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Army Magazine >> Army Magazine Archive >> ARMY Magazine - December 2002 >> Korean War at 50/December 1952 Email this... Email    Print this Print

Korean War at 50/December 1952

2 President-elect Dwight D. Eisenhower visits Korea for three days. The visit convinces him that further offensive action is useless and the struggle for the hills will only lead to more casualties. He decides to renew diplomatic efforts.

3 The U.N. General Assembly passes Indian representative V.K. Krishna Menon’s resolution, calling for the return of all willing prisoners and the establishment of a four-member Neutral Nations Repatriation Commission to supervise the remaining POWs. The revised amendment guarantees voluntary repatriation. The Soviet bloc is the sole opposition.

4 At the Pongam-do Island prisoner of war camp near K˘oje-do, some 9,000 Communist Korean civilian internees refuse to arrange their clothing and equipment for inspection. Many of these prisoners are from K˘oje-do POW camp, which had been the scene of a bloody prison revolt.

6 Camp authorities at K˘oje-do say they have evidence that prisoners at K˘oje-do and Pongam-do might be planning a mass escape.

7 Prisoners at Pongam-do defy camp authorities and conduct military drills. Three days later a small group of prisoners assault a prison official, and a pair of prisoners attack another official.

9 Planes from the aircraft carriers Oriskany, Bon Homme Richard and Essex attack rail facilities in North Korea. A week later, planes from the same carriers attack rail targets along the Manchurian border.

11 Two battalions of the Chinese People’s Volunteer Army (CPVA) attack Republic of Korea (ROK) army outposts on Little Nori, Hill Betty and Hill 105 along the Imjin River. The CPVA takes Little Nori and Hill 105, both of which are recaptured during the day. That night the CPVA takes Little Nori for a second time and repulses four counterattacks by the ROK 11th Regiment.

13 The ROK 11th Regiment retakes Little Nori and repulses two CPVA attempts to retake it.

14 The camp commandant at Pongam-do orders the 3,600 internees to end their drilling; instead they commence a mass demonstration which the guards believe is a breakout attempt. POWs lock arms, forming a protective human screen, behind which other POWs throw rocks at the approaching ROK guards, who are firing warning shots into the air. When the POWs refuse to disband, the guards open fire, killing 85 POWs and wounding 113. The North Korean People’s Army uses the incident as propaganda against the United States.

17 President-elect Eisenhower meets with retired Gen. Douglas MacArthur, who tells him his plan to win the war. MacArthur proposes to either threaten China with bombing her cities or have the Air Force drop radioactive waste along the border between China and North Korea, which would prevent reinforcement from China and trap the enemy troops already on the peninsula. He then suggests that U.N. forces launch amphibious attacks on the east and west coasts of North Korea, catching the enemy in a three-way vise. Eisenhower rejects MacArthur’s recommendations.

25 Battle of T-Bone Hill. The CPVA attacks the 38th Infantry Regiment, 2nd Infantry Division (ID), at outposts Eerie and Arsenal. The enemy suffers an estimated 500 casualties during the intense battle, while the regiment suffers only 47, including six killed.

27 The newly organized ROK 12th Division begins taking over for the U.S. 45th ID’s sector. The transfer is completed three days later.

29 The U.S. 7th ID completes its relief of the 2nd ID in the I Corps section of the line.