I can only advise the party on the defensive not to divide his forces
too much by attempting to cover every point.|
ANTOINE HENRI JOMINI, The Art of War
Serious trouble for General Walker developed in the east during the
threatened enemy breakthrough in the Naktong Bulge. North Korean attacks
in the Kigye and P'ohang-dong area became critical as the ROK divisions
there suddenly gave way and threatened to collapse. The blow came with
a suddenness that contained the element of surprise. Eighth Army, low in
reserves, was ill-prepared to meet an enemy breakthrough in the east, with
its main forces already fully and even desperately engaged elsewhere.
Through July and into the first week of August, there were repeated
rumors and reports of strong guerrilla groups in the mountains ten or fifteen
miles northwest of P'ohang-dong. These reports in time were treated as
casually as the repeated cry of "Wolf!" by the boy in Aesop's
The Kyongju Coridor to Pusan
Throughout the Pusan Perimeter fighting, the terrain in the P'ohang-dong
area exercised a dominant influence on the action there and on General
Walker's tactical plans for the defense of that part of the Perimeter.
A natural corridor here led straight to Pusan. (See Map IV.)
From Taegu a lateral highway and railroad ran east to P'ohang-dong,
50 air miles away. This lateral corridor is the first valley route to the
east coast of Korea south of the Seoul-Ch'orwon-P'yonggang-Wonsan corridor,
225 miles to the north. Situated on this route about midway between Taegu
and P'ohang-dong is Yongch'on. There, the only important north-south road
between Taegu and the east coast comes down from Andong and Uisong through
the mountains to meet the lateral valley road. East of this road for a
distance of 40 air miles to the coast, lies a rugged mountain area entirely
devoid of improved roads.
Twelve miles west of P'ohang-dong in the lateral Taegu corridor is the
town of An'gang-ni, and 6 miles north of it is the smaller town of Kigye.
The latter is situated at a point where several trails and a poor road
debouch southward from the mountains into a north-south valley that enters
the Taegu-P'ohang lateral corridor at An'gang-ni. This north-south valley
continues on south past An'gang-ni to Pusan, 60 air miles away. Kyongju,
an important rail and highway center in the Taegu-P'ohang-Pusan triangle, lies 12 miles south
of An'gang-ni in this corridor. These terrain facts explain why the towns
of Kigye, An'gang-ni, and Kyongju assumed importance in the eastern battles.
At P'ohang-dong the coastal road from the north swings inland along
the Hyongsan-gang to a point less than 2 miles from An'gang-ni where it
bends south and enters the Kyongju corridor to continue on to Pusan. Militarily,
P'ohang-dong itself was of slight importance, although its port permitted
a partial supply by water of the ROK and the small U.S. forces on the east
coast. Rather, it was the eastern half of the Pusan Perimeter communications
net, the Taegu-Yongch'on-An'gang-ni-Kyongju-Pusan route-almost a sea-level
valley route the entire distance-that was of critical importance. If it
should be cut by the enemy for any appreciable period of time the Taegu
position would become untenable.
The eastern part of the Perimeter was not as strongly held as other
parts of the line. General Walker did not have the troops and supporting
heavy weapons to hold the front strongly everywhere. At some points he
had to take risks. Seeing that the mountains to the north in the P'ohang
area were almost a trackless waste, he thought it unlikely that the North
Koreans could move forward heavy equipment and supplies in sufficient quantity
to exploit a penetration there, should one be made, for a continuing drive
on Pusan. 
Contrasting with the rugged terrain and the lack of a good communications
system in the enemy's field of operations in the east, General Walker had
the interior valley rail and highway net over which he could rush reinforcements
to the area. He considered as another source of U.N. strength the proximity
of the Yonil Airfield six miles south of P'ohang-dong, and within two to
five minutes' flying time of the critical areas, should the North Koreans
reach the lateral corridor.
The North Koreans Reach Pohang-dong
On this eastern flank of the Pusan Perimeter, three North Korean divisions
and an independent regiment pressed against the ROK defenders in August
1950. The 8th Division drove down the Uisong road toward
Yongch'on, the 12th Division plunged into the mountains southeast
of Andong and headed for P'ohang-dong, the 766th Independent
Regiment left the coastal road at Yongdok and swung southwest into
the mountains toward Kigye and An'gang-ni, and the 5th Division
drove down the coastal road from Yongdok, with some of its infantry units
infiltrating through the mountains around the ROK 3d Division. 
The first of these divisions, the N.K. 8th Division, failed
to penetrate to the Taegu-P'ohang lateral corridor. Near Uisong on 9 August,
the ROK 8th Division caught part of its forces by surprise and almost annihilated
one battalion of the 3d Regiment, causing 700 casualties. The division's 2d Regiment then entered the
battle and itself suffered heavy losses, though it won back the ground
previously lost to the ROK's.
In this fighting along the Uisong-Yongch'on road, ROK troops achieved
some success against enemy armor. ROK infantry defended an antitank mine
field covering both sides of the road in a narrow valley near a bridge.
Two enemy tanks approaching the bridge struck mines. Three more enemy tanks
and a self-propelled 76-mm. gun approached. Before they could turn around
on the blocked road a flight of F-51 fighter planes came over firing rockets
and dropping napalm on the six armored vehicles. All were destroyed. This
affair provides a good example of multiple reporting. The Far East Air
Forces claimed six kills; not to be outdone, the ROK engineers claimed
the same number. 
The enemy 8th Division was so badly hurt in this fighting
that it was unable for a week to continue the drive on Yongch'on, and then
it advanced only a few miles south of Uisong before in the face of continuing
strong ROK opposition it halted to await reinforcements. 
Next in line eastward, the N.K. 12th Division, now bearing
the honorary name, "The Andong Division," crossed the upper Naktong
at Andong and plunged into the mountains in an effort to carry out its
orders to capture P'ohang-dong. Its fighting strength was only a fraction
of what it had once been. At this time the 2d Battalion of
the Artillery Regiment sent all its artillery pieces back
to Tanyang on the upper Han River because of failure to obtain ammunition
for them. 
The ROK Capital Division was supposed to establish contact with the
ROK 3d Division across this mountainous region. Reports were rife that
enemy groups, the largest estimated at 2,000 men, were in the mountains
inland from the coast. On 9 August, Eighth Army headquarters received a
report that regular North Korean Army troops were in the "guerrilla
area" northwest of P'ohang-dong, threatening the coastal road and
the Yonil Airfield. On that day the 1st and 2d Battalions of the ROK 25th
Regiment, a new unit just arrived from Taegu, attacked north from Kigye
with orders to effect a juncture with the 3d Division south of Yongdok.
Two and a half miles north of Kigye, an enemy counterattack hurled the
regiment back to a point two miles southeast of the town. It was now clear
that, although the ROK 3d Division held the coastal road from a point twenty
miles above P'ohang-dong, there were no defenses inland in the mountains
and enemy units were operating in this area.  (Map II)
Eighth Army on 10 August organized Task Force P'ohang, consisting of
the ROK 17th and 25th Regiments, the ROK 1st Anti-Guerrilla Battalion,
the ROK P'ohang Marine Battalion, and C Battery of the U.S. 18th Field
Artillery Battalion (75-mm.). The next day the ROK Army activated the 26th
Regiment at Taegu and hurried it east to join Task Force P'ohang at An'gang-ni.
Of these units, only the ROK 17th Regiment was battle tested. The mission
of Task Force P'ohang was to attack north from the An'gang-ni-P'ohang area
and clear enemy forces from the mountains near the coast. 
The events around Kigye and in the mountains to the west of P'ohang-dong
from this point on can be understood in their true light only if one knows
what was taking place simultaneously on the east coast, only a few miles
away. To bring those events into their proper perspective it is necessary
now to review them.
A previous chapter recounted the series of bloody battles on the coastal
road between the N.K. 5th Division and the ROK 3d Division
through the first days of August. The fighting seesawed around Yongdok
for two weeks, with first one side and then the other holding the town.
This action. had ended with the ROK's temporarily regaining Yongdok. But
they held it only briefly.
On 5 August the North Koreans attacked again and drove the ROK's south
of the town to Hill 181. General Walker sent a personal message to Colonel
Emmerich, the KMAG adviser with the ROK 3d Division, saying that the lost
ground must be regained. Plans were made for a counterattack the next night.
During the 6th, while these plans were being readied, it was possible from
the ROK division command post to see, through field glasses, the North
Korean and ROK troops locked in battle at grenade range on Hill 181.
The night attack got under way at 1930 with a 15-minute air attack using
rockets, napalm, and bombs. Naval gunfire and an artillery preparation
for another fifteen minutes followed the air attack. Then at 2000 the ROK
22d and 23d Regiments moved out in the infantry attack. They drove the
North Koreans from Hill 181 and held it during the night. On the morning
of 7 August the attack resumed after another naval and artillery preparation.
This drove the enemy to a point just south of Yongdok. 
During the night attack an untoward incident occurred at the ROK 3d
Division command post. An enemy mortar barrage hit close to the command
post and killed several soldiers. When the KMAG adviser sent to the ROK
command post for a report on the situation his messenger brought back word
that he could not find anyone there. An interpreter tried to find the division
commander, General Lee. He returned and said the general and his staff
could not be found. Upon receiving this information Colonel Emmerich and
Major Slater searched the area with flashlights and finally, with the help
of some ROK soldiers, found the general and his aide in a hillside dugout.
Emmerich instructed the ROK commander to assemble his staff and return
to the command post. The next morning he requested that the division commander
be relieved. 
At this time the 1st Separate Battalion and the Yongdungp'o Battalion
were inactivated and their troops absorbed into the ROK 22d and 23d Regiments.
On 7 August, also, General Walker sent a message to Colonel Emmerich
telling him that the bridge below Yong-dok at Kanggu-dong must be held. Up to this time an Engineer squad from
the 24th Division had manned the demolitions on the 520-foot bridge there
over the Osip-ch'on. The squad was now called back to Taegu, and control
of the demolitions passed to Korean troops with directions that they were
to blow the bridge only upon instructions from Major Britton of KMAG.
Just after daylight, at 0500 on 9 August, a great explosion rocked the
area of the bridge. The commanding officer of the ROK 22d Regiment had
ordered the bridge blown without securing approval from Major Britton.
About 350 ROK soldiers of the regiment were still north of the Osip-ch'on
when the bridge dropped. Many of these soldiers drowned in trying to cross
the deep estuary flowing into the Japan Sea. The ROK division chief of
staff demanded that the regimental commander be relieved or he would court
martial him and place him before a firing squad. The Korean Army relieved
the regimental commander at once.
The blowing of the Kanggu-dong bridge compelled the withdrawal southward
of the ROK command post to Changsa-dong on the afternoon of 9 August to
escape enemy artillery fire. On 10 August N.K. 5th Division
soldiers infiltrated around the ROK 3d Division and cut the coastal road
below it at Hunghae, five miles north of P'ohang-dong. The ROK 3d Division
was virtually surrounded on that date. 
As soon as Eighth Army learned that enemy forces had cut off the ROK
3d Division above P'ohang-dong, General Walker instructed Colonel Emmerich
to meet him at Yonil Airfield. Emmerich radioed to the American cruiser
Helena, offshore, for a helicopter to fly him to the airstrip, where
he met General Walker, General Partridge, and Brig. Gen. Francis W. Farrell,
Chief of KMAG.
General Walker instructed Emmerich to have the ROK 3d Division hold
in place around Changsa-dong, twenty miles north of P'ohang-dong, and to
prevent the enemy 5th Division from moving its tanks and
artillery down the road to the P'ohang area. If enemy tanks and artillery
got through on the coastal road they would render Yonil Airfield untenable.
Emmerich returned at once to Changsa-dong and relayed the orders to Brig.
Gen. Kim Suk Won, the ROK 3d Division's new commander. The division then
went into a perimeter defense extending along the coast from a point four
miles north of Changsa-dong to a point seven miles south of the town. 
The sudden appearance of strong enemy army units near P'ohang-dong on
10 August surprised many American officers, including General Walker. He
had just asked General Farrell if the ROK troops in the east would need
American help to assure the defense of P'ohang-dong and Yonil Airfield.
Farrell had advised Walker that the ROK troops would be able to protect
these places. This opinion reflected that prevailing at the time-that the
North Koreans would not be able to move through the mountains in sufficient strength to make an effective attack on
P'ohang-dong from the rear. 
After his conference with Colonel Emmerich at Yonil Airfield, General
Walker returned to Taegu. From there he sent an order by courier at 1735
to Maj. Gen. Lawrence B. Keiser, commanding the U.S. 2d Division at Kyongsan,
to move the remaining elements of the 8th Regiment from that point to Yonil
Airfield at once. This task force was to be commanded by Brig. Gen. Joseph
S. Bradley, Assistant Division Commander, 2d Division. Task Force Bradley
was to report directly to General Walker. 
This task force moved toward P'ohang-dong and Yonil after dark, 10 August,
over the main road through Kyongju. The command group and the 3d Battalion,
9th Infantry, except K Company, reached Yonil Airfield shortly before midnight
and General Bradley assumed responsibility for the ground defense of the
Ten miles north of Kyongju and at a point about a mile east of An'gang-ni,
the road bent sharply right in the Hyongsan-gang valley toward P'ohang-dong,
seven miles eastward. Just after making this turn the road swung around
the base of a steep mountain which crowded it close against the river near
the village of Tongnam-ni. Company K and four vehicles of C Battery, 15th
Field Artillery Battalion, were ambushed at this point at 0120, 11 August.
Enemy fire suddenly hit the driver of the leading truck and his vehicle
swerved, blacking the road. Automatic weapons fire swept over the column,
bringing death and destruction. The K Company convoy fell into confusion.
As many men as could fled back toward Kyongju; approximately 120o members
of the company, including two officers, reached the town. 
Learning of the ambush, General Bradley at Yonil Airfield ordered I
Company to return to An'gang-ni, to K Company's rescue. West of P'ohang-dong
it, too, was ambushed. Informed by radio of this second ambush, Bradley
sent two MPG vehicles, with their heavy armament of four .50-caliber machine
guns each, to the scene. All but about twenty-five men of I Company got
back to the airfield during the day. 
At the K Company ambush casualties were greater. By afternoon, 7 dead
and at least 4o wounded were reported. About 25 members of C Battery, 15thField Artillery Battalion, were also lost in this ambush.
The enemy soldiers who had cut the road west of P'ohang-dong the night
of 10-11 August and staged these ambushes apparently were from the 766th
Independent Regiment. This regiment, leaving the 5th
Division in the vicinity of Yongdok, had come in behind P'ohang-dong
by way of mountain trails.
In the early afternoon, 11 August, General Walker ordered the Tank Company,
9th Infantry, which had stopped at Kyongju to wait upon repair of a damaged
bridge, to proceed to the Yonil Airfield. He also ordered the ROK 17th
Regiment released from Task Force P'ohang and to proceed from An'gang-ni
to the airstrip. 
Aerial reconnaissance showed the K Company ambush site was still held
by enemy troops. Well aware of this, Captain Darrigo, KMAG adviser with
the ROK 17th Regiment at An'gang-ni, volunteered to lead an armored patrol
through to P'ohang-dong and Yonil. Darrigo rode the first of five tanks.
Four F-51 fighter planes took off from Yonil Airfield and delivered a strike
on the enemy positions at the ambush site just as the tanks arrived there.
This air strike flushed enemy troops from concealment at just the right
moment. Tank machine gun fire killed many of them; in one group about seventy
North Koreans were caught in the open.
This tank column arrived at Yonil Airfield about 2030, 11 August, and
were the first tanks to reach the airstrip. They were immediately placed
in the perimeter defense. Darrigo was the same officer who had escaped
from Kaesong at dawn, 25 June, when the North Koreans began their attack across the
38th Parallel. One who saw this courageous 30-year-old soldier when he
arrived at Yonil said he looked to be fifty. 
While these events were taking place behind and to the east of it, Task
Force P'ohang attacked north from the An'gang-ni area the morning of 11
August. (Map 12) It came to grief almost at once. At one
place the enemy annihilated two companies of the ROK 25th Regiment. The
task force, and also the ROK Capital Division, lost ground. The day was
blazing hot. Great dust clouds hung over the roads. Fighter planes shuttled
constantly from Yonil Airfield to the numerous nearby points where enemy
troops were active, trying to stabilize the situation. One pilot, speaking
of that day, said, "I barely had my wheels up before I started my
strafing runs." But it was not all one-sided for the fighter planes.
The day before, enemy small arms and machine gun fire had shot down four
of them. By evening of 11 August, North Korean patrols reportedly were
operating three miles south of P'ohang-dong. Eighth Army during the day
ordered the ROK forces in the east to fall back to new positions during
the nights of 12 and 13 August. 
The main enemy force encountered by Task Force P'ohang on 11 August
seems to have been advance elements of the 12th Division.
This division had now crossed the mountains from Andong and was debouching
at Kigye into the valley west of P'ohang-dong. There, in a series of battles,
fought by the North Koreans almost entirely with automatic weapons and
small arms, the 12th Division drove back the ROK Capital
Division and Task Force P'ohang. In this series of action the 12th
lost about 800 casualties, according to prisoner reports. 
That night, 11 August, the fighter planes at Yonil flew to another airfield
for security, but returned the next day. From hills to the south and southwest
of the airstrip enemy troops delivered long-range, ineffective fire against
it. Even though this fire did no damage, it created a state of alarm. The
next day, 12 August, 28-year-old Colonel Kim Hi Chun, acting on General
Walker's orders, in a successful attack eastward from An'gang-ni, led his
ROK 17th Regiment into Yonil, greatly to the relief of everyone there.
Enemy forces first entered P'ohang-dong on 10 or 11 August. ROK sources
reported on the 11th that an estimated 300 enemy soldiers from the 766th
Independent Regiment and the 5th Division had
entered the town and seized the railroad station. But they did not remain
there more than a few hours. Naval gunfire and aerial strikes drove them
out to seek comparative safety in the nearby hills. The town of P'ohang-dong
now became a no man's land. Patrols from ROK and North Korean units entered
the town at night but neither side held it. The battle swirled around it on the adjacent hills. 
The Air Force Abandons Yonil Airfield
Some United States ground and air service troops had been at Yonil Airfield
before the 40th Fighter-Interceptor Squadron (35th Group) moved there on
16 July from Ashiya, Japan. On 7 August, the 39th Squadron moved to the
field, and the next day the 6131st Fighter Wing was formed at the P'ohang
base. But, even as these expanding air activities at Yonil were taking
place, another and opposite current of events began. On 8 August, aviation
engineers there received orders to evacuate their heavy equipment. In the
next few days, as the North Koreans occupied the hills around P'ohang-dong
and west and southwest of Yonil Airfield, FEAF officials became alarmed
for the safety of their aircraft. They feared that enemy troops would be
able to bring up mortars and artillery to bombard the strip, and that enemy
infantry might overrun it. 
Even though U.S. infantry units and tanks were at Yonil on 13 August,
FEAF on that day decided to abandon the field. The order came about noon.
Not a single crater dented the runway as the F-51's took to the air to
fly away. It appears that Colonel Witty, commanding the Air Force units
at Yonil, recommended the evacuation of the field and was supported by
General Partridge, commander of the Fifth Air Force. Army officials had
no part in the decision to abandon the Yonil field. Army units remained
at the field and it never was brought under effective enemy fire. 
The first news of the Fifth Air Force evacuation of Yonil Airfield came
to General MacArthur's headquarters about 1600 that afternoon, 13 August,
in the form of a United Press report, filed at 1320. This news report stated
that an "Air Force spokesman announced that the Air Force was evacuating
P'ohang air strip" because North Koreans were placing machine gun
and mortar fire on the strip. A telephone call to Eighth Army headquarters
at once disclosed that there was no mortar fire on the airstrip and that
the report of enemy fire on the field was greatly exaggerated. It did,
however, confirm that the Fifth Air Force Advance Headquarters had ordered
the planes to leave the field.
General MacArthur and General Almond, his Chief of Staff, were "much
upset" by the evacuation of Yonil Airfield. MacArthur instructed one
of his staff officers to inform FEAF that he intended to hold the airfield
and did not want the planes to return to Japan. Nevertheless, the two squadrons
of F-51's (forty-five aircraft) moved from Yonil to Tsuiki Air Base on
The heavy equipment at Yonil was taken to the beach and loaded on LST's. The bomb supply followed, and
finally Fifth Air Force personnel at the base embarked on LST's and left
the next day, 14 August. A considerable supply of aviation gasoline and
petroleum products remained at Yonil. Occasionally after 13 August a crippled
fighter plane came down at Yonil in an emergency landing, and many fighters
refueled there as long as the fuel lasted. 
The ROK 3d Division Evacuated by Sea
While the battles for P'ohang-dong and the entrance to the Kyongju corridor
were being fought behind it, the ROK 3d Division-cut off by the N.K. 5th
Division above P'ohang-dong since 10 August-was fighting to save
itself from destruction. Well aware that it had isolated the ROK division,
the N.K. 5th Division now strove to destroy it. Constant
enemy attacks compelled the ROK division to reduce the extent of its perimeter.
The division command post moved four miles farther south from Changsa-dong
to the water's edge at Toksong-ni, where KMAG advisers thought LST's could
land. The principal fire support for the shrinking ROK perimeter came from
the cruiser USS Helena and three destroyers offshore, and from the
Fifth Air Force. A tactical air control party and artillery observers directed
air strikes and naval gunfire at critical points on the perimeter. Two
helicopters from the Helena brought medical supplies for the Korean
On 13 August the ROK's carried 313 of their wounded on board a supply
LST at Changsa-dong. Later in the day at Toksong-ni, this LST struck rocks
and opened a hole in its hull. All the wounded had to be transferred to
another LST over a walkway in a heavy running sea. Dukw's (amphibious trucks)
took 86 of the more critically wounded ROK's to a Korean hospital ship
which arrived and anchored 500 yards offshore. The LST then sailed for
The steadily deteriorating situation in the vicinity of P'ohang-dong
caused Eighth Army on 15 August to order the ROK 3d Division evacuated
by sea. The division was to land at Kuryongp'o-ri, twenty air miles southward
on the cape at the south side of Yongil Bay. It was then to relieve elements
of the Capital Division in the line below P'ohang-dong and join in a planned
co-ordinated attack northward. 
Evacuation of the ROK 3d Division by LST began the night of 16 August
at Toksong-ni. The division completed loading the next morning, including
125 wounded in the perimeter, and the last LST pulled away from the beach
at 0700. The division at this time consisted of the 22d and 23d Regiments
and 1,200 attached National Police. More than 9,000 men of the division,
the 1,200 National Police, and 1,000 laborers, together with all their
weapons, ammunition and equipment, escaped to the waiting vessels under
cover of darkness and naval gunfire. After daylight of the 17th the Fifth
Air Force helped maintain a curtain of fire around the beach. The Helena
and several destroyers escorted the evacuation LST's to Kuryongp'o-ri where
they arrived at 1030. The division unloaded at once, and received orders
to move the next day into battle positions south of P'ohang-dong. 
The North Koreans Turned Back From the Kyongju Corridor
While it seems clear that enemy patrols and miscellaneous groups of
soldiers had entered P'ohang-dong as early as 10-11 August, it was not
until the 13th that the North Korean communiqué claimed its complete
liberation. Large elements of the N.K. 12th Division, advancing
from the direction of Kigye, entered the town on that day. But, like others
before them, they did not remain long. An officer of the enemy division,
when captured later, said the 1st Regiment withdrew from
P'ohang-dong after three hours because of an intense naval bombardment
and severe air strikes. The 12th Division then took up positions
on the hills west and southwest of the town. The 2d and 3d
Battalions of the 2d Regiment occupied the hills six miles
southwest of P'ohang-dong and threatened the Yonil Airfield. Elements of
the N.K. 5th Division meanwhile had reached the hills just
north of P'ohang-dong. 
By 14 August the Capital Division, on Eighth Army order, had moved about
twenty-five miles, from near Andong to the An'gang-ni-Kigye area, where
it went into the line east of the ROK 8th Division. The ROK I Corps now
established its headquarters at Yongch'on.
The fighting in the vicinity of P'ohang-dong between North and South
Koreans became a dog-eat-dog affair. Both sides lost heavily. The ROK's
renewed their attack on 13 August when the 17th Regiment, reverting to
control of the Capital Division, drove forward, supported by U.S. artillery
and tanks from Task Force Bradley, to the hills north of P'ohang-dong.
Task Force P'ohang attacked northward from An'gang-ni toward Kigye.
In the fighting from 15 to 17 August, the Capital Division and Task Force
P'ohang pushed the North Koreans back north of the Taegu-P'ohang lateral
road and away from the Kyongju corridor in the neighborhood of An'gang-ni.
About daylight, 17 August, the 2d Battalion, 23d Regiment, 2d Division,
arrived at Kyongju to buttress the defense there. 
In the midst of this seesaw battle in the east-which also was the period
of the successful enemy crossing of the Naktong River into the zone of the U.S. 24th Division at the bulge-Premier
Kim Il Sung of North Korean broadcast from P'yongyang an order calling
on his army to drive the United States and ROK forces from Korea by the
end of the month. He correctly predicted that the longer they remained
the stronger they would become. He exhorted his Communist troops to "destroy
the South Korean and United States [troops] to the last man." 
The fortunes of war in the east at last seemed to be veering in favor
of the South Koreans. By nightfall of 17 August, ROK attacks in the vicinity
of An'gang-ni threatened to surround the 766th Independent
Regiment, and it withdrew to the mountains north of Kigye. Battling
constantly with ROK troops and suffering severely from naval gunfire and
aerial strikes, the N.K. 12th Division that night began to
withdraw from the hills around P'ohang-dong. At 2000, 17 August, the 12th
Division ordered all its units to withdraw through Kigye northward
to the Top'yong-dong area. The division suffered heavy casualties in this
withdrawal. The next day it ordered all its units to assemble on Pihak-san
on 19 August for reorganization. 
On Pihak-san, a 2,400-foot rugged peak six miles due north of Kigye,
the 12th Division reorganized. In this reorganization, the
766th Independent Regiment lost its identity, its
troops being distributed among the three regiments of the 12th Division.
After incorporating 2,000 replacements and the approximately 1,500 men
of the 766th Independent Regiment, the division reportedly
totaled about 5,000 men. This figure shows the severe casualties suffered
thus far in the war by this division, originally composed mostly of CCF
veterans. Though morale was low there was little desertion. 
In these battles attending the withdrawal of the North Koreans from
the vicinity of P'ohang-dong, the ROK Capital Division by '9 August had
advanced to a point two miles north of Kigye, the 3d Division entered P'ohang-dong,
and Task Force Min reached a point a mile and a half north of the town.
The next day the 3d Division relieved Task Force Min and attacked to selected
positions five and a half miles north of P'ohang-dong. The Capital Division
also made additional gains north of Kigye. That day, 20 August, Eighth
Army by radio order dissolved Task Force Bradley and redesignated the force
at Yonil Airfield the 3d Battalion, 9th Infantry, Reinforced. This same
day, with the emergency in the east temporarily ended, Task Force P'ohang
was dissolved, and Task Force Min moved west to a position between the
ROK 1st and 6th Divisions. 
A ROK Army dispatch on 2d August claimed that its forces in the P'ohang
area from 17 August on had killed 3,800 and captured 181 North Koreans.
It also claimed the capture of 20 artillery pieces, 11 light mortars, 21
82-mm. mortars, 160 machine guns, 557 U.S. M1 rifles and 381 Japanese rifles.
Since about the end of July, the greater part of the N.K. 12th
Division had been armed with the U.S. M1 rifle and the U.S. carbine.
There was an adequate supply of ammunition for these weapons, but not always
available at the front. The Japanese 99 rifles and ammunition with which
the division was originally armed were turned in to the division supply
dump at the end of July, when the supply of American arms captured from
ROK units enabled the division to substitute them.
Not the least important of the factors that brought about the defeat
of the North Koreans at P'ohang-dong and in the Kigye area in mid-August
was the near exhaustion of the 12th Division after its passage
through the mountains south of Andong, and its lack of artillery and food
supply. One captured officer of the division said his unit received no
food after 12 August, and for five days thereafter up to the time of his
capture had only eaten what the men could forage at night in the villages.
His men, he said, became physically so exhausted that they were no longer
combat effective. A captured sergeant of the 2d Battalion,
1st Regiment, said that of 630 men in his battalion only
20 survived on 18 August. In the 2d Regiment, according to
a captured captain, no battalion averaged more than 250 men on 17 August.
He said there was no resupply of ammunition from the rear. 
When the N.K. 12th Division reached P'ohang-dong it was
like a rubber band stretched to its uttermost limit. It must either break
or rebound. The North Korean system of logistics simply could not supply
these troops in the Kigye-P'ohang-dong area.
 Interv, author with Lt Col Paul F. Smith (G-3 Opns, 8th Army), 2 Oct
52: Interv, author with Lt Col Robert G. Ferguson (G-2 Sec, 8th Army), 2
Oct 52; Ltr with comments, Landrum to author, recd 28 Jun 54.
 ATIS Res Supp Interrog Rpts, Issue 4 (N.K. 8th Div), pp. 23-24;
Ibid., Issue 99 (N. K. 12th Div), p. 46; Ibid., Issue 96 (N.K. 5th Div),
 Crawford, Notes on Korea, 25 Jun-5 Dec 1950.
 ATIS Res Supp Interrog Rpts, Issue 4 (N.K. 8th Div), p. 24: EUSAK
WD, 12 Aug 50, ATIS Interrog Rpt 507, Sr Col Han Ch'ong, CofS 8th Div,
and interrog of Sr Sgt Yung Pyong Yong.
 ATIS Res Supp Interrog Rpts, Issue 106 (N.K. Arty), p. 70.
 EUSAK WD, G-3 Sec, 8-9 Aug 50; Ibid., POR 47, 10 Aug 50; GHQ FEC G-3
Opn Rpt 46, 9 Aug 50.
 EUSAK WD, Summ, 10-11 Aug 50, pp. 27-30; Ibid., G-2 Daily Sitrep, 9
Aug 50. and Br for CG, 10 Aug 50; Ibid., POR 89, 11 Aug 50.
 Emmerich, MS review comments, 30 Nov 57.
 Ibid.; Maj. Perry Austin and Capt. Mario Paglieri (KMAG advisers
with ROK 3d Div), It Can Be Done: A Lesson in Tactics, MS, copy in OCMH.
 Paglieri, Notes on ROK 3d Division, August 1950, MS, copy in OCMH;
Interv, author with Emmerich, 4 Dec 51; Karig, et al., Battle Report:
The War in Korea, p. 147.
 Interv, author with Farrell, 31 Dec 52 New York Times, August 14,
1950, dispatch by W. H. Lawrence.
 As finally constituted, Task Force Bradley comprised the 3d
Battalion, 9th Infantry; Tank Company, 9th Infantry; A Company, 2d
Engineer Combat Battalion; A Battery, 82d Antiaircraft Artillery
(Automatic Weapons) Battalion; C Battery, 15th Field Artillery
Battalion; 3d Platoon, Heavy Mortar Company, 8th Infantry; and medical
and signal detachments. EUSAK WD, 10 Aug 50, Msg at 101735, CG EUSAK to
CG 2d Div; Ibid., POR 87, 10 Aug 50; Ibid., Briefing for CG, 10 Aug 50;
1st Lt Robert J. Teitelbaum, Debriefing Rpt 47, Arty School, Ft. Sill,
Okla., 14 Dec 51; 82d AAA Bn WD, Summ, Aug 50; Ltr, Lt Col D. M. McMains
to author, 27 May 53 (McMains commanded the 3d Bn, 9th Inf of TF
Bradley); Rpt, The Korean Campaign, Arty School Rep, Army Field Forces
Observer Team 2.
 EUSAK WD, G-3 Jnl, Msgs 110120 and 110355 Aug 50; Ibid., G-3 Jnl,
12 Aug 50; GHQ FEC G-3 Opn Rpt 48, 11 Aug 50; Interv, author with
Farrell, 31 Dec 52; Ltr, McMains to author, 27 May 53; Rpt, The Korean
Campaign, Arty School Rep, AFF Observer Team 2.
 EUSAK WD G-3 Jnl, Msg 1335, 11 Aug 50; Davis, The 2d Infantry
Division in Korea, July-September 1950.
 Davis, The 2d Infantry Division in Korea July-September 1950; Rpt,
The Korean Campaign, Arty School Rep, AFF Observer Team 2; EUSAK WD, G-3
Jnl, Msgs 1331 and 1700, 11 Aug 50.
 Interv, author with Capt Darrigo, 5 Aug 53; Darrigo, Korean
Experiences, 1950, MS, copy in OCMH; New York Times, August 13, 1950,
dispatch by W. H. Lawrence 12 August from Yonil Airfield: Newsweek,
August 21, 1950, pp. 16-18, article by Harold Lavine in Korea.
 EUSAK WD, Summ, 11 Aug 50; GHQ FEC Opn Rpt 49, 18 Aug 50; New York
Times, August 11, 1950, Lawrence dispatch.
 ATIS Interrog Rpt 722, Issue 2, p. 51, Jr Lt Tu Chul Ki; ATIS
Interrog Rpt 734, Issue R, p. 80, Capt Kim Tong II, Trans Co, 2d Regt,
 ATIS Res Supp Interrog Rpts, Issue 106 (N.K. Arty), p. 46; EUSAK
WD, 30 Aug 50, ATIS Interrog Rpt 867; Ibid., POR 90, 11 Aug 50.
 USAF Hist Study 71, p. 50.
 Ibid.; Ltr, McMains to author, 27 May 53; New York Times, August
14, 1950, dispatch by W. H. Lawrence.
 Transcript of telephone conversation between Gen. Roderick R.
Allen, Deputy CofS ROK Army, and Collier, at 1600, 13 Aug 50, CofS
files, FEC; Fonecon, Allen and Lt. Gen. Lawrence C. Craigie, Vice Comdr,
FEAF, at 1930, 13 Aug 50, CofS files, FEC; Memo, Capt Webster W. Plourd.
ROK Air Liaison Secy to Allen, 131645 Aug 50, CofS files, FEC.
 USAF Hist Study 71, p. 50; Ltr, McMains to author, 27 May 53.
Colonel McMains stayed at Yonil with the 3d Battalion, 9th Infantry,
until 14 September 1950, when the ROK 3d Division assumed responsibility
for defense of the airstrip.
 Paglieri, Notes on ROK 3d Div, Aug 50; Austin and Paglieri, It Can
Be Done, p. 4.
 Ibid.; EUSAK WD, G-3 Sec, 15 Aug 50; GHQ FEC G-3 Opn Rpt 53, 16 Aug
50; Interv, author with Emmerich, 5 Dec 51.
 Paglieri, Notes on ROK 3d Div, Aug 50; Austin and Paglieri, It Can
Be Done, pp. 9-10; EUSAK WD G-3 Sec, 16-17 Aug 50; GHQ FEC G-3 Opn Rpt
54, 17 Aug 50; New York Herald Tribune, August 17, 1950.
 EUSAK WD, 21 Aug 50, ATIS Interrog Rpt 721, Lt. Pak Kwang Hon;
Ibid., 22 Aug 50, ATIS Interrog Rpt 734, Capt Kim Tong Il (2d Regt, 12th
Div), and related interrog of Kim in ATIS Interrog Rpts, Issue 2, Rpt
734, p. 80, Rpt 723, p. 55, Sgt Im Chang Nam; ATIS Res Supp Interrog
Rpts, Issue 99 (N.K. 12th Div), p. 46; New York Times, August 14, 1950.
 Interv, author with Farrell, 31 Dec 52; EUSAK WD, 13 Aug 50; Ibid.,
Summ, 1-31 Aug 50; GHQ FEC G-3 Opn Rpt 50, 13 Aug 50.
 New York Times, August 15, 1950, P'yongyang broadcast monitored in
 Capt Kim Tong Il (see n. 28): ATIS Res Supp Interrog Rpts, Issue 99
(N.K. 12th Div), pp. 46-47; 23d Inf WD, 17 Aug 50.
 ATIS Res Supp Interrog Rpts, Issue 99 (N.K. 17th Div), pp. 46-47;
EUSAK WD, 30 Aug 50, ATIS Interrog Rpt 869, Lee Son Chol; Ibid., 734,
Kim Tong Il; ATIS Interrog Rpts, Issue 2, p. 11, Rpt 704, Jr Lt Kim Dok
Yong, 2d Regt, 12th Div, Rpt 722, p. 51, Jr Lt Tu Chul Ko, 1st Regt,
12th Div, and Rpt 724, p. 58, Lt Chang Chin Sop, 1st Regt, 12th Div.
 EUSAK WD, 20 Aug 50; Ibid., Aug 50 Summ, 19-20 Aug; Ibid., G-3 Sec,
entry 9, 20 Aug 50; Ibid., G-3 Jnl, 20 Aug 50; GHQ FEC G-3 Opn Rpt 58,
21 Aug 50.
 New York Times, August 21, 1950.
 EUSAK WD, 22 Aug 50, ATIS Interrog Rpt 721, Lt Pak Kwang Hon, Rpt
722, Jr Lt Tu Chul Ki, Rpt 723 Im Chang Nam, Rpt 727, p. 64, Sr Sgt Choe
Chol Hak, and Rpt 734, Kim Tong Il: ATIS Interrog Rpts, Issue 2, p. 51,
Jr Lt Tu Chul Ki.
A survey of 825 North Korean prisoners revealed that they listed
shortage of food as most important of all factors causing low morale.
See USAF Hist Study 71, p. 52.
Causes of the Korean Tragedy ... Failure of Leadership, Intelligence and Preparation