5]

[note]

US Air Force

 

Sent two memoranda to COMNAVFE:

(1) Sorry but could not afford to withdraw a helicopter from my Air-Sea Rescue Units to replace the one Seventh Fleet lost inasmuch as my bombers covering distances over water, etc. (2) that which is quoted in full hereafter: "Your attention is invited to the attached clipping headlined 'Navy Flier Doubts Subs Near Korea,' from the Pacific Stars & Stripes of Saturday, 8 July.[88-This short article, an interview with Air Group's commanding officer, Comdr Harvey P. Lanham, was actually rather innocuous. The subject of submarines took up only a couple of paragraphs, with Lanham saying that what some B-29 fliers took for submarines were probably gunboats. (Cpl Larry Sakamoto, 'Navy Flier Doubts Subs near Korea,'ť Stars and Stripes [Pacific Edition], July 8, 1950, p 1.)] It appears to me that this sort of thing is in bad taste. We are trying to operate a unified team out here under General of the Army Douglas MacArthur and such statements certainly don't add to the unification of such a team. There are many things in the reported results of any strike that could be questioned. Every remark I have made with reference to the Navy's strikes has been complimentary and that goes for my staff and officers. For God's sake, let's don't get into a service controversy out here where we are pulling for one cause and that is the destruction of the Communist Korean Forces in Korea.


1500 hours, Vice Admiral Sprague,[89-Vice Adm Thomas L. Sprague, Commander Air Force, Pacific.] COMAIRPAC with Rear Admiral Hardison,[90-Rear Adm O.B. Hardison, Commander Naval Forces, Marianas.] COMNAVMARIANAS, and accompanying Navy officers. (Also Capt. R.W. Ruble, USN, Capt. F. H. Turner, USN, Col. S.C. Dyer, USMC, Capt. A. S. Hill, USN & Capt. A. S. Heyward, USN.)[91-Capt Richard W. Ruble had been an aide to the Secretary of the Navy but had just been appointed Commander, Carrier Division 15; Capts Frank Turner and Alexander S. Heyward, Jr., were on Admiral Sprague's staff; Capt Arthur S. Hill was Navy liaison officer at FEAF headquarters; probably Col Edward C. Dyer, Operations Officer, 1st MAW, and later, Deputy Chief of Staff for Close Air Support, X Corps.]


1745 interview with Miss Charlotte Knight,[92-Two of her articles, one in Air Force and the other in Collier's, appeared in August and September. The Collier's article described a mission on which she flew. The Air Force article was a sympathetic but candid story of the problems facing FEAF. Stratemeyer hammered home to Ms. Knight that FEAF's mission had been the air defense of Japan and that lack of materiel (particularly planes and pilots) hampered any possibility of offensive warfare. Nevertheless, Stratemeyer pointed out that without the Air Force, South Korea would have been overrun. (Charlotte Knight, 'Air War in Korea'ť Air Force, August 1950, pp 21-34.)] Air Force magazine's Far East representative and also Far East representative for Collier's. I cautioned her that anything she wrote she must be very careful of security. I gave her some background.


Red Forces in Korea pushing steadily; our ground forces being isolated (those advance positions) or driven back. Our infantry battalion near Ch'onan cut off.


President Truman names CINCFE to command all United Nations forces fighting Communist Northern Koreans. Ground situation dismal.

FEAF missions concentrating on bridges, etc. Tabulation report showed 23 tanks destroyed, 13 damaged, 2 large guns knocked out, 92 trucks destroyed and 43 damaged, etc. No aircraft losses.

[note]

According to CINCFE orders FEAF Bomber Command was also to support the ground troops in Korea. General Stratemeyer first assigned this medium bomber command a proper mission against enemy transportation systems north of the Han River and against North Korean industrial targets and air installations.

Unless ordered by FEAF, Bomber Command was not to operate south of the 38th parallel. This delimitation of mission was based on General Stratemeyer's firm conviction that the employment of medium bombers in attempted close support during the first two weeks of Korean hostilities did blunt the North Korean advance but was nevertheless calculated to be extremely wasteful of air effort in any war.

Yet on 9 July, the day that General Stratemeyer set out the medium bomber mission, the 24th Division found itself unable to resist enemy armor, and General MacArthur, though he recognized its inefficiency, called for B-29 support for the hard-pressed ground troops.

[note]


The Extemporized Tactical Control System - Mosquitos

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Under normal circumstances Army units bear the burden of requesting air support missions and of transmitting adequate intelligence and target information to the air-ground operations section of the JOC. The Eighth Army, retreating during most of the summer, was more often than not unable to identify enemy points of strength on its front lines. At the same time, the jet fighters, limited by their fuel to a short time over the front lines, had to have an immediate target if they were to give support.

Lt. Col. Stanley P. Latiolais, A-3 Operations, Fifth Air Force, suggested to General Partridge that T-6 trainers be used for tactical reconnaissance and tactical control in close coordination with friendly ground units. Pending the modification of T-6's, Lieutenants James A. Bryant and Frank G. Mitchell on 9 July took two L-5G type liaison planes , modified with four-channel VHF radios, to Taejŏn where they were joined by Lt. Harold E. Morris to form what was called the "Operations Section" of the JOC.

Unable to get their radios working because of low generator voltages, Lieutenants Bryant and Mitchell borrowed rides in Army liaison L-17 's for that day. Although Bryant was attacked by two Yaks over the road between Ich'on and Ŭmsŏng, the two airborne controllers nevertheless managed about 10 flights of F-80 's each during the day. There was some confusion, for the fighters had not been briefed to expect airborne control, but results of the missions brought forth Colonel Murphy's comment that it was

"the best day in Fifth Air Force history."

Despite continued efforts, it proved impracticable to use the L-5 in airborne control, and Maj. Merrill H. Carlton, who had undertaken direction of the airborne control, appealed strongly for unarmed but speedier T-6's equipped with AN/ ARC-3 radio. When these arrived, all airborne control work was shifted to them. Although the trainers were vulnerable to ground fire, the North Koreans proved reluctant to expose their positions by firing, for as the saying among them went

"when we hear drone of small bee, we know it will bring soon the sting of the hornet."

[note]

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However ill-prepared, the 8th Tactical Reconnaissance Squadron went to work promptly with the outbreak of fighting: within 72 hours the 8th Squadron had a detachment of 8 crews at Itazuke, supplemented by a field laboratory processing unit and photo interpretation team from the 548th Squadron. By 9 July the entire 8th Squadron had moved to Itazuke where it undertook to provide photo and visual reconnaissance of Korean airfields, cities, communications lines, bomb strikes, movements within the battle zones, and other information required by the Fifth Air Force and Eighth Army.

One tactical reconnaissance squadron was manifestly inadequate to perform such a volume of work and operational problems included shortages of planes and pilots (its RF-80 aircraft strength was increased from 17 to 30 during July and August), difficulty in obtaining intelligence summaries of the ground fighting, crowded facilities (the photo lab finally moved from tents to a theater lobby), and the greatest difficulty in procuring chemicals, film, and printing paper.

Aircraft proved difficult to maintain because of parts shortages for RF-80A aircraft, and the one wrecked RF-80A on the base was cannibalized to keep other planes flying; FEAMCOM even used RF-80A noses on RF-80C aircraft to provide the squadron with two more planes.

In spite of the heat and humidity, the 8th turned out a commendable volume of film and prints, but an observer from the Air Materiel Command found that quality was being sacrificed to speed. After weighing the relative merits of saving time and providing more information to photo interpreters through top quality film, the squadron reverted to normal technical order procedures and improved the film, even with its outdated sensitized materials.

[note]

Alarmed by the critical situation of the 24th Division on 9 July, General MacArthur wanted all B-29 effort used for supporting the hard pressed ground troops, and FEAF was compelled to cancel a mission planned against the marshaling yards at P'yŏngyang, Sŏul and Wŏnsan in favor of a medium bomber effort against bridges south of Sŏul.

[note]

7,8,9 During the three days 7-9 July, in the P'yŏngt'aek-Sŏul area Fifth Air Force planes claimed 197 trucks and 44 tanks destroyed, (6,000 men and 120 T-34 tanks).

[note]


On 9 July [Sunday] Lts. James A. Bryant and Frank G. Mitchell brought to Taejŏn two L-5G liaison planes, modified with four-channel very high-frequency radios. Bryant and Mitchell were unable to get their radio equipment to work in the field, but they borrowed rides in two 24th Division L-17's during their first day in Taejŏn. Although Bryant was bounced by two Yaks over the road between Ich'on and Ŭmsŏng, the two airborne controllers-calling them-selves "Angelo Fox" and "Angelo George"-each hailed down and managed about ten flights of F-80's during the day. There was some confusion, for the fighter pilots had not been briefed to expect airborne control, but the results of the missions brought Colonel Murphy's comment that it was

"the best day in Fifth Air Force history. #17




Drawing the Battleline 81

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Even the hard-climbing jeep needs an occasional assist over the rough Korean terrain.

[note]

7,8,9 Almost every aircraft sortie destroyed some enemy target. In the three days, 7 through 9 July, Fifth Air Force crews claimed 197 trucks and 44 tanks destroyed on the roads between P'yŏngt'aek and Sŏul.#32

But the Fifth Air Force was unable to obtain the intelligence information from Korea which it needed to insure the most complete success of its operations.

[note]


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During the first week in July FEAF air units had been "fighting fire" in Korea-meeting situations as they arose and doing their best while they were working out the operational techniques which would make an optimum use of their capabilities. In this same time command arrangements had been shaping up, both in Japan and in Korea.

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And so, on the night of 9 July, when the reports that the 24th Division had been driven out of Ch'ŏnan caused General MacArthur to question whether he would be able to hold South Korea, FEAF was prepared to face the challenge. On this night General MacArthur sent peremptory orders to FEAF:

"His desired," he stated, "that all FEAF combat capabilities be directed continuously, and to the exclusion of other targets, at the hostile columns and armor threatening the 24th Division.#44

General MacArthur's operations officer added the caution that the Communist threat actually existed from coast to coast and was not exclusively confined to the thrust against the 24th Division.#45

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Impressed with the gravity of the situation, General Stratemeyer flashed positive instructions to General Partridge.

"You must," he said, "consider your mission primarily direct support of ground troops.#46

[note]

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Because of the dubious economy which had severely curtailed reconnaissance aviation between wars, FEAF was compelled to use what it had while it rebuilt a reconnaissance establishment. Sending a detachment to Itazuke within hours after the start of the war, the 8th Tactical Reconnaissance Squadron moved to this southern Japanese airfield by 9 July to provide photo-reconnaissance requirements of the Fifth Air Force and Eighth Army.

The 8th Squadron's negatives had to be ferried up to Yokota to the 548th Reconnaissance Technical Squadron for mass reproduction and interpretation. This worked fairly well when flying weather was good, but when weather was bad, which was often, photo-reconnaissance products might not reach requesting agencies for as long as a week

Its about 650 miles from Itazuke to Yokota, a 12 hour drive, why a week?

[note]

US Marine Corps

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The 5th Marines spent four days [7,8,9,10] packing, boxing, and preparing supplies and equipment for embarkation at Camp Pendleton. A few men were hurriedly sent to the range to familiarize themselves with new weapons like M20 3.5inch rocket launchers and M26 Pershing tanks. Concurrently, streams of men from Camp Pendleton and trainloads of refurbished World War II–era equipment from the desert supply center at nearby Barstow flooded the port of embarkation at San Diego.

[note]

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Support battalions were cut down to company size, generally speaking, for service with the Brigade.
Thus Company A of the 1st Motor transport Battalion numbered 6 officers and 107 men;

and Company A of the 1st Engineer Battalion (reinf.) totaled 8 officers and 209 men.

The largest unit of the ground forces, of course, was the 5th Marines with 113 officers and 2,068 men commanded by Lieutenant Colonel Raymond L. Murray.

Next came the 1st Battalion (reinf.) of the 11th Marines, numbering 37 officers and 455 men under the command of Lieutenant Colonel Ransom H. Wood.

Altogether, according to a report of 9 July 1950, the Brigade ground forces reached a total of 266 officers and 4,503 men.[21]

On this same date, the Brigade’s air component amounted to 192 officers and 1,358 men. The principal units were as follows:

Adding the ground force and air figures gives a grand total of 6,319—458 officers and 5,861 men—on 9 July 1950. Before sailing, however, the activation of third rifle platoons and the last-minute attachment of supporting troops brought the strength of the Brigade and its air components up to 6,534.

Most of the equipment came from the great Marine supply depot at Barstow in the California desert. Here were acres of “mothballed” trucks, jeeps, DUKW’s and amphibian tractors dating back to World War II. It has been aptly remarked, in fact, that

“there were more veterans of Iwo and Okinawa among the vehicles than there were among the men who would drive them.”[23]

Rail and highway facilities were taxed to the limit by the endless caravan of equipment moving from Barstow to Pendleton and El Toro after being hastily reconditioned and tested. Not all the arms were of World War II vintage, however, and the Marines of the Brigade were among the first American troops to be issued the new 3.5" rocket launcher.

[note]

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on 7 July General Shepherd continued his trip to the Far East. That evening, accompanied by his G–3, Colonel Victor H. Krulak, he took off from the Pearl Harbor area on the flight to Tokyo

7, 8, or 9
[check date]Upon his arrival, CG FMFPac was acquainted by General Almond with the deteriorating military situation. As a first step toward sending U.S. ground forces to Korea, CinCFE had set up the GHQ Advanced Command Group under the command of Brigadier General John H. Church, USA.

[note]

US Navy

CDR Michael J. L. Luosey took command of ROK Navy.

[note]

On the 5th Admiral Andrewes, with HMS Belfast (C-35), HMS Cossack (D-57) and HMS Consort (D-76), was detached to join the blockading forces in compliance with orders from ComNavFE, Admiral Struble flew to Tokyo by carrier plane, and Task Force 77 continued on to Buckner Bay. There it arrived on 6 July, and there it was retained until the 16th.

6, 7,8 ,9 10, 11, 12, 13,14 ,15, 16

[note]

USS Toledo (CA-133)reached Pearl Harbor on the 9th and left on the 11th;

[note]

On 6 July USS Philippine Sea (CV-47) got underway from San Diego for Pearl Harbor, where she arrived on the 14th to commence a ten-day period of accelerated training exercises.

6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11,12, 13, 14

[note]

Admiral Hartman’s force was only a day out of Long Beach when USS Toledo (CA-133) was ordered forward at best speed, and two days later USS Helena (CA-75) and Destroyer Division 111 were detached from the task group with orders to hurry onward. Thus scattered by the need for haste the ships steamed west:

USS Toledo (CA-133) reached Pearl Harbor on the 9th and left on the 11th; the USS Helena (CA-75) group arrived on the 11th and left on the 13th; the tankers, the submarines, and the two remaining destroyers pressed on behind. For destroyers en route to the Far East the distances west of Pearl posed problems of fuel consumption: steaming at 24 knots would save a day in transit, as compared to steaming at economical speed, but would also necessitate refueling. But the oilers with which they had left the coast were far behind, none was available at Pearl for forward deployment, and the facilities at Midway Island, on the direct route westward, had been deactivated in May on instructions from the Department of Defense.

The budgetary ceiling had thus affected not only the strength of the Pacific Fleet but also its mobility in time of crisis. Reactivation of Midway was clearly in the cards, but for the moment extemporization was necessary. Two chief petty officers, recent graduates of the Service Force Petroleum School, were rounded up and embarked on the first destroyer as it was leaving Pearl Harbor. On arrival at Midway the chiefs activated the fuelling system and replenished two of the destroyers from the oil which remained in the tanks, while Helena refueled the others.

With the war still in its second week very considerable reinforcements were on their way. Three days after American troops first entered action, naval fighting strength equal to the original Western Pacific deployment had set sail from the continental United States. But the departure of these units from the west coast found the Pacific Fleet approaching the bottom of the barrel. On 8 July, in order to provide some slight reserve for new contingencies, the Chief of Naval Operations authorized the activation of certain units of the mothball fleet.

[note]

The emphasis on floating support for fleet units, made necessary by the limited base facilities in the Western Pacific, was desirable for other reasons as well. A prime virtue of naval power is its mobility; if the bases can also move this virtue is increased. For reasons of economy, and to obviate the need for an extensive shore establishment in Japan which would itself be logistically costly and complicating, mobile support was also desirable. But complete floating support for the fleet was well beyond the capabilities of the Service Force as then constituted, or indeed under any circumstances short of pretty complete mobilization. Again it is worth emphasizing how fortunate it was for this campaign that the resources and productive facilities of the Japanese base were close to hand. In the Second World War almost complete support for forces overseas had been provided from the continental United States. But now at mid-century the effort was made to live off the land, and the foraging party reappeared, not in the form of the sergeant with his squad, but in that of the supply officer armed with contract and fountain pen.

Yet however helpful, the Japanese economy could not support the war alone, and two questions called for immediate answers from Admiral Denebrink and his staff. What Service Force units would be required in the operating areas to support the fleet? What shipping would be necessary, over and above that provided by MSTS, to keep the 6,000-mile Pacific pipeline full?

A study of anticipated needs led to requests on 5 and 8 July for the activation of two gasoline tankers and the assignment of another ammunition ship, and then on the 9th the full bill was presented in a memorandum to CincPacFleet which called for the activation of 58 auxiliaries in 16 categories ranging from destroyer tenders down to tugs.

[note]


By the 9th, when the first ships became available, embarkation plans had been completed and loading could be begun.


The brigade had been built around the infantry strength of the 5th Marines, with 132 officers and 2,452 enlisted men. The next largest ground component, the artillery, was provided by the 1st Battalion of the 11th Marines, 44 officers and 474 enlisted men. To these were added motor transport, medical, shore party, engineer, tank, and amphibious tractor companies; detachments of signal, ordnance, service, reconnaissance, and military police units; an amphibious truck platoon; and the organic observation squadron, VMO 6, with eight OY observation planes and four H03S-1 Sikorsky helicopters. The air strength of the brigade, the forward echelon of the 1st Marine Aircraft Wing, was made up of MAG 33’s two day fighter squadrons, totaling 48 F4U-4B aircraft, and one night fighter squadron of F4U-5Ns.


The responsibility for producing the shipping to lift the Marine Brigade fell upon Rear Admiral Francis X. Mclnerney, acting commander of the Amphibious Force, Pacific Fleet. To provide this lift a supply expedition which was preparing to sail for Point Barrow, Alaska, was hastily modified, and its commanding officer, Captain Louis D. Sharp, Jr., was designated Commander, Provisional transport Group. All available ships were incorporated in the transport Group, and the capacity thus made available was almost enough. Except for some motor transport everything was taken along, but this deficiency would be remedied on the far shore, by capture from the enemy or the Army.


Ground forces of the brigade embarked at San Diego in the three attack transports of Captain Sharp’s Task Group 53.7,

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USS George Clymer (APA-27),

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USS Henrico (APA-45) , and

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USS Pickaway (APA-222);

in the attack cargo ships

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USS Whiteside (AKA-90) and

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USS Alshain (AKA-55);

and in the LSDs

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USS Gunston Hall (LSD-5) and

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USS Fort Marion (LSD-22).

Air group personnel and equipment boarded the transport

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USS General A. E. Anderson (AP-111)

and the attack cargo ship

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USS Achernar (AKA-53)

at Terminal Island; aircraft and airicrews were embarked on

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USS Badoeng Strait (CVE-116).

[note]

On the east coast 8 July saw HMS Jamaica (C-44) and HMS Hart (M-55), now joined by USS Lyman K. Swenson (DD-729), operating in the neighborhood of 37°. There, where the highway skirts the water’s edge, road traffic was taken under fire, enemy shore batteries were engaged, and the British cruiser received a hit from a 75-millimeter shell which killed four and injured eight.

Late in the day an alarm from P'ohang brought HMS Jamaica (C-44), HMS Hart (M-55), and USS Lyman K. Swenson (DD-729) south at speed, while USS Mansfield (DD-728) broke off her escort duties and USS Juneau (CLA-119) got underway from Sasebo. All five ships

  1. HMS Jamaica (C-44)
  2. HMS Hart (M-55)
  3. USS Lyman K. Swenson (DD-729)
  4. USS Mansfield (DD-728)
  5. USS Juneau (CLA-119)

joined off P'ohang on the morning of the 9th, but although the situation ashore was serious it was not yet out of control.

[note]

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In Korea his [Struble] presence was urgently desired. On 9 July General Dean, then commanding all Army units in Korea, had inquired hopefully about the possibility of carrier air support. In response Struble next day advised Admiral Joy of his willingness to help out either with close support or with further strikes on west coast targets, while noting that until ammunition reached Okinawa on the 18th he would be limited to two days of close support operations.

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For effective work in support of troops the front line communications problem was governing; if the Tactical Air Control Squadron from USS Mount McKinley (AGC-7) could be made available, all would be well; if not, Seventh Fleet could supply a small control team, although equipment would have to be provided it. Subject to these considerations Struble proposed to sail from Buckner on the 11th for operations on the 13th and 14th.

The offer, however, was not accepted. Admiral Joy’s reply stated that he knew of no plans for carrier close support, and that the Tacron was not designed for shore employment.

[note]


0000 Korean Time

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About the middle of the night the company [A34IR] stopped and took up
positions on a hill adjoining the road, staying there,...

until the first signs of daylight when Osburn roused his men and resumed the march.

0100 Korean Time

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0200 Korean Time

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About the middle of the night the company stopped and took up
positions on a hill adjoining the road,

staying there until the first signs of daylight when Osburn roused his men and resumed the march.

After several hours the three trucks returned and began shuttling the remainder of the battalion to new positions just north of the Kum River and the town of Konju. [Kongju] There the entire battalion formed a perimeter in defensive positions-the best they had constructed since coming
to Korea.

[note]

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Late in the day on 8 July, General Dean issued an operational order confirming and supplementing previous verbal and radio instructions. It indicated that the 24th Division would withdraw to a main battle position along the south bank of the Kum River, ten miles south of Choch'iwŏn, fighting delaying actions at successive defensive positions along the way.

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The order stated, "Hold Kum River line at all costs. Maximum repeat maximum delay will be effected." The 34th Infantry was to delay the enemy along the Kongju road to the river;

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the 21st Infantry was to block in front of Choch'iwŏn.

Dean ordered one battery of 155-mm. howitzers of the 11th Field Artillery Battalion to Choch'iwŏn for direct support of the 21st Infantry. Also in support of the regiment were A Company, 78th Heavy Tank Battalion (M24 light tanks), less one platoon of four tanks, replacing the 24th Reconnaissance Company tanks, and B Company of the 3rd Engineer Combat Battalion. The 3rd itself was to prepare roadblocks north of Kongju along the withdrawal route of the 34th Infantry and to prepare all bridges over the Kum River for demolition. [07-24]Messages from General Dean to Colonel Stephens emphasized that the 21st Infantry must hold at Choch'iwŏn, that the regiment must cover the left flank of the ROK forces eastward in the vicinity of Ch'ŏngju until the latter could fall back, and that he could expect no help for four days. General Dean's intent was clear. The 34th and 21st Infantry Regiments were to delay the enemy's approach to the Kum River as much as possible, and then from positions on the south side of the river make a final stand. The fate of Taejŏn would be decided at the Kum River line .

The Fight at Ch'ŏnui

On the morning of 9 July, the 3rd Battalion, 21st Infantry, completed moving into the positions north of Choch'iwŏn, and Colonel Jensen began registering his 81-mm. and 4.2-inch mortars. Engineers blew bridges in front of Ch'ŏnui. [07-25]

[note]

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As of 9 July, Admiral Radford (CINCPAC/CINCPACFLT) judged this Marine force capable of specialized missions, including amphibious landings, "under conditions where appropriate higher echelon agencies are present." [09-13]

[note]

After several hours the three trucks returned and began shuttling the remainder of the battalion [3/21] to new positions just north of the Kum River and the town of Konju. There the entire battalion formed a perimeter in defensive positions-the best they had constructed since coming to Korea.

[note]

1000 Korean Time

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But invasion had brought disorganization; Admiral Sohn, the Chief of Naval Operations, had not yet returned from the United States, and naval headquarters at Sŏul had been quickly overrun. Since a functioning Korean Navy was of prime importance, both for its resources of local knowledge and for its monopoly of types capable of inshore operations, ComNavFE moved quickly to restore cohesion. Arriving by air from the United States, Commander Michael J. Luosey found himself designated Deputy Commander,

Naval Forces Far East, and put on the first plane for Korea. On 9 July, with Lieutenant David C. Holly and five enlisted men, Luosey arrived at Pusan and assumed operational control of the Korean Navy.

Six days later [15th] President Rhee formally turned over command of the ROK armed forces to General MacArthur, and on 17 July Admiral Sohn arrived with the other two PCs.

Luosey’s first days were spent in extemporizing logistic support at Pusan for U.N. ships, in establishing liaison with the Army, and in gaining the confidence of the Koreans.

[note]

1100 Korean Time

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1200 Korean Time

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By noon the 21st Regimental Headquarters received a report that enemy tanks were moving south from Ch'ŏnan.

[note]

On 9 July the advance group landed at Taejŏn. There the group reported to General Dean's 24th Division Head-quarters. But they learned they were at the wrong place. They returned to the airfield and took off for Taegu, where Eighth Army's Headquarters opened that day.

[note]

1300 Korean Time

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Eighth Army's Headquarters
The next day, 9 July at 1300, General Walker's advance party opened its command post at Taegu. [09-1]

[note]

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1500 Korean Time

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On the afternoon of 10 July American air power had one of its great moments in the Korean War. Late in the afternoon, a flight of jet F-80 planes dropped down through the overcast at P'yŏngt'aek, twenty-five air miles north of Ch'ŏnui, and found a large convoy of tanks and vehicles stopped bumper to bumper on the north side of a destroyed bridge. Upon receiving a report of this discovery, the Fifth Air Force rushed every available plane to the scene: B-26's, F-80's, and F-82's in a massive air strike.

Observers of the strike reported that it destroyed 38 tanks, 7 half-track vehicles, 117 trucks, and a large number of enemy soldiers. This report undoubtedly exaggerated unintentionally the amount of enemy equipment actually destroyed. But this strike, and that of the previous afternoon near Ch'ŏnui, probably resulted in the greatest destruction of enemy armor of any single action in the war. [07-37]

[note]

On the morning of 9 July, the 3rd Battalion, 21st Infantry, completed moving into the positions north of Choch'iwŏn, and Colonel Jensen began registering his 81-mm. and 4.2-inch mortars. Engineers blew bridges in front of Ch'ŏnui. [07-25]

July 9
In mid-afternoon, Capt. Charles R. Alkire, in command at the forward blocking position at Ch'ŏnui, saw eleven tanks and an estimated 200-300 enemy infantry move into view to his front. He called for an air strike which came in a few minutes later.

[note]

By the time the trenches and holes were dug in, it was mid-afternoon of 9 July. Company A got an issue of rations and, for the first time, one of ammunition. The Weapons Platoon received one 60-mm mortar. This preparation for combat weakened the rumor about returning to Japan.

Instead, Captain Osburn and his officers told the men of another infantry division then en route from Japan. The sky was clear, the sun hot and, for the first time in several days, the men had dry clothing.

[note]

1600 Korean Time

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1650 Korean Time

Artillery also took the tanks under observed fire. Five of the eleven tanks reportedly were burning at 1650. Enemy infantry in Ch'ŏnui came under 4.2-inch mortar and artillery fire. Observers could see them running from house to house. The men on the low ridge east of Ch'ŏnui saw columns of black smoke rise beyond the hills to the northwest and assumed that the planes and artillery fire had hit targets there. Aerial observers later reported that twelve vehicles, including tanks, were burning just north of Ch'ŏnui.

[note]

1700 Korean Time

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1800 Korean Time

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While this heavy bombardment of the enemy column was still in progress, Colonel Stephens arrived at the forward position about dusk and announced he was going to stay overnight. [07-27]

In their front, burning Ch'ŏnui relieved the blackness of the night. Enemy patrols probed their position. Unless all signs failed there would be action on the morrow.

About 500 men of A and D Companies and fillers for B and C Companies who had arrived at Pusan too late to join Task Force Smith for the Osan action comprised the composite battalion of the 21st Infantry at the Ch'ŏnui position.

They occupied a three-quarter mile front on a low ridge 500 yards east of Ch'ŏnui and on a higher hill 800 yards south of the town. Rice paddy land lay between this high ground and Ch'ŏnui. The railroad and highway passed between the ridge and the hill. Still another hill westward dominated the left flank but there were too few troops to occupy it. [07-28]

[note]

1900 Korean Time

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1940 Korean Time

1945 Korean Time

At dusk another air report stated that of about 200 vehicles on the road from P'yŏngt'aek to Ch'ŏnui approximately 100 were destroyed or burning. The third and fourth tactical air control parties to operate in the Korean War (Air Force personnel) directed the strikes at Ch'ŏnui. [07-26]

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sn 04c07

(Map 4: DELAYING ACTION 21ST Infantry 8-12 July 1950)

[note]

1952 Sun Set

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[a week (5-days) after the Osan disaster]

On the night of 9 July MacArthur's chief of staff, Maj. Gen. E. M. Almond, called Brig. Gen. Jarred V. Crabb, the FEAF director of operations, on the telephone. So far, said Almond, all of FEAF's efforts against enemy armor and mechanized elements had been ineffective.

Korean_War

The Communist threat to General Dean's 24th Division was critical. Almond stated bluntly that General MacArthur wanted FEAF to direct all of its combat capabilities continuously and to the exclusion of other targets at the hostile columns and armor threatening the 24th Division. As General Stratemeyer expressed it, Almond gave Crabb quite a bit of "static.#35

Completely loyal to his commander in chief, General Stratemeyer immediately committed the whole of FEAF's combat capability to the support of General Dean's forces. To General Partridge went the message: "You must consider your mission primarily direct support of ground troops.#36

Korean_War

And although he privately doubted the wisdom of the action, Stratemeyer made an eleventh-hour change in the 19th Bombardment Group's assigned targets. The medium bombers had been ordered to attack bridge structures; now they were directed to hit enemy convoys, tanks, and troop concentrations reported to be somewhere in the vicinity of Ch'ŏnan and P'yŏngt'aek.

[note]

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Casualties

Sunday July 09, 1950 (Day 15)

Korean_War 006 Casualties

As of July 9, 1950

3 21ST INFANTRY REGIMENT
1 34TH INFANTRY REGIMENT
1 35TH FIGHTER BOMBER SQUADRON
1 507TH ANTIAIRCRAFT ARTILLERY AW BATTALION - MOBILE
6 19500709 0000 Casualties by unit
Date USAF USA USMC USN Other Total
Previous 27 185 0 0 0 212
Today 1 5 0 0 0 6
Total 28 190 0 0 0 218

Aircraft Losses Today 001

Notes for Sunday July 09, 1950 - Day 15