Place Names

Kwangju, South Korea

 

 

 

 

MAP 16 Kwangju Region L552-NI52-1

June 25, 1950 1430

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Acting in accordance with plans previously prepared, it began moving reserves to the north of Sŏul for a counterattack in the vital Uijŏngbu Corridor. The ROK 2nd Division at Taejŏn was the first of the divisions distant from the Parallel to move toward the battle front. The first train with division headquarters and elements of the 5th Regiment left Taejŏn for Sŏul at 1430, 25 June, accompanied by their American advisers.

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By dark, parts of the 5th Division were on their way north from Kwangju in southwest Korea.

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The 22nd Regiment, the 3rd Engineer Battalion, and the 57-mm. antitank company of the ROK 3rd Division also started north from Taegu that night.

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During the 25th, Capt. James W. Hausman, KMAG adviser with General Chae, ROK Army Chief of Staff, had accompanied the latter on two trips from Sŏul to the Uijŏngbu area. General Chae, popularly known as the "fat boy," weighed 245 pounds, and was about 5 feet 6 inches tall.

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General Chae's plan, it developed, was to launch a counterattack in the Uijŏngbu Corridor the next morning with the 7th Division attacking on the left along the Tongduch'ŏn-ni road out of Uijŏngbu, and with the 2nd Division on the right on the P'och'on road. In preparing for this, General Chae arranged to move the elements of the 7th Division defending the P'och'on road west to the Tongduch'ŏn-ni road, concentrating that division there, and turn over to the 2nd Division the P'och'on road sector. But the 2nd Division would only begin to arrive in the Uijŏngbu area during the night. It would be impossible to assemble and transport the main body of the division from Taejŏn, ninety miles below Sŏul, to the front above Uijŏngbu and deploy it there by the next morning.

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Brig. Gen. Lee Hyung Koon, commander of the 2nd Division, objected to Chae's plan. It meant that he would have to attack piecemeal with small elements of his division. He wanted to defer the counterattack until he could get all, or the major part, of his division forward. Captain Hausman agreed with his view. But General Chae overruled these objections and ordered the attack for the morning of 26 June.

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The Capital Division at Sŏul was not included in the counterattack plan because it was not considered tactical and had no artillery. It had served chiefly as a "spit and polish" organization, with its cavalry regiment acting as a "palace guard."