Frozen Chosin

frozen coldest  In November 1950,  Chinese troops cut off the advance guard of the American invasion of North Korea. Our troops had repelled the latter’s attack on South Korea and were sprinting to the Chinese border.  General MacArthur and his staff, who dismissed word of massing Chinese troops and a looming winter front, found their men cut off near the Chosin (Changjin) Reservoir.   Instead of claiming a victory, they now had to engineer a breakout. In The Frozen Hours,  Author Shaara fictionalizes the battle, doing his usual trick of mingling imagined foot soldiers with real-life generals.  Shaara “tells a good story’ but the definitive account of this campaign remains David Halberstam’s The Coldest Winter, also at the Nichols Library, which truly captures the desperate strait of the cut-off Americans.

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