Friday, April 12, 2019

Holding the Line

Truman Library Photo
Summer 1950.  Korea.  A squad of U.S. Army troops occupy a machine gun nest overlooking the Naktong River.  This position was one of the pitifully few emplacements that attempted to serve as a defensive line.  To their front, across the Naktong, is rugged countryside that masks the advance of North Korean troops. To the rear of the Americans, too little land remains to effect a withdrawal.  In other words, this is a fight-or-die position.

A pontoon bridge remains extant in the background of this image, but it was due to be dismantled or destroyed before the enemy could put it to use. Regardless, the river would slow, rather than stop, the enemy advance.  The U.S.  24th Infantry Division would remain embattled on the Naktong front until mid September, when the allied Inchon Invasion initiated a rout of the enemy back to North Korea. 

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