Highway 13 to Sŏul
June 25, 1950 1500
During the afternoon of 25 June ROK President Syngman Rhee's importunate telephone calls kept Ambassador Muccio occupied. President Rhee believed that the ROK ground troops would offer effective opposition, but he was greatly worried about the Reds' superiority in tanks and aircraft.
Unable to contact General MacArthur, Rhee telephoned an urgent plea to Muccio. Give us ten F-51 aircraft, with bombs and "bazookas" (rockets), he begged. Deliver them before dawn on 26 June to Korean pilots who will be waiting at Taegu. Unless these planes are received, Rhee warned, it will be very difficult to meet the northern attack. Rhee also asked for heavier artillery which could disable or destroy Communist tanks, specifically 75-mm. antitank guns, 105-mm. howitzers, and 155-mm. howitzers.#21
Ambassador Muccio relayed these requests to Tokyo and reported to the U.S. Secretary of State that Rhee was most concerned about his lack of air capabilities.
"As Department doubtless aware," Muccio cabled, "Rhee and other Korean officials will look to United States for air assistance above all else. Future course of hostilities may depend largely on whether United States will or will not give adequate air assistance." #22