Weather

Korean Climate

Mean Temp 24.9°C 76.82°F at Taegu

Heavy Overcast

1950 Pacific Typhoon Season

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


Overview

August 2 - 1st Provisional Marine Brigade, (reinforced) (5th Marine Rgt.) arrived Pusan Korea.

[note]

Russia, whose boycott of the UN allowed the Security Council to back South Korea, now returns to the world body. Deputy Foreign Minister Jacob A. Malik assumes the chairmanship for August. He tries to make up for lost time with moves designed to stall deliberations on the Korean War. On August 1 he rules that communist China will replace Taiwan in the UN. The U.S. ambassador objects, saying that a chairman cannot make rulings without a Security Council vote. Membership for communist China is defeated 8-3 following a debate.

The U.S. also leads a defeat of Malik's insistence on settling the question of Mainland China's membership Aug. 2.

[note]

Three SB-17s were used for orbit and surveillance missions this date, a total of twenty four hours and forty minutes (24:40) was flown on these missions.

C-47 #45-883, made a flight to Taegu, Korea, and return this date. This aircraft delivered supplies and equipment from Ashiya to the Rescue Detachment located at Taegu.

Captain Ferdinand L. Svore, departed from Flight "A" for Ashiya in H-5 #1997. The badly needed H-5 will join Flight "A"s other helicopter, #539, which was flown there earlier in the week by Lt. Merle A. Clapsaddle.

[note]

In response to an Eighth Army request, the 374th troop Carrier Group (TCG) airlifted 300,000 pounds of equipment and supplies from Ashiya to Korea in 24 hours, a new airlift record for the war.

[note]

By August 2, the Allies were pushed down into the Pusan Perimeter in a small corner of the peninsula. The North Koreans suffered heavy losses while forcing back the UN forces, which became advantageous to the Allies, whose strength increased as more military aid arrived. More armies were stationed across the Naktong River, their last natural barrier against the enemy.

[note]

It [The 1st Provisional Marine Brigade] went into the line at Pusan on 2 August.

[note]

Distinguished Service Cross

August

BOISVENUE *

CHECK

DUDLEY

ELLISON

PAPPERT

RECTOR

SAUNDERS *

WEATHERS *

WHITE *

* KIA

"By early August, 134 National Guard units had received activation orders."

[note]

"The 1st Provisional Marine Brigade, hastily organized from 1st Marine Division units on the West Coast, landed in Korea."

[note]

August

By the time it fell back to defensive positions on the South Korean peninsula, east of the Naktong River, on August 2, savage fighting had reduced the 24th to 9,882 men. The attachment of 486 U.S. troops and operational control of the 2,000-man Republic of Korea (ROK) 17th Infantry Regiment brought the aggregate strength to 12,368. Major General John Huston Church, a veteran of both world wars and recipient of the Distinguished Service Cross, was now division commander. He replaced Maj. Gen. William F. Dean, who was a prisoner of the North Koreans.


Forming a lengthy, serpentine moat along two-thirds of the Pusan perimeter, the twisting Naktong flowed through a valley that averaged 1,000 yards wide, although the river itself averaged no more than 385 yards across and was from 1 to 3 1/2 yards deep.


The 24th occupied a sector 34 miles long, extending northward along the Naktong from its junction with the Nam River. The river frontage was extended by the many loops in the Naktong's course. Hill masses on both sides of the river rose an average of 220 yards, with some reaching 330 yards. The terrain was of equal elevation on either side of the river, except in the far north. There, Hill 409 on the east bank dominated the terrain to the west.


The three battalions of Colonel Kim Hi Chun's ROK 17th Regiment were deployed along the northern 30,000 yards of front, regarded as the most difficult sector to defend and reinforce because of the poor road network. General Church surmised that the North Koreans would strike there.
When the NKPA 4th Division instead attacked to the south, it was unexpected and came sooner than General Church thought it would. The U.S. 21st Infantry Regiment, commanded by Colonel Richard W. Stephens, was south of the ROK 17th. The 3rd Battalion (Lt. Col. John McConnell commanding), consisting of K and M companies, plus part of the regimental Heavy Mortar Company serving as a rifle unit, manned the 12,000-yard regimental front. The 1st Battalion, led by Lt. Col. Charles B. Smith, was deployed in separate company positions several thousand yards to the rear of the 3rd. The 14th Engineer Combat Battalion reinforced the 21st Infantry Regiment.

Aug 2
The Heavy Mortar Company was on the 21st Regiment's left flank, just north of a boundary with the 34th Regiment. The company established outposts of four to six men on a line of several thousand yards. A lone halftrack, armed with four .50-caliber machine guns (called a quad .50 by the troops), happened to be close by. Lieutenant Planter Wilson from the Heavy Mortar Company positioned the halftrack so that the four guns could fire all along the company front.


Company K was dug in about a mile from the mortar men, also on an extended frontage. Across the Naktong, a road ran parallel to the river.

[note]

August August

MacArthur, accompanied by Admiral Struble, flew to Taipei on 31 July where for two days he conferred with Chiang Kai-shek and his generals. But not until five days after his return (7 Aug 50) to Tokyo did MacArthur report to the Joint Chiefs of Staff. [20-13]

[note]

The 1st Provisional Marine Brigade (Reinforced) debarked at Pusan on August 2, 1950 and received its baptism of fire on August 7th, the same day that Booker, Jesse V . (Capt. F4U MAG-12) was shot down

[note]

South then North

August August

The ROK 1st Division was heavily engaged north of the river on 2 August, while the 16th Regiment of the ROK 8th Division was even more heavily engaged by the N.K. 12th Division at Andong. [15-16]

[note]

August 1950, the volume of refugees moving through U.N. lines was greater than at any other time in the war. With the destruction of the Waegwan bridges, Eighth Army by the morning of 4 August had destroyed all the bridges across the Naktong on its front. Its troops were in defensive positions on the east bank awaiting enemy crossings.

On a line curving north and east from Waegwan, the divisions of the ROK Army also withdrew across the river, coordinating their moves with Eighth Army on the night of 2-3 August. In this movement, the ROK forces had some severe fighting. The ROK 1st Division was heavily engaged north of the river on 2 August, while the 16th Regiment of the ROK 8th Division was even more heavily engaged by the N. K. 12th Division at Andong. [15-16]

It was evident in the last days of July and the first of August that General Walker was concerned about the failure of his troops to carry out orders to maintain contact with the enemy. In preparing for the withdrawal to the Perimeter position, on 30 July he had ordered all units to maintain such contact.

Three days later [after 7/30] conditions compelled him to repeat the order with the injunction that division commanders give it their personal attention. Later in the day he thought it necessary to issue still another directive which ordered, "Daily counterattacks will be made by all units. ... Commanders will take immediate and aggressive action to insure that these and previous instructions to this effect are carried out without delay." "Counterattack," Walker said, "is a decisive elm [15-element] of the defense." [15-17]

[note]

The 5th Regimental Combat Team from Hawaii, commanded by Col. Godwin L. Ordway, arrived first, on 31 July, after nine days at sea, with all three battalions. With the regiment came fourteen M26 Pershing tanks and the 555th (Triple Nickel) Field Artillery Battalion. Orders from Eighth Army awaited the regiment upon its arrival at Pusan to proceed at once to Masan where it was to be attached to the 24th Division. The leading element of the regiment arrived at Masan the next evening, 1 August.

By the following morning the entire regiment was in an assembly area north of the town. [15-37]

This regiment included many Hawaiians and some former members of the famed 442nd Regimental and the 100th Battalion Combat Teams, the much-decorated Nisei infantry units of World War II. Another notable characteristic of this regiment was the close bond of comradeship that existed between it and its supporting 555th Field Artillery Battalion.

[note]

Before beginning the account of Task Force Kean's attack in the southern sector near Chindong-ni it is necessary to describe the position taken there a few days earlier by the 2nd Battalion, 5th Regimental Combat Team. Lt. Col. John L. Throckmorton, a West Point graduate of the Class of 1935, commanded this battalion. It was his first battalion command in combat. Eighth Army had moved the battalion from the docks of Pusan to Chindong-ni on 2 August to bolster the 27th Infantry.

Throckmorton placed his troops on the spur of high ground that came down from Sobuk-san a mile and a half west of Chindong-ni, and behind the 2nd Battalion, 27th Infantry, which was at Kogan-ni.

The highest point Throckmorton's troops occupied was Yaban-san (Hill 342), about a mile north of the coastal road. A platoon of G Company occupied this point, Fox Hill, as the battalion called it. Fox Hill was merely a high point on a long finger ridge that curved down toward Chindong-ni from the Sobuk-san peak. Beyond Fox Hill this finger ridge climbed ever higher to the northwest, culminating three miles away in Sobuk-san (Hill 738), 2,400 feet high.

[note]

On 2 August, I Corps was activated at Fort Bragg, N.C., with General Coulter in command.

[note]

Citations

Medals   

Distinguished Service Cross

19500802 0000 DSC BOISVENUE

19500802 0000 DSC CHECK

19500802 0000 DSC DUDLEY

19500802 0000 DSC ELLISON

19500802 0000 DSC PAPPERT

19500802 0000 DSC RECTOR

19500802 0000 DSC SAUNDERS

19500802 0000 DSC WEATHERS

19500802 0000 DSC WHITE

 

Silver Star

Buckley, John L. [1stLt SS HqHqCo1stBn27thIR]

Burnett, Thomas K. [1stLt SS MedCo5thCR]

Ewing, James H. [Sgt SS MedCo5thCR]

Johnson, Arthur O., Jr. [Sgt SS B99thFAB]

Knier, Aloysius M. [Capt SS HqCo5thCR]

Lopez, Phillip [Cpl SS D19thIR]

Moody, Troy E. [2ndLt SS F27thIR]

Scroggins, Walter J. [2ndLt SS A27thIR]

Velez, Alfred M. [SFC SS ServCo7thCR]

Wilson, Wesley C. [LtCol SS Hq1stBn29thIR]

 

[note]

 

The Forgotten War

August

All these re-dispositions, completed about August 2, compressed Eighth Army into what journalists labeled the "Pusan Perimeter". The label misleadingly implied a close-in, circular enclave at Pusan. In fact, the perimeter was quite large: an upright rectangle about 100 miles tall and 50 miles wide. It was bordered by the Naktong River on most of the left (or west), the Sea of Japan on the right (east), rugged mountains on the top (north), and the Korea Strait on the bottom (south).

The Pusan Perimeter was not by any means an impregnable enclave. By the usual standards, the American forces were very thinly spread. But the Americans had the broad Naktong River and its valley before them and sufficient forces to block the roads over which NKPA tanks and mechanized artillery had to travel. Moreover, the American front was now clearly defined and more or less static. Thus the artillery and FEAF close air support could be utilized more effectively. The railway and road nets within the perimeter enabled the logisticians to bring supplies* from Pusan to the front quickly. All this gave the American forces for the first time increased feelings of security and a will to fight.

*The flow of supplies into Pusan had increased, but it was far from sufficient to support three American and five ROK divisions. All units continued to suffer from shortages, particularly of ammo. The shortage was compounded by an earlier JCS decision, urged by Joe Collins, to support the French forces in Indochina. On August 1, 1950, an official Army historian wrote, there were supplies "sufficient to equip twelve infantry battalions" en route to Indochina.[6-84]

[note]

ComInt

Walker enjoyed another advantage: excellent communications intelligence (COMINT) from breaking some encoded NKPA radio transmissions. The full details of this operation remain classified, but a little background and a cursory outline of successes in Korea can be pieced together from unclassified material.

During World War II the Allied forces had benefited greatly from breaking German and Japanese military and diplomatic codes. In the postwar years Washington had directed code-breaking efforts against the Soviet Union and other Communist nations, but owing to a lack of funding, a shortage of qualified and highly motivated code breakers and linguists, bureaucratic inertia, infighting and other factors, it had not been able to duplicate the remarkable COMINT successes of World War II. Most encoded radio traffic out of Moscow was unbreakable.[6-86]

As a result of the effort directed toward Moscow and elsewhere, North Korean codes had of necessity been grossly neglected. A study conducted in June 1952 by George A. Brownell and others (the so-called Brownell Report) revealed that the State Department and Pentagon had ranked North Korea near the bottom (twelfth or lower) on its postwar code-breaking priority list. Hence, by the time the Korean War began almost nothing noteworthy had been achieved, and, Brownell reported, Washington had been "poorly pre-pared to handle Korean traffic.

The upshot was that unlike the Army commanders of World War II, Johnnie Walker had no flow of decoded strategic" enemy radio traffic from Washington to assist him. What he got, he had to acquire locally - tactical" COMINT. In this effort, however, Walker's G-2 section was remarkably, even astoundingly, successful. One reason, a senior G-2 officer wrote, was that the NKPA was careless and had an obvious lack of communications security.

As a result, Eighth Army cryptographic specialists were able to "break into" the NKPA "tactical radio network" and "read" NKPA traffic. "They had a pad' which they changed weekly," a G-2 specialist explained. "It took only one day to break it, then we could read NKPA traffic for four or five days running." As a result of this tactical code breaking, plus the usual battlefield intelligence, the Eighth Army G-2 specialist wrote, throughout July and August, every major enemy attack was known in advance. ..."[6-88

Possessing this advance knowledge proved to be a priceless asset for Walker. Alerted to enemy moves in advance, he was able to shift his few reserves within the Pusan Perimeter to key spots at the key times, further capitalizing on his favorable "interior lines of communication." Inasmuch as COMINT was ultra top secret and every effort was made to limit its distribution and conceal its output, only a handful of personnel in Eighth Army were aware of it. Those not "in the picture" would unwittingly praise Walker for his seemingly uncanny - or even magical - ability to divine enemy intentions.

[note]

August August

In order to reestablish contact with the NKPA 6th Division and possibly to thwart its attack, Michaelis and Moore decided to launch independent probing attacks westerly on the morning of August 2. The plan was that these probes would meet at Much'on, just east of Chinju, where the road to Masan divided.

Moore chose Wesley Wilson's depleted 1/ 29, the stronger of the two Okinawa battalions, to lead his attack; Michaels chose Gilbert Check's 1/27.

Heartened by the presence of five Sherman tanks, Wilson's 1/29 jumped off in high spirits. However, the probe ran straight into an all-out NKPA attack and came to an abrupt halt. The fight that ensued was, in the words of the Army historian, a "disastrous spectacle." ' In the initial encounter one of Wilson's platoons was "almost annihilated" by swarms of ' flanking NKPA infantry.

August August August

As the 1/29 fell back in confusion and fear, Moore who was on the scene, committed Robert Rhea's 1/19, then Tom McGrail's 2/19, and finally the other Okinawa battalion, the skeletal 3/ 29. In the chaos of battle the American units inflicted heavy casualties on one another. Adding insult to this injury, FEAF fighters mistakenly strafed the Americans.[7-4]

Meanwhile, on the "south road," Gilbert Check's 1/27, led by six Sherman tanks, probed west toward the fork at Much'on. At first all went well. There was no sign of the enemy. Michaelis became worried that he had made a fatal error in judgment, that he would be court-martialed for disobeying orders. But near the fork Check's 1/27 ran into the flank of the NKPA 6th Division assaulting the Chicks on the "north road." Boldly and aggressively attacking (with help from FEAF fighters), Check laid into the NKPA truck convoys with heavy fire, forcing the motorized columns to turn about and flee to Chinju. In this important engagement Check and his men destroyed a dozen NKPA vehicles, inflicted heavy casualties on the NKPA, and considerably eased pressure on the Chicks.[7-5]

[note]

US Air Force

 

 

A quick brief of what took place during my trip to Formosa is as follows: Arrived late at about 2:00 P.M. at Taipei; at 4'clock all, with many, many Chinese officers, attended a general briefing of the Commie Order of Battle and the Chinese Government Order of Battle on Formosa.

I thought it a very interesting and excellent briefing, although there were some misunderstandings between General MacArthur and the Chinese officers due to language difficulties. Immediately after this general briefing, General MacArthur had all his people meet him in his billet where he gave his general observations. He stated that the Chinese forces had a poor organization, that they were not deployed properly, that if they had about 75,000 to 100,000 people properly organized on paper and on the ground, the proper commanders in charge, they could hold Taiwan; that our job would be to send without delay a liaison group made up of Army, Air and Navy and that although we would not command, we would assist and direct what we as Americans considered proper in the defense of the islands. There would be no integration of forces, but that we would work along parallel lines, that our activities on Formosa would be concerned with defense only, that we would assist the Chinese, that we would in no way get involved with political aspects and that our activities would be purely professional. We were then dismissed and went to our billets and later that evening at 8'clock attended a dinner as guests of the Generalissimo and Madame Chiang.[164-Madame Chiang Kai-shek (Mayling Soong Chiang) married the Generalissimo in 1927. Although very charming, she was also known to be very determined and to possess an iron will.] We stayed up too late - not getting home until 11'clock.


The next morning, 1 August, General MacArthur's key people and a selected group of Chinese key military people met with General MacArthur, the Gissimo [Generalissimo] and his lady in General MacArthur's billet. Here General MacArthur reviewed his intentions, making them very definite and clear to which the Gissimo and his people agreed.


We departed for Okinawa at 12 noon Tokyo time, landing at Naha where all of us were then driven from Naha to Kadena in order to give General MacArthur and all of us a quick look-see at the island and at the improvements made by General Kincaid and General Sheetz. We were there 1 1/2 hours and General MacArthur and all members of his staff were greatly impressed with what had been done and with what was taking place. We took off for Haneda and landed about 8:15


This morning received a call from General O'Donnell, who is departing for Okinawa today, and he made a very strong request that the 31st Recon Squadron stay in the Kanto Plain area.


His second request was to rush the completion of extra hardstands at Yokota.

I made affirmative decisions on both and so instructed the staff.


Letter arrived from Gene Eubank dtd 27 July in which he stated "I am telling my friends around here not to worry about the Far Eastern situation - that it is in good hands!"

When I returned last night, sent the following (via STRATLINE)[165- "Stratlines" were high priority messages from Stratemeyer to his major commanders, i.e., to Maj Gen Howard M. Turner, the 13AF commanding general.] to Turner with info to Struble, Stearley, and CINCFE:

...Desire you immediately fly to Taipei, Formosa, and check in with Gen- eral Chow,[166-Stratemeyer is probably referring to Gen Chou Chih-jou, the Commander-in-Chief, Chinese Air Force and also Chiang's chief of staff.] Chief of Staff Chinese Nationalist Forces. He knows you are coming and will lend all possible assistance to your plans. I will send a team of engineers to Taipei to make survey of flying fields to select under your direction one in northwest and one in southwest for F–80C use. Chinese have labor, cement, gravel, etc. to lengthen runways to 7500 feet and have guaranteed all necessary facilities for housing, maintenance and supply for Air Force people. We will ship JP [jet propulsion] fuel to Formosa immediately. Suggest you contact Stearley on Okinawa and have Col Weltman with his 51st Fighter Group commander meet you in Taipei and up and down west coast and inland over population centers landing at Shinchiku airfield for familiarization and publicity purposes before end of this week. (AVGAS [aviation gasoline] is available and can be used in F–80Cs.) Just as soon as possible, I want all three squadrons of F–80Cs to visit Formosa for morale and publicity purposes for Chinese Nationalists. General MacArthur is behind this procedure 100 percent.
You will furnish immediately a liaison group of at least two officers to
work with Chinese Air Force and FEC liaison group when established.
Your officers will contact Capt. Grant,[167-Capt Etheridge Grant, formerly Commander Fleet Air Wing One.] U. S. Navy, on arrival. He is
Admiral Struble’s liaison officer in Taipei. Your people will then assist
the Chinese Nationalists Air Force in every way possible. New Subject:
You, your command group and your liaison are purely professional and
have nothing to do with political aspects. Your activities on Formosa will
be concerned with defense only. I repeat, you are there to assist the Chinese Air Force. If and when Formosa is attacked, then you operate under Admiral Struble, Commander Seventh Fleet with your fighters. All
reports will be addressed and submitted to me only repeat to me only.[168-Because of JCS and State Department concerns about these actions (mentioned above), the F–80s were not sent to Formosa.]


The Chinese Nationalist's Air Force consists of 367 to 417 aircraft of all types; they have 331 combat aircraft, 199 of which are operational and ready to fight.


They estimate that the Communist's Air Force totals 167 aircraft of all types; they also estimate that Soviet Russia has in Communist China the following types and manned by Russians: 40 twin-engine bombers; 77 fighters; 38 jet - or total of 155 aircraft.


The total armed forces on Formosa consist of 680,000 men which includes
85,850 Chinese Air Force personnel.


Sent Partridge a "Stratline personal" re "because of the knowledge that you have on atomic energy and the function of SAC in any possible atomic offensive, you are directed to discontinue flights over hostile territory in Korea."


General Kincaid called to say goodbye this afternoon; he departs 1800 hours tonight.


Replied to a letter sent me by Cabell.[169-Maj Gen Charles P. Cabell, Director of Intelligence, Headquarters USAF.] In his letter he compared Navy strikes against FEAF strikes and was in somewhat of a flap because he said Vandenberg in an embarrassing position if he can't prove (he used the word "irrefutably") that FEAF is accomplishing its mission. He said, "this situation can be corrected by an all-out effort in reconnaissance to give us the information required." In my reply to Cabell, although a bit sharp, told him to keep his shirt on. That I thought we were doing all right, and that we would get better.

 

[note]

 

 

 

Unfortunately, the GHQ Target Group did not prove thoroughly conversant with the problems of target selection. Out of a total of 220 primary and secondary targets designated during the period 17 July through 2 August, some 20 percent of the targets did not actually exist.

These mistakes came about in several ways.

It appears that invalid targets were included in the selections of the GHQ Target Group as late as 2 August 1950.

[note]

elastic bridge

August

FEAF listed targets to Bomber Command on 28 July designed to effect the rail interdiction. A second plan of similar scope designed to institute highway interdiction was drawn up on 30 July, and the FEAF Bomber Command interdiction list was accordingly revised on 2 August.

[note]

August August

The proposition having been accepted by MacArthur, General LeMay alerted the 98th and 307th Bombardment Groups on 29 July for a minimum of 30 days temporary duty in the Far East. The 98th Group left Spokane for Yokota between 2 and 4 August, and the 307th departed from its home base at MacDill Air Force Base, Florida, on 1-3 August, headed for Kadena.

Although the experiences of these units in preparing for short notice departures were similar to those of the first two groups, the actual movement benefited from the earlier example. The historical officer of the 98th Group stated that "completion of preparation for the move, personnel-wise, was expeditiously accomplished."

[note]

The warning alert, followed by appropriate operations orders, went out to the 22nd and 92nd Groups on or soon after 1 July. Officers and airmen who had been planning Fourth of July holidays found themselves packing crates, loading cargo planes, or standing in line before the boarding ramps of planes bound for the Far East. After hurried hours of packing and preparation, the deployment airlift got under way. The two groups scheduled flights of ten B-29's each day, departing their home bases on 5 through 7 July.

August

The 22nd left March Air Force Base, California, stopped off at Hickam for a rest period, then flew on to Kadena, with stops at Kwajalein and Guam.

August

The 92nd Group took off from Spokane Air Force Base, Washington, and followed a similar flight plan, with a final destination of Yokota Air Base.

The 98th and 307th Groups were equally well prepared for short-notice departures.

August

The 98th departed Spokane Air Force Base for Yokota between 2 and 4 August, and the

August

307th left MacDill Air Force Base, Florida, between 1 and 3 August, headed for Kadena.#128

[note]

August

Although General Stratemeyer had thought that the GHQ Target Group would continue to prepare and recommend air targets to the FEC Target Selection Committee, this agency had so little capability for target research that it went out of business shortly after 2 August.

[note]

August

Such procedures were thorough and comprehensive, but they did not delay the medium-bomber strategic interdiction campaign. On 28 July-the date that MacArthur specified that the medium bombers would first be available for interdiction-FEAF issued an initial list of strategic interdiction targets. After more study this initial list was expanded on 2 August, when Bomber Command was provided with a list of 44 rail and highway bridge targets, further designated as primary, secondary, and tertiary in importance. All but 13 of these targets lay north of the 38th parallel, and General Stratemeyer made Bomber Command specifically responsible for coordinating the strategic interdiction effort in North Korea.#47

note]

August August

At the same time that he was dividing responsibility for interdiction in Korea between the FEAF Bomber Command and the Fifth Air Force, General Stratemeyer was anxious to share the task with the Navy. On 2 August he asked Admiral Struble to destroy the entire bridge complex at Sŏul. "We have been unable to do this so far," he said, "so now let us give the Navy a crack at it. "#49

[note]

Fortunately for the success of Interdiction Campaign No. 1, which FEAF officially initiated on 2 August, the B-29 crews of the FEAF Bomber Command soon demonstrated that they alone could adequately handle the systematic destruction of North Korea's transportation routes.

[note]

August August

General MacArthur readily accepted the two additional medium-bomber groups, and General Weyland, on 2 August, secured a meeting of the FEC Target Selection Committee to discuss the implementation of a strategic air campaign. The committee of high-ranking officers was briefed on the FEAF plan for strategic air attacks against the five main industrial areas of North Korea, a plan which was little changed from that which General O'Donnell had brought from the Strategic Air Command. Based upon purely military considerations, FEAF urged that incendiary attacks would be most economical, efficient, and expeditious. Given visual bombing weather, two medium-bomber groups could destroy the five industrial areas in thirty days, but weather forecasts indicated that the North Korean industrial areas would probably be cloud covered during half the days of August. For this reason General Weyland argued that three medium-bomber groups should be committed to the strategic air campaign, but, in the end, he had to give way to the counter- arguments of the Army representatives on the committee, who insisted that two groups were enough for the strategic air attacks and that the other three groups should continue interdiction attacks.#11

[note]

August August

1st Provisional Marine Brigade lands, is attached to 25th Infantry Division, and moved up as reserves at Masan.

[note]

US Marine Corps

August

The embarked Marine air ground task force became the first American unit to reach Korea directly from the United States. The 1st Marine Brigade arrived there on 2 August. The UNC was barely holding on when the 5th Marines came ashore. The ROK Army held a short northern line that ran inland from P'ohang-dong on the east coast to Andong about forty miles away, and the U.S. Army had four divisions dug in along the Naktong River to form the longer western edge of the Pusan Perimeter. The situation was desperate. Before the Pusan Perimeter had been formed, many UNC troops bolted in the face of the enemy during unauthorized movements derisively called "bug outs" by the press. General Craig addressed this issue when he told his officers "troops now fighting in Korea [have often] pull[ed] back. . . . You will never receive an order to retreat from me."

[note]

on 1 August and catapulted 44 of its Marine fighter planes into the air. The aircraft sped to the field at Itami, where they were quickly checked by pilots and crews for their imminent role in combat.

On the following day, the other 26 fighters left the carrier and joined the first group ashore for maintenance and testing.[11]

To achieve maximum mobility and striking power, Marine and Navy commanders agreed to base VMF’s 214 and 323 aboard aircraft carriers for initial operations over Korea.

[note]

August

Not until the morning of 2 August did General Craig learn that Task Group 53.7 was scheduled to dock at Pusan that very evening. The last-minute disclosure relieved him of considerable anxiety, but he was still disturbed for want of specific orders concerning departure of the Brigade from Pusan. His instructions from General Walker were to debark the ground force immediately and have it prepared to move forward by 0600 the following morning. The same orders advised him that a specific destination “would be given later.”[8]

August

“Later” did not come soon enough for the Marine commander. As the long column of ships steamed into Pusan Harbor in the early evening, he still did not know where he would lead his Brigade the next morning.[9]

[note]

August

On 2 August the Division issued training Bulletin No. 36–50 as a general guide providing for some rudiments of individual and small-unit instruction. But about all that could be accomplished was conditioning training and test firing of weapons. As a result, many of the weapons issued directly to units were found to be defective, having been in storage since 1945.[20]

The war news from Korea at this time lent an atmosphere of grim realism to preparations at Camp Pendleton.

August

On 2 August the 1st Provisional Marine Brigade had landed at Pusan, the day following the debarkation of two U.S. Army units, the skeletonized 2nd Infantry Division and the 5th RCT. The original destination of the Marines had been Japan, but during the voyage the military situation deteriorated so rapidly that on 25 July a landing in Korea was ordered by CinCFE.

[note]

Many of the politico-military restrictions which stemmed from United Nations' humanitarian motives were not precisely defined but were usually manifest by some higher authority's disapproval of suggested operations. Early in August 1950 FEAF planners calculated that the B-29's could most efficiently destroy North Korean industrial targets with incendiary bombs. Use of incendiaries, coupled with radar aiming, would permit day or night attacks in any weather, and the destruction of urban areas adjoining industrial plants would erode the morale of the North Korean people and undermine their obedience to the Communist government.#19

Washington, however, desired no unnecessary civilian casualties which might come from fire attacks and was unwilling to sanction an "indiscriminate" use of incendiaries.#20

[note]

US Navy

August

on the next day the destroyers HMS Cockade (D-34) and HMS Cossack (D-57) steamed in to the attack. Docks and railroad sidings were bombarded with satisfactory results, but the FEAF dispatch appears to have been in error: after an hour over the target the spotters in the VP 6 Neptune reported that one sunken steamer constituted the only shipping present.

[note]

With the arrival of his carriers Rear Admiral Ruble was relieved of his temporary chores as Commander Naval Air Japan and began a fancy juggling act. On the 31st he put his staff aboard Sicily at Yokosuka and sailed her for Kobe to rejoin her consort. There she loaded ground personnel, spare parts, and ammunition for VMF 214, and on the afternoon of 1 August sailed for the southern tip of Kyushu to rendezvous with the destroyers USS Doyle (DMS-34) and USS JAMES E. KYES (DD-787). On the same afternoon USS Badoeng Strait (CVE-116) got underway from Kobe to fly off aircraft to the Itami airbase; this was completed the next day, whereupon the carrier returned to port to replenish. On the 2nd, as USS Sicily (CVE-118) was joining her escorts in Van Diemen Strait, Admiral Ruble went aboard Badoeng Strait.

[note]

August

On the 2nd, four helicopters and four spotting planes of VMO 6 were flown from Japan to Pusan, and then onwards to Chinhae on the 4th, as the LST with the ground crews reached Pusan.

[note]

August

1st Marine Provisional Brigade began landing at Pusan.

[note]

August

Map 7. Support of the Perimeter, 2–13 August 1950

Click on map for higher resolution image (220 KB).

Since the Koreans were busy elsewhere, U.S. and Commonwealth units were made available in the south. On 2 and 3 August the destroyer USS Higbee (DDR-806) patrolled the Namhae area but encountered no enemy movement. On the night of 4-5 August underwater demolition personnel from the fast transport USS Diachenko (APD-123) attempted to blow bridges north of the railroad town of Yŏsu, a natural jumping-off place for enemy shore-to-shore movement. But the landing force was repelled by a North Korean patrol, which arrived inopportunely by handcar, and Diachenko had to content herself with a 40-minute bombardment of the railroad yards. Four days later an imaginative B-29 report of heavy junk concentrations near Yŏsu brought the Canadian destroyers HMCS Cayuga (218) and HMCS Athabaskan (R79) on a flank speed sweep of the south coast, but with negative results. On the 12th the destroyer USS Collett (DD-730), from Admiral Higgins’ task element, steamed into Yŏsu Gulf to bombard the town.

For the first few days of August, while these coastal activities were in progress, the Seventh Fleet Striking Force lay at anchor in Buckner Bay.

[note]

August

Of these USS Sicily (CVE-118) was first in action. On 2 August she picked up her screening ships south of Kyushu, and on the next day the aircraft of VMF 214 arrived on board from Itami. That afternoon a first strike was flown off against North Korean troop concentrations near Chinju in the south and on the central Naktong front.

[note]

During this interval Admiral Struble visited Formosa, in company with General MacArthur, to perfect planning and liaison against the chance of a Communist invasion;

[MacArthur, accompanied by Admiral Struble, flew to Taipeh on 31 July where for two days[8/1-2] he conferred with Chiang Kai-shek and his generals. But not until five days [8/7] after his return to Tokyo did MacArthur report to the Joint Chiefs of Staff. [13]]

[note]

August

27,28,29,30,31,01,02,03,04,05,06 July-August

01,02,03,04,05,06,07,08,09,10,11

On 27 July 8-inch guns were used for the first time against the invading army, as USS Toledo (CA-133) fired on troop concentrations, supplies, and revetments by day, and by night illuminated the battleline with star shell.

By careful conservation of ammunition this support was continued for 11 days, and so effective was the shooting of the cruiser and the destroyers, assisted by a 24th Division fire control party and by air spot, that only here did the battleline remain stable.

Cruising generally some 7,000 yards offshore, exchanging liaison personnel with the forces ashore by whaleboat, covering the seaborne arrival of supplies for frontline troops, and making arrangements for possible evacuation, the ships of Higgins’ element found their days full.

[note]

27,28,29,30,31,01,02 July-August

August


The preparatory barrages began at 0830. Then came the air strikes. The battle that then opened lasted until 2 August without letup.

[It has already been going on for a week, 7/17. Should go on until the 9th]

[note]

 

 

Korean_War

17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23 Week 1

24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30 Week 2

31, 01, 02, 03, 04, 05, 06 Week 3

07, 08, 09 The Red 5th Division retakes Yŏngdök

Korean_War

On 17 July the North Koreans drove the disorganized [ROK 23rd IR] regiment south of Yŏngdök. The loss of this town so quickly was a demoralizing blow, and Eighth Army became at once concerned about it. During the day the first United States artillery to support the ROK's on the east coast, C Battery of the 159th Field Artillery Battalion, entered the fight. [12-3]

The enemy entry into Yŏngdök began three weeks of fighting for this key coastal town, with first one side and then the other holding it. Two or three miles of ground immediately south of it became a barren, churned up, fought-over no man's land. The first ROK counterattack came immediately.

[note]

0000 Korean Time

Central East Coast Zulu Korea
08/01/50
9:00 AM
08/01/50
10:00 AM
08/01/50
3:00 PM
08/02/50
12:00 AM

0100 Korean Time

Central East Coast Zulu Korea
08/01/50
10:00 AM
08/01/50
11:00 AM
08/01/50
4:00 PM
08/02/50
1:00 AM

August

Dawn of 1 August found the U.S. 25th Division moving to new defensive positions south of Sangju on the central front. At 1500 that afternoon a telephone message from Eighth Army head-quarters to General Kean abruptly changed division plans. Eighth Army alerted the division for movement south to Samnangjin on the Naktong River. There it was to deny enemy movement eastward and prepare to attack westward. [15-1]

An advance party of the division headquarters left Posŏng-dong an hour after midnight, 2 August.

[note]

August August

August 2, 1950 0130

Into Pusan harbor on the same day, 31 July, came the first ground troops from the United States, the 9th Infantry Regiment of the 2d Infantry Division. Known as the Manchu Regiment because of its part in suppressing the Boxer Rebellion in China in 1900, the 9th Infantry was one of the oldest regiments in the United States Army. The 2d Battalion of the regiment sailed from Tacoma, Washington, 17 July, the first Army infantry troops to depart continental United States for Korea. The 9th Infantry, commanded by Col. John G. Hill, proceeded immediately to Kyŏngsan, ten miles southeast of Taegu, and was placed in army reserve. The 15th Field Artillery Battalion accompanied the regiment as its artillery support unit. At 0130, 2 August, Eighth Army ordered Colonel Hill to be ready to move his regiment on 1-hour notice after 1600 that day. [15-38]

[note]

August

A third major reinforcement arrived in Korea on 2 August-the 1st Provisional Marine Brigade, commanded by Brig. Gen. Edward A. Craig. Activated on 7 July, the brigade began loading at San Diego and Long Beach, Calif., two days later and sailed for the Far East on the 14th. While still at sea it received orders to bypass Japan and head directly for Pusan.

[note]

0200 Korean Time

Central East Coast Zulu Korea
08/01/50
11:00 AM
08/01/50
12:00 PM
08/01/50
5:00 PM
08/02/50
2:00 AM

0300 Korean Time

Central East Coast Zulu Korea
08/01/50
12:00 PM
08/01/50
1:00 PM
08/01/50
6:00 PM
08/02/50
3:00 AM

0400 Korean Time

Central East Coast Zulu Korea
08/01/50
1:00 PM
08/01/50
2:00 PM
08/01/50
7:00 PM
08/02/50
4:00 AM

August

Colonel Check's Reconnaissance in Force Toward Chinju

That same morning, 2 August, Colonel Check at 0400 led the 1st Battalion, 27th Infantry, with 'A' Battery of the 8th Field Artillery Battalion attached, westward from Chindong-ni on the southern leg of the two-pronged reconnaissance. At the head of the column a platoon of infantry rode four medium tanks (Shermans). Colonel Check's immediate objective was the road juncture at Much'on-ni.

Check's column was unopposed at first. After traveling several miles, the tanks and the lead platoon forming the point caught an enemy platoon still in their blankets along the road. When the startled North Koreans jumped up and started to run, tank machine guns and riflemen killed all but two, and these they captured. [14-23] Soon, enemy opposition began to develop, but it was mostly from snipers and scattered patrols.

[note]

0500 Korean Time

Central East Coast Zulu Korea
08/01/50
2:00 PM
08/01/50
3:00 PM
08/01/50
8:00 PM
08/02/50
5:00 AM

0530 Korean Time

August August August

They [1/29] assembled in front of the 19th Infantry regimental command post in Chungam-ni at 0530 the next morning, 2 August, and the rest of the column organized behind them. Groups of five infantrymen from C Company mounted each of the tanks and armored cars. Next came the motorized battalion in twenty-two trucks and a number of jeeps.

[note]

0535 Sunrise

[note]

0600 Korean Time

Central East Coast Zulu Korea
08/01/50
3:00 PM
08/01/50
4:00 PM
08/01/50
9:00 PM
08/02/50
6:00 AM

August

The tanks led off from Chungam-ni at 0615 with the first good light.

[note]

August August

Half an hour later the head of the column passed through the 1st Battalion, 19th Infantry, defensive position at the Notch, its line of departure.

Excitement spread among the men at the Notch when enemy fire suddenly struck and stopped the armored column just below their position. Colonel Wilson at the time was well back in that part of the column still on the northeast incline leading up to the Notch. Hearing heavy firing forward, he jumped from his jeep and hurried up the hill. Colonel Rhea ran up as Wilson reached the crest, shouting, "You better be careful-that ground down by the pond is enemy territory. My men were fighting with them when your tanks came by." [14-18] Colonel Wilson's motorized column in passing through the Notch had met head-on an enemy attack just starting against the 19th Infantry.

The tanks met enemy soldiers crawling up the ditch at the side of the road, 100 yards below the crest of the pass. The tanks moved slowly ahead, firing their machine guns. Some of the enemy soldiers ran into the woods along both sides of the road. The lead tank, with its hatch open, had reached a point about 400-500 yards down the incline when an enemy mortar shell struck it, killing the crew. Fire from an enemy antitank gun hit a truck farther back in the column and set it on fire. Three enemy heavy machine guns along the road 200 yards below the crest started firing on the column as it ground to a halt. This machine gun fire almost annihilated the 1st Platoon, C Company, as the men scrambled from the trucks. Twelve or fourteen vehicles had crossed over the pass and were on the southern slope when the enemy opened fire. [14-19]

When the American soldiers jumped off their vehicles and ran to the roadside ditches for protection, they found the enemy already there. Several desperate struggles took place. Some North Koreans in the ditches continued to advance slowly uphill, pushing captured Americans, their hands tied, in front of them. This melee along the road resulted in about thirty American casualties.

August

Colonel Wilson witnessed this disastrous spectacle from a point just southwest of the Notch. Seeing that the column was effectively stopped, he placed B Company, 29th Infantry (62 men), in position with the 1st Battalion, 19th Infantry. Colonel Wilson displayed great energy and exposed himself constantly in reorganizing scattered and intermingled units west of the Notch.

As soon as the enemy machine gun positions were located, recoilless rifles took them under fire and either destroyed them or caused the enemy gunners to abandon them. But enemy fire in turn killed three of four crew members of the recoilless rifle on the west side of the Notch. The fourth member, Sgt. Evert E. "Moose" Hoffman, stayed with the gun and fired at every available target throughout the day. He won a battlefield commission. Another courageous noncommissioned officer, MSgt. William Marchbanks, D Company, 29th Infantry, placed his two mortars in position at the edge of the Notch and took under fire every burst of enemy fire he could locate. [14-20]

August

When the fight started, Colonel Moore came to the command post of the 1st Battalion on the west side of the Notch and stayed there most of the day, directing the defense.

August

The battle soon spread from the road and flared up along the high ground on either side of the Notch. The night before, B Company, 19th Infantry, had started to climb the peak on the west side of the Notch but, tired from the efforts of the past few days and the hard climb, it stopped short of the crest.

On the morning of 2 August, enemy troops came upon the men in their sleep. In a swift attack the North Koreans bayoneted the company commander and several others and drove the rest off the hill.

[note]

0700 Korean Time

Central East Coast Zulu Korea
08/01/50
4:00 PM
08/01/50
5:00 PM
08/01/50
10:00 PM
08/02/50
7:00 AM

0800 Korean Time

Central East Coast Zulu Korea
08/01/50
5:00 PM
08/01/50
6:00 PM
08/01/50
11:00 PM
08/02/50
8:00 AM

August August

Seeking to secure more naval close-support strikes and to get a formal statement of policy, General Weyland informed Admiral Joy on 2 August that the naval air operations in support of the Eighth Army were "highly successful and contributed very materially to the joint effort at a critical time." Weyland recommended that carrier aircraft should continue to support the ground forces, under coordination at the fleet-air force level in Korea.#14

[note]

August August

That morning General Kean and his party followed by plane, stopping at Taegu for a conference at Eighth Army headquarters. At the conference, General Walker changed the destination of the division from Samnangjin to Masan. General Kean informed the division units en route of the change in orders, employing every type of communication available, from runner to radio. [15-2]

There was only one road for the movement of the 25th Division. This ran south from Sangju to Kŭmch'ŏn and then southeast to Waegwan on the Naktong River. travel as far as Waegwan would be by foot and motor, from Waegwan to Masan by rail. The Kŭmch'ŏn-Waegwan road was the main supply road to the central front. Accordingly, there was ample opportunity for conflict, confusion, and delay in the movement of supplies north and of the 25th Division south over this road. Eighth Army headquarters recognized this danger. Colonel Landrum made available from headquarters to the army G-3 Section all the officers he could spare to assist in the orderly control of the 25th Division movement. These officers concentrated their attention at points where road restrictions or the presence or movement of other units threatened trouble. [15-3]

Equal or even greater effort had to be made to assure that the necessary rail equipment would be at hand to carry the division from Waegwan southward. At the time, with the enemy pushing the front back everywhere, there was a great demand for rail equipment to evacuate supplies and troops. Congestion in rail yards was almost indescribable. Units seeking transportation commandeered locomotives, cars jammed the tracks, native refugees crowded into cars, and general chaos threatened.

The ROK 17th Regiment, moving southwest at this time to buttress the sagging 24th Division front in the Kŏch'ang area, further complicated the traffic problem. Without the planning, supervision, and hard work of American transportation troops, the Korean rail system would have failed at this time. [15-4]

[note]

0900 Korean Time

Central East Coast Zulu Korea
08/01/50
6:00 PM
08/01/50
7:00 PM
08/02/50
12:00 AM
08/02/50
9:00 AM

August

The hapless Henrico finally overtook Task Group 53.7 in the Tsushima Straits on the morning of 2 August. A few hours later the Marines of the Brigade got their first glimpse of Korea’s skyline. Seen from a distance, the wall of forbidding, gray peaks was hardly a welcome sight to men who had been broiled and toughened on the heights of Camp Pendleton.

For reasons unknown, neither Colonel Snedeker nor anyone else had received the operations plan which Craig had sent via Eighth Army at Taegu. Although every Marine in the convoy realized the gravity of the situation ashore, there could be no specific preparations by troop leaders whose only source of information was an occasional news broadcast.

Having heard nothing from his superiors, Lieutenant Colonel Murray was thinking in terms of a purely administrative landing. Had he known what awaited his 5th Marines ashore, he would have had his troops draw ammunition and rations while still at sea. Throughout the sleepless night that followed, he had ample time to reflect sourly on the fortunes of war.[16]

[note]

In the meantime the ground forces were arriving. Henrico, the tail-end transport, just made it. On the morning of 2 August she overtook the rest of Task Group 53.7 in Tsushima Strait, and in the afternoon the ships carrying the Marine Brigade steamed into Pusan. Around the Korean perimeter the situation was so bad that decisions were being made on a minute-to-minute basis, and it was not until almost midnight that General Craig learned his destination.

[note]

In the meantime the ground forces were arriving. Henrico, the tail-end transport, just made it. On the morning of 2 August she overtook the rest of Task Group 53.7 in Tsushima Strait, and in the afternoon the ships carrying the Marine Brigade steamed into Pusan. Around the Korean perimeter the situation was so bad that decisions were being made on a minute-to-minute basis, and it was not until almost midnight that General Craig learned his destination.

In the meantime the ground forces were arriving. Henrico, the tail-end transport, just made it. On the morning of 2 August she overtook the rest of Task Group 53.7 in Tsushima Strait, and in the afternoon the ships carrying the Marine Brigade steamed into Pusan. Around the Korean perimeter the situation was so bad that decisions were being made on a minute-to-minute basis, and it was not until almost midnight that General Craig learned his destination.

[note]

August

During the day, an estimated enemy battalion had come in behind Check's column and attacked E Company, which held the line of departure at Pongam-ni. A relief force sent from the 2nd Battalion helped E Company fight its way back to the battalion's main defensive lines at Kogan-ni, three miles eastward. Still another enemy force ambushed a platoon from A Company, 65th Engineer Combat Battalion, south of Chindong-ni on the Kosŏng-Sach'ŏn road, with resulting heavy personnel losses and destruction of much equipment. Obviously, North Koreans were moving east from Chinju toward Masan on all roads. [14-30]

[note]

August August

At 09:45 2 August, Colonel Stephens received Eighth Army's order to withdraw. He at once sent the 34th Infantry across the Naktong to the Yŏngsan-ni, area. During the day, while the 21st Infantry and the ROK 17th Regiment fended off enemy probing attacks, he made plans to complete the withdrawal that night to the east side of the Naktong. [15-11]

[note]

1000 Korean Time

Central East Coast Zulu Korea
08/01/50
7:00 PM
08/01/50
8:00 PM
08/02/50
1:00 AM
08/02/50
10:00 AM

1100 Korean Time

Central East Coast Zulu Korea
08/01/50
8:00 PM
08/01/50
9:00 PM
08/01/50
2:00 AM
08/02/50
11:00 AM

1200 Korean Time

Central East Coast Zulu Korea
08/01/50
9:00 PM
08/01/50
10:00 PM
08/02/50
3:00 AM
08/02/50
12:00 PM

The confusion west of the Notch was heightened about noon when three American fighter planes mistakenly strafed and rocketed this company. [14-21]

August August

On that (west) side of the Notch, men of the 1st Battalion, 19th Infantry, and of the 1st Battalion, 29th Infantry, became badly intermingled. The enemy force that had driven B Company, 19th Infantry, from the high ground placed cross fire from flank and rear on other units. In an effort to halt this destructive fire, C Company, 29th Infantry, gradually worked its way to a saddle short of the high ground. From there it attacked and drove the enemy force from the heights. In the attack, twelve men of C Company were killed; half of the casualties, in Colonel Wilson's opinion, were caused by American fire from neighboring positions.

During the preceding night, plans for covering the left (east) flank of the Notch position had also miscarried. Colonel Min's troops were supposed to occupy that ground and tie in with the 19th Infantry near the Notch. Morning found them too far eastward, separated by a mile and a half from the 19th Infantry. Snipers infiltrated behind some American soldiers on that side and killed five of them by shots through the back of the head. In the afternoon, enemy mortar fire on the east side also killed and wounded several men.

From his position west of the Notch, Colonel Moore saw men moving up the valley eastward, following the railroad toward Chungam-ni. Thinking they were enemy troops he directed Captain Cutler, his S-3, to send part of the 2nd Battalion to block them. This force, however, turned out to be Colonel Min's ROK troops withdrawing because friend and foe alike had them under fire.

August August

East of the Notch, gaps in the line produced much confusion. The 3rd Battalion, 29th Infantry, had been committed next to Colonel Min's force, and B Company, 29th Infantry, also went there during the day to help hold the high ground. Enemy troops tried to advance from the railroad tunnel in front of B Company, but a platoon of F Company, 19th Infantry, counterattacked and drove

[note]

1300 Korean Time

Central East Coast Zulu Korea
08/01/50
10:00 PM
08/01/50
11:00 PM
08/02/50
4:00 AM
08/02/50
1:00 PM

1400 Korean Time

Central East Coast Zulu Korea
08/01/50
11:00 PM
08/02/50
12:00 AM
08/02/50
5:00 AM
08/02/50
2:00 PM

1500 Korean Time

Central East Coast Zulu Korea
08/02/50
12:00 AM
08/02/50
1:00 AM
08/02/50
6:00 AM
08/02/50
3:00 PM

August August August August

As its task under the comprehensive interdiction program announced by FEAF on 2 August, the Fifth Air Force was expected to curtail enemy movement south of the 38th parallel, and for the most part south of Sŏul. In view of the relatively short distance between Sŏul and the battlelines, the Fifth Air Force's interdiction task was somewhat more complex than that of the FEAF Bomber Command. Taking into consideration the fact that the Eighth Army appeared to be stabilizing its defensive positions, General Partridge sought to commit approximately one-third of his aircraft capability to interdiction operations.#67

This, however, was a flexible allocation of air effort, for the Eighth Army's requirements for close support would continue to get first-priority claims on Fifth Air Force resources. Wherever possible the Fifth Air Force attempted to key its interdiction operations to the destruction of major road and rail bridges on the transportation routes leading to the battle area. Light bombers and fighter-bombers continued to hammer the railways south of Sŏul, and during August these planes established and maintained 47 rail cuts-nine on the line between Sŏul and Taejŏn and the others on tributary lines.

[note]

August

The fighting along the road west of the Notch died down during the afternoon. The enemy apparently had moved off to the flanks in his favorite maneuver. At midafternoon a squad from A Company, 19th Infantry, went down the road past the knocked-out vehicles and killed a few enemy soldiers still near them. The men then set up a roadblock 100 yards beyond the tanks. Other groups took out American wounded and recovered most of the vehicles. The rest of A Company swept the adjoining ridge forward of the pass for several hundred yards. By evening, the enemy had withdrawn from close contact with the 19th Infantry.

American casualties in the Notch battle numbered about ninety. North Korean losses are unknown. Nor is it known how large an enemy force was engaged there. Estimates ranged among officers present from two companies to a regiment. From information gained later concerning the location of the 6th Division, it appears that the enemy was at least in battalion strength at the Notch on 2 August, and he may have had the greater part of a regiment.

The day's events disclosed that from Chinju elements of the enemy 6th Division had followed closely behind the withdrawing 19th Infantry, sending the bulk of its advance units up the northern road toward Masan.

[note]

August

At the Much'on-ni road fork about midafternoon, Check's column met and surprised a number of enemy soldiers. The surprise was evident, as a column of enemy supply trucks had just descended from the Chinju pass. Drivers were able to turn some of the vehicles around and escape, but the North Koreans abandoned about ten vehicles, ranging from jeeps to 2 1/2-ton trucks. These were loaded with uniforms, food, ammunition, medicine, and other supplies. Pilots of F-51 planes overhead reported later that the appearance of Check's column caused many other vehicles to turn around at the top of the pass and head toward Chinju. They made good targets for the planes. [14-24]

Enemy resistance now increased. Just beyond the road fork Check dismounted his motorized battalion and sent the trucks back. He did not want to run the risk of having them captured, and he believed his men could fight their way out on foot if necessary. Only the mortar platoon and the artillery battery retained their vehicles. Having no communication with the regiment, Colonel Check sent runners back to Colonel Michaelis, but none reached their destination. Enemy forces had closed in behind Check and cut the road.

Check's battalion, now afoot, advanced westward with the tanks in the lead. In the low hills at the foot of the Chinju pass, a long hard fight with the enemy began. The North Koreans held the pass in force. Sniper fire from the right (north) caused the infantry on the tanks to dismount and take cover behind them. Suddenly, Lieutenant Norell, tank platoon leader in the third tank, saw enemy fire hit the tank ahead of him. He could see that it was coming from three antitank guns about five yards off the road to the right. His own tank then received three hits almost immediately and started to burn. In leaving his tank, Lieutenant Norrell received machine gun and shrapnel wounds. [14-25] This quick burst of enemy antitank fire killed the gunner in the second tank and wounded seven other enlisted tank crew members. Very quickly, however, the artillery battery took the antitank guns under fire and silenced them. The infantry then captured the pieces. There were many enemy dead in this vicinity, and others feigning death. Check walked over to the guns and noted that they were 76-mm. [14-26]

Colonel Check called for volunteers to form crews for the two partly disabled but still operable tanks. Men who had operated bulldozers volunteered to drive the tanks. They received quick instruction from the drivers of the two undamaged tanks. Check used riflemen as improvised tank machine gunners. The advance continued, but in the next hour gained only a few hundred yards.

[note]

1600 Korean Time

Central East Coast Zulu Korea
08/02/50
1:00 AM
08/02/50
2:00 AM
08/02/50
7:00 AM
08/02/50
4:00 PM

August August

That morning [???????] about 1700, Colonel Michaelis at Chindong-ni received word from Colonel Moore that enemy troops had stopped his part of the reconnaissance just beyond its line of departure. Moore reported that he would have all he could do to hold his defensive positions. Late in the morning and in the early afternoon, Michaelis received reports that the enemy had cut the road between Check and the rest of the regiment, and that E Company in its advance blocking position was heavily engaged. It was apparent, therefore, that strong enemy forces had moved toward Masan

He thereupon, sometime after 1600, dispatched to Colonel Check the message by liaison plane to return with the 1st Battalion. [14-28]

Upon receiving Colonel Michaelis' message, Colonel Check immediately set about disengaging the battalion and started back. The two damaged tanks gave trouble and had to be towed by the other tanks to start them. Check put them in the lead. The two undamaged tanks brought up the rear, behind the mortar and artillery vehicles. The infantry, moving along the sides of the ridges parallel to the road, engaged in a fire fight as the withdrawal started.

[note]

August

When the 1st Marine Brigade emerged from the bedlam at the Pusan waterfront it was assigned to Lt. Gen. Walton H. "Bulldog" Walker's Eighth Army. The 5th Marines was immediately ordered to move into reserve positions at Ch'angwŏn. Lieutenant Colonel Newton's 1st Battalion led a forty mile motor march northwest out of Pusan over dust choked, bumpy roads. The last Marines were in position by about 1600. The 1st and 3rd Battalions formed a defensive arc, while the 2nd Battalion protected a centrally located hill where headquarters and the artillery positions were located.

[note]

1700 Korean Time

Central East Coast Zulu Korea
08/02/50
2:00 AM
08/02/50
3:00 AM
08/02/50
8:00 AM
08/02/50
5:00 PM

August

Shortly after 1700 on 2 August, the first ship steamed into Pusan Harbor. As it edged toward the dock, Leathernecks crowding the rail were greeted by a tinny and slightly tone-deaf rendition of the Marine Corps Hymn, blared by a South Korean band. Army troops scattered along the waterfront exchanged the usual barbed courtesies with their web-footed brethren aboard ship, and old salts smiled while noting that tradition remained intact.

When the USS George Clymer (APA-27) approached its berth, Craig waved a greeting to Snedeker and shouted, “What battalion is the advance guard?”[17]

The chief of staff registered an expression of astonishment. “Did you get my orders?” Craig called to Murray when the USS Pickaway (APA-222) slid against the dock.

“No, sir!”[18] replied the CO of the 5th Marines.

Craig ordered a conference at 2100 for the Brigade staff, Murray, battalion commanders, and the leaders of supporting units.

[note]

August

About 1700 or 1730, a liaison plane reappeared and dropped a message. It was from Colonel Michaelis and read, "Return. Road cut behind you all the way. Lead with tanks if possible. Will give you artillery support when within range." [14-27]

That morning about 1700, [0500] Colonel Michaelis at Chindong-ni received word from Colonel Moore that enemy troops had stopped his part of the reconnaissance just beyond its line of departure. Moore reported that he would have all he could do to hold his defensive positions. Late in the morning and in the early afternoon, Michaelis received reports that the enemy had cut the road between Check and the rest of the regiment, and that E Company in its advance blocking position was heavily engaged. It was apparent, therefore, that strong enemy forces had moved toward Masan. [He thereupon, sometime after 1600, dispatched to Colonel Check the message by liaison plane to return with the 1st Battalion. [14-28] ]

Upon receiving Colonel Michaelis' message, Colonel Check immediately set about disengaging the battalion and started back. The two damaged tanks gave trouble and had to be towed by the other tanks to start them. Check put them in the lead. The two undamaged tanks brought up the rear, behind the mortar and artillery vehicles. The infantry, moving along the sides of the ridges parallel to the road, engaged in a fire fight as the withdrawal started.

[note]

1800 Korean Time

Central East Coast Zulu Korea
08/02/50
3:00 AM
08/02/50
4:00 AM
08/02/50
9:00 AM
08/02/50
6:00 PM

Bombing of Rashin

August August August August

In the early months of the Korean fighting, General MacArthur had been furnished a list of targets in North Korea which the Joint Chiefs of Staff thought suitable for destruction by strategic bombing. Among these key targets was the port city of Rashin. Rashin, lying only nineteen air miles south of the Soviet border on Korea's east coast, housed a major port and extensive rail yards. At the time of its selection as a bombing target, General Ridgway, then on the Department of the Army staff, had noted Rashin's proximity to the Russian border and had questioned its selection. [18-50] Nevertheless, Rashin remained on the target list and was bombed effectively on one occasion. Another bombing strike mounted on the port was diverted because of weather conditions.

When reports of the Rashin bombing reached the Department of State, officials there expressed concern over the possibility of violations of the Soviet border, and asked that targets close to that border no longer be bombed. [18-51]

[note]

August August

On that date [8/2] at 1800 the ROK 3rd Division recaptured Yŏngdök and pursued the enemy north of the town. North Korean prisoners said that U.S. naval, artillery, and mortar fire and the air strikes gave them no rest, day or night. They said that in the two weeks' battle for Yŏngdök the N.K. 5th Division had lost about 40 percent of its strength in casualties. [12-10]

[note]


1900 Korean Time

Central East Coast Zulu Korea
08/02/50
4:00 AM
08/02/50
5:00 AM
08/02/50
10:00 AM
08/02/50
7:00 PM

1937 Sunset


2000 Korean Time

Central East Coast Zulu Korea
08/02/50
5:00 AM
08/02/50
6:00 AM
08/02/50
11:00 AM
08/02/50
8:00 PM

August August

While Check was fighting at Much'on, a substantial force of NKPA infantry slipped behind (or east of) him and threw a block across the "south road." Discovering this, Michaelis airdropped a message to Check:

"Return. Road cut behind you all the way. Lead with tanks if possible. Will give you artillery support when within range."

Making a run for it with the surviving four of the six Sherman tanks in the van, and ably supported by Gus Terry's 8th FAB, Check made it back to the 27th CP at Chindong-ni after dark.]

[note]

August

Just before dark, and still west of the Much'on-ni road fork, Check decided he would have to mount his infantry on tanks and vehicles and make a run for it. Thirty to thirty-five men crowded onto the decks of each of the four tanks. The mortar and artillery trucks likewise were loaded to capacity, but every man found a place to ride.

The tank-led column went back the way it had come, almost constantly engaged with the enemy along the road. Several times the lead tanks stopped and infantry riding the decks jumped off to rush enemy machine gun positions. Until dark, the withdrawing battalion had air cover and, when it came within range, the 8th Field Artillery Battalion and a battery of 155-mm. howitzers fired shells on either side of the road, shortening the ranges as Check's battalion neared Chindong-ni. Exhausted, the 1st Battalion reached Chindong-ni at midnight. It had suffered about thirty casualties during the day. Colonel Check's leadership on this occasion won for him the Distinguished Service Cross. [14-29]

[note]

2100 Korean Time

Central East Coast Zulu Korea
08/02/50
6:00 AM
08/02/50
7:00 AM
08/02/50
12:00 PM
08/02/50
9:00 PM

August

When the officers entered the wardroom of the USS George Clymer (APA-27) at the specified time, the last ship of Task Group 53.7 was being moored in its berth.

After introductory remarks by the general, his G-2, Lieutenant Colonel Ellsworth G. Van Orman, launched the briefing with a grim narrative of the enemy situation. Next came Stewart, who outlined tentative operations plans. The Brigade would definitely begin moving forward at 0600 the next morning, although a specific destination had yet to be assigned by the Army. travel would be by road and rail. The necessary trains were already awaiting in the Pusan terminal, and the 50 trucks procured by Chidester were standing by, complete with Army drivers.[19]

Craig then summed up his earlier discussions with Walker. The Army leader had voiced a strong desire to use the Marines in an attack, for he felt it was high time to strike back at the Red invader. Employment of the Brigade as an offensive force was a natural conclusion to its commander, and he told his subordinates how he had won assurances for the integrity of the air-ground team. This was an encouraging note on which to close one of the strangest combat briefings in the history of the Corps. The leaders of over 4,000 Marines rushed from the ship to alert their units for movement into a critical tactical situation. They would leave in a few hours, but didn’t know where they were going.[20]

It is not surprising that the Pusan waterfront turned into a bedlam. As darkness settled, thousands of Marines poured onto the docks. Cranes and working parties unloaded vehicles, supplies and equipment, while a chorus of commands and comments was added to the roar of machinery. Supply points were set up under searchlights, and long lines of Marines formed on the docks, in buildings and along streets. Armfuls of C-rations, machinegun belts, grenades, and bandoleers gave men the appearance of harried Christmas shoppers caught in a last-minute rush.

The activity and din continued all night. Few men could sleep through the noise, crowding, and shuffling.

[note]

August

The main party of the 25th Division command post arrived at Masan at 2115, 2 August, after an all-day ride.

[note]

2200 Korean Time

Central East Coast Zulu Korea
08/02/50
7:00 AM
08/02/50
8:00 AM
08/02/50
1:00 PM
08/02/50
10:00 PM

August

The preceding night, at 2200, the engineers blew the other Naktong River bridge in the 24th Division sector. It was twenty air miles south of the Koryong bridge and connected Ch'ogye with Ch'angnyŏng, 24th Division headquarters. [15-12]

[note]

2300 Korean Time

Central East Coast Zulu Korea
08/02/50
8:00 AM
08/02/50
9:00 AM
08/02/50
2:00 PM
08/02/50
11:00 PM

August

After the conference aboard the Clymer, Brigade headquarters resumed its efforts to obtain specific information from Taegu. Finally, at 2325 August 2,  Landrum telephoned Craig and announced Walker’s decision—the Brigade would go westward to the vicinity of Ch'angwŏn, where it would remain for the time being in Eighth Army reserve. Only Walker himself could order any further move. If some extreme emergency arose and communications with Eighth Army were lost, the Brigade would then come under the control of the CG, 25th Infantry Division.[21]

August

The long-awaited message gave added impetus to the unloading operations. Major William L. Batchelor’s shore party company devoted one of its principal efforts to the big howitzers and vehicles of 1/11, while English and his tankmen struggled to get their steel monsters ashore from the LSD’s. Engineer heavy equipment, mobile maintenance shops of the Ordnance Detachment, fuel, ammunition, and medical supplies swung from decks to docks, where waiting Marines rushed them off to staging areas around the waterfront.

Altogether, 9,400 tons of supplies were unloaded, and the vast majority were turned over to Army quartermaster authorities in Pusan. Four officers and 100 men of Major Thomas J. O’Mahoney’s Combat Service Detachment were designated as the Brigade rear echelon. This group would remain in the port city to handle logistical and administrative matters. Supplies were moved into Army warehouses, where they became part of the common pool shared by all units at the front. This led to confusion later, when the Brigade requested its own Class II and IV items, only to discover that they had already been issued to other outfits. But the Army divisions had already been fighting for a month in a war which caught the nation unprepared, so that the Pusan Base Command had no alternative but to issue supplies on the basis of immediate need, not ownership.[22]

The Brigade was prepared to travel light. Not only the bulk of supplies but also all personal baggage was left behind in Pusan, to be stored and safeguarded by the rear echelon.

[note]

August

In the meantime the ground forces were arriving. Henrico, the tail-end transport, just made it. On the morning of 2 August she overtook the rest of Task Group 53.7 in Tsushima Strait, and in the afternoon the ships carrying the Marine Brigade steamed into Pusan. Around the Korean perimeter the situation was so bad that decisions were being made on a minute-to-minute basis, and it was not until almost midnight that General Craig learned his destination.

[note]

August

Exhausted, the 1st Battalion reached Chindong-ni at midnight. It had suffered about thirty casualties during the day. Colonel Check's leadership on this occasion won for him the Distinguished Service Cross. [14-29]

[note]


Casualties

Wednesday August 2, 1950 (Day 039)

August 119 Casualties

As of August 2, 1950

15 19TH INFANTRY REGIMENT
3 21ST INFANTRY REGIMENT
3 27TH INFANTRY REGIMENT
20 29TH INFANTRY REGIMENT
10 3RD ENGINEER COMBAT BATTALION
1 55TH QUARTERMASTER DEPOT - PUSAN
19 5TH CAVALRY REGIMENT
12 65TH ENGINEER COMBAT BATTALION
1 7TH CAVALRY REGIMENT
2 8066TH RECONNAISSANCE PLATOON
2 89TH MEDIUM TANK BATTALION (8072)
22 8TH CAVALRY REGIMENT
2 8TH FIELD ARTILLERY BATTALION (105MM)
1 90TH FIELD ARTILLERY BATTALION (155MM)
6 99TH FIELD ARTILLERY BATTALION (105MM)
119 19500802 0000 Casualties by unit

Date USAF USA USMC USN Other Total
Previous 57 2901 0 2 0 2960
Today 0 119 0 0 0 119
Total 57 3020 0 2 0 3079

Aircraft Losses Today 001

Notes for Wednesday August 2, 1950 (Day 039)

cc cc