|I Corps||IX Corps||X Corps|
|1st Marine Division|
|LtGen.||Lt. Gen. Walton H. Walker||13 July 1950||23 Dec 1950||NBC|
|Col||Eugene M. Landrum|
The Eighth US. Army (EUSA) served as the Japan occupation force headquartered in Yokohama. It established a forward headquarters in Taegu (sometimes spelled Taegue), South Korea, on 9 July 1950.
On 13 July it assumed command of all U.S. forces in Korea and formed Headquarters, Eighth U.S. Army in Korea (EUSAK), to control all forces within the country.
Eighth U.S. Army in Korea (EUSAK) (aka EUSA (Forward)) was an operational command subordinate to EUSA and formed on 13 July 1950 to control U.S. combat units in South Korea. Though technically not a corps and controlling two ROKA corps, it essentially functioned as such until I U.S. Corps arrived in-country in September 1950. It was commanded by Lt. Gen. Walton H. Walker, Commanding General, EUSA. Units under the control of EUSAK included:
|1st U.S. Cavalry Division|
|2nd U.S. Infantry Division|
|24th U.S. Infantry Division|
|25th U.S. Infantry Division|
|1st Provisional Marine Brigade|
|27th British Infantry Brigade|
|5th U.S. Regimental Combat Team|
|I R.O.K. Corps (8th and Capital R.O.K. Divisions)|
|II R.O.K. Corps (1st and 6th R.O.K. Divisions)|
|3rd R.O.K. Division|
|Pusan Logistical Command|
A small advance headquarters with overall control of the withdrawing KMAG elements preceded EUSAK. Known as GHQ Advance Command and Liaison Group in Korea (AD COM-pronounced "add-com"), it was formed in Japan and deployed to Korea on 27 June 1950. It was dissolved on 12 July when EUSAK arrived.
Brig. Gen. John H. Church commanded ADCOM.
U.S. Army Forces in Korea (USAFIK-pronounced "us-sa-tick"), not to be confused with the post-World War II occupation force, was activated on 4 July 1950 under Maj. Gen. William F. Dean, also Commanding General, 24th Infantry Division.
It controlled early deploying U.S. ground forces and the Korean Military Advisory Group until the arrival of EUSAK on 13 July. At the time of the 27 July 1953 cease-fire, the Eighth U.S. Army was deployed on the front line from west to east as follows:
Eighth United States Army shoulder sleeve insignia
Active 10 January 1944 – present
Country United States of America
Branch Regular Army
Type Field Army
Garrison/HQ Yongsan Army Garrison, South Korea
Motto Pacific Victors
Engagements World War II Korean War
Commanders Current commander LTG John D. Johnson
Distinctive Unit Insignia
The Eighth United States Army – often unofficially abbreviated EUSA – is the commanding formation of all US Army troops in South Korea.
World War II The unit first activated on 10 June 1944 in the United States, being commanded by Lieutenant General Robert Eichelberger. The Eighth Army took part in many of the amphibious landings in the Southwest Pacific Theater of World War II, eventually participating in no less than sixty of them. The first mission of the Eighth Army, in September 1944, was to take over from the US Sixth Army in New Guinea, New Britain, the Admiralty Islands and on Morotai, in order to free up the Sixth Army to engage in the Philippines Campaign (1944–45). The Eighth Army again followed in the wake of the Sixth Army in December, when it took over control of operations on Leyte Island on 26 December. In January, the Eighth Army entered combat on Luzon, landing the XI Corps on 29 January near San Antonio and the 11th Airborne Division on the other side of Manila Bay two days later. Combining with I Corps and XIV Corps of Sixth Army, the forces of Eighth Army next enveloped Manila in a great double-pincer movement. Eighth Army's final operation of the Pacific War was that of clearing out the southern Philippines of the Japanese Army, including on the major island of Mindanao, an effort that occupied the soldiers of the Eighth Army for the rest of the war.
Eighth Army was to have participated in Operation Downfall, the invasion of Japan. It would have taken part in Operation Coronet, the second phase of the invasion, which would have seen the invasion of the Kanto Plain on eastern Honshū. However, instead of invading Japan, Eighth Army found itself in charge of occupying it peacefully. Occupation forces landed on 30 August 1945, assuming responsibility for occupying all of Japan at the beginning of 1946. Four quiet years then followed, during which the Eighth Army gradually deteriorated from a combat-ready fighting force into a somewhat soft, minimally-trained constabulary. Lieutenant General Walton H. Walker took command in 1948, and he tried to re-invigorate the Army's training, but he was largely unsuccessful. This situation was to have serious consequences in South Korea.
Fighting with the 2nd Inf. Div. north of the Chongchon River, Sfc. Major Cleveland, weapons squad leader, points out Communist-led North Korean position to his machine gun crew. 20 November 1950. Pfc. James Cox.
The peace of occupied Japan was shattered in June 1950 when North Korea invaded South Korea, igniting the Korean War.
American naval and air forces quickly became involved in combat operations, and it was soon clear that American ground forces would have to be committed. To stem the North Korean advance, the occupation forces in Japan were thus shipped off to South Korea as quickly as possible, but their lack of training and equipment was telling, as some of the initial American units were destroyed by the North Koreans. However, the stage was eventually reached as enough units of Eighth Army arrived in Korea to make a firm front.
The North Koreans threw themselves against that front, the Pusan Perimeter, and failed to break it.
In the meantime, Eighth Army had reorganized, since it had too many divisions under its command for it to exercise effective control directly. The I Corps and the IX Corps were reactivated in the United States and then shipped to Korea to assume command of Eighth Army's subordinate divisions.
The stalemate was broken by the Inch'ŏn landings of the X Corps (tenth corps, consisting of soldiers and Marines). The North Korean forces, when confronted with this threat to their rear areas, combined with a breakout operation at Pusan, broke away and hastily retired.
Both South and North Korea were almost entirely occupied by United Nations forces.
However, once American units neared the Yalu River and the frontier between North Korea and China, the Chinese intervened and drastically changed the character of the war.
Eighth Army was decisively defeated at the Battle of the Chongchon River and forced to retreat all the way back to South Korea. The defeat of the U.S. Eighth Army resulted in the longest retreat of any American military unit in history.
General Walker was killed in a jeep accident and replaced by Lieutenant General Matthew Ridgway.
The overstretched Eighth Army suffered heavily with the Chinese offensive, who were able to benefit from shorter lines of communication and with rather casually deployed enemy forces. The Chinese broke through the American defenses despite American air supremacy and the Eighth Army and UN forces retreated hastily to avoid encirclement. The Chinese offensive continued pressing US forces, which lost Sŏul, the South Korean capital. Eighth Army's morale and esprit de corps hit rock bottom, to where it was widely regarded as a broken, defeated rabble.
General Ridgway forcefully restored Eighth Army to combat effectiveness over several months. Under his leadership, it slowed and finally halted the Chinese advance at the battles of Chipyong-ni and Wŏnju.
It then counter-attacked the Chinese, taking Sŏul again, and driving the communist forces back above the 38th parallel into North Korea.
Next, the front stabilized in the 38th parallel area.
When General Ridgway replaced General of the Army Douglas MacArthur as the overall U.N. commander, Lieutenant General James Van Fleet assumed command of Eighth Army.
After the war of movement during the first stages, the fighting in Korea settled down to a war of attrition.
Ceasefire negotiations were begun at the village of Panmunjom in the summer of 1951, and they dragged on for two years.
When the Military Demarcation Line was finally agreed to by the Korean Armistice Agreement, the Eighth Army had succeeded in its mission of liberating South Korea, but the realities of a limited war in a world of nuclear weapons had become obvious. South Korea and North Korea continued on as separate states.
Eighth United States Army memorial at Yongsan During the aftermath of the Korean War, the Eighth Army remained in South Korea, but the forces under its command were continually reduced as the demands of the U.S. Army in Europe and then the Vietnam War increased.
By the 1960s, only the I Corps, consisting of the 7th Infantry Division and the 2nd Infantry Division, remained as part of the Eighth Army.
Then, in 1971, further reductions occurred. The 7th Infantry Division was withdrawn from South Korea, along with the command units of I Corps, which were moved across the Pacific Ocean to Ft. Lewis, Washington, leaving only the 2nd Infantry Division to watch the Korean Demilitarized Zone and to assist the South Korean Army in defending South Korea.
Besides forming a trip-wire against another North Korean invasion, the 2nd Infantry Division remained there as the only Army unit in South Korea armed with tactical nuclear weapons. (Otherwise, there is only the U.S. Air Force in South Korea and on Okinawa.)
All nuclear weapons were taken from the Army to be under Air Force control. Later, all U.S. nuclear weapons were removed from South Korea. An occasional armed clash aside, relations between the two Koreas remained as stable as could be expected.
By the end of the Cold War, the American army and Air Force in South Korea were regarded as a trip-wire force, not so much deployed for their military use but for their political value. An attack on South Korea by North Korea would mean an attack on the U.S. Army as well.
However, in 2003, plans were announced to move almost all of the 2nd Infantry Division (Eighth Army) southwards, away from the border. That would in turn reduce its "trip wire" effect. This provoked a heated debate in South Korea, where the future of the Eighth Army is still a contentious topic. The Headquarters of the Eighth Army is located at Yongsan Garrison, but it is scheduled to move southward to Camp Humphreys by 2016.
Eighth Army units under direct operational control (click to enlarge) Command group Commanding General: Lieutenant General John D. Johnson Command Sergeant Major: Command Sergeant Major Rodney D. Harris Current structure Eighth Army, Yongsan Garrison 2nd Infantry Division, Camp Red Cloud 1st Heavy Brigade Combat Team, Camp Hovey 210th Fires Brigade, Camp Casey Combat Aviation Brigade, 2nd Infantry Division USAG Humphreys 19th Sustainment Command (Expeditionary), Daegu 501st Sustainment Brigade, Camp Carroll Army Material Support Center, Camp Carroll 35th Air Defense Artillery Brigade, Osan Air Base 501st Military Intelligence Brigade, Yongsan Garrison 1st Signal Brigade, Yongsan Garrison 65th Medical Brigade, Yongsan Garrison Headquarters and Headquarters Battalion, Yongsan Garrison Headquarters and Headquarters Company Headquarters and Headquarters Detachment United Nations Command Honor Guard Company Korean Service Corps Battalion, Camp Kim UN Command Security Battalion, Joint Security Area