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Koto-ri Breakout

The Chinese Failure At Chosin

On 11/27/50, with 5th and 7th Marines attacking West from Yudam-ni on orders to close on Eighth Army and protect their flank, about 100,000 Chinese ambushed the entire 1st Marine Division at the Chosin Reservoir. Since Eighth Army was already in headlong flight south, the Marines were finally ordered to fall back on Hungnam, and after bitter fighting both regiments reached Hagaru-ri 12/3/50, where they re-grouped and fought through to Koto-ri to join most of the Division. The division fought out from Koto-ri 12/8/50, fought through the last Chinese ambush forces in Fuchilin Pass, and reached the port of Hungnam on 12/11, whence they were evacuated by 12/15.

Chosin Reservoir Map

Marines on Main Supply Road

1stMarDiv Koto-ri Breakout , 12/8/50, Main Supply Road (MSR), the way to Hungnam and safety

Troops at left mount out for their turn at the point

China ambushed the Marines in the Chosin Reservoir. Ten Divisions, about 100,000 veteran foot-soldiers against about 7,000 Marines and the 7th Division 31st RCT. 31RCT was virtually destroyed, and the Marines casualties were heavy, but most fought their way out in a series of savege tactical victories amidst overwhelming strategic defeat, joined up at Hagaru, and fought down through Koto-ri to eventual safety and evacuation at Hungnam.


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