Cover image for A Christmas far from home : an epic tale of courage and survival during the Korean War
Title:
A Christmas far from home : an epic tale of courage and survival during the Korean War
Author:
Weintraub, Stanley, 1929-
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
Boston, MA : Da Capo Press, a member of the Perseus Books Group Press, 2014.
Physical Description:
xvi, 286 pages : illustrations, maps ; 24 cm
Summary:
"From an acclaimed historian, the dramatic story of the Christmas escape of thousands of American troops overwhelmingly surrounded by the enemy in Korea's harsh terrain. Just before Thanksgiving in 1950, five months into the Korean War, General MacArthur flew to American positions in the north and grandly announced an 'end-the-war-by-Christmas' offensive despite recent intervention by Mao's Chinese, who would soon trap tens of thousands of US troops poised toward the Yalu River border. Led by Marines, an overwhelmed X Corps evacuated the frigid, mountainous Chosin Reservoir fastness and fought a swarming enemy and treacherous snow and ice to reach the coast. Weather, terrain, Chinese firepower, and a 4,000-foot chasm made escape seem impossible in the face of a vanishing Christmas. But endurance and sacrifice prevailed, and the last troop ships weighed anchor on Christmas Eve. In the tradition of his Silent Night and Pearl Harbor Christmas, Stanley Weintraub presents another gripping narrative of a wartime Christmas season"--
Language:
English
Contents:
Foreword -- A Turkey for Thanksgiving -- Upbeat Thanksgiving -- The Pincers Parlay -- Mission Impossible -- An Entirely New War -- Beginning the Breakout -- Hagaru to Koto-ri -- A Bridge Apart -- Downhill All the Way -- Christmas Eve -- Epilogue.
ISBN:
9780306822322

9780306824135
Format :
Book

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Summary

Summary

The day after Thanksgiving, five months into the Korean War, General Douglas MacArthur flew to American positions in the north and grandly announced an end-the-war-by-Christmas offensive, despite recent evidence of intervention by Mao's Chinese troops. Marching north in plunging temperatures, General Edward Almond's X Corps, which included a Marine division under the able leadership of General Oliver Smith, encountered little resistance. But thousands of Chinese, who had infiltrated acrossthe frozen Yalu River, were lying in wait and would soon trap tens of thousands of US troops.

Led by the Marines, an overwhelmed X Corps evacuated the frigid, mountainous Chosin Reservoir vastness and fought a swarming enemy and treacherous snow and ice to reach the coast. Weather, terrain, Chinese firepower, and a 4,000-foot chasm made escape seem impossible in the face of a vanishing Christmas. But endurance and sacrifice prevailed, and the last troopships weighed anchor on Christmas Eve.

In the tradition of his Silent Night and Pearl Harbor Christmas , Stanley Weintraub presents another gripping narrative of a wartime Christmas season.

A Military Book Club main selection


Author Notes

Stanley Weintraub is Evan Pugh Professor Emeritus of Arts & Humanities at Pennsylvania State University. He has written acclaimed works of military history on World Wars I & II. He lives in Boalsburg, Pennsylvania.

(Publisher Provided) Stanley Weintraub was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania on April 17, 1929. He received a B.S. in education from West Chester State Teachers College in 1949 and a M. A. in English from Temple University. He served in the Army during the Korean Conflict where he was awarded the Bronze Star and the Korean Ribbon with five battle stars. Upon his return, he received a Ph.D. from Pennsylvania State University where he went on to teach until his retirement.

He wrote over 40 books during his lifetime including Private and Public Shaw: A Dual Portrait of Lawrence of Arabia and George Bernard Shaw, Beardsley: A Biography, 11 Days in December, Silent Night: The Story of the World War I Christmas Truce, MacArthur's War, Long Day's Journey into War, and A Stillness Heard Round the World: The End of the Great War. He received the George Freedley Award in 1971 for Journey to Heartbreak: The Crucible Years of Bernard Shaw, 1914-1918 and the Freedom Foundation Award in 1980 for The London Yankees: Portraits of American Writers and Artists in London, 1894-1914.

(Bowker Author Biography)


Reviews 1

Booklist Review

By November 1950, General Douglas MacArthur was confident to the point of arrogance. His risky but brilliant invasion of Inchon had reversed the course of the Korean War, driving the North Koreans back into their own territory north of the 38th parallel. MacArthur predicted that U.S. troops would be home by Christmas, despite increasing evidence that Chinese troops were entering the war in force. His miscalculation would lead to a military disaster as thousands of American and UN troops were forced into a retreat under a Chinese onslaught during severe winter conditions. Weintraub, the award-winning historian, follows the unfolding setback on both the political and military track. He portrays MacArthur as ego-driven and politically ambitious; he surrounded himself with yes-men when he would have benefited from those advising caution. President Truman was, initially, too willing to accept MacArthur's assurances. The heroes in this account are the troops in the field who endured appalling conditions, maintained discipline, and staved off complete collapse.--Freeman, Jay Copyright 2014 Booklist


Table of Contents

Prefacep. xiii
1 A Turkey for Thanksgivingp. 1
2 Upbeat Thanksgivingp. 29
3 The Pincers Parlayp. 61
4 Mission Impossiblep. 83
5 An Entirely New Warp. 105
6 Beginning the Breakoutp. 129
7 Hagaru to Koto-rip. 157
8 A Bridge Apartp. 187
9 Downhill All the Wayp. 215
10 Christmas Evep. 233
Epiloguep. 257
Sourcesp. 263
Acknowledgmentsp. 277
Indexp. 279

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