Korean War

Photo above: One trooper represented in the Korean War Memorial, Washington, D.C., Carol Highsmith Archives, Library of Congress.

Korean War

A remnant from World War II when the Soviet Union, in 1945, wrested control of the Korean peninsula from Japanese control north of the 38th parallel with the United States in the south. By 1948, with Cold War tensions rampant, the peninsula was separated into two halves, North and South, with separate governments that considered the whole as part of their territory. On June 25, 1950, North Korea invaded South Korea, prompting the United Nations to declare the invasion and the United States, with their allies, into conflict against the North, China, and the Soviet Union. The conflict would last for three years. The problem of a divided Korean peninsula still exists today.

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  • Battle Timeline

  • Korean War - Quick Battle Timeline 1952

    Korean War

    Leading into 1952

    Pockets of resistence remained in the south with United Nations troops engaged along a line north of the 38th Parallel. Armistice negotations that had begun in July 1951 were now stalled and the Korean War fell, for the most part, into a stalemate battle costing men and material without changing the status or eventual outcome.

    June 26, 1952 - March 26, 1953 - Battle of Old Baldy
    Troops: USA/South Korea/Columbia 30,000; China 20,000.
    Casualties (Killed/Wounded/Missing): USA/Allies 307; China NA.
    Five battles for Hill 266 in south-central Korea thought critical because it commanded viewpoints in three directions.
    Battle One - June 26 to July 3, 1952. United States attack on Chinese position is challenged by waves of counterattacks before China withdraws to the northeast, unable to break through. China losses estimated at 3,500.
    Battle Two - July 17, 1952. Chinese attack positions during unit changeover with first repelled, but subsequent attack takes the crest of the hill. China losses estimated at 1,093.
    Battle Three - End of July to August 4, 1952 - United Nations forces attempt to take back crest, which they succeed in doing, then fend off counterattacks.
    Battle Four - October 5-7, 1952.
    Battle Five - March 23-26, 1953.

    October 6-15, 1952 - Battle of White Horse
    Troops: USA/South Korea/France NA; China NA.
    Casualties (Killed/Wounded/Missing): USA/Allies 3,500-9,300, depending on source; China 5,412-10,000, depending on source.
    Battle for a hilltop along a strategic transportation route northwest of Cheorwon, it was occupied at the start of the battle by the United States, but changed hands twenty-four times over ten days. At the end of the battle, the United States was still in possession.

    October 14 to November 25, 1952 - Battle of Triangle Hill
    Troops: USA/South Korea/Ethiopia/Columbia NA; China 50,000.
    Casualties (Killed/Wounded/Missing): USA/Allies 6,331; China 11,529-19,000.
    In attempt to gain control of the Iron Triangle Area, United States and its United Nations allies fight a protracted battle with repeated attempts to take Triangle Hill and Sniper Ridge. China retained Triangle Hill after forty-two days of fighting. Most costly battle of 1952.

    Armistice Negotiations 1952

    The United States had been pursuing an armistice since December of 1950, seeking a twenty mile demilitarized zone and one to one prisoner exchange. The Republic of Korea, as well as North Korea, had been, until June 27, 1951, against peace unless it included reunification. That posture changed after armistice talks began, although throughout talks in 1952, you could make the case that the stance still stood. You can even make that case today. The sticking point throughout 1952 was prisoner exchange and repatriation. Many soldiers would not agree to be repatriated back to North Korea, which China and North Korea would not accept. By the end of the year, 1952, the United States had elected Dwight D. Eisenhower President. He took a more active role, visiting Korea in an attempt to find a way to end the war, and considering options that MacArthur had previously suggested before his removal.

    Photo above: United States Marine helicopters taking off from USS escort carrier Sicily, September 1, 1952, Sam Dyben, U.S. Navy Naval History and Heritage Command. Courtesy Wikipedia Commons. Data source, including casualty amounts; Wikipedia Commons; koreanwar-educator.org.

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