The Coldest Winter

The Coldest Winter, America and the Korean War by David Halberstam published in 2007. The first Korean War from beginning to end in well-written prose. I recommend this book.

The US and UN thought that technology would win the war and it certainly was an advantage, but not an overwhelming one. Geography and weather and smart tactics were offsetting factors. The Chinese used North Korea’s terrain and extensive caves to ambush US/UN troops repeatedly. Bad weather grounded US/UN airpower when it was most needed. Geography and weather don’t change much from one war to another and that is just as true in Korea as it is Afghanistan.

During the Korean War, some US generals thought that the war would be a cakewalk, while others were more cautious. The same is true today in the generals advising Trump, some cautious and some not. Technology did not win the war in Vietnam, has not won the wars in Afghanistan, Iraq or Syria, and won’t win another war in Korea, no matter what weapons we employ.

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