[E–pub/Kindle] Enter the Dragon China's Undeclared War Against the US in Korea 1950 51
Through the frozen wastes of North Korea at the height of winter and being surprised by the site of dozens and then hundreds of snowmen scattered across the land until his North Korean driver tells him that these are Chinese coolies and soldiers who froze to death in the arctic cold and have been covered by snow The other is his description of the last days of the great Marshal Peng Dehuai Marshal Peng a straight shooting peasant revolutionary made the fatal mistake of uestioning Mao s actions during the Great Leap Forward For this he was removed from his posts arrested and then beaten in the course of 130 brutal interrogations until he died "beaten the course of 130 brutal interrogations until he died torture after many years of imprisonmentThe other notable point in the book is that even when completely down and out and certainly as soon as they were even a little bit back on their feet the North Koreans deferred to no one Even though it was the Chinese who were doing almost all the fighting at that point the North Koreans insisted on maintaining appearances the Chinese as their guests the North Koreans as the primary actors in the war and today the gigantic Korean war museum in Pyongyang has only one picture showing Chinese volunteers crossing the Yalu everything else is KoreanSpurr has the war correspondents disdain for the senior brass of his own army and has a special dislike for MacArthur so he may be a little unfair when it comes to the supreme commander but overall this is a fair and balanced book and one that fills a real gap in histories of the Korean war In a way Spurr was lucky he got into China to research this when the Chinese were repudiating the Cultural revolution and Maoism and his interlocutors were able to talk to him relatively freely That degree of openness may not be possible now It is possible that other researchers have
DUG UP MATERIAL THAT WAS NOT up material that was not to Spurr when he wrote this book in the 1980s but I am not aware of another English language book that presents the Chinese side in this manner Definitely worth reading A good history of China s initial involvement in the warSpurr mostly focuses on the experiences of a few soldiers in a single Chinese division near the frontline first at the Yalu Intervention through their first strike in October to the standstill at the end of January 1951Based on five years of research and over 20 fact finding trips to the People's Republic of China and Korea Enter the Dragon describes why China became involved in Korea and how its strategy evolved and re creates life on the front lines conference rooms and in the streets of the embattled citie. Not a scholarly history but still gave me insights into modern Chinese
history I never had Deep Russel Spurr was a British Australian journalist I never had Deep Russel Spurr was a British Australian journalist spent most of his life reporting from East Asia 20 years in Hong Kong during which time he made many trips to China and Taiwan and interviewed multiple veterans of "The Chinese Intervention In Korea To Write What Was Probably "Chinese intervention in Korea to write what was probably first book covering the Korean war from the Chinese perspective published in 1988 The book Enter the Dragon China s undeclared war against the US in Korea 1950 51 provides a great introduction to the other side of the Korean conflict Writing in journalistic style he freely recreates conversations and scenes that obviously rely on accounts of survivors as well as his own imagination but that does not mean he has not done his research He nows his history and the bare facts are always accurate And whatever the book lacks in typical military history details it than makes up in the form of vivid anecdotes that really bring the war to lifeFar too many Western accounts of the war portray the Chinese as some ind of undifferentiated mass of Reds who come across the mountains in human waves and overwhelm the Americans by sheer force of numbers getting tens of thousands of their own robot soldiers illed in the process This is very misleading and the most valuable contribution of Spurr s book is to put such caricatures to rest The Chinese intervention in Korea was well planned and methodical Lacking modern weapons and logistical support the PLA nonetheless was an organized force with high morale great elan and some excellent leaders Marshal Peng Dehuai had already made his mark in the Chinese civil war and thanks to interviews with some of his staff officers Spurr is able to provide a detailed picture of his leadership and initiative in Korea Badly euipped and lacking all modern amenities he and
the Chinese leadership in general were still determined not to allow the Americans to conuer all Chinese leadership in general were still determined not to allow the Americans to conuer all Korea They new their own weaknesses and compensated for them by using vast networks of coolies to carry supplies by using captured supplies by marching great distances on foot along mountain tracks to surprise the enemy and by att. Reissued to coincide with the 60th anniversary of US involvement in the Korean War this gripping dramatic military classic re creates six pivotal months in the conflict told from both the Chinese and Allied sidesThe Korean War was years before Vietnam the first great East West military misadventure eventually engaging sixteen countries under the UN flag in war against China and North Kore. Acking at night to nullify America s superior
firepower and domination of the air they and total domination of air They their opposite leaders and were well aware of MacArthur s island hopping exploits in the second world war when the North Koreans failed to break into the Pusan pocket Chinese staff officers fully expected MacArthur to go for a bold amphibious landing the only uestion was whereWhile they freuently had a cartoonish view of the GIs as uniformly soft and easily scared their view of their American adversaries was much realistic than the cartoonish view the Americans had of the Chinese coolies In fact the Chinese do seem to have tried to signal that total destruction of North Korea would not be allowed and they hoped that the Americans would understand these signals Unfortunately the Americans and in particular MacArthur were not mentally ready to see the Chinese as a respectable power with its own interests somewhat understandable given recent Chinese history while the Chinese for all their material backwardness saw themselves as a great civilization and were determined to be respected as one The first phase of their counter attack in Korea was well planned brilliantly executed and led to the most humiliating retreat in US military history These were
not meat grinder operations in which tens of thousands of Chinese died in human wave assaults they were meat grinder operations in which tens of thousands of Chinese died in human wave assaults they were series of well executed attacks that completely unbalanced the US forces and induced such defeatism that the US not only retreated from its positions near the Chinese borders but did not even try to hold a line around Pyongyang something they could have done if they had been better ledUltimately General Matthew Ridgeway arrived to take charge of the demoralized American troops and reversed their losses retaking Seoul and fighting the Chinese to a standstill at the 38th parallel In this phase the Chinese did suffer horrendous casualties and North Korea was bombed into the stone age but by then Marshal Peng and his troops had made their point Chinese core interests as defined by the Chinese would be defended no matter what the costThe book is full of fascinating anecdotes but the one that will forever stay in my mind is of Colonel Wong passing. A Enter the Dragon examines the Chinese side of the Korean War for the first time re creating and dramatizing Communist China's reluctant role in the undeclared war against the US in Korea Russell Spurr's military classic is drawn from firsthand recollections of observers and participants on both sides and focuses on six pivotal months beginning in August 1950 when China first deliberated. .