Overview

Tropical storm (SSHS)
Duration July 15 – July 19
Peak intensity
110 km/h (70 mph) (1 -min), Unknown

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Tropical Storm Flossie

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The 34th and 19th Regiments of the 24th Infantry Division engage two North Korea divisions in the hills and rice paddies around Taejŏn. They would pull out the next day, but MacArthur says the two undermanned regiments have set back the invaders' timetable.

-- About 500 North Koreans seize the Samgyo bridgehead on the Kum River July 15. At other sites along the river, U.S. soldiers kill hundreds of Reds trying to cross in banzai-like charges.

-- North Koreans in captured American fatigues, led by English speakers, cross the river and hit U.S. positions. GIs assume they're ROK soldiers until the guerrillas pull guns and start shooting. More Reds wearing fatigues and South Korean civilian clothes cause havoc against other positions and supply roads for the next five days.

-- With heavy artillery support, North Koreans cross the Kum at Kongju and attack the middle of the U.S. line. As GIs fall back to eight miles from Taejŏn, they have to clear out nests of snipers who infiltrated their lines.

-- On July 17 American soldiers take up defensive positions west of Taejŏn. The U.S. Army field headquarters evacuates the city and the airfield is closed. The South Korean government had left July 14 to reestablish the national capital at an unreported location. There is no fighting for the next two days [18 and 19] the Reds consolidate their forces. They're forced to bring heavy equipment over the Kum at night to keep from being attacked by U.S. fighter planes.

Today and tomorrow 6 are killed on the 15th and 420 are killed on the 16th.

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July 15
Russian Premier Josef Stalin offers to negotiate a peace in Korea in return for kicking Nationalist China out of the UN and replacing it with Communist China. The U.S. government rejects the offer as simply a move to get another communist country membership in the UN.

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15 July 1950
Three SB-17s were used this date for weather recon and orbit missions. A total of twenty-two hours and thirty-five minutes (22:35) was logged.

The pararescue team and the two (2) L-5s were returning to Ashiya from Pusan this date. The L-5s are to be transferred to another organization, as described in the operational summary.

At 1030/K ADCC alerted the Flight for a Mayday 40 miles out.

At 1050/K the Flight was instructed to disregard the Mayday.

At 1150/K received another call from ADCC that a Mayday was 44 miles out.

At 1250/K instructed to disregard the Mayday as they had all landed safely.

At 1445/K alerted again for a Mayday. No further instructions.

A total of three false alerts this date.

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Army Policy

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Even before he realized that the 7th Division would have to make up his major Army component for Inch'ŏn, General MacArthur had begun to rebuild this depleted unit as much as he could. In mid-July, when the 2nd Division was still slated for Inch'ŏn, General MacArthur had ordered 20 percent of all combat replacements from the United States diverted to the 7th Division in Japan. He had also halted all further levies against the division for men and equipment. By stabilizing the division, by feeding in such resources as could be spared from Eighth Army, and by intensive training, he hoped to make the 7th Division strong enough to fight effectively in Korea by October.

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When using the phrase "limited troops available," Collins was not exaggerating. The 11th Airborne Division had so few men that only one RCT, at less than half its authorized infantry strength, could be formed on 15 July. Since the beginning of July Army authorities had been assigning all officers and men completing the Army Parachute School at Fort Benning, Georgia, to the 11th, feeding in about 400 trained jumpers each week. General Bolté, investigating the readiness date for the airborne RCT, was told that by transferring trained jumpers from the 82nd Airborne, the 11th Airborne RCT could be readied for shipment to MacArthur by 1 August.

On the other hand, the current process of filling the RCT with graduates of the parachute school only would slow its departure until 20 September. The latter method did not disrupt the 82nd Airborne, however, and was therefore the method most acceptable to General Bolté and General Collins.

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As they moved to set up military control over the procedure for accepting forces, the Joint Chiefs of Staff questioned MacArthur in mid-July on his standards for foreign units to be integrated into the United Nations Command. By this time, when it appeared that the U.S. reserve of trained ground forces would be strained to its limit, the Joint Chiefs felt that some other nations should be asked to send ground forces to Korea. He recommended, in an immediate reply, that foreign units should be sent at no less than reinforced battalion strength of about 1,000 men, mainly infantry, but having organic artillery support. He would attach these battalions to his American divisions. If service units were furnished, they should be large enough to be usable at once. [07-8]

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The normal channel through which member nations of the United Nations offered military forces and other forms of assistance to the unified command ran from the Department of State to the Department of Defense to the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

A nation offering assistance usually approached the Department of State with its proposal, but made no final offer until after preliminary informal talks. During exploratory conversations the Department of State consulted the Secretary of Defense who, in turn, sought the advice of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

The latter officials weighed the offer against needs in the field and the probable effectiveness of the forces offered, keeping in mind General MacArthur's criteria. Their recommendations bore great weight. If they were favorable, the nation then made a firm offer which was accepted. Offers of ground combat forces came slowly at first, but gradually increased.

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National Guard Divisions

The only source from which the Army could draw complete, relatively ready, divisions other than from the General Reserve was from the National Guard of the United States. General Collins was extremely reluctant to advise the calling up of National Guard divisions until he was sure that no other solution could be found to the grave manpower situation. His reasons for holding back stemmed from his concern over the great impact upon the economy and morale of home areas of selected divisions. The other members of the Joint Chiefs of Staff in mid-July also opposed federalization of any National Guard divisions so long as it could be avoided. [07-22]

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The fighting in Korea prompted staff agencies of GHQ FEC to seek more people. They took experienced replacements, particularly officers, out of the pipeline to Korea. At the same time, GHQ section chiefs kept at desk jobs many of their original men and officers who could have been sent as replacements. At other stations in the replacement stream from Japan to the battlefront, men and officers intended for combat duty were diverted to administrative and rear-echelon service. General Beiderlinden warned fellow members of the GHQ staff about allowing this practice to grow. General Headquarters could hardly justify its strident pleas for replacements if it kept these men from the fighting units.

On 15 July he cautioned,

"Until a flow of replacements commensurate with current critical needs materializes, it is mandatory that . . . the tendency to augment administrative and rear-echelon service organizations . . . be resisted."

He urged the fullest use of Japanese and American civilians in Japan. [07-37]

[note]

MacArthur, on 15 July, also told General Walker that future emergency use of these medium bombers would he ordered by GHQ whenever Walker felt it necessary. [06-28]

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When General Vandenberg and General Collins came to the theater in mid-July, this aspect of the air-ground relationship concerned both of them.

[can you believe this?]

Vandenberg did not attempt to interfere since, if Eighth Army troops were driven off the peninsula and the Air Force was meanwhile employing its bombers to bomb remote industrial areas in North Korea, the resultant effect on public opinion would have been most unfavorable.

General Collins, on the other hand, expressed great interest in the way the B-29's were being employed and asked to be kept informed.

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General Collins returned to Tokyo early on 14 July, leaving for Washington the same day. Before leaving, the Army Chief of Staff gave General MacArthur his personal ideas on which major units he could count on having for the offensive which he had in mind.

In addition to the four divisions already in the Far East, these units were the 2nd Division, the 1st Marine Division, the 4th RCT, the 29th RCT, and an RCT from the 11th Airborne Division.

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General MacArthur, after getting Collins' views, told the Chief of Staff that he would make his plans on the basis of the anticipated strength of these units. If Russia or Communist China intervened in force, the plans would have to be changed. He assured Collins that he fully understood the problems faced in Washington and the necessity of maintaining some kind of General Reserve. [06-24]

Air Operations-July 1950

While possible steps to improve MacArthur's ground strength were being considered, moves to improve air operations in Korea were under way. Since there was no provision in the FEC GHQ staff organization for joint representation of the Navy and Air Force, the central command of air operations over Korea was not possible below the level of General MacArthur himself.

[I haven't seen this as yet]

Anomalous and inefficient operations sometimes resulted. In early July, as an example, the Navy sent planes from Task Force 77 against targets that FEAF planned to attack the following day. As a consequence, the Air Force medium bombers sat on the ground the next day since it was too late to set up other targets. [06-25]

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F80s accounted for eighty-five percent of the enemy’s losses to air attack. Far East Air Forces Commander, Lieutenant General George E. Stratemeyer, stated that he wouldn’t trade the F80 for all the F47s and F51s he could get.

""It does a wonderful job in ground support and can take care of the topside job if enemy jets appear,"""

What a bunch of crap.

[note]

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President Syngman Rhee transferred operational control of the ROK Army to the United Nations Command.

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"The North Koreans penetrated the US 24th Infantry Division’s defense and crossed the Kum River. The 19th Infantry Regiment lost twenty percent of its fighting force, the 1st Battalion alone losing 338 out of 785. The 63rd Field Artillery Battalion was overrun and sustained heavy casualties."

[note]

South then North

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[on the 11th] The North Koreans overran the 3rd Battalion. Before noon, survivors in small groups made their way back toward Choch'iwŏn. Enemy fire killed Colonel Jensen, the battalion commander, and Lt. Leon J. Jacques, Jr., his S-2, when they tried to cross a stream in the rear of their observation post.

The battalion S-1 and S-3, Lieutenants Cashe and Lester, and Capt. O'Dean T. Cox, commanding officer of L Company, were reported missing in action.

The 3rd Battalion, 21st Infantry, lost altogether nearly 60 percent of its strength in this action. Of those who escaped, 90 percent had neither weapons, ammunition, nor canteens, and, in many instances, the men had neither helmets nor shoes.

One officer of L Company who came out with some men said that after he and others had removed an enemy machine gun blocking their escape route many uninjured men by the side of the road simply refused to try to go on. One noncom said, "Lieutenant, you will have to go on. I'm too beat up. They'll just have to take me." A remnant of 8 officers and 142 men able for duty was organized into a provisional company of three rifle platoons and a heavy weapons company.

But by 15 July a total of 322 out of 667 men had returned to the [3rd] battalion.

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July 15, 1950
The battles in the mountains between the North and South Koreans in July were often bitter and bloody with losses high on both sides. One of the most critical and protracted of these began about the middle of the month near Mun'gyŏng between the N.K. 1st Division and the ROK 6th Division for control of the Mun'gyŏng pass and plateau.

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General Dean tried to give this front additional strength by assembling there the advanced units of the 25th Infantry Division, commanded by Maj. Gen. William B. Kean.

[It was the second United States division to be committed in the war and arrived in Korea between 10 and 15 July.

Lastly, the 35th Infantry Regiment, commanded by Col. Henry G. Fisher, arrived at Pusan between 13 and 15 July. [08-13]

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Two days later he advised General Walker that he would direct emergency use of the medium bombers against battle-front targets whenever Eighth Army requested it. [09-31]

It is clear that by the time the 24th Division retreated across the Kum River and prepared to make a stand in front of Taejŏn there was no complacency over the military situation in Korea in either Eighth Army or the Far East Command. Both were thoroughly alarmed.

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On the 15th, engineers destroyed the railroad bridge upstream at Sinch'on. [10-30]

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The command ship USS Mt. McKinley (AGC-7) and final elements of the first lift [1CD] sailed for Korea on 15 July in Task Force 90, commanded by Rear Adm. James H. Doyle.

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Of the eleven infantry battalions requested by General MacArthur in early July to make up shortages within the infantry divisions of the Far East Command, two battalions from the 19th Infantry Regiment on Okinawa were the first to arrive in Korea. The history of these units between the time they were alerted for probable combat use in Korea and their commitment in battle shows the increasing sense of urgency that gripped the Far East Command in July, and how promises and estimates made one day in good faith had to be discarded the next because of the growing crisis in Korea. And it also shows how troops not ready for combat nevertheless suddenly found themselves in it.

About the middle of July, Maj. Tony J. Raibl, Executive Officer, 3d Battalion, 29th Infantry Executive Officer, 3rd Battalion, 19th Infantry,, learned in Tokyo that the Far East Command expected that the regiment would have at least six weeks' training before being sent to Korea. [18]

Yet, immediately after making that estimate, the Far East Command issued orders to the regiment on 15 July to prepare for movement.

All troops were placed in two battalions, the 1st and 3rd. Lt. Col. Wesley C. Wilson commanded the 1st Battalion and Lt. Col. Harold W. Mott, the 3rd Battalion. The regimental headquarters was to remain behind as a nucleus for a new regiment that would assume responsibility for the ground defense of Okinawa.

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After the first hectic weeks, steps were taken to reduce the necessity for the large number of airlifts to Korea from Japan. By 15 July, MacArthur's headquarters sent to Eighth Army a proposal to provide daily ferry service from the Hakata-Moji area (the south island) to Pusan, and to provide this service with fast express trains from the Tokyo-Yokohama area. [15-45] Accordingly, a Red Ball Express was organized. It had a capacity of 300 measurement tons daily of items and supplies critically needed in Korea. The Red Ball made the run from Yokohama to Sasebo in a little more than thirty hours, and to Pusan in a total of about fifty-three hours.

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As soon as the 24th Division received confirmation of the bad news about the 63rd Field Artillery Battalion it ordered an air strike for the next morning, 15 July, on the lost equipment-a practice that became standard procedure for destroying heavy American equipment lost or abandoned to enemy in enemy-held territory. [10-24]

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During the day I Company, 34th Infantry, had stayed in its position on the river line. Enemy mortar fire had fallen in its vicinity until noon. In the early afternoon, artillery from across the river continued the shelling. The acting commander, Lt. Joseph E. Hicks, tried but failed to locate L Company and the 3rd Battalion Headquarters. A few men from the Heavy Weapons Company told him that enemy roadblocks were in his rear and that he was cut off. Except for the enemy shelling, all was quiet in I Company during the day. That night at 2130, pursuant to orders he received, Hicks led I Company over the mountains east and southeast of Kongju and rejoined the regiment.

The 34th Infantry occupied new positions just east of Nonsan early in the morning of 15 July. [10-25]

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The 34th Infantry occupied new positions just east of Nonsan early in the morning of 15 July. [10-25]

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In their first day of attack against it, the North Koreans had widely breached the Kum River Line. Not only was the line breached, but the 19th Infantry's left flank was now completely exposed. The events of 14 July must have made it clear to General Dean that he could not long hold Taejŏn.

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Citations

Medals   

Distinguished Service Cross

19500715 0000 DSC WINSTEAD

 

Silver Star

Bridges, J.C. [SFC SS 78thHTB]

Steele, William H. [1stLt SS B52ndFAB]

 

 

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The Forgotten War

Collins and Vandenberg returned to Tokyo, [5-7/13 2300] where they again conferred with MacArthur, then flew back to Washington, where they arrived on July 14, Washington time.

They briefed the JCS, Louis Johnson, and President Truman. The tenor of the briefing, reflecting the views of Johnnie Walker and MacArthur, was upbeat. Walker could probably hold a perimeter until some kind of amphibious landing somewhere (but, it was hoped, not Inch'ŏn) behind the NKPA could be mounted. Collins did not believe MacArthur would require two American field armies comprising eight full divisions to defeat the NKPA; however, he endorsed MacArthur's request to increase the Marine Corps RCT to a full division to assist the 2nd Infantry Division in the proposed amphibious envelopment.[5-19]

Over the next two weeks, to meet MacArthur's demands for ground manpower, the JCS and, when required, President Truman approved the following measures, many of them highly controversial.


*The Air Force and Navy also mobilized Reserve and Air National Guard units: the Air Force called 130,000 men to active duty; the Navy, 165,000.

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Notwithstanding these drastic steps, the JCS continued to view MacArthur's proposed amphibious landing at Inch'ŏn with deepest misgivings and was reluctant to provide him with further major forces to carry it out.

Forrest Sherman stubbornly opposed committing a full Marine division to the Far East. He yielded only after repeated and heated cables from MacArthur. When paratrooper Matt Ridgway informed Joe Collins that an RCT from the 11th Airborne Division could not be trained and equipped in time for Inch'ŏn even on a "crash" schedule, Collins struck it from the Inch'ŏn operation and, in spite of repeated protestations from MacArthur, refused to make it or, as suggested, a substitute RCT from the "untouchable" 82nd Airborne Division, available.[5-21]

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Tropical storm (SSHS) Duration July 15 – July 19; Peak intensity 110 km/h (70 mph) (1 -min),

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US Air Force

 

 

Directive issued and received from General MacArthur through General Almond to hit Kimp'o airport and the marshaling yards at Seoul today, using B-29s, and still maintain B-29 ground support in front of the South Koreans. My decision as follows: continued use of B-29s in ground support; the remainder of B-29s in the 92d Bomb Group to hit Kimp'o; maximum effort of the 22d and 19th Bomb Groups on Okinawa on the marshaling yards at Seoul tomorrow.


General MacArthur agreed 100 percent on my recommendation and even went so far as to beat me to the recommendation not to bomb Seoul marshaling yards unless visual bombing.


After my talk with MacArthur, I had a good heart-to-heart talk with Brigadier General Pinky Wright, G-3, and he thoroughly understands our position and at all times support it. I informed both General Almond and General Hickey as well as General Fox[119-Maj Gen Alonzo P. Fox, Executive for Economics and Industrial Affairs, Office of the Deputy Chief of Staff, SCAP from 1946-1947. Since then, he had been D/CS, SCAP.] of General MacArthur's approval of my recommendations.


Lunch with Rosie O'Donnell at the Union Club.[120-The Union Club, another Japanese building taken over by the occupying forces, now was the FEAF Officers Club.] Ate the low calorie meal and you surely get filled up; I can well understand why there are no calories on it!


General O'Donnell and I will depart for Kadena from Haneda at 1000 hours tomorrow for a visit to his bomb units at Kadena and for the purpose of a conference with my Air Force commander, General Kincaid.


Commendation letter to CG Twentieth Air Force for the 19th Bomb Group and Twentieth Air Force personnel on the excellent work that they have done was approved and prepared. I will take it with me tomorrow. Also, I have approval and citation prepared for the Legion of Merit for Colonel Graff.[121-Col Theodore Q. Graff, CO of the 19th BG. The medal was presented for the achievements of his group. By July 30, however, Graff was under fire from FEAF because his group had fallen below the FEAF combat readiness standard. (Hist, ComOpsDiv, FEAF, Jun 25-Oct 31, 1950, I, Jul 30 entry.)] The presentation of which I will make at Kadena.


Continued strikes at North Korea; B-29s hit Kimp'o and other targets reporting excellent results. Lost an F-51 from small arms fire; pilot killed.


Brigadier General Charles Y. Banfill, my new Deputy for Intelligence arrived 1800 hours; billeted Imperial.[122-Originally scheduled to be 20AF vice commander, Banfill hardly got his feet wet in that job before being reassigned to his new duties.

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July 15: Carrier aircraft on missions over Korea began to report to the Joint Operations Center at Taegu. The 51st Fighter Squadron (FS) (Provisional) at Taegu flew the first F-51 Mustang combat missions in Korea. A 5th Air Force operation order assigned "Mosquito" call signs to airborne controllers in T-6 airplanes, and the name became the identifier for the aircraft.

They were up and running, before they were up and running!!! What-a-outfit.

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Meanwhile, FEAF representatives had located another field on the east coast of Korea at P'ohang, which had a runway similar in construction to that at Pusan but in better condition When Company A, 802nd Engineer Aviation Battalion reached Pusan, it was therefore diverted to P'ohang on 10 July;

two days later [7/12], the work of placing a 500-foot PSP overrun and constructing taxiways and hardstands was started. Two large spongy areas had to be dug out and refilled preliminary to laying the taxiway planking, and the speed of construction demanded that grading of a part of the taxiway be omitted.

The first combat mission was flown from the strip on 15 July, and by 19 July completion of a cross taxiway permitted combat units to use as much of the field as had been completed at that time.

Enemy pressure against the P'ohang area forced the engineers to evacuate on 13 August.

[note]

On 15 July two Yaks attacked four B- 26's, damaging one so badly that it had to land at Taejŏn. On this day seven Yaks were observed parked on Kimp'o, and the speed with which both Kimp'o and Suwŏn had been put back into shape for flying seemed to indicate that the enemy expected reinforcements.

[note] [note]

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At the same time the Thirteenth Air Force was forming another F-51 squadron, utilizing the personnel of the 12th Fighter-Bomber Squadron. This so-called DALLAS squadron left Clark on 10 July, was flown to Johnson where it picked up F-51's, and by 15 July it had flown its first missions in combat. These two provisional units were combined at Taegu on 10 July as the 51st Fighter Squadron, Single Engine (Provisional).

[note]

On 15 July MacArthur further informed Walker that future emergency use of medium bombers would be directed whenever EUSAK desired. He evidently meant to continue using medium bombers in the very manner which Stratemeyer lead thought wasteful in the first two weeks of hostilities.

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Yet it would be an oversimplification to attribute all problems of tactical air employment to shortages of personnel and equipment, for not the least of such problems were failures in execution of doctrine and of many key personages to understand the accepted doctrine of air-ground cooperation. General Stratemeyer pointed out that he had no authoritative publication announcing approved policies on joint Navy-Air Force operations and responsibilities for coordination of air activities. Although Field Manual 31-35, August 1946, was the accepted and approved doctrine for Joint Army-Air Force tactical air operations, an informal survey of key officers in EUSAK headquarters made in mid-July 1950 revealed that only two of those officers had ever read it or were familiar with its contents.

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10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16. 17, 18.,19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26

Despite the dubious results of medium bombers in close support, General O'Donnell was required to reserve 15 aircraft each day for primary effort against tactical targets along the battle line, and between 10 and 26 July he used 130 B-29 sorties in such activity.

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A provisional fighter unit hurried into Taegu after a brief formative period in Japan. The Fifth Air Force established Detachment 1 of the 36th Fighter-Bomber Squadron at Itazuke on 27 June, equipped the detachment-better known by its code name of BOUT-ONE - with F-51 's, and moved it to Taegu.

At the same time the Thirteenth Air Force was forming another F-51 squadron, utilizing the personnel of the 12th Fighter-Bomber Squadron. This so-called DALLAS squadron left Clark on 10 July, was flown to Johnson where it picked up F-51's, and by 15 July it had flown its first missions in combat. These two provisional units were combined at Taegu on 10 July as the 51st Fighter Squadron, Single Engine (Provisional).

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The 6204th Photo Mapping Flight, with two unarmed RB-17's, was ordered from Clark to Johnson Air Base on 15 July. After much difficulty in getting the two planes armed at Clark and FEAMCOM, one plane was finally ready on 23 August, the same day that two additional unarmed RB-17's flew in from the Zone of Interior. One month and 8 days after the detachment was given the mission of combat-mapping photography for North Korea, it was ready for action, and on 28 August it flew its first mission.

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On 15 July two Yaks attacked four B-26's, damaging one so badly that it had to land at Taejŏn. On this day seven Yaks were observed parked on Kimp'o, and the speed with which both Kimp'o and Suwŏn had been put back into shape for flying seemed to indicate that the enemy expected reinforcements.

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JSPOG

Following this agreement, [on the 11th] the Joint Strategic Plans and Operations Group drafted a directive which issued without further coordination over General Almond's signature on 15 July. "When both Navy Forces, Far East, and Far East Air Forces are assigned missions in Korea," read this directive, "coordination control, a Commander in Chief, Far East, prerogative, is delegated to Commanding General, Far East Air Forces. #47

Hardly was this directive issued than Air Force officers discovered that the magic formula of "coordination control" had no officially assigned meaning. It meant one thing to FEAF and quite another thing to NavFE, and, although asked to give some clarification, CINCFE never saw fit to explain just what "coordination control" did mean. Time itself would give some meaning to the newly coined phrase, but until it did so there would be differences of opinion, misunderstandings of channels of communications, and disagreements over the wordings of important operations orders.

Other language in the 15 July directive indicated that its promulgators actually had not attached any great significance to the "coordination control" authority which was granted to General Stratemeyer. Another paragraph of the directive provided that

"Basic selection and priority of target areas will be accomplished by the General Headquarters target analysis group [formed by Almond on the 14th] with all services participating.#

[note]

Other language in the 15 July directive indicated that its promulgators actually had not attached any great significance to the "coordination control" authority which was granted to General Stratemeyer. Another paragraph of the directive provided that " Basic selection and priority of target areas will be accomplished by the General Headquarters target analysis group with all services participating. "

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On 15 July the 92nd Group continued the ground-support effort, but, since the controllers at Taejŏn had been unable to handle the medium bombers when they arrived so close together. the group allowed thirty minutes between planes.

Because a few Communist aircraft were reported to be at Kimp'o, three of the Superfortress crews were sent to attack this airfield. The other eight crews checked in with the control station at Taejŏn and were sent to attack targets of opportunity around Chongju. These attacking aircraft hit a rail tunnel entrance, destroyed two railway bridges, and bombed the marshaling yard at Wŏnju.#61

[10 planes a day, what an effort]

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American soldiers of the 8th Cavalry Regiment, 1st Cavalry Division, prepare an 81-mm mortar along the Naktong River front.

[note]

The "Dallas" squadron proceeded by air transport from the Philippines to Johnson Air Base on 10 July. While the pilots hurriedly checked out in Mustangs, the ground echelon drew supplies and other equipment. After ferrying their planes to Taegu, the "Dallas" pilots flew their first combat missions on 15 July.#71

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Now it is 3 bomber

On 15 July two Yaks attacked a formation of four B-26's while the bombers were attacking a target. One of the B-26's was damaged so badly that its crew had to make an emergency landing at Taejŏn.#93

Bothered by the "reappearance" of the North Korean Air Force, General MacArthur gave Stratemeyer oral instructions to devote a part of his air effort to counter-air purposes. Since MacArthur was particularly concerned about the seven camouflaged Yaks reported to be at Kimp'o, General Partridge sent strafers there which destroyed two or three of these widely dispersed planes on 15 July. That same day General O'Donnell diverted three B-29's and used them to crater the runways at Kimp'o.#94

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*The CINCFE "coordination control" directive was actually issued on 15 July 1950 as an answer to General Stratemeyer's letter of 8 July 1950, but it was generally referred to as the "8 July directive". See Chapter 2, pp. 49-50.

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Yak-9

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B-26 Douglas

USAF F-80 2 x Yak-9 destroyed on ground

KPAFAC Yak-9 1 x B-26 damaged

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US Marine Corps

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The last of these vessels departed the West Coast on 14 July. A further 1,135 men earmarked for the as yet unformed rifle companies (Companies C, F, and I) would later sail from San Diego in August with the rest of the 1st Marine Division.

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It was not a smooth sail for the Marine Brigade. En route the USS Henrico (APA-45) , carrying the 1st Battalion, developed engine trouble and had to steam from San Clemente Island to San Francisco for repairs. The hard luck "Happy Hank" (as the ship was known in the fleet) finally caught up to the convoy just as it closed on the Korean coast in early August. The convoy's original destination had been Japan, where the Marines were to debark, organize for combat, conduct last minute training, combat load, and then proceed to Korea. However, this plan was overtaken by events in Korea — due to the serious combat situation there, the landing site was hastily changed to Pusan Harbor.

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In July, at last Puller’s orders came; he called Virginia from his office. It was late Saturday afternoon [7/15/50]:

“Can we leave for home tomorrow?”

“Have you gone mad?”

“No, I’m sending a driver for you and the children now, to get your shots.”

“Lewis, you know we can’t possibly get this house cleared, the furniture ready, and the children off in such time.”

“My orders are for Camp Pendleton, California, dear, and the matter is fairly urgent. A small war.”

“Well, we’ll try. I’ll call the McMorris’s and tell them we can’t come to the party tonight.”

“No. We’ll go anyway. It may be a long time before we’re out on another one together.”

Mrs. Puller retained a memory of that night:

“We had a wonderful time, a big crowd of Navy and Marine people, and Lewis was the life of the party. Did the hula, eve, and brought down the house. No one would ever have guessed that he had orders to go immediately --- and that he knew the kind of thing that was waiting for him in Korea.”

[They left Hawaii and arrived in Calif. on Thursday 7/20]

[note]

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Sikorsky HO5S-1

The Emphasis was also placed upon procuring observation helicopters as well as transport helicopters. The first contract of this sort provided for 12 Sikorsky HO5S–1s; four for each of the two VMO squadrons and four as replacements for the HO3S–1s in HMX–1 .

[Back in June] Delivery was expected to be at a rate of not less than three per month beginning in March 1951 .[18]

During July the number was raised from 12 to 22 aircraft [19]

and shortly thereafter was again enlarged to 42 .[20]

This demand for observation helicopters was based on planning which called for replacing all OY fixed-wing aircraft in VMO squadrons with the helicopter . In addition, the number of aircraft per squadron was raised again to 12 from the original number of eight due to the activation of two force artillery battalions—which increased the requirement for observation missions .[21]

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Sikorsky HRS-1

So far, the action taken by HQMC to procure more aircraft did not solve the immediate problem of providing additional helicopters to the 1st Provisional Brigade. Something had to be done to fill the gap until such time as the HRS's and the HO5S's became available. Although the HO3S–1s were performing a valuable service and were practically indispensible to the brigade, the fact remained that they were not a suitable military helicopter due to their deficiencies in payload, range, flight instrumentation, and communication equipment .

As a temporary measure to solve the problem, the Division of Aviation, as recommended in a letter from the Commanding Officer of HMX–1, initiated a plan which proposed the assignment of 10 Navy Bell-manufactured HTL'1s to the Marine Corps . The CNO subsequently approved the plan with the first three to be made available in October 1950 and the last one before the end of December . The Navy had only recently purchased 16 of the new models for training aircraft, but due to the urgency created by the Korean situation it was tentatively willing to release 10 of the 16 . The HTL's (Bell H-13) were to be used in VMO–6 until production deliveries of the Sikorsky HOS's began .[22]

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Bell HTL-4

The HTL–4 was similar to the previous Bell models except for a few added refinements . Two features affecting its appearance were the removal of the tail boom covering aft of the cabin, which made the helicopter 156 pounds lighter, and the substitution of a skid type landing gear in lieu of its wheels . The cabin could accommodate two passengers besides the pilot, whereas, all previous HTL models could carry only one passenger . The aircraft came equipped with provisions for carrying two external litters, each mounted parallel with the cabin across the top of the skid . The empty weight was 1,546 pounds with a maximum takeoff weight of 2,350 pounds. Sea level air speed was restricted to 80 knots, almost identical to that o f the HTL-3s. [23]

Although the Marine Corps was fortunate in its ability to procure the HTL for use by VMO-6, it was only beginning to view progress in obtaining the most sought-after of all helicopters—the ultimate assault transport .

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A Bell HTL-5 demonstrates wire laying at Quantico.

[note]

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[note]

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The transport group and screen got under way on the 15th for a rendezvous near the objective area on D-day with the tractor group.

[note]

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And on 15 July General Shepherd directed Brigadier General Harry B. Liversedge, temporary CG 1st Marine Division, to extend the work day and work week while intensifying training and making preparations to expand.[4] The 15th was also the date of General MacArthur’s second request for a war-strength Marine division with its own air for employment in his proposed Inch'ŏn amphibious assault. General Shepherd advised CMC that same day as to the composition of cadres to facilitate the rapid expansion of the 1st Marine Division.[5]

Already it was becoming apparent that this build-up would allow little time for training. Fortunate it was, therefore, that the Division and the 1st Marine Aircraft Wing had participated in an intensive training program during recent months. Following are the principal exercises:

2. Training Activities of Fleet Marine Force, Pacific.

On 1 October, 1949, the 1st Marine Division was reorganized from the "J" Series Tables of Organization and to the present "K" Series Tables of Organization (Peace) and K" Series Tables of Organization (War) immediately initiated an intensive training program in conjunction with the 1st Marine Aircraft Wing. Highlights of the air and ground training programs were as follows:

Oct 1949: Air lift field exercise involving the air movement to San Nicholas Island, California, by a reinforced battalion and a Marine air command. One Marine Aircraft Group was carrier embarked for participation in Operation MIKI.

Nov 1949: Field exercise involving a reinforced regiment and supporting aircraft.

Nov 1949: Comprehensive field exercise involving a reinforced Regiment and supporting aircraft.

Dec 1949

Combined field exercise involving all principal elements of the 1st Marine Division (Reinforced) and 1st Marine Aircraft Wing. This exercise extending over a seven (7) day period, was a simulated amphibious assault and involved preparation of complete amphibious plans.

Jan 1950: Participation by elements of Division in Operation MICOWEX 50, stressing the use of the transport submarine and helicopter in amphibious operations.

Jan-Feb 1950.# Participation by 1st Marine Division elements in MICOWEX 50. This operation stressed the use of the transport submarine and helicopter in amphibious reconnaissance in subarctic conditions.

Feb 1950: Field exercise involving a reinforced regiment with supporting air.

Feb 1950 Landplane and seaplane air lift exercise involving the seizure of San Nicholas Island, California, by a reinforced battalion and a Marine Air Command. The exercise marked the first tactical use of the JRM-2 as a transport seaplane.

Mar 1950: Land plane and seaplane air-lift exercise involving seizure of San Nicholas Island by a reinforced battalion and a Marine air command.

Mar 1950

Field exercise involving a reinforced regiment with supporting air.

May 1950: Participation by a majority of Division and Wing elements in DEMON III, an amphibious demonstration for students of Command and General Staff College, Fort Leavenworth. Participation by Wing in two-week major advanced base field exercise, with intensive training in close support.

Execution of DEMON III, a painstakingly prepared amphibious demonstration for the students of the Command and General Staff College, Fort Leavenworth. A majority of both Division and Wing elements participated in the excellent training offered by this demonstration.

Field exercise (conducted upon completion of DEMON III) involving a reinforced regiment supported by entire 1st Marine Aircraft Wing, and involving extensive overland movement.

Extended air exercise. The 1st Marine Aircraft Wing utilized the opportunity offered by DEMON III to conduct a major advanced base field exorcise of 2 weeks duration. Wing Headquarters, Marine Aircraft Control Group 2 and Marino Aircraft Group 33 embarked in DEMON III shipping, landed all ground elements and supplies over the Aliso canyon beaches and established an advance base air field at the Camp Pendleton airstrip. Marine Aircraft Group 12 moved overland to Ream Field south of Coronado, California, and established an advance base air field which thereafter was supplied by air from El Toro by Marine Aircraft Group 25. The period in the field was devoted to intense training in close air support and air defense.

I - 4 During the period October - June there were numerous lesser ground, air, and air-ground training problems, field exercises and command post exercises. Particularly significant were the reinforced infantry battalion and regimental exercises which habitually employed close air support. It was through these problems that ground commanders, staffs and troops acquired a wealth of first hand knowledge and confidence in the employment and capabilities of close air support. At the same time aviation commanders, pilots and forward air controllers were gaining invaluable experience in identification of friendly and enemy ground forces, target location and identification and close air support techniques.

Throughout the period the Division conducted a continuing program of development of tactics and techniques for landing forces embarked in transport submarines.

During the period the Wing continued its carrier qualification program despite limited carrier availability.

One VMR squadron of Marine Air Group 25 received invaluable training in transpacific air operations through being attached to the Pacific Division of MATS for about one year. This duty was concluded in December, 1949

Throughout April, May and June the staffs of the Division and Wing were engaged in preliminary planning for MAJEX 50 with the naval commanders and staffs involved.

Jun 1950: Continuation of training in lesser air-ground problems, field exercises and command post exercises. [6]

3. Training activities of the Fleet Marine Force, Atlantic.

While detailed information concerning the training activities of 2d Marine Division (which also reorganized under the "K" Tables on 1 October), and 2d Marine Aircraft Wing is not available, it is known that they conducted the following significant amphibious exercises:

Operation CAMID at Little Creek, Virginia. An amphibious demonstration bearing some similarity to DEMON III.

Battalion level cold weather amphibious exercises at Argentina, Newfoundland.

One Marine Aircraft Group was embarked aboard a carrier in the Mediterranean for approximately 6 months.

2nd Division and 2nd Wing conducted an amphibious assault exercise (Operation CROSSOVER) at Camp Lejeune in the spring of 1950.

Elements of the 2nd Wing participated in Operation PORTREX, an Army-Navy amphibious exercise in the Caribbean and in Operation SWARMER, an Army-Air Force airborne exercise in North Carolina.

Elements of the Division and Wing participated in May, 1950, in the Marine Corps Schools annual Amphibious Command Post Exercise conducted at Camp Lejeune, North Carolina.

One reinforced battalion was maintained on station in the Mediterranean (with rotation every four (4) months and had frequent opportunity for amphibious exercises.

As in the case of Fleet Marine Force, Pacific units, there was a continuing sequence of smaller ground, air and air-ground exercises.

4. Marine Corps Posts and Stations.

a. Posts and Stations conducted annual weapons qualification firing and that individual military training required annually by Marine Corps General Order No. 10. This training is intended to maintain and extend the basic military proficiency of Marines not serving with the Fleet Marine Force, and places particular emphasis on familiarity with weapons as well as on practical rifle marksmanship.

b. Of significance is the fact that a high proportion of the troops at the various posts and stations had reported to that duty from a tour in the Fleet Marine Force, as n part of the Commandant of the Marine Corps' rotation policy.

5. Organized Marine Corps Reserve.

a. The Organized Marine Corps Reserve units were fortunate in possessing considerable cadres of Marine veterans of World War II. They further had attracted large numbers of young men of high potential combat effectiveness and imbued then with traditional Marine Corps esprit.

I - 7

b. The Reserve training program was vigorous and well planned, both in armory and summer active duty training. Of particular interest was the fact that Reserve air and ground units conducted their summer active duty training under the guidance of similar type Fleet Marine Force units. The latter units either 'adopted' the Reserve unit and supervised its training or provided it with officer and enlisted instructors and advisors. In some cases, Tables of Organization deficiencies in Reserve units were filled by Marines from Fleet Marine Force units.

c. The rapid post-war achievement of near Table of Organization strength by reserve units in conjunction with their cadre of veterans enabled many of then to progress beyond basic training into advanced individual and unit training.

A number of those units who completed active duty training in June and July, 1950, could accurately be classified as "nearly combat-ready" upon outbreak of the Korean crisis.

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Counterparts of nearly all of these exercises might have been found in the training program for the 2nd Marine Division and 2nd Marine Aircraft Wing on the North Carolina coast.

Operation CAMID at Little Creek, Va., was similar to DEMON III.

All principal FMFLant elements participated in Operation CROSSOVER at Camp Lejeune, North Carolina, in the spring of 1950, and a Marine aircraft group was embarked aboard a carrier in the Mediterranean.

Other elements of the Wing took part in PORTREX, an Army-Navy amphibious exercise in the Caribbean, and in SWARMER, an Army-Air Force airborne exercise in North Carolina.

Units of both the Division and the Wing were represented in the annual Amphibious Command Post Exercise at Lejeune; and throughout the winter and spring a succession of smaller ground, air, and air-ground exercises emphasized close support and amphibious landings. The Inch'ŏn-Sŏul Operation, Ch 2, Expansion to Full Peace Strength Page 1 of 2

Posts and stations were meanwhile conducting annual weapons qualification firing tests and individual training as required by USMC General Order No. 10. This program was designed to maintain the basic military proficiency of men not serving with the Fleet Marine Force. It is significant, however, that a large proportion of them had reported to such duty directly from FMF units, in accordance with the rotation policy.

The program for the Organized Reserve included both armory and active duty summer training. Air and ground units of reservists were “adopted” during their summer training by similar units of the Fleet Marine Force, which supervised the exercises and provided instructors.

By the summer of 1950, a large proportion of the reservists had progressed beyond basic training into advanced individual and unit training, so that they could be classed as “nearly combat ready” at the time of the 1st Marine Division expansion.[7]

[note]

Four days after the President's announcement of 26 June, Congress approved The Selective Service Extension Act of 1950. This measure in effect nullified the guarantee that reservists would not be called to active duty except in time of war or national emergency. The pertinent part of The Selective Service Extension Act of 1950 reads:

Until July 9, 1951--.the President shall be authorized to order into the active military or naval service of the United States for a period not to exceed twenty-one consecutive months, with or without their consent, any or all members and units of any or all Reserve components of the Armed Forces of the United States...."

The President chose, however, to delay the invocation of this new authority until a later and more practical date. Meanwhile, the Armed Forces conducted rapid but extensive surveys of their material and manpower resources in preparation for the. eventuality that sizable American military forces would-be committed in the Far East.

As a result, the Department of Defense and its subordinate military departments arrived at certain basic conclusions, which thereafter contributed to the decisions and events affecting the mobilization of the reserve components. Prominent among the resulting decisions was the resolution that, in the interest of an expeditious and effective mobilization, voluntary separation from the reserve components should be suspended except in unusual cases.

The first measure taken to implement this decision came on 15 July, when the Chief of Naval Personnel ordered that the discharge of Naval reservists upon their own request held in abeyance.

[note]

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Prominent among the resulting decisions was the resolution that, in the interest of an expeditious and effective mobilization, voluntary separation from the reserve components should be suspended except in unusual cases. The first measure taken to implement this decision came on 15 July, when the Chief of Naval Personnel ordered that the discharge of Naval reservists upon their own request held in abeyance.

[note]

US Navy

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15 July
Task Force 90 transported two RCT's of the First Cavalry Division from Tokyo Bay to P'ohang-dong via Inland Sea and Shimonoséki strait.

Frigate (PF) activation program began at Yokosuka.

[note]

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MSTS had been created in [on 1] October 1949 by directive of the Secretary of Defense, pursuant to the National Security Act of 1947. In the following months it developed into a world-wide operating agency, with major area commands in London, New York, San Francisco, and Tokyo. The first Deputy Commander for the Western Pacific reached Tokyo in January 1950 to organize his command, activation of which was scheduled for 1 July. On that date, in accordance with plan, Captain Alexander F. Junker assumed his responsibilities as DepComMSTS WestPac to find himself faced by an emergency of wholly unexpected dimensions.

The first problem was to find the shipping for an immediate large scale lift of troops and supplies. That under Captain Junker's own control the MSTS "owned" shipping in the area-was initially limited to 25 intra-area support ships inherited from the Army. Not all of these were of types useful to the task, but there were ten 175-foot, 500-ton capacity cargo ships (AKL) of Army design, the two 340-foot coastal transports(T-APc) USNS Sgt. George D. Keathley (T-APC-117) and USNS Sgt. Joseph E. Muller (T-APC-118) each normally carrying 100 troops, and six LSTs. Three LSTs and two AKLs had been inactivated, but work on them was quickly put in hand, and the LSTs were operating by the 8th.

A second source of shipping was, of course, to be found in the Scajap fleet, which was immediately made available and which continued to be employed in close connection with MSTS.

A third expedient it was to retain and employ MSTS transports and cargo ships which, like the aircraft transport USNS Cardinal O'Connell Aircraft Transport (AKV-7), had reached the Far Eastern theater on normal transPacific runs. Finally, most fortunately and most importantly, there was the possibility of charter of Japanese merchant ships.

By 10 July the MSTS-controlled fleet in or en route to the Western Pacific had risen from 25 to 70 vessels, not counting the 50-odd ships belonging to Scajap. But not all had reached the Far East and some, for reasons of size or type or availability, were unsuited to the work at hand: of the total of 70 vessels, 52 were available for emergency movements to Korea. Of these, Japanese vessels on charter on 10 July accounted for 29 bottoms and 74,000 measurement tons;

[By 15 July] five days later this number would have increased to 40. In addition to the Marus and to the ships inherited from the Army, Captain Junker had two AKA's and three T-AP's which had reached Japan and which had been retained to lift men and material to Pusan.

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The 24th Infantry Division had completed its movement to Korea by 6 July.

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Hard on its heels the 25th Division began to move, its first elements loading at Moji on Shimonoseki Strait on the 8th, and subsequent echelons at Inland Sea ports and at Sasebo; for this movement Japanese time-chartered ships were extensively used.

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The third major Army unit to be lifted from Japan was the 1st Cavalry Division, and this, since handling facilities at Pusan were clogging from overload, was put in over the beaches.

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This movement was accomplished by Admiral Doyle’s Amphibious Group, temporarily augmented by the loan from MSTS of two AKA's, three T-AP's, one ocean tug, five LSTs, and four time-chartered Japanese Marus.

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Late in July the final intra-theater movement of the initial phase brought in two battalions of the 29th Infantry Regiment from Okinawa. On the 16th MSTS assigned two Japanese passenger vessels and a cargo ship to this lift, and on the 24th these troops were landed at Pusan.

[note]

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Thus the job was done [not exactly]. By mid-July all Army forces in the Far East had been committed or were scheduled for commitment, with the single exception of the 7th Division, held back to provide a skeleton garrison for Japan. And while the emergency movements within the Far Eastern theater were going on, others were in preparation elsewhere.

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In Hawaii the Mid-Pacific branch of MSTS was assembling shipping to lift the 5th Regimental Combat Team west.

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On the west coast planning for the movement of the 2nd Division was in progress, and urgent efforts to project supplies forward across the ocean highways were underway.

[note]

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General Craig and General Cushman had remained behind to tidy up administrative detail. On the 15th they departed by air from El Toro to Japan, where they arrived on 19 July.

[note]

Yet given the base facilities and the aircraft, it is possible to deliver across great distances not only ammunition to the ultimate consumer but much else besides. In the Second World War the possibilities of airborne operations were dramatically demonstrated by the German conquests of Norway and Crete, and by the Allied airdrop into Normandy in 1944.

Equally if not more important were the logistic feats accomplished through air supply: in Burma the British planned a whole campaign around this capability; in France, although insufficient air tanker capacity halted Patton’s tanks in 1944, the final advance into Germany saw the airlift bringing up half a million gallons of gasoline a day.

[what about the Berlin air lift?]

Nothing so colossal was to supervene in Korea, although air supply would prove a priceless asset, but from the beginning air transport was called on to assist the overseas deployment.

Since air transport offered the quickest method of alleviating critical shortages, the call for help was urgent. From all services requests came flooding in for vitally needed gear and personnel. For Naval Forces Far East, communicators to handle the dispatch load, boat crews for undermanned amphibious shipping, individuals of all ranks and rates were hurried west to build up personnel to something approaching wartime complement, to staff the expanding base facilities, and perhaps most urgent of all, to staff the staffs. The result of this overwhelming demand was to force an extremely rapid expansion upon the air transport facilities of the armed services, the Military Air Transport Service and the Fleet Logistic Air Wing.

JULY

27--To meet the requirements of supporting combat forces in Korea, Fleet Logistics Air Wing, Pacific, was established as a unit of the
Pacific Fleet and independent from the existing Fleet Logistic Air Wing.

SEPTEMBER

18--Fleet Logistic Air Wing was replaced by Fleet Logistic Air Wing, Atlantic/Continental, and assigned status parallel to that of the previously established Fleet Logistic Air Wing, Pacific

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The Military Air Transport Service, operated by the Air Force, is the aerial counterpart of MSTS. Established as a unified logistic organization pursuant to the National Security Act, MATS operates what is in effect a scheduled airline between major traffic generating points around the world.

To supplement this schedule by providing feeder service to dispersed naval activities, the flexibility of non-scheduled operations, and something to fall back on in a general emergency when MATS would be pretty well mortgaged to other activities, the Navy had set up its Fleet Logistic Support Wings. Of these there had originally been two, one on each coast, but the passion for centralizing which had afflicted the Defense Department had led to their merger, despite objections from the fleet commanders, into a single Fleet Logistic Air Wing, responsible to the Chief of Naval Operations and with headquarters at Patuxent River, Maryland.

At the outbreak of hostilities three Navy air transport squadrons were employed in the Pacific to supplement the regular MATS schedule.

One, under the operational control of CincPacFleet, was operating six R5Ds from Barber’s Point, Oahu;

the second was flying four JRM Martin Mars flying boats out of Alameda;

the third, with five R5Ds and two R6Os was at Moffett Field. This capacity was speedily to prove inadequate.

On 28 June CincPacFleet asked the Chief of Naval Operations for operational control of the west coast squadrons, and two days later the request was granted.

On 1 July, in his capacity as CinCPac, Admiral Radford requested the commander of the Pacific Division of MATS to double his lift within ten days.

On the 4th, as CincPacFleet, he ordered the Commander 14th Naval District to establish facilities for transport aircraft at Midway, and called upon Patuxent River for an additional increment of planes. Three more R5Ds were at once assigned the Moffet Field squadron, but backlogs were piling up on the west coast, more were urgently needed, and

on the 7th the Fleet Marine Force Pacific was asked to contribute ten more transport aircraft.

All this was little enough. Air transport is not always the economical way of moving men and goods, but its expediency in time of crisis creates irresistible pressures. Despite the transfer of additional equipment to the Pacific run, and despite creation of a west coast coordinating office to make some sense out of priorities inflated beyond all meaning, the jam increased.

July 15

By mid-July personnel awaiting transportation totaled nine times FLAW’s (Fleet Logistic Air Wing) maximum weekly lift, the cargo backload was seven times maximum, and MATS, in a similar situation, was chartering commercial planes. Nor had the theoretical virtues of centralization held up in the emergency: Patuxent River was too far away, and before the month was out [27 July] CNO had established the Fleet Logistic Air Wing Pacific under the control of CincPacFleet.

[note]

By mid-July the waters of the Pacific and the air above them were again bearing westward a great burden of military traffic. Fighting ships and their numerous auxiliaries, Army troops and the Marine Brigade, planes for the Air Force, food, fuel, and ammunition for all were converging upon the Far Eastern theater. Hour by hour the 6,000-mile distance was decreasing. If a line could be held into August a wholly new order of force would be available to stem the Communist aggression. But distances in Korea were decreasing too. By 15 July North Korean forces had covered half of the 225-mile journey to Pusan. The foothold was not yet secure. Whether it could be held depended on the course of events in the Korean hills, in the Korean air, and along the Korean coasts.

[note]

But by mid-July North Korean forces had covered more than half the distance to Pusan, and had occupied the line Chŏnju-Taejŏn-Yongjin-Yŏngdök, while the 1st Cavalry and the 29th Infantry had not yet arrived.

As Korean physiography and the Korean transportation net governed the land scheme of maneuver, so the hydrography of the area profoundly affected naval capabilities.

The Korean coastline, generally straight along the Sea of Japan but deeply convoluted on south and west, has a length of some 5,400 miles. The steepness of the east coast, where the mountains rising from the sea confine road and railroad to a narrow coastal strip, has its underwater counterpart: except in the Gulf of Korea, off Wŏnsan and Hungnam, the 100-fathom curve runs close to shore, coastal shipping is exposed, and warships can get within gun range of land communication facilities.

But in the south and west conditions are very different, and the countless islands and deeply indented bays which mark the disappearance of the mountain ranges into the sea provide shelter for coastal traffic. The operations of major fighting ships are restricted, and effective supervision of coastal shipping calls for small craft of shallow draft.

On the western shore further complications arise from the extraordinary hydrographic conditions of the Yellow Sea: whereas the tidal range in the Sea of Japan is of the order of a foot or two, here it ranges from 20 to 36 feet; currents are considerable and the water turbid; nowhere are there depths greater than 60 fathoms, and the 20-fathom line runs ten miles offshore. Extending far from land and exposed at low tide, the mud banks which trapped the French frigates a century ago remain a hazard for the unwary. [In 1846 the French frigates Gloire and Victorieuse, sent to investigate a massacre of missionaries, grounded on uncharted shoals; the extreme tidal range of the Yellow Sea left them high and dry, the crews were taken off by a passing English ship, and the frigates abandoned to the elements.]

These hydrographic facts of life and the very limited forces available combined to dictate the early activities of the Navy. Task Force 77 had been withdrawn to Okinawa, and the period from 5 to 17 July saw naval effort concentrated on the movement of troops and supplies into Pusan, gunfire support of ROK forces resisting the enemy east coast advance, and the planning of future operations.

[note]

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On the 15th, however, the cruiser (USS Juneau (CLAA-119))and USS De Haven (DD-727) had a big day on the 20-mile stretch between 36°34' and 36°52' where the road runs generally close to the sea. For the first time an Army liaison plane was available to provide air spot, and a total of 645 rounds of 5-inch ammunition, expended against troops, shore batteries, and other targets, included a little night work against road traffic with the aid of star shell illumination.

[note]

But there were also major problems. The first of these, and one which would recur throughout the war, was the problem of intelligence: nobody knew much about P'ohang. If one proposes to put landing craft up on the beach in order to get troops ashore it is desirable to know the underwater characteristics of the objective area, but although American forces had occupied South Korea, and had undertaken to conduct a mapping program, Korean beach gradients and much else remained a mystery. This, it may be observed, was no new experience; the same situation had prevailed in the Philippines after 40 years of American occupation. In January 1945, when American attack forces set forth for Lingayen Gulf and the re-conquest of Luzon, information concerning those beaches, which other Americans had previously defended against the Japanese, was conspicuous by its absence. Yet experience had not taught convincingly the need for basic intelligence studies, and so far as South Korea was concerned the lack of information, as Admiral Doyle remarked,

"was appalling."


Fortunately there was a solution. P'ohang was still in friendly hands. On 10 July U.S. troops were reported guarding the airstrip, an aviation engineer unit was landed by LST, and Fifth Air Force was preparing to move in a fighter squadron. On the 11th some officers from the Amphibious Group and Cavalry Division staffs were flown to P'ohang, to return two days later with useful and previously unavailable information.

On the 15th a second group flew across to make such preparations for the landing as were possible, and to keep the command informed of enemy progress down the coastal road.

There was also a problem of shipping. The Amphibious Group had been sent westward for training purposes, and the four vessels available -- a command ship, an attack transport, an attack cargo ship, and an LST -- were wholly inadequate to the contemplated task.

Fifteen more LSTs were procured from Scajap, and two attack cargo ships, USS Oglethorpe (AKA-100) and USS Titania (AKA-13), were borrowed from the Military Sea transportation Service for the assault phase. For the follow-up echelons shipping was also provided by MSTS, in the amount of three transports, a dozen Scajap LSTS, and four Japanese time-charter vessels.

Although Oglethorpe and Titania had retained the classification of AKA while assigned to MSTS, their equipment and personnel had been radically reduced. The first problem was met by Fleet Activities Yokosuka, where landing craft, boat fittings, and much miscellaneous gear including slings, nets, and the like were installed. At the same time an emergency air movement of boat crews and other specialized personnel from the west coast helped to strengthen the crews, but the two ships were still below peacetime complement when the force set sail, and far below that of wartime.

The load imposed on Fleet Activities Yokosuka in preparation for "Bluehearts" was not limited to the modification of the Akas'. To assist in unloading at the objective half a dozen LSU's were reactivated; the proposal to tow these to P'ohang by LST superimposed a requirement for the manufacture of towing gear. Both in this high-speed shipyard work and in the loading of the Attack Force there was reason to be grateful for Japanese facilities and Japanese labor. The larger ships, which carried an average of 138 vehicles and 575 tons of bulk cargo, were loaded in little over a day, and the vehicle-laden LSTs in only four hours. Despite all difficulties the sailing date was somehow met.

The employment of Scajap LSTs in both the assault phase and the follow-up echelons, and the use of chartered Japanese merchant ships, created an unusual situation. Seldom, indeed, do men embark for war in ships manned and navigated by enemy aliens. Since control of the Scajap fleet was exercised through the Civilian Merchant Marine Committee, an agency of the Japanese Government, its administration was somewhat unwieldy. Always, of course, there was the language problem. But the most important complications were of a military nature.

If sailed independently, the only contact with these ships was through Japanese radio channels, cumbersome and presenting difficult questions of security. Even when sailing in company, problems arose in communicating with units which could not be issued classified publications. Placing of Navy radiomen and quartermasters aboard, while answering some difficulties gave rise to others, not least in the manifestation at meal time of cultural differences between east and west.

Yet these problems, if not overcome, were mitigated by various expedients, and the Scajap LSTs gave yeoman service throughout the war.

table 6.--P'ohang ATTACK FORCE

TASK FORCE 90. ATTACK FORCE. REAR ADMIRAL J. H. DOYLE .

Task Force 91 . Landing Force.

Major General Hobart Gay, USA.

Task Group 90.1 . Tactical Air Control Group.
Tacron 1 .

Commander Elmer Moore, USN.

Task Group 90 .2 . transport Group
USS McKinley (AGC-7) fleet flagship
USS Cavalier (APA-37)
USS Oglethorpe (AKA-100)
USS Titania (AKA-13)
USS Union (AKA-106)

Captain Virginius R. Roane, USN
1 Amphibious Command Ship
1 Amphibious transport
3 Amphibious Cargo Ships

Task Group 90-3. tractor Group.
USS Crook County (LST-611)
15 Scajap LST

USS Cree (ATF-84)
USS Lipan (ATF-85)
USS Conserver (ARS-39)
6 LSU.

Captain Norman W. Sears, USN
1 Landing Ship Tank
15 Supreme Commander Allied Powers, Japan LST as assigned
2 Fleet Tugs

1 Salvage Ship
6 Landing Ship Utility

Task Group 90-4 . Protective Group
90.41 Mine Squadron 3
USS Pledge (AM-277)
USS Chatterer (AMS-40)
USS Kite (AMS-22)
USS Redhead (AMS-34)
90.42 Mine Division 31
USS Mockingbird (AMS-27)
USS Osprey (AMS-28)
USS Partridge (AMS-31)
90.43 Destroyer Screen
USS Higbee (DD-806)
USS James B. Kyes (DD-787)


LCDR Darcy V. Shouldice, USN
1 Minesweeper
3 Coastal Minesweepers


3 Coastal Minesweepers


2 Destroyers (as screen for movement of objective then under TG 96.5)

Task Group 90-7 . Reconnaissance Group
USS Diachenko (APD-123)
UDT-3 detachment.

LCDR. James R. Wilson, USN

1 High Speed transport
Underwater Demolition Team

Task Group 90.8 . Control Group.
USS Diachenko (APD-123)

(From Task Group 90.7)

USS Lipan (ATF-85)

(From Task Group 90.3)

LCDR Clyde E. Allmon, USN
1 High Speed transport
1 Fleet Tug

Task Group 90.9. Beach Group.
1 Beachmaster Unit detachment,
UDT-3 Detachment

LCDR Jack L. Lowentrout, USN

Underwater Demolition Team

Task Group 90.0 . Follow-up Shipping Group.
USNS Fred C. Ainsworth (T-AP-181)

USNS General David C. Shanks (T-AP-180)


12 Scajap LST
4 Maru.

Captain Daniel J. Sweeney, USN

2 transports

12 Supreme Commander Allied Powers, Japan Landing Ship Tanks

Task Group 96.5 . Gunfire Support Group.
USS Juneau (CLLA-119)
USS Collett (DD-730)
USS Higbee (DD-806)

(from Task Group 90.4 .)
USS James B. Kyes (DD-787)

(from Task Group 90.4 .)
HMAS Bataan

Rear Admiral John M. Higgins, USN

1 Light Cruiser
3 Destroyers


Australian Navy Destroyer

Close air support from Seventh Fleet;

deep air support from FEAF;

patrol aircraft from Task Group 96.2 Naval Air Japan.

Although the P'ohang operation was a comparatively small one, and although plans and preparations were made in record time, the organization of the Attack Force followed standard amphibious practice.

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The landing force, commanded by Major General Hobart Gay, USA, consisted of the 5th and 8th RCTs of the 1st Cavalry Division, an artillery group of three battalions, and minor attached units.

These were transported to the objective area in the large vessels of the transport group, in the 16 LSTs of the tractor group, and in follow-up shipping.

The Attack Force also included a minesweeping group (TG-90.4) of one AM and six AMS;

a gunfire support group made up of Juneau, the American destroyers Kyes, Higbee, and Collett, and the Australian Bataan;

and units assigned for reconnaissance, control purposes at the objective, administration of the beaches, and the like.

Deep air support was the responsibility of the Air Force, which by this time had a fighter squadron on the P'ohang air strip; close air support at the objective, should the natives prove unfriendly, would be provided by the Seventh Fleet, which was coming up from Okinawa for the occasion.

[note]

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Map 5. P'ohang Landing Carrier Strikes, 15–23 July 1950

[note]

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[On July 10th] VP 28, a PB4Y-2 Privateer squadron, was moved up from Guam to Okinawa;

Korean_War

VP 46, a PBM-5 Mariner squadron with units at Sangley Point and Buckner Bay, was ordered forward to the Pescadores along with the tender USS Suisun (AVP-53);

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Commander Fleet Air Wing 1 was relieved of responsibilities at Guam and instructed to advance his headquarters to Okinawa. (see Okinawa and Guam)

These movements were expeditiously completed. Captain Grant had his wing headquarters in operation at Naha Air Force Base by the 15th;

[note]

Korean_War

On 8 July General Stratemeyer had advised CincFE that it was essential that he have "operational control" of all naval aircraft in the theater. To the Navy, quite apart from doubts as to FEAF’s technical capability to handle this effort, the implications of the request appeared excessive, involving as they did the authority to control carrier movements as well as to assign targets, and after some discussion a CincFE letter of the 15th delegated "coordination control" to the commanding general of FEAF.

[note]

Through the hectic weeks of July, as the U.N. Command struggled to stem the enemy advance, naval operations fell into three interrelated categories.

1. To support the campaign in the peninsula a steady stream of shipping was flowing into Pusan,

2. while the P'ohang landing, carried out by Task Force 90, permitted the rapid reinforcement of the front by the previously uncommitted 1st Cavalry Division.

3. At the same time Task Force 77, the U.N.’s long-range weapon, worked over North Korean air strength and communications, attacked targets of opportunity like the Wŏnsan refinery, and attempted to support the western front against the pressure of the numerically superior enemy.

Korean_War

As troops and supplies were fed into Korea, and as Struble’s force struck northward and struggled with problems of communications and control, the units of Naval Forces Japan were busy on both sides of the peninsula. While patrol planes covered the maritime flanks, the gunnery units escorted shipping, bombarded enemy positions, and gave fire support to the ROK forces holding the east coast road.

Korean_War

Like everyone else, the Fleet Air Wing 1 detachment had more jobs than it could easily handle. To perform the multitudinous duties of antisubmarine patrol, escort of convoy, weather reconnaissance, and shipping search, Captain Alderman had a total of eight PBM Mariner flying boats and nine P2V Neptunes. Shortly after their arrival in Japan the PBMs of VP 47 moved from Yokosuka to the RAAF base at Iwakuni, near Hiroshima on the Inland Sea. Messed, housed, and supported by the hospitable Australians, the squadron managed to extemporize a seadrome and to maintain an antisubmarine patrol of the Korean Strait, and on the 15th the arrival of the seaplane tender USS Gardiners Bay (AVP-39) brought more ample logistic assistance.

[note]

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Six days later President Rhee formally turned over command of the ROK armed forces to General MacArthur, and

[note]

Korean_War

On the 15th, inshore patrol sectors were established along both coasts south of 37° and a detachment of Korean Marines was sailed for Kunsan by LST in an attempt to hold that port.

[note]

Korean_War

One day out of San Diego the well deck of the USS Fort Marion (LSD-22) had accidentally flooded, and salt water had damaged a number of tanks and a quantity of ammunition.

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The transport USS Henrico (APA-45) had developed serious mechanical difficulties and had been forced to put back to Oakland for repairs. Three days of urgent effort were required to put Henrico back in commission, but on the 18th she steamed out the Golden Gate and headed west at best speed in the hope of overtaking the task group.

[note]

Korean_War

[Oh Woe was us=AF] Flying planes which were not yet converted to fighter-bomber tasks from faraway airfields in southern Japan, the Shooting Star pilots were performing admirably. By 15 July the F-80's had flown 70 percent [70% of nothing is still nothing] of all combat sorties over Korea and had accounted for 85 percent of the enemy's losses to air attack.

[That is bull shit too! They were only over the target for 15 minutes.]

"I wouldn't trade the F-80 for all the F-47's and F-51's you could get me,"

said General Stratemeyer.

"It does a wonderful job in ground support and can take care of the top-side job if enemy jets appear.#38

#38 Msg. A-3841, CG FEAF to CofS USAF, 6 Aug. 1950.

[What a FOOL, what JETS? The quote is from 8/6 a month from now?
What is the author doing? In April 51 he specifically asks for F-47's]

But the F-80 pilots were seeking to solve a number of operating problems. The chief problem was the limited range of the F-80C. Carrying standard Lockheed wing tanks, the F-80's could not remain over the target area in Korea for more than fifteen minutes.

Korean_War

The 49th Fighter-Bomber Group used the 265-gallon "Misawa" tip tanks which the group had devised and got up to forty-five minutes' time over targets along the Korean battleline, but during the first few weeks of combat only about one flight out of four could be continually equipped with the big tanks.

Denied the staying time they required effectively to attack Communist targets, those pilots who carried the small tanks reported:

"We felt like Joe Louis in the ring, blindfolded."

They were flying combat sorties, had the firepower, could manage to navigate into the target area under the most adverse weather conditions, and yet could not stay long enough there to manage a solid combat punch. In short, the F-80's were based 150 miles too far distant from their targets.#39

#39 Hists. 8th, 9th, 35th, and 36th Ftr.-Bmr. Sqs., July 1950.

[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]

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Sun Rise 0521 1950
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Korean_War

The morning of 15 July, Colonel Stephens at 0600 started his 21st Infantry Regiment from the Taejŏn airstrip for Okch'ŏn, ten miles east of the city on the main Sŏul-Pusan highway. This organization was now only a shadow of a regiment. Its 1st Battalion had a strength of 517 men. The 132 men of the 3rd Battalion were organized into K and M Companies and attached to the 1st Battalion. A separate provisional group numbered 466 men. As already noted, the regiment so organized numbered little more than 1,100 men of all ranks. [10-37]

Korean_War

General Dean had ordered the move to the Okch'ŏn position. He feared there might be a North Korean penetration through ROK Army forces east of Taejŏn, and he wanted the 21st Infantry deployed on the high hills astride the highway in that vicinity to protect the rear of the 24th Division.

The regiment went into position five miles east of Taejŏn, beyond the railroad and highway tunnels, with the command post in Okch'ŏn. From its new position the 21st Infantry also controlled a road running south from a Kum River ferry site to the highway.

Korean_War

One battery of the 11th Field Artillery Battalion accompanied the 21st Infantry. A company of attached engineer troops prepared the tunnels and bridges east of Taejŏn for demolition. [10-38]

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Korean_War

The next morning, at 0700, Colonel Meloy received word from his extreme left flank that North Koreans were starting to cross there. An aerial strike and the I&R Platoon's machine gun fire repelled this crossing attempt. But soon thereafter enemy troops that had crossed lower down in the 34th Infantry sector briefly engaged the Reconnaissance Platoon when it tried to establish contact with the 34th Infantry. [10-35]

These events on his exposed left flank caused Colonel Meloy to reinforce the small force there with the remainder of G Company, 1 machine gun platoon and a section of 81-mm. mortars from H Company, 2 light tanks, and 2 quad-50's of the 26th Antiaircraft Artillery Battalion-in all, two thirds of his reserve.

Battery A, 26th Anti-aircraft Artillery Automatic Weapons Battalion

Lt. Col. Thomas M. McGrail, commanding officer of the 2nd Battalion, accompanied these troops to the left flank. Meloy now had only F Company in reserve behind the 1st Battalion in the main battle position. [10-36]

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At 8:00 A.M. the NKPA swarmed across the river on barges or wading or swimming. Lantron called for artillery fire from Dawson's 63rd FAB and Ben Allen's more distant 11th FAB, but the response was desultory or ineffective or worse. (The 63rd's commander, Dawson, temporarily felled by a "blood infection," was being evacuated, relieved by William E. Dressler.) One of Lantron's 3/34 companies (I) held, but the other (L) abandoned its position and fled to the rear. Subsequently Lantron relieved the L Company commander.[5-27]

(note)

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Korean_War

The NKPA, "squealing like a bunch of Indians," swarmed through the hole left by L Company southward to the positions of the 63rd FAB. Within two hours Dressler was dead in his foxhole and his entire under strength outfit was wiped out. The NKPA captured all ten 105mm howitzers (half of them serviceable) plus large amounts of ammunition, about seventy vehicles, and miscellaneous other weapons. At day's end 136 men of the 63rd were dead or missing, 86 of them captured by the NKPA.[5-28]

[note]


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Late that afternoon Bill Dean, having been apprised of the 34th's collapse, sent an encouraging message to Wadlington and Meloy:

"Hold everything we have until we find out where we stand - might not be too bad - may be able to hold - make reconnaissance - may be able to knock those people out and reconsolidate."

But these words were scarcely on the way when an entirely new threat to Taejŏn appeared to be developing. Intelligence reported that the ROKs on the "central front" were giving way in panic, possibly opening the way for the NKPA to attack Taejŏn from the northeast.

Korean_War

To meet this new threat, Dean ordered Stephens's regrouped 21st Regiment (1,100 men) to deploy to Okch'ŏn, due east of Taejŏn, to prevent an encirclement which might cut off the 19th and 34th.[5-30]

Korean_War

The collapse of Wadlington's 34th Regiment left only Stan Meloy's Chicks holding the Kum River line. Initially Meloy had deployed the Chicks thus:

the 1/19, commanded by Otho T. Winstead, thirty-five, at the river;

the 2/19, commanded by Thomas M. McGrail, forty-one, in reserve, except for its E Company, which held the extreme east flank on the river.

Korean_War Korean_War Korean_War

The Chicks were supported by the 13th FAB, commanded by Charles W. Stratton, two batteries of Perry's 52nd FAB and Ben Allen's 11th FAB. When the 34th melted away Meloy was compelled to commit McGrail's reserve 2/19 to fill the void on his left, holding merely one rifle company (F) to serve as regimental reserve.[5-31]

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The entire battalion [Osburn] moved out by truck on the 15th and fell back to the city of Taejŏn, closing there late in the afternoon. Other units of the 24th Division, already assembled, were preparing to defend the town. The 1st Battalion took up defensive positions on the northeast side of Taejŏn, on high ground between the main part of the town and the airstrip used by the division liaison planes. [01-16] American forces destroyed the bridge over the Kum River before withdrawing to Taejŏn, but the North Koreans succeeded in crossing and followed in close pursuit.

[note]

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On Bill Dean's orders Pappy Wadlington had gone to the rear that day to scout deeper defensive positions. At about 4:00 P.M., when he returned to his CP and learned of this latest disaster in the 34th, he gave orders for Red Ayres's 1/34, which was in reserve behind the 3/34, to attack and, if possible, to recapture the 63rd's artillery pieces and gunners before dark.

[note]

1640 Korean Time

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Nevertheless, Dean tried to bolster the morale of the defeated units. After he had received reports of the disaster, he sent a message at 1640 in the afternoon saying,

"Hold everything we have until we find where we stand-might not be too bad-may be able to hold-make reconnaissance-may be able to knock those people out and reconsolidate. Am on my way out there now." [10-26]

Informing Colonel Stephens that the 34th Infantry was in trouble, he ordered him to put the 21st Infantry Regiment in position on selected ground east of Taejŏn. Something of Dean's future intentions on operations at Taejŏn was reflected in his comment,

"We must coordinate so that the 19th and 34th come out together."

General Dean closed his message by asking Stephens to come to his command post that night for a discussion of plans. [10-27]

Although an aerial observer saw two tanks on the south side of the Kum River southwest of Kongju early in the morning of the 15th, enemy armor did not cross in force that day. Other parts of the 4th Division continued to cross, however, in the Kongju area. Air strikes destroyed some of their boats and strafed their soldiers. By nightfall of 15 July some small groups of North Korean soldiers had pressed south from the river and were in Nonsan. [10-28]

[note]



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As evening of 15 July approached, Colonel Meloy alerted all units in battle positions for an enemy night crossing. Supporting mortars and artillery fired on the enemy-held villages across the river. This and air strikes during the evening set the flimsy Korean wood-adobe-straw huts on fire and illuminated the river front with a reddish glow.

Korean_War

Enemy sources indicate that all day the N.K. 3rd Division had made preparations for an attack on the river line, and that repeated air attacks seriously hampered the movement of its heavy equipment and instilled fear in the minds of its soldiers. Political officers tried to raise the lowering morale of the troops by promising them a long rest after the capture of Taejŏn and by saying that when the city fell the Americans would surrender. [10-39]

[note]

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Ayres jumped off at about 5:00 P.M.; but while approaching the 63rd FAB site, he ran into heavy enemy fire, and as instructed, he withdrew the 1/34 without having achieved anything.

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Just before dusk, 2nd Lt. Charles C. Early, platoon leader of the 3rd Platoon, B Company, from his position above the Kum, saw an enemy T34 tank come around a bend in the highway across the river. While he telephoned this information to his company commander, he counted eight more tanks making the turn in the road. He could see them distinctly with the naked eye at a distance of about two miles. Three of the tanks pulled off the road, swung their turrets, and fired on Early's position. Most of their rounds passed overhead. Enemy artillery began firing at the same time.

The 1st Battalion had called for an air strike when the enemy tanks opened fire, and now two planes appeared. When the planes arrived over the river all the tanks except one took cover in a wooded area. The strike left the exposed tank burning on the road. The two planes stayed over the area until dark. Upon their departure, enemy infantry in trucks moved to the river's edge. [10-40]

Small groups of enemy soldiers tested the American river defenses by wading into the river; others rushed out to the end of the blown bridge, jumped into the water, and began swimming across. Recoilless rifle and machine gun fire of the Heavy Weapons Company inflicted heavy casualties on this crossing attempt at and near the bridge, but some of the North Koreans got across under cover of tank fire.

Upstream in front of Hill 200 another enemy crossing attempt was under way in front of C Company. The combined fire from all company weapons supported by that from part of the Heavy Weapons Company repelled this attack and two more that followed after short intervals.

Some rounds falling short from friendly 81-mm. mortars knocked out two of the company's 60-mm. mortars and broke the base plate of the remaining one. Corporal Tabor improvised a base plate and, holding the tube in his hand, fired an estimated 300 rounds. With his first river crossing attacks repulsed, the enemy made ready his major effort.

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1950 Sun Set

[note]

Although an aerial observer saw two tanks on the south side of the Kum River southwest of Kongju early in the morning of the 15th, enemy armor did not cross in force that day.

Korean_War

Other parts of the 4th Division continued to cross, however, in the Kongju area. Air strikes destroyed some of their boats and strafed their soldiers. By nightfall of 15 July some small groups of North Korean soldiers had pressed south from the river and were in Nonsan. [10-28]

[note]

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After dark Lantron's outflanked I Company decamped and escaped to the rear.

[Wadlington's entire 34th was just east of Nonsan (The 34th Infantry occupied new positions just east of Nonsan early in the morning of 15 July.)]

The action that day was another decisive victory for the NKPA. It had swiftly crossed a river in the face of an American defense, shattered yet another American infantry battalion, overrun and captured most of a field artillery battalion, and beaten back Red Ayres's counterattack. Moreover, the collapse of the 34th Regiment laid bare the entire left flank of Stan Meloy's green 19th Infantry.[5-29]

[note]

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Casualties

Saturday July 15, 1950 (Day 021)

Korean_War 007 Casualties

As of July 15, 1950

1 11TH FIELD ARTILLERY BATTALION (155MM)
2 19TH INFANTRY REGIMENT
1 21ST INFANTRY REGIMENT
2 34TH INFANTRY REGIMENT
1 40TH FIGHTER INTERCEPTOR SQUADRON
7 19500715 0000 Casualties by unit
Date USAF USA USMC USN Other Total
Previous 38 683 0 0 0 721
Today 1 6 0 0 0 7
Total 39 689 0 0 0 728

Aircraft Losses Today 001

Notes for Saturday July 15, 1950 - Day 021