The Line: Combat in Korea, January-February 1951

The Line: Combat in Korea, January-February 1951 (Battles and Campaigns Series) by William Bowers

English | Oct 24, 2008 | ISBN: 0813125081 | 376 Pages | PDF | 5 MB

Many combat veterans refuse to discuss their experiences on the line.
With the passage of time and the unreliability of memory, it becomes
difficult to understand the true nature of war. In The Line: Combat in
Korea, January–February 1951, retired Army colonel William T. Bowers
uses firsthand, eyewitness accounts of the Korean War to offer readers
an intimate look at the heroism and horror of the battlefront. These
interviews of soldiers on the ground are particularly telling because
they were conducted by Army historians immediately following combat.
Known as the “forgotten war,” the action in Korea lasted from June 1950
until July 1953 and was particularly savage for its combatants. During
the first few months of the war, American and U.N. soldiers conducted
rapid advances and hasty withdrawals, risky amphibious landings and
dangerous evacuations, all while facing extreme weather conditions. In
early 1951, the first winter of the war, frigid cold and severe winds
complicated combat operations. As U.N. forces in Korea retreated from an
oncoming Chinese and North Korean attack, U.S. commanders feared they
would be forced to withdraw from occupation and admit to a Communist
victory. Using interviews and extensive historical research, The Line
analyzes how American troops fought the enemy to a standstill over this
pivotal two-month period, reversing the course of the war. In early
1951, the war had nearly been lost, but by February’s end, there existed
the possibility of preserving an independent South Korea. Bowers
compellingly illustrates how a series of small successes at the
regiment, battalion, company, platoon, squad, and soldier levels ensured
that the line was held against the North Korean enemy. The Line is the
first of three volumes detailing combat during the Korean War. Each book
focuses on the combat experiences of individual soldiers and junior
leaders. Bowers enhances our understanding of combat by providing
explanatory analysis and supplemental information from official records,
giving readers a complete picture of combat operations in this
understudied theatre. Through searing firsthand accounts and an intense
focus on this brief but critical time frame, The Line offers new
insights into U.S. military operations during the twentieth century and
guarantees that the sacrifices of these courageous soldiers will not be
lost to history.