Ebook On Desperate Ground The Marines at The Reservoir the Korean War's Greatest Battle read – DOC, Kindle eBook and Epub Read



10 thoughts on “On Desperate Ground The Marines at The Reservoir the Korean War's Greatest Battle

  1. says:

    “A Chinese soldier armed with a rifle climbed onto the bed of the truck He came to the first man leveled the barrel between his eyes and fired He moved on to the next Then the nextEd Reeves sat up half out of his sleeping bag and watched as though it were movie He didn't know any of these Americans especially well – he’d just shared the bed of a truck with them for a day and a half – but he was in awe of them They didn't beg or cry

  2. says:

    What a treat to have Sides create a narrative for us on a tough job our soldiers had in Korea and gather in some lessons relevant to our precarious position today in that part of the world I’ve had nothing but 5 star reads with this talented storyteller and history sleuth and this one continues that tradition His major focus here is on a critical campaign that almost started World War 3 namely MacArthur’s initiative after l

  3. says:

    This is the best account of the Chosin Reservoir battle I have read Sides is an excellent historian and his exhaustive research shows But than that Sides knows how to weave individual stories into the broad overview and still keep the narrative pace moving smartly alongChosin was the site of the first major eng

  4. says:

    Yeah this is the book There aren't many authors who can keep my bedside lamp burning until 0300 hrs on a workday but that's what happened to this one Any good war story has to have a mixture of brass officers strategy planning and balls grunts action blood and guts brotherhood Hampton Sides has mixed these ingredients in just the right combin

  5. says:

    Hampton Sides in one of those authors whose books automatically goes to the top of my TBR list His look at the first 6 months of the Korean War and the Marines escape from the Chosin Reservoir does not disappoint T

  6. says:

    “Sun Tzu says in ‘The Art of War’ that in battle there are nine kinds of situations nine kinds of ‘grounds’ The final and most distressing type is a situation in which one’s army can be saved from destruction only by fighting without delay It is a place without shelter and no possibility of easy retreat If met by the enemy an army has no alternative but to surrender or fight its way out of its pr

  7. says:

    Sides always does a great job of humanizin

  8. says:

    I am giving this book 5 stars The 5 star rating for me means the book possesses a WOW factors and this book certainly had me expressing that sentiment on several occasions To begin with I have to confess that 20th

  9. says:

    Once again Hampton Sides does not disappoint This was a uniuely engaging in parts riveting and easily accessible slice of military history nicely placed in time and place and context seasoned splendidly with just enough human interest to ramp up the empathy but not distract and as is the case with his other stuff efficiently written so it fee

  10. says:

    Hampton Sides latest book ON DESPERATE GROUND THE MARINES AT THE RESERVOIR THE KOREAN WAR’S GREATEST BATTLE has met or even surpassed the high standards for excellent narrative history that he has set in his previous works The book is based on extensive interviews memoirs command of secondary sources and the

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Read Ð PDF, DOC, TXT, eBook or Kindle ePUB free Ê Hampton Sides

12 hrs 8 minsFrom the New York Times bestselling author of Ghost Soldiers and In the Kingdom of Ice a chronicle of the extraordinary feats of heroism by Marines called on to do the impossible during the greatest battle of the Korean WarOn October 15 1950 the vainglorious General Douglas MacArthur Supreme Commander of UN troops in Korea convinced President Harry Truman that the communist forces would be utterly defeated by Thanksgiving The Chinese he said with near ce. What a treat to have Sides create a narrative for us on a tough job our soldiers had in Korea and gather in some lessons relevant to our precarious position today in that part of the world I ve had nothing but 5 star reads with this talented storyteller and history sleuth and this one continues that tradition His major focus here is on a critical campaign that almost started World War 3 namely MacArthur s initiative after landing at Inchon and retaking Seoul to invade North Korea and win the war with a drive to the Yalu River boundary with China This triggered People s Republic of China s deployment of than 200000 troops across the Manchurian border About 120000 of these soldiers surrounded the 20 thousand or so American Marine and Army troops around the Choisin Reservoir properly Changjin These men had been sent to the austere mountainous region with a fragile supply line in the form of a 78 mile stretch of two lane road back to the port of Hungnam with many vulnerable choke points and a critical bridge From the perspective of key officers and enlisted men Sides delivers a well crafted and harrowing story of how the Marine and Army troops held up to being surrounded and assaulted by overwhelming forces and boldly pulled off a successful fighting retreat Along the way he covers enough of the whole war and antecedent events to provide a good context to this major turning pointIn addition to excessive enemies the trapped UN forces faced the extreme challenges of the terrain and the winter weather As can be seen below the Choisin Reservoir region is rough country for the logistics of combat and few soldiers beset there had any alpine warfare training or experience And winter in high country there meant temperatures that often got to 20F It s hard to convey the personal impact of such cold better than the following face You could imagine the difficulties of digging a foxhole in such weather the constant threat of frostbite and challenges of treating the wounded Despite these challenges advantages the UN forces included better clothing and weapons than the Chinese and Communist Koreans and in clear weather total dominance of the skies for air strikes and supply drops The following map can provide some geographical perspective and illustrate the main phases of the war In the bottom right you can see how far the North Korean army had pushed the South Korean and occupying UN forces by September 1950 to a small region around Pusan The brutal urban warfare leading to the loss of Seoul and desperate retreat to the south was well covered in another comprehensive book about the war David Halberstam s masterful The Coldest Winter America and the Korean War You can see how the invasion of Inchon opened the door for an effective assault on the flank and supply lines of the invaders MacArthur from his command site in Japan couldn t resist following up the successful retaking of South Korea with an attempt to defeat the North once and for all Truman warned him to pull back at any sign of engagement in the war by the Chinese but the Joint Chiefs gave him plenty of latitude to push as hard he wanted He was aware of lots of Chinese troops over the border in Manchuria but he was blind to the possibility of their willingness to defend their client state and for a long time ignored plenty of evidence that regular Chinese army troops were present in force one soldier complained If you are shot and killed by an enemy that isn t there are you still alive You can see how the Choisin Reservoir area was effectively the tip of the spear for whole military campaign The book doesn t delve much into the tough fighting by the 7th Army Infantry Division to the east of the Reservoir region or UN troop battles in northwestern Korea Fortunately General Oliver Smith Commander of the First Marine Division was assigned to lead the advance through the Chosin region He had experience with MacArthur s overreaching in the Pacific theater of World War 2 where he fought with the First Marines in their useless slaughter in the taking of the island Pelieu 6500 casualties He had reason to believe that many Chinse troops had already infiltrated into North Korea and that they were advancing into a trap His idiot supervisor as X Corps Commander and MacArthur acolyte Major General Edward Almond constantly pressing him to recklessly advance ahead Smith slowed their advance and left supply caches along the way He wisely took the initiative to build up the mining town at the southern tip of the Reservoir Hagaru ri into a stronghold and direct his brilliant chief engineer Col John Partridge to direct work around the clock to construct a landing strip suitable for C47 cargo planes for supply and evacuation of the wounded Major General Oliver Smith commander of the 1st Marine Division accompanies MacArthur on a tour after taking InchonIn the next map the print will be too small but it usefully illustrates the encirclement of the Marine positions to the west of the reservoir and of the Army task force on the east side Lt Colonel Faith s story of holding in the face of mass attacks and then leading his Army units on a breakout is so tragic in its details His column was effectively cut in half at one bottleneck and only 1000 of 2500 made it to the relative safety of Hagaru a few hundred as individuals walking across the ice wounded and freezing To the west the survivors of the embattled outpost Yudam took enough hills by fierce combat to enable them to break through multiple roadblocks and ambushes on the road to Hagaru Another dangerous bottleneck to surmount was Tonktong Pass which the particularly brave Fox Company led a colorful Captain William Barber had lost most of its men guarding for days from a strategic hill With consolidation of his forces at Hagaru Smith eventually got the message through to command that retreat was necessary to prevent total obliteration he famously preserved morale of his troops by exclaiming Retreat hell We re not retreating we re just advancing in a different direction The fighting retreat down the road toward the port of Hungnam was brilliantly orchestrated by Smith against tall odds With just enough trucks to cram his wounded in he made the sad decisions to execute their dying prisoners and to bury 117 of their dead in a mass graves Many refugees followed in the convoy s wake on foot The convoy came to a dead stop at high point called Funchilin Pass due to a large span of the bridge there having being blown out by the Chinese Calling again for the magic of Partridge s engineering skills led to the unusual plan of having the Air Force deliver by parachute eight massive girders of 2900 pounds each to repair the breach Evacuation of the survivors of whole expeditionary force and 14000 refugees to boot at Hungnam was a massive and successful effort involving nearly 200 ships A sad but necessary breah of the Marine principle to not leave fallen comrades behind the burial of 117 Marines Army soldiers and Royal British Commandos on the evacuation road south of ChoisinThe outcome of the Battle of Choisin Reservoir was a complete turnaround in the war All of MacArthur s claim just weeks earlier to be close to ending the war was ashes in his mouth as he realized the impossibility of defeating China s vast forces and armaments supplied by the Soviet Union When he was called on the carpet by Truman for getting him in very hot water with his electorate and inspiring Sen Joe McCarthy to call for his impeachment MacArthur claimed to have intended to force China s commitment to their imperialist Commie designs Before the war was finally over and back to the permanent standoff across the 38th parallel both men supposedly considered use of nuclear weapons The result of the Korean War was a return to a standoff between two Koreas across the 38th parallel which was supposed to be a temporary division between Soviet and Allied occupation zones after the ouster of Imperial Japan from the peninsula toward the end of World War 2 Compared to long wars like Vietnam and Afghanistan the three years of fighting was relatively short But the casualties were very high making it a shame how it has become a forgotten war by many According to Wikipedia the US suffered about 34000 battle deaths South Korea about 138000 North Korea about 215000 and China 114 183000 Other NATO nations such as the UK Canada Turkey and Australia suffered 300 1000 combat deaths As often neglected in the butcher s bill for war civilian deaths dwarf those of the soldiers with 374000 estimated for South Korean and over a million for North Korea The US campaign of massive bombing of all North Korean cities in the war is the major contributor to the huge disparity For every death recorded multiply by 2 or 3 for the injured and maimed Seems hardly worth it to return to the status uo All it proved is that the US with NATO was willing to make sacrifices to block national dominos from falling But in the mind of most enemy soldiers they were defending their homeland and the sense of threat felt by the PRC over American occupation of a land at their borders might be comparable to the US stance if China or Russia were to invade Mexico Regardless of the politics and whether you consider the fateful invasion of North Korea a tragic mistake the contribution and sacrifices of soldiers on both sides should not be forgotten Ironically the civil war never technically ended Amid all the Trumpery involving Korea this year a small step forward was made when the presidents of the two Koreas met at the demilitarized zone in April and pledged to forge a peace treaty within a year s timeIn its excellent balance between coverage of the big picture of a war at the level of generals and politicians while weaving the human story of those in desperate combat this book shares many of the virtues of Sides Ghost Soldiers his previous history of the Battle of Bataan and successful rescue of survivors from a Japanese prison camp by an intrepid group of commandos Sides excels in marshalling all available resources and his own interviews with participants to create a narrative as readable as a good novel Unlike that book he didn t delve much into the actions of the adversaries of the Americans or even into the stories of their allies One exception is the details on the life of a Seoul medical student who was born in the north and eagerly served as a translator for the NATO forces This book was provided for review by Doubleday If you want a bit of a preview check out the excellent PBS documentary film the Battle of Choisin for which Sides served as a consultant and commentator

Review On Desperate Ground The Marines at The Reservoir the Korean War's Greatest Battle

On Desperate Ground The Marines at The Reservoir the Korean War's Greatest Battle

Rtainty would not intervene in the war As he was speaking 300000 Chinese soldiers began crossing the border Led by the 13000 men of the 1st Marine Division the Americans moved far north into the trap Mao had set for the arrogant MacArthur at the Chosin Reservoir What followed was one of the most heroic and harrowing operations in American military history Faced with annihilation and temperatures plunging to 20 degrees below zero the surrounded Marines fought through. Yeah this is the book There aren t many authors who can keep my bedside lamp burning until 0300 hrs on a workday but that s what happened to this one Any good war story has to have a mixture of brass officers strategy planning and balls grunts action blood and guts brotherhood Hampton Sides has mixed these ingredients in just the right combination which is about one part brass to three parts ballsSides spends a bit of time explaining what we already knew that MacArthur was as crazy as a shithouse rat an officer who loved to be in the rear with the gear surrounded by sycophants His real effort is expended in relating the heroic battles of the USMC against overwhelming Chinese forces in the battle for the Chosin Reservoir commonly called the Frozen Chosin I m not going to relate any exploits here Sides has already done that for you in his book Suffice to say that these leathernecks are a bunch of tough hombres and there s enough action here to satisfy even Lee Ermey God rest his leathery old soul I ll give the Sarge his due since he was snubbed by Hollywood this yearSides also covers the famous retreat possible only by American ingenuity and the fact that they had tons of gear they could use to just miracle bridges out of seemingly thin air Probably no other country at that time could have pulled off that retreat simply for want of the euipmentThe author has generously provided us with photos pertinent to the text on glossy paper thank you very much And a map of the area on the inside of the cover where I found it eventually after cursing the lack of a mapA couple of passages amused me or raised my eyebrow One occurs on page 113 where Sides is trying to impress upon us the terrible cold that the Marines faced at the Chosin Reservoir Overnight temperatures went into free fall Within a few hours the mercury plummeted forty degrees to nearly ten below zero FahrenheitWell that s kinda cold I guessif you don t have a jacket or something Around these parts 10 is a bloody heat wave And combatant reports of small arms fire kicking up waterspouts from the ice on the reservoir indicates that maybe the Chosin wasn t as frozen as we might think And on page 193 I found Some of the UN units were performing valiantly especially a brigade of Turks who had surprised everyone with their resilience and ferocity I wondered why any General would be surprised by Turkish ferocityit s not like it hasn t been well documented Ask the Aussies about dealing with Johnny Turk in WWIOverall I think this is about as close to perfect as a war book can get Sides gets the meat of the story over efficiently and in a captivating manner I could have done without the photo of Chesty Puller thoughhe scares hell right outta me

Read Ð PDF, DOC, TXT, eBook or Kindle ePUB free Ê Hampton Sides

The enemy forces with ferocity ingenuity and nearly unimaginable courage Hampton Sides's superb account of the battle relies on years of archival research and interviews with scores of Marines and Koreans who survived the siege While expertly chronicling the follies of the American leaders this is an immediate grunt's eye view of history enthralling in its narrative pace and powerful in its portrayal of what ordinary men are capable of in the most extreme circumstanc. I am giving this book 5 stars The 5 star rating for me means the book possesses a WOW factors and this book certainly had me expressing that sentiment on several occasions To begin with I have to confess that 20th century wars generally do not have a great deal of appeal for me as they tend to have been overly done by popular media Conseuently I do not know much about the Korean War and surprisingly this war didn t seem to get the usual media exposure of wars fought after the invention of movies television and the internet The only movie I can recall about the Korean War was Gregory Peck in Pork Chop Hill It has been called the Forgotten War and that really is true I read Jeff Shaara s historical fiction regarding the same subject last year and that book opened my eyes and awareness to the battle depicted in these pages but I cannot imagine a better concise readable and entertaining treatment of the Battle of the Chosin Reservoir that what has been accomplished by Hampton SidesWhile the author has written a history he has written it with the heart pounding excitement of a bestselling thriller Even knowing the outcome of the various disparate events in this battle I couldn t put the book down until I read another page and then another and well we all know how that goes Sides doesn t go into a lot of detail about the specifics of the engagements and the strategies and tactics This is not that sort of book What the reader is given is a strong sense of living the struggles and terrors that were experienced by Marines and soldiers that were there and those that commanded them While many of the stories told in this book may have been previously recounted in other works this author still does a masterful job of telling the stories for the benefit of readers that are not as knowledgeable of this War or this battle This book is an example of how history really should be written so that ordinary people can better appreciate and digest the information that we should all be familiar with The reader cannot help but put this book down and come away with a better understanding of the horrors of war and a greater appreciation for the young people that are sent off to endure these horrors This book is going on my Highly Recommended bookshelf and I hope all of you give this book a well deserved read Enjoy