19500903 0000 SUNDAY

3 SEPTEMBER 1950

biography   biography

 

Following is redline personal to Vandenberg sent out in line with my policy of keeping CSAF advised of pertinent info:

biography 

 

AP report from front quotes Major General Wm. B. Kean,[256] commander of the 25th Div, saying: "The AF saved this division."

AP report then continues, saying: "Kean issued a statement saying "the close air support rendered by 5th AF again saved this division as they have many times before. I am not just talking. I have made this a matter of official record." AP report. UP report quotes Kean as saying: "Close air support rendered by 5th AF has been magnificent." UP report. I am querying Fifth Air Force for complete text of "official record." Perhaps above statements will be of significance in connection with the current Washington interest in tactical aviation.


Major General Wm. E. Hall with a Colonel Welchner arrived in Tokyo.[257]
General Tunner, who reported in this morning, informed me (which I have passed on to Weyland) that General Vandenberg was sending to FEAF one group of C-46s (30 airplanes) which were due to arrive 1 October.

 (Queried Weyland to find out if we are getting with that group the supply and maintenance people - that I feel it should be a wing and not a group.) General Tunner also stated that General [Edward H.] White's (MATS) transport squadron could be made available upon our request for airlift as this squadron was being furnished 3 crews per airplane, but if we use it, we must notify General Edwards, D C/S, Ops, USAF, in advance, giving him the time with inclusive dates that its use is desired. Advised Weyland to keep me posted re above 2 subjects.

Sent the following official letter to O'Donnell, with copies to Craigie, Weyland and Crabb (and LeMay with the note: Dear Curt - just to keep you informed):

(1) This is to confirm my suggestions to you as given in General Weyland's office 1 Sept 50, that you figure out with your people some methods and new techniques on the use of your B-29s for emergency purposes in order to affect the outcome of the ground battle now taking place in Korea. You know the ground situation, plans of maneuver and the locations of their corps and division CPs. (2) I want these plans perfected in order to utilize the 500-pound and 250-pound frag clusters and the 500- pound napalm bomb of which we have a great supply. Also, consideration must be given to utilizing B-29s at low altitudes, perhaps in flights of three, squadrons, or even groups, in order to bomb visually below cloud decks. (3) Certainly with imagination and study as we can use this SAC weapon now more advantageously than in the past. Practically all the Joint Chiefs of Staff targets have been destroyed. (4) I desire that you give this immediate study and submit to me by endorsement hereon your ideas on how best to employ the B-29s in this emergency, using non- SAC tactical methods.


In answer to my redline of yesterday asking for additional air defense and telling Vandenberg that I'm stripping my forces to put all the power I can in Korea, the following was received: "re redline request this hq four F-80 squadrons for air defense requirement FEAF. This matter under study. You will be advised."


My immediate reply to above redline: "regrad TS 4070 AFOPD: my request was for a four squadron fighter wing. I did not specify F-80 squadrons."


Sent the following Memo to CINCFE: "I thought you would be interested in the attached chart which depicts graphically the weight, in terms of sorties, and the continuity of the joint air effort over Korea."

To Major General William B. Kean, CG of the 25th Infantry Division, sent the following:

The courageous action of your 25th Division in containing the heavy North Korean thrust during the past two days has been magnificent. Although your men have been in action almost continuously since first committed early in July and in spite of the numerical superiority enjoyed by your opponents, the 25th has not only absorbed everything that could be thrown at them, but also have bounded back in remarkable fashion. The deep admiration of the airmen of the Far East Air Forces goes to the men of the fighting 25th.


I have just read the investigation conducted by General Banfill, assisted by Colonel Tidwell, Staff Judge Advocate, and Major Ranlett,[258] an officer from the Inspector General's office, and as far as I can determine, the investigation is complete and I like the recommendation made; however, I am having it looked over by my Vice Commander, Administration and Plans, in order to seek his advice. The directive for the investigation was dated 31 August, subject: "Alleged Attack on Neutral Airfield Near Antung, Manchuria by United States Air Force F-51 Aircraft," to:  Brigadier General Charles Y. Banfill, and signed by me.


On the 13th of Aug I sent a ltr to CINCFE, subj: "Air-Ground Operations," and stated that although 5th AF procedures in coordination with 8th Army operations are based on FM 31-35, dtd Aug 46, which is based on WW II experiences and certain refinements derived from subsequent field exercises and maneuvers, I feel that more effective use could be made if an air-ground operations system were established within the Army. Amplified my reasoning for above and gave an estimate of personnel and equipment required: 1 senior officer with G-3 air experience to supervise the operation of the air-ground system; at the JOC in Hq
5th AF, there should be 9 G-3 air duty officers, 6 G-2 air duty officers, and required clerical help; one ground liaison officer team to brief pilots who are assigned missions which are closely integrated with ground action and to interrogate these air crews subsequent to each mission; suggest an Army photo interpretation center be established; and a communications of a mobile type to connect the components of the air-ground operations system mentioned above.

The following reply to my letter that is briefed above has been sent to 5th AF in Korea & Nagoya, read by Colonel Sykes, and copies made for the AG [adjutant general] File; the reply is quoted in part:

The CG, 8th Army has established an air-ground operations system in Korea based upon the principles of organization and procedure outlined in FM 31-35 and the pamphlet "Conduct of Air-Group Operations." The latter pamphlet was prepared jointly by the Office, Chief of Army Field Forces, and the Headquarters, Tactical Air Command, and represents the latest guide for the conduct of air-ground operations. This pamphlet has been reproduced by GHQ, FEC, and 40 copies were furnished by hq by referenced letter. The CG, 8th Army, is cognizant of the discrepancies in the present air-ground organization, as outlined by your letter, and every effort is being made to overcome these as soon as possible. The arrival of additional personnel, presently assigned or expected, will permit the complete staffing of the JOC with qualified personnel ... and will permit the dispatch of the necessary ground liaison officers to each 5th AF combat group to brief pilots and to interrogate crews subsequent to each mission. The personnel and equipment required to establish the Photo Interpretation and Reproduction Center and the necessary air-ground communication system are not presently available in the FEC but have been requisitioned from the ZI with request that movement of personnel and equipment be expedited....

 

----

 

256. Commander of the 25th Infantry Division since 1948, Kean had been Gen Omar Bradley's chief of staff, then chief of staff of the First Army in World War II.

257. General Hall had worked closely with Stratemeyer during World War II as Secretary of the Air Staff and then Deputy Chief, Air Staff. Presently, he was Director, Legislation and Liaison in the Office of the Secretary of the Air Force. Lt Col Carl A. Welchner also worked in the L and L office.

258. Maj Charles A. Ranlett, Jr., executive officer of the FEAF Inspector General Office.