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Your pick: biggest US Korean War mistake

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  • #46
    MacArthur wanted the war to carry on, even to the point of invading China and if necessary, using nuclear weapons. I think there was a clear conflict of interests here as Truman felt that saving South Korea was more than adequate.

    His allies in the UN force convinced him that to invade China would start a war that would involve the USSR, so an attack on China was halted. MacArthur was prepared to ignore all advice and attack China anyway and that's why Truman fired him.

    "MacArthur's approach would have involved America in the wrong war, in the wrong place, at the wrong time and with the wrong enemy."

    General Omar Bradley
    Hitler played Golf. His bunker shot was a hole in one.

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    • #47
      Originally posted by Pruitt View Post
      Letting MacArthur run the show.
      Yes! Why wasn't this on the list

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      • #48
        Probably because given that the Norks started the war, which caught everyone by surprise (except the Chinese and Soviets), there wasn't much of a choice as to who the first CINC would be.
        dit: Lirelou

        Phong trần mài một lưỡi gươm, Những loài giá áo túi cơm sá ǵ!

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        • #49
          Invading was a bad mistake anyway. Knowing that the slightest slip-up would bring down a crushing Soviet sledgehammer, the US risked the lives of their men and their money on pointlessly attempting to stall Communism in a tiny country halfway around the world.

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          • #50
            Originally posted by William Howe View Post
            Invading was a bad mistake anyway. Knowing that the slightest slip-up would bring down a crushing Soviet sledgehammer, the US risked the lives of their men and their money on pointlessly attempting to stall Communism in a tiny country halfway around the world.
            What? Sober up and try putting all that in thoughts we can understand.
            Skip

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            • #51
              Other, excessive arrogance in not paying attention to substantial intelligence from front lines about pending ChiCom attacks and not being properly prepared for the conditions of battle.

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              • #52
                Revisiting a thread from 10 years ago, which was a poll. I don't think the poll questions were too bad, but I should have had a choice for biggest mistake of "Not taking Pyongyang and setting up a defensive line"; in other words a choice instead of/or in addition to setting up a line once the Chinese intervened.

                As I re-read the thread, I couldn't help notice the excellent posts by lirelou, who I don't think anybody would question was the forum Korean War and History of Korea expert!

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                • #53
                  Lire lou almost always posted very knowledgeable information........

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                  • #54
                    crossing the Yalu River

                    In 1950, General Douglas MacArthur was hell-bent on chasing the retreating North Koreans to the Chinese border. Nothing would stop him—not orders from Washington, not intelligence reports that Mao's troops were building up in the area. Which is how hundreds of Americans got slaughtered at Unsan, one of the worst defeats of the Korean War. In an excerpt from his new, and final, book, David Halberstam weaves the tale of hubris, deception, and death.

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                    • #55
                      Not crossing the 38th parallel and taking what is now North Korea. Same mistake we made in Viet Nam.

                      Either fight to win or stay home.
                      Quis Custodiet Ipsos Custodes? Who is watching the watchers?

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                      • #56
                        MacArthur DID send his army North of the 38th Parallel. The ROK's made it all the way to the Yalu. The 7th Infantry Division was savaged and the Marines were magnificent in reaching the coast. MacArthur was removed and the new commander let the Chinese advance far enough to use up their supplies and then would counter attack.

                        Pruitt
                        Pruitt, you are truly an expert! Kelt06

                        Have you been struck by the jawbone of an ASS lately?

                        by Khepesh "This is the logic of Pruitt"

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                        • #57
                          I'd say a huge mistake was allowing ROK as much leeway as it historically did. Yes, it was their country, but they were under overall US/UN command. It was the ROK which committed the bulk of the atrocities and had they been reined in, they may have been able to fight the Nork/Chinese forces with as much fervor as they used when killing civilians.
                          You'll live, only the best get killed.

                          -General Charles de Gaulle

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