Second Battle of Seoul
The Second Battle of Seoul was a battle that resulted in United Nations forces recapturing Seoul from the North Koreans in late September 1950. Before the battle, North Korea had just one understrength division in the city, with the majority of its forces south of the capital. MacArthur oversaw the 1st Marine Regiment as it fought through North Korean positions on the road to Seoul. Control of Operation Chromite was given to Major General Edward Almond, the X Corps commander. General Almond was in an enormous hurry to capture Seoul by September 25 three months after the North Korean assault across the 38th parallel; the advance on Seoul was bloody after the landings at Inchon. The reason was the appearance in the Seoul area of two first-class fighting units of the Korean People's Army, the 78th Independent Infantry Regiment and 25th Infantry Brigade, about 7,000 troops in all; the KPA launched a T-34 attack, trapped and destroyed, a Yak bombing run in Incheon harbor, which did little damage. The KPA attempted to stall the UN offensive to allow time to reinforce Seoul and withdraw troops from the south.
Though warned that the process of taking Seoul would allow remaining KPA forces in the south to escape, MacArthur felt that he was bound to honor promises given to the South Korean government to retake the capital as soon as possible. On the second day, vessels carrying the U. S. Army's 7th Infantry Division arrived in Incheon Harbor. General Almond was eager to get the division into position to block a possible enemy movement from the south of Seoul. On the morning of September 18, the division's 2nd Battalion, 32nd Infantry Regiment landed at Incheon and the remainder of the regiment went ashore in the day; the next morning, the 2nd Battalion moved up to relieve a U. S. Marine battalion occupying positions on the right flank south of Seoul. Meanwhile, the 7th Division's 31st Infantry Regiment came ashore at Incheon. Responsibility for the zone south of Seoul highway passed to the 7th Division at 18:00 on September 19; the 7th Infantry Division engaged in heavy fighting with KPA forces on the outskirts of Seoul.
The Marines entered Seoul shortly after 7:00am on September 25 to find it fortified. Buildings were defended by machine guns and snipers, on Ma Po Boulevard, the main road through the city, the KPA had established a series of 8-foot-high barricades of burlap bags filled with either sand or rice. Located about 200-300 yards apart, each major intersection of the city featured such a barricade, the approaches to which were laced with mines, which were defended by a 45mm anti-tank gun and machine guns; each had to be eliminated one at a time, it took the Marines, on average, 45–60 minutes to clear each position. Casualties mounted. Edwin H. Simmons, a Major in 3rd Battalion, 5th Marines, likened the experience of his company's advance up the boulevard to "attacking up Pennsylvania Avenue towards the Capital in Washington, D. C." He described the street as "once a busy, pleasant avenue lined with sycamores, groceries and tea shops." Anxious to pronounce the conquest of Seoul on MacArthur's insistence by the third-month anniversary of the war, Almond declared the city liberated on September 25, although Marines were still engaged in house-to-house combat.
Effective resistance would cease by September 27. After the battle, South Korean police executed citizens and their families who were suspected as communist sympathizers in what is known as the Goyang Geumjeong Cave and Namyangju massacres. Eugene A. Obregon, US Marine posthumously awarded the Medal of Honor for shielding a fellow Marine during the battle First Battle of Seoul Third Battle of Seoul Operation Ripper Halberstam, David; the Coldest WInter – America and the Korean War. New York: Hyperion. ISBN 978-1-4013-0052-4. Hoyt, Edwin P. On To The Yalu, ISBN 0-8128-2977-8
Battle of Kyongju
The Battle of Kyongju was an engagement between United Nations and North Korean forces early in the Korean War from August 31 to September 15, 1950, in the vicinity of Kyongju in South Korea. It was a part of the Battle of Pusan Perimeter, was one of several large engagements fought simultaneously; the battle ended in a victory for the United Nations after large numbers of United States and Republic of Korea troops repelled a strong North Korean attack. Holding a line north of P'ohang-dong, An'gang-ni, Kyongju, the so-called "Kyongju corridor," the Republic of Korea Army I Corps was unexpectedly hit with an attack by the North Korean People's Army's II Corps, part of the wider Great Naktong Offensive; the South Korean troops demoralized and struggling to maintain a strong defensive line, were pushed back from their positions. US Army units were called in to assist the South Koreans repel the attack. Fighting was heavy and the two sides fought to capture and recapture P'ohang-dong and An'gang-ni, with the North Koreans seeking to break through the Kyongju corridor as a way to attack the UN base at Pusan.
However, with large amounts of UN air and naval support, the US and South Korean ground forces were able to rout and force back the North Korean troops after two weeks of fighting. From the outbreak of the Korean War and the invasion of South Korea by the North, the North Korean People's Army had enjoyed superiority in both manpower and equipment over both the Republic of Korea Armed Forces and the United Nations forces dispatched to South Korea to prevent it from collapsing; the North Korean strategy was to aggressively pursue UN and South Korean forces on all avenues of approach south and to engage them aggressively, attacking from the front and initiating a double envelopment of both flanks of the unit, which allowed the North Koreans to surround and cut off the opposing force, which would be forced to retreat in disarray leaving behind much of its equipment. From their initial June 25 offensive to fights in July and early August, the North Koreans used this strategy to defeat any UN force and push it south.
However, when the UN forces, under the Eighth United States Army, established the Pusan Perimeter in August, the UN troops held a continuous line along the peninsula which North Korean troops could not flank, their advantages in numbers decreased daily as the superior UN logistical system brought in more troops and supplies to the UN army. When the North Koreans approached the Pusan Perimeter on August 5, they attempted the same frontal assault technique on the four main avenues of approach into the perimeter. Throughout August, the NK 6th Division, the NK 7th Division engaged the US 25th Infantry Division at the Battle of Masan repelling a UN counteroffensive before countering with battles at Komam-ni and Battle Mountain; these attacks stalled as UN forces, well equipped and with plenty of reserves repelled North Korean attacks. North of Masan, the NK 4th Division and the US 24th Infantry Division sparred in the Naktong Bulge area. In the First Battle of Naktong Bulge, the North Korean division was unable to hold its bridgehead across the river as large numbers of US reserve forces were brought in to repel it, on August 19, the NK 4th Division was forced back across the river with 50 percent casualties.
In the Taegu region, five North Korean divisions were repulsed by three UN divisions in several attempts to attack the city during the Battle of Taegu. Heavy fighting took place at the Battle of the Bowling Alley where the NK 13th Division was completely destroyed in the attack. On the east coast, three more North Korean divisions were repulsed by the South Koreans at P'ohang-dong during the Battle of P'ohang-dong. All along the front, the North Korean troops were reeling from these defeats, the first time in the war their strategies were not working. In planning its new offensive, the North Korean command decided any attempt to flank the UN force was impossible thanks to the support of the UN navy. Instead, they opted to use frontal attack to breach the perimeter and collapse it as the only hope of achieving success in the battle. Fed by intelligence from the Soviet Union the North Koreans were aware the UN forces were building up along the Pusan Perimeter and that it must conduct an offensive soon or it could not win the battle.
A secondary objective was to destroy the UN and South Korean units in that city. As part of this mission, the North Korean units would first cut the supply lines to Taegu. On August 20, the North Korean commands distributed operations orders to their subordinate units; the North Koreans called for a simultaneous five-prong attack against the UN lines. These attacks would overwhelm the UN defenders and allow the North Koreans to break through the lines in at least one place to force the UN forces back. Five battle groupings were ordered; the easternmost of these was for the NK 12th and NK 5th Divisions break through the ROK Capital Division and ROK 3rd Division to P'ohang-dong and Kyongju. The North Korean attack struck first on the UN's right flank on Korea's east coast. Although the NK II Corps general attack in the north and east was planned for September 2, the NK 12th Division, now with a strength of 5,000 men, started to move forward from the mountains earlier than planned, from where it had reorganized after its defeat in the Kigye and P'ohang-dong area.
The division was low in food supply and ammunition, its men suffered from low morale. On August 26, American and South Korean officers in the P'ohang-dong and Kigye area were optimistic.
The Korean War was a war between North Korea and South Korea. The war began on 25 June 1950 when North Korea invaded South Korea following a series of clashes along the border; as a product of the Cold War between the Soviet Union and the United States, Korea had been split into two sovereign states in 1948. A socialist state was established in the north under the communist leadership of Kim Il-sung and a capitalist state in the south under the anti-communist leadership of Syngman Rhee. Both governments of the two new Korean states claimed to be the sole legitimate government of all of Korea, neither accepted the border as permanent; the conflict escalated into warfare when North Korean military forces—supported by the Soviet Union and China—crossed the border and advanced south into South Korea on 25 June 1950. The United Nations Security Council authorized the formation and dispatch of UN forces to Korea to repel what was recognized as a North Korean invasion. Twenty-one countries of the United Nations contributed to the UN force, with the United States providing around 90% of the military personnel.
After the first two months of war, South Korean and U. S. forces dispatched to Korea were on the point of defeat, forced back to a small area in the south known as the Pusan Perimeter. In September 1950, an amphibious UN counter-offensive was launched at Incheon, cut off many North Korean troops; those who escaped envelopment and capture were forced back north. UN forces approached the Yalu River—the border with China—but in October 1950, mass Chinese forces crossed the Yalu and entered the war; the surprise Chinese intervention triggered a retreat of UN forces which continued until mid-1951. In these reversals of fortune, Seoul changed hands four times, the last two years of fighting became a war of attrition, with the front line close to the 38th parallel; the war in the air, was never a stalemate. North Korea was subject to a massive bombing campaign. Jet fighters confronted each other in air-to-air combat for the first time in history, Soviet pilots covertly flew in defense of their communist allies.
The fighting ended on 27 July 1953. The agreement created the Korean Demilitarized Zone to separate North and South Korea, allowed the return of prisoners. However, no peace treaty was signed, according to some sources the two Koreas are technically still at war, engaged in a frozen conflict. In April 2018, the leaders of North and South Korea met at the demilitarized zone and agreed to work towards a treaty to formally end the Korean War. In South Korea, the war is referred to as "625" or the "6–2–5 Upheaval", reflecting the date of its commencement on June 25. In North Korea, the war is referred to as the "Fatherland Liberation War" or alternatively the "Chosǒn War". In China, the war is called the "War to Resist America and Aid Korea", although the term "Chaoxian War" is used in unofficial contexts, along with the term "Hán War" more used in regions such as Hong Kong and Macau. In the U. S. the war was described by President Harry S. Truman as a "police action" as the United States never formally declared war on its opponents and the operation was conducted under the auspices of the United Nations.
It has been referred to in the English-speaking world as "The Forgotten War" or "The Unknown War" because of the lack of public attention it received both during and after the war, in relation to the global scale of World War II, which preceded it, the subsequent angst of the Vietnam War, which succeeded it. Imperial Japan destroyed the influence of China over Korea in the First Sino-Japanese War, ushering in the short-lived Korean Empire. A decade after defeating Imperial Russia in the Russo-Japanese War, Japan made Korea its protectorate with the Eulsa Treaty in 1905 annexed it with the Japan–Korea Annexation Treaty in 1910. Many Korean nationalists fled the country; the Provisional Government of the Republic of Korea was founded in 1919 in Nationalist China. It failed to achieve international recognition, failed to unite nationalist groups, had a fractious relationship with its U. S.-based founding president, Syngman Rhee. From 1919 to 1925 and beyond, Korean communists led internal and external warfare against the Japanese.
In China, the Nationalist National Revolutionary Army and the communist People's Liberation Army helped organize Korean refugees against the Japanese military, which had occupied parts of China. The Nationalist-backed Koreans, led by Yi Pom-Sok, fought in the Burma Campaign; the communists, led by Kim Il-sung among others, fought the Japanese in Manchuria. At the Cairo Conference in November 1943, the United Kingdom, the United States all decided that "in due course Korea shall become free and independent". At the Tehran Conference in November 1943 and the Yalta Conference in February 1945, the Soviet Union promised to join its allies in the Pacific War within three months of the victory in Europe. Accordingly, it declared war o
Battle of Chumonchin Chan
The Battle of Chumonchin Chan or the Action of 2 July 1950 was the battle fought between surface combatants during the main phase of the Korean War. It began. On 2 July 1950, USS Juneau, HMS Black Swan, HMS Jamaica were sailing along the coast of the Sea of Japan when they encountered four North Korean torpedo and gunboats that had just finished escorting a flotilla of ten ammunition ships up the coast; the North Korean torpedo boats began an attack on the allied ships. Before their torpedoes could be fired however, they were met with a salvo of gunfire from the United Nations ships which destroyed three of the torpedo boats; the surviving North Korean craft fled. In July, Juneau encountered the same ammunition ships and destroyed them. Naval Battles of the Korean War. Archived 2 November 2013 at the Wayback Machine
Air Battle of South Korea
The Air Battle of South Korea was an air campaign early in the Korean War occurring from June 25 to July 20, 1950, over South Korea between the air forces of North Korea and the United Nations, including the countries of South Korea, the United States and the United Kingdom. The month-long fight for air supremacy over the country saw several small engagements over airfields in Seoul and Taejon and ended in victory for the UN air force, able to destroy the small North Korean People's Air Force. Main Article: Initial Phase of Korean WarOn the morning of June 25, 1950, ten divisions of the North Korean People's Army launched a full-scale invasion of the nation's neighbor to the south, the Republic of Korea; the force of 89,000 men moved in six columns, catching the Republic of Korea Army by surprise, resulting in a rout. The smaller South Korean army suffered from widespread lack of organization and equipment, was unprepared for war; the numerically superior North Korean forces destroyed isolated resistance from the 38,000 South Korean soldiers on the front before it began moving south.
To prevent South Korea's collapse the United Nations Security Council voted to send military forces. The United States' Seventh Fleet dispatched Task Force 77, led by the fleet carrier USS Valley Forge. By June 27, the naval and air forces moving to Korea had authorization to attack North Korean targets with the goal of helping repel the North Korean invasion of the country. With the US forces accepting the North Korean attack as an act of war, it became imperative to evacuate civilians and American diplomats from Korea, as the forces of the north and south were battling across the peninsula. On June 27 the South Koreans were losing the First Battle of Seoul. Most of South Korea's forces retreated in the face of the invasion; the North Koreans would capture the city the next day forcing the South Korean government and its shattered army to retreat further south. In the meantime, US naval and air forces were evacuating US diplomats, military dependents, civilians by ship and air transport, hoping to get American civilians out of the country "by any means."
Civilians were being gathered at Suwon Airfield and Kimpo Airfield near Seoul, before moving to Inchon and out of the country. These airlifts and convoys were being escorted by aircraft from the United States, operating its aircraft from bases in Japan; the United States Air Force had 1,172 aircraft in the Pacific region at the time of the outbreak of the Korean War, including hundreds of F-80 Shooting Stars as well as numerous F-82 Twin Mustangs, B-26 Invaders, B-29 Superfortresses, among others. Hundreds of aircraft were available to be mustered against the North Korean invasion, many of them the newest jet engine-powered fighter aircraft; the aircraft could fulfill a variety of missions and were well equipped, well armed and out of reach of North Korean attack, with many bases safely in Japan. Additionally, the Fleet Air Arm of the United Kingdom, the Royal Australian Air Force of Australia provided assistance as 800 Naval Air Squadron, 802 Naval Air Squadron, No. 77 Squadron RAAF were dispatched to provide additional support for ground operations.
The combined airpower had about 33,975 personnel. The North Korean People's Air Force consisted of only 132 aircraft and 2,000 personnel, of whom only 80 were pilots and most poorly trained; the two Koreas had small air forces of their own, with the North Koreans' 132 aircraft organized into the KPAF 1st Air Division. At the early phase in the war, these aircraft were used boldly to the North Koreans' advantage. Aware of their air superiority over the Republic of Korea Air Force and not expecting UN intervention, they anticipated light resistance in the air. In all, the KPAF had 2,000 personnel. At the June 25 outbreak of the war, the US aircraft in Japan began moving to the closest bases to the Korean Peninsula, Itazuke Air Base and Ashiya Air Base. MacArthur ordered. North Korean aircraft first met US aircraft in combat during the Battle of Suwon Airfield, in which seven of the 13 North Korean aircraft were destroyed; the North Korean Lavochkin La-7 and Ilyushin Il-10 aircraft were outmatched by the superior North American F-82 Twin Mustang and F-80C Shooting Star aircraft, which had better-trained pilots.
The planes of the 8th Fighter Wing, which were attempting to defend Suwon to allow evacuation of UN civilians encountered repeated harassing attacks from North Korean aircraft operating out of Heijo Airfield in Pyongyang. Heijo was the KPAF's main base, but in the first few days in the war the US aircraft only had authorization to defend themselves if attacked, they could not conduct offensive operations into North Korea. During the day on June 29, the KPAF returned to attack Suwon, six sorties of North Korean aircraft strafed the airfield during the morning, but each time were driven off by American F-80s, in the course of these attacks Lieutenant William T. Norris and Lieutenant Roy W. Marsh each shot down a North Korean aircraft; the North Koreans were able to destroy a single C-54 Skymaster parked at the airfield. The sorties culminated in a battle above Suwon in the midst of a conference of US military leaders in the town. Leaders including Lieutenant General George E. Stratemeyer and General of the Army Douglas MacArthur witnessed the final sortie of the day, in which four North Korean aircraft attacked four P-51 Mustang aircraft over the town.
The four P-51s succeeded in shooting down all four of the North Korean aircraft, with Lieutenant Orrin R. Fox scoring two kills and Lieutenants Richard J. Burns, Ha
Battle of P'ohang-dong
The Battle of P'ohang-dong was an engagement between the United Nations and North Korean forces early in the Korean War, with fighting continuing from 5–20 August 1950 around the town of P'ohang-dong, South Korea. It was a part of the Battle of Pusan Perimeter, was one of several large engagements fought simultaneously; the battle ended in a victory for the United Nations after their forces were able to drive off an attempted offensive by three North Korean divisions in the mountainous eastern coast of the country. Forces of the South Korean Republic of Korea Army, supported by the United States Navy and United States Air Force, defended the eastern coast of the country as a part of the Pusan Perimeter; when several divisions of the North Korean People's Army crossed through mountainous terrain to push the UN forces back, a complicated battle ensued in the rugged terrain around P'ohang-dong, which contained the vital supply line to the main UN force at Taegu. For two weeks North Korean and South Korean ground units fought in several bloody back-and-forth battles and retaking ground in which neither side was able to gain the upper hand.
Following the breakdown of the North Korean supply lines and amidst mounting casualties, the exhausted North Korean troops were forced to retreat. The battle was a turning point in the war for North Korean forces, which had seen previous victories owing to superior numbers and equipment, but the distances and demands exacted on them at P'ohang-dong rendered their supply lines untenable. Following the invasion of the Republic of Korea by its northern neighbor, the Democratic People's Republic of Korea and the subsequent outbreak of the Korean War on 25 June 1950, the United Nations decided to enter the conflict on behalf of South Korea; the United States—a member of the UN—subsequently committed ground forces to the Korean peninsula with the goal of fighting back the North Korean invasion and to prevent South Korea from collapsing. However, U. S. forces in the Far East had been decreasing since the end of World War II five years earlier, at the time the closest forces were the 24th Infantry Division, headquartered in Japan.
Advance elements of the 24th were badly defeated in the Battle of Osan on 5 July, the first encounter between American and North Korean forces. For the first month after the defeat of Task Force Smith, 24th Infantry was defeated and forced south by superior North Korean numbers and equipment; the regiments of the 24th Infantry were systematically pushed south in engagements around Chochiwon and Pyongtaek. The 24th made a final stand in the Battle of Taejon, where it was completely destroyed but delayed North Korean forces until July 20. By that time the 8th Army′s force of combat troops were equal to North Korean forces attacking the region, with new UN units arriving every day. While the 24th Infantry Division was fighting on the Korean western front, the 5th and 12th North Korean Infantry Divisions advanced on the eastern front; the North Korean army, 89,000 men strong, had advanced into South Korea in six columns, catching the Republic of Korea Army by surprise, resulting in a complete rout.
The smaller South Korean army suffered from widespread lack of organization and equipment, it was unprepared for war. Numerically superior, North Korean forces destroyed isolated resistance from the 38,000 South Korean soldiers on the front before it began moving south. With Taejon captured, North Korean forces began surrounding the Pusan Perimeter from all sides in an attempt to envelop it; the 4th and 6th North Korean Infantry Divisions advanced south in a wide flanking maneuver. The two divisions attempted to envelop the UN′s left flank, but became spread out in the process. At the same time the NK 5th and 12th Divisions pressured the South Koreans on the right flank, they advanced on UN positions with armor and superior numbers defeating U. S. and South Korean forces and forcing them further south. On 21 July the NK 12th Division was ordered by the II North Korean Corps to capture P'ohang-dong by 26 July. Though they were pushed back, South Korean forces on the right flank increased their resistance further south, hoping to delay North Korean units as much as possible.
North and South Korean units sparred for control of several cities, inflicting heavy casualties on one another. The Republic of Korea Army forces defended Yongdok fiercely before being pushed back, they performed well in the Battle of Andong, forcing the NK 12th Division to delay its attacks on P'ohang-dong until early August. The South Korean forces had undergone significant reorganization, after receiving a large number of recruits by 26 July, the South Korean Army had reached an effective strength of 85,871 men. Along the South Korean front of the perimeter, on the eastern corridor, the terrain made moving through the area difficult. A major road ran from Taegu 50 mi east to P'ohang-dong on Korea's east coast; the only major north-south road intersecting this line moves south from Andong through Yongch'on, midway between Taegu and P'ohang-dong. The only other natural entry through the line lies at the town of An'gang-ni, 12 mi west of P'ohang-dong, situated near a valley through the natural rugged terrain to the major rail hub of Kyongju, a staging area for moving supplies to Taegu.
Gen. Walton Walker—commanding the 8th Army—chose not to reinforce the area, as he felt the terrain made meaningful attack impossible, preferring to respond to attack with reinforcements from the transportation routes and air cover from Yonil Airfield, south of P'ohang-dong. With the exception of the valley between Taegu and P'ohong-dong, the terrain along the line was roug
Battle of Pusan Perimeter
The Battle of Pusan Perimeter was a large-scale battle between United Nations and North Korean forces lasting from August 4 to September 18, 1950. It was one of the first major engagements of the Korean War. An army of 140,000 UN troops, having been pushed to the brink of defeat, were rallied to make a final stand against the invading North Korean army, 98,000 men strong. UN forces, having been defeated by the advancing North Koreans, were forced back to the "Pusan Perimeter", a 140-mile defensive line around an area on the southeastern tip of the Korean Peninsula that included the port of Pusan; the UN troops, consisting of forces from the Republic of Korea, United States and United Kingdom mounted a last stand around the perimeter, fighting off repeated North Korean attacks for six weeks as they were engaged around the cities of Taegu, P'ohang, the Naktong River. The massive North Korean assaults were unsuccessful in forcing the United Nations troops back further from the perimeter, despite two major pushes in August and September.
North Korean troops, hampered by supply shortages and massive losses, continually staged attacks on UN forces in an attempt to penetrate the perimeter and collapse the line. However, the UN used the port to amass an overwhelming advantage in troops and logistics, its navy and air forces remained unchallenged by the North Koreans during the fight. After six weeks, the North Korean force collapsed and retreated in defeat after the UN force launched a counterattack at Inchon on September 15; the battle would be the furthest the North Korean troops would advance in the war, as subsequent fighting ground the war into a stalemate. Following the outbreak of the Korean War, the United Nations decided to commit troops in support of the Republic of Korea, invaded by the neighboring Democratic People's Republic of Korea; the United States subsequently sent ground forces to the Korean peninsula with the goal of fighting back the North Korean invasion and to prevent South Korea from collapsing. However, US forces in the Far East had been decreasing since the end of World War II, five years earlier, at the time the closest forces were the 24th Infantry Division of the Eighth United States Army, headquartered in Japan.
The division was understrength, most of its equipment was antiquated due to reductions in military spending. Regardless, the 24th Infantry Division was ordered into South Korea; the Korean People's Army, 89,000 men strong, had advanced into South Korea in six columns, catching the Republic of Korea Army by surprise and routing it. The smaller ROKA suffered from widespread lack of organization and equipment, was unprepared for war. Numerically superior, KPA forces destroyed isolated resistance from the 38,000 ROKA soldiers on the front before moving south. Most of South Korea's forces retreated in the face of the advance. By June 28, the KPA had captured South Korea's capital of Seoul, forcing the government and its shattered forces to retreat further south. Though it was pushed back, South Korean forces increased their resistance further south, hoping to delay KPA units as much as possible. North and South Korean units sparred for control of several cities, inflicting heavy casualties on one another.
The ROKA defended Yongdok fiercely before being forced back, managed to repel North Korean forces in the Battle of Andong. Outnumbered and under-equipped US forces—committed in piecemeal fashion as as they could be deployed—were defeated and pushed south; the 24th Division, the first US division committed, took heavy losses in the Battle of Taejon in mid-July, which they were driven from after heavy fighting. Elements of the 3rd Battalion, 29th Infantry Regiment, newly arrived in the country, were wiped out at Hadong in a coordinated ambush by KPA forces on July 27, leaving open a pass to the Pusan area. Soon after, Chinju to the west was taken, pushing back the 19th Infantry Regiment and leaving open routes to Pusan. US units were subsequently able to defeat and push back the KPA on the flank in the Battle of the Notch on August 2. Suffering mounting losses, the KPA force on the west flank withdrew for several days to re-equip and receive reinforcements; this granted both sides several days of reprieve to prepare for the attack on the Pusan Perimeter.
The KPA forces were organized into a mechanized combined arms force of ten divisions numbering some 90,000 well-trained and well-equipped troops in July, with hundreds of T-34 tanks. However, defensive actions by US and South Korean forces had delayed the North Koreans in their invasion of South Korea, costing them 58,000 of their troops and a large number of tanks. In order to recoup these losses, the North Koreans had to rely on less-experienced replacements and conscripts, many of whom had been taken from the conquered regions of South Korea. During the course of the battle, the North Koreans raised a total of 13 infantry divisions and one armored division to the fight at Pusan Perimeter; the UN forces were organized under the command of the United States Army. The Eighth United States Army served as the headquarters component for the UN forces, was headquartered at Taegu. Under it were three weak US divisions; these forces occupied the western segment of the perimeter, along the Naktong River.
The ROKA, a force of 58,000, was organized into five divisions.