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Unarmed Martial Arts in the Korean War

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  • #31
    Originally posted by Ogukuo72 View Post
    Good point. The carbine, even when empty, is still an effective weapon. Swing the butt around, and it'll do damage. The muzzle to the solar plexus should hurt. And, of course, it can be used to block and catch a machete being swung at you.
    Actually, using the carbine as a club isn't as effective if you want to keep you stock from shattering. For good old fashioned clubbing and beating, use the A2, A4. Something with a solid buttstock. A muzzle to the solar plexus will do more than hurt, ideally it'll kill. You get the idea though.

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    • #32
      Originally posted by Naffenea View Post
      Actually, using the carbine as a club isn't as effective if you want to keep you stock from shattering. For good old fashioned clubbing and beating, use the A2, A4. Something with a solid buttstock. A muzzle to the solar plexus will do more than hurt, ideally it'll kill. You get the idea though.
      That's true, although the idea was to swing the sharp (bottom) end of the butt-stock around like an elbow strike, or to ram the carrying handle into the face. Not strictly a club, of course. A full-sized rifle would have been better, though, for hand-to-hand fighting.

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      • #33
        Originally posted by SegaSaturnGamer View Post
        Very cool story!Know any more from examples of melee combat in Korea?All we ever hear about in popular media and general history books is Americans bayonetting their way through hordes of Chinese human waves but nothing more!
        No, unfortunately, that was the only one I've heard about.
        TTFN

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        • #34
          Originally posted by Naffenea View Post
          Actually, using the carbine as a club isn't as effective if you want to keep you stock from shattering. For good old fashioned clubbing and beating, use the A2, A4. Something with a solid buttstock. A muzzle to the solar plexus will do more than hurt, ideally it'll kill. You get the idea though.
          I've never seen it attempted, but I would imagine that the telescoping stock would be a bit fragile.
          TTFN

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          • #35
            The paratroop version of the M-2 Carbine had a folding stock, not telescoping stock. It was relatively light but still should have made an effective club in a pinch. Supposedly, Ola Lee Mize got his Medal of honor swinging a sharpened entrenching tool, which would have been more available to any Korean War line troopie than a carbine (usually carried by NCOs and officers).
            dit: Lirelou

            Phong trần mi một lưỡi gươm, Những loi gi o ti cơm s g!

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            • #36
              I heard the entrenching tool was pretty nasty from WWI days.

              Oh, sorry, I was thinking of the M-4.
              TTFN

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              • #37
                There were very few examples of unarmed combat in the Korean War, simply because - even absent firearms and in a melee - armed combat is much deadlier. Use an empty rifle, bayonet, entrenching tool even an ammunition crate - all are far more lethal man stoppers than the "coup de pied." Mart martial arts instructors who focus on real combat teach that unarmed tactics are simply to buy time to deploy a more lethal weapon.

                There is a story in the Imperial War Museum archives that Captain Mike Harvey, a Judo black belt (very rare in 1951) who led the only Glosters to escape the trap at Imjin River, "chopped his way through an enemy MG nest with his bare hands." Nonsense. (At least, he did not mention it to me when I interviewed him and he demonstrated a range of MA technqiues).

                One boxer at Imjin claims to have decked Chinese who came through his position. This is credible, as the position in question was overrun (Zulu Co, 5th Fusiliers, Imjin, 24 April 51). Regt history calls it "A battle measured not in yards, but in feet."

                I have also interviewed on RM Commando who was bayonetted in "Hellfire Valley" at Chosin Reservor. His solution? Empty a BAR into the bayonetter. Another commando decked a local with his rifle butt (he left a tooth in the woodwork) during one of the raids on the NK coast in 1950.

                The Aussies DID use bayonets when relieving 187th Airborne at the "Apple Orchard" battle in Oct 1950, but that was unusual. Most other acconts of bayonet combat on a large scale are - when one actually talks to the guys invovled - not bayonet combat, but firearm combat that was at close range.

                One last example: Last Middlesex company to withdraw from Kunuri Pass in Nov 1950 was engulfed in brief H2H fight, but broke away. No fists or feet, all bayonets and rifle butts.

                Unarmed combat has three uses for soldiers:
                PT (This is what the Korean Army uses TKD for)
                Spirit (British Army uses boxing, US Army uses combatives to inculcate aggression)
                Capture of enemy when lethal force would be inappropriate (Mike Harvey founded the UK Army's unarmed combat tactics for N Ireland based on Aikido and Judo)

                The issue of learning martial arts "in case you get overrun and have to fight with bare hands" is a Ramboism - better to train in weapoin retention and ammo resupply.

                While Fairbairn and co were famous for teaching their dirty tricks to commandos, SOE and later rangers,, if you look at the declassified SOE records in WWII, you will find that a number of agents were killed or captured as they decided to use their supposedly deadly unarmed combat techniques instead of weapons - ie learning this material was more dangerous than not learning it. When the Duke of Wellingtons Regt was assignedto Korea (they held "The Hook" one of the last hill battles of the war) their CO expressly forbade unarmed combat training, he wanted his men to focus on musketry, digging and small unit tactics - ie soldiering.


                Lou:

                FYI, I interviewed Ben O'Dowd, the guy who led the forward Aussie comapniesa at Kapyong (their Bat HQ was overrun) and led their retreat over the hills. One hell of a guy. He demolished a lot of shibboleths that still crop up around Kapyong on Wiki and other places.
                A massive attack...a brigade against an army...three nights of battle...an unforgettable tragedy.
                Sixty years later, the full story is told at last:
                http://tothelastround.wordpress.com/

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                • #38
                  Originally posted by kelt06 View Post
                  Here are excerpts from the 2nd Infantry Division site depicting bayonet fighting:

                  Hill 247, a low lying enemy-infested hill mass, was taken by the French only after they fixed bayonets and cut their way to the top where, they held in spite of savage counterattacks and sub-zero winds which cut through winter clothing



                  At 0700. the enemy launched powerful attacks on all positions occupied by the French including Hill 453 where biter hand-to-hand fighting took place and in the Muchon valley where the enemy broke through the French Heavy Weapons Company and came within 200 yards of the road before it was repelled by a counterattack of the French Pioneer Platoon supported by two tanks. "L" Company was forced to give up slight ground about 1030 hours when severe pressure caused the lines to sag but by 1200 hours the ground was regained and the fighting continued to rage. In the French sector, the defenders were inflicting terrific casualties on the attackers in bayonet fighting


                  http://www.2id.org/wonju1-tt.htm
                  You know I always hear how the French had historically been the best army when it comes to bayonet combat.In fact from what I read, the French were the first to make bayonets a standard weapon for infantry!

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                  • #39
                    Originally posted by Kendoka Girl View Post
                    I heard the entrenching tool was pretty nasty from WWI days.

                    Oh, sorry, I was thinking of the M-4.
                    It's still a pretty handle weapon, I suppose.

                    Particularly when you have companies like Cold Steel selling (expensive) souped up killer versions of the basic entrenching tool!

                    That's what I love about America - you can always find a souped up version of something.

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                    • #40
                      French army of the Napoleonic era was renowned for its elan in the attack. And the bayonet was a useful weapon in 19th century when firearms took 20 seconds or so to reload, so if you were at close range (say 30 yards) it was more effective to follow up a volley with a bayonet charge than have "first rank - reload! Second rank - fire!" Today, the bayonet is used in very rare circumstances or in extremis.

                      Moreover - this surprises many people - the bayonet is more of a psychological weapon than a physical one. Most regimental histories' accounts of bayonet combat are - when you actually speak to the men involved and ask them exactly what they were doing - not so. Also a bayonet charge is usually just that - a charge with bayonets fixed rather than a melee with guys actually spitting each other. What tends to happen is one side's nerve breaks and does a runner before the charge hits home. Quote from Ardent De Picq, who pretty much invented the science (art?) of battlefield analysis:
                      "Every army in Europe says, 'No army can stand before a bayonet charge of our troops.' And they are all correct."
                      A massive attack...a brigade against an army...three nights of battle...an unforgettable tragedy.
                      Sixty years later, the full story is told at last:
                      http://tothelastround.wordpress.com/

                      Comment


                      • #41
                        Originally posted by Ogukuo72 View Post
                        Particularly when you have companies like Cold Steel selling (expensive) souped up killer versions of the basic entrenching tool!
                        $26.99 is expensive?
                        http://www.ltspecpro.com/spshovel.html

                        Comment


                        • #42
                          Originally posted by SegaSaturnGamer View Post
                          You know I always hear how the French had historically been the best army when it comes to bayonet combat.In fact from what I read, the French were the first to make bayonets a standard weapon for infantry!
                          Well, Bayonet is a French Word. Actually, IIRC, the Bayonet was developped to counter sword armed infantry like the Highlanders, that would close the distance to the musketeers faster than they musketeers could reload. This was right at that time when the tercio was falling out of favor, and with it the specialized pikeman. So they found that their improved muskets still didn't have the firepower to counter a brisk charge of sufficient size, and they took to producing daggers that were designed to plug the muzzle of the muskets, making them short pikes, A la Bayonette. Then the socket bayonet was finally developped, and allowed for efficient firing and reloading while the bayonet was fixed. With the advent of the Geneva conventions and repeating rifles, the bayonet started on its trek to becoming what it is today.....a fighting knife with attachment points to go on a rifle. In short, it's a useful utility knife that you could turn into a stubby spear.
                          Tacitos, Satrap of Kyrene

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                          • #43
                            Originally posted by johns624 View Post
                            Hey, no it's not! That's a good price.

                            Of course, I can buy a local version for like ten US bucks.

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                            • #44
                              Fortunately, the history of Taekwondo is more easily traced than many other forms of martial arts. Since it is a newer and more recent martial art, the origins are fairly well documented and allow for thorough study of its origins and history. Taekwondo is primarily a Korean martial art, having been created during the early years after the end of the Korean War. Before this modern inception of Taekwondo, however, early forms of martial arts similar to Taekwondo and having served as the basis of Taekwondo were running rampant.

                              If one is looking that far back (to the earliest ancestors to Taekwondo), it is there that the history does, in fact, get a little murky. Taekwondo is such a universal art and it has borrowed techniques from many other martial arts during the years (and centuries) that the parent art of Taekwondo is not well known at all. Taekwondo is better thought of as a culmination of many Korean, Japanese and Chinese influences (however, the influences are mainly Korean) to form one very well-rounded and well thought out martial arts curriculum.

                              One of the reasons that Taekwondos parent arts are obscure is that many of them were banned during the years in which Japan had control over the majority of Korea (between 1910 and 1945). For example, the strictly traditional Korean martial arts such as Subak and Taekkyon were prohibited from being practiced or taught in Japans effort to force Korea to assimilate to Japanese culture (Koreans were also forced to disregard their own language and take on Japanese names in place of their own). Subak and mainly Taekkyon were still practiced and taught in secret, however, many moves and techniques may have been changed to alter the style enough so that the Koreans would not get caught.

                              Of course, after the Korean war, modern Taekwondo (it was at this point that Taekwondo received its current name) began to take its place among Korea and other countries as well. It was around the year 1955, after many Taekwondo schools became popular in Korea that Taekwondo began gaining popularity in the United States as well. No one really expected Taekwondo to become as popular as it did in the Western world, and as a martial art form, it is as well known and well practiced in the United States as Karate and Kung Fu.

                              Even more proof towards the gaining popularity of Taekwondo is that it is one of two martial arts to be an official Olympic game the other martial art is Judo. Some dojangs focus more on practicing and teaching their students the martial art of Taekwondo to prepare them for tournaments and competitions and other dojangs focus more on learning the martial art itself. It is important that anyone interested in Taekwondo find the proper dojang for his or herself. While emphasis on philosophy and virtues are not as prevalent in Taekwondo as in other martial arts, they are present and go back to the original inception of Taekwondo itself.


                              Tae Kwon Do Philosophy


                              There are certain concepts that Taekwondo teachers and students take as gospel. They vary slightly from dojang to dojang.

                              Here are some examples:
                              1. Loyalty (Choong Sung)
                              2. Obedience (Soon Jong)
                              3. Love (Sah Rang)
                              4. Cooperation (Hyup Jo)
                              5. Faith (Shin Eui)
                              6. Respect (Joen Gyung)
                              7. Honesty (Jung Jick)
                              8. Compassion (Ohn Jung)
                              9. Mercy (Jah Bee)
                              10. Persistence (Ggeun Gee)
                              11. Courtesy (Yae Eui)
                              12. Integrity (Yeom Chi)
                              13. Perseverance (In Nae)
                              14. Self Control (Geuk Gi)
                              15. Indomitable Spirit (Baik Chul Bool Gool)

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                              • #45
                                [QUOTE]Koreans were also forced to disregard their own language and take on Japanese names in place of their own)[QUOTE]

                                Creepyhollow: I am unsure what you mean by Koreans were "also forced to disregard their own language". If you mean that Koreans were prohibited from speaking, reading, or writing it, you might have a hard time proving that, given that Newspapers and books in Hangeul were still being printed in Seoul as late as 1942. Also regarding the names, there is no doubt that after 1937, Koreans were 'encouraged' to adopt Japanese names, yet there were some prominent families (the Ko'chong Kims, for example) who kept their Korean names.

                                By the way, regarding the Japanese occupation of Korea, there are three distinct stages. 1905 to 1921 - when Newspapers and books in Hangeul were common. 1921 to 1937 - the most liberal period, when the Japanese tried their best to make Koreans full partners in their Empire, and 1937 to 1945, the most oppressive period when the military wanted to make assimilate the Koreans into the Japanese military effort.

                                Otherwise, a very good post, free of the invented history that some attempt to impart to Korean martial arts. You might have mentioned that several Korean masters were prominent in the founding of some Japanese martial art forms, and I did see a website in English some years ago that credited a Korean master for perfecting their art. (p.s., I myself studied Soobak under Master Kim Ivanhoe, though I can hardly claim to have attained any great success.)
                                dit: Lirelou

                                Phong trần mi một lưỡi gươm, Những loi gi o ti cơm s g!

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