GENERAL POST-WORLD WAR II

1950s

Intelligence & the Korean War

D - G

Detzer, David. Thunder of the Captains: The Short Summer in 1950. New York: Crowell, 1977. [Petersen]

De Weerd, Harvey A. "Strategic Surprise in the Korean War." Orbis 6 (Fall 1962): 435-452.

Dillard, Douglas C. [COL/USA (Ret.)] Operation Aviary: Airborne Special Operations -- Korea, 1950-1953. Victoria, Canada: Trafford, 2003.

Dwyer, John B. "Secret Naval Raids in Korea." Military History 19, no. 5 (Dec. 2002): 66-72.

The CIA "sponsored a variety of activities during the Korean War, among which were behind-the-lines maritime operations. Yong Do Island, connected by a rugged isthmus to Pusan, served as the base for those operations, which were carried out by well-trained Korean guerrillas. The four principal American advisers responsible for the training and operational planning of those special missions were 'Dutch' Kramer, Tom Curtis, George Atcheson and Joe Pagnella. All of them had been processed through the CIA's front organization, Joint Advisory Commission, Korea (JACK), headquartered at Tongnae, a village near Pusan, on the peninsula's southeast coast."

Edwards, Paul M., comp. The Korean War: An Annotated Bibliography. Westport, CT: Greenwood, 1998.

Evanhoe, Ed. Darkmoon: Eighth Army Special Operations in the Korean War. Annapolis, MD: Naval Institute Press, 1995.

From advertisement: "For over 40 years the story of behind-enemy-lines exploits of American, British, and Korean special operations forces languished in forgotten files and archives. Now a participant has written the definitive account of the top secret, 'dark of the moon' forays by the Eighth Army's G-3 Miscellaneous Group deep into North Korea to gather intelligence, conduct raids and sabotage, rescue POWS, recruit and lead guerrilla armies, and create confusion in the enemy rear."

Crerar, AIJ 16.2/3, calls this "a good book" that "fills a gap.... Much of what is intelligence related concerns the turf politics between the then new CIA and the existing military structure." Writing in Special Forces 11.3, Crerar adds that the story is told "sparsely but interestingly," although "the serious special operator would wish for more information on a host of subjects.... An unsupported McCarthy-like slur on the loyalty of Department of State personnel is both inappropriate and grating."

Evanhoe, Ed. "United Nations Partisan Infantry Korea, 8240th AU, February 1951 to February 1954." http://www.korean-war.com/specops.html.

The United Nations Partisan Infantry Korea, the 8240th Army Unit, got its beginning on "Paengnyong-do, a large island off the North Korean held west coast, on February 15, 1951." The objective was to bring anti-communist North Korean partisan groups under Eighth Army command. The author offers brief details on some of the operations carried out by UNPIK before it was disbanded in 1954.

Fehrenbach, T.R. This Kind of War: A Study in Unpreparedness. New York: Macmillan, 1963.

Clark comment: Fehrenbach provides little coverage of the intelligence aspects of the war, and is too lacking in the embellishments of serious research to be well regarded. However, first read near contemporaneously with its original publication and reread 30 years later, it remains for this reviewer one of his favorite depictions of the Korean War.

Finnegan, John P. "The Evolution of US Army HUMINT: Intelligence Operations in the Korean War." Studies in Intelligence 55, no. 2 (Jun. 2011): 57-70. Originally published in a classified issue of Studies in Intelligence 44, no. 2 (2000). [https://www.cia.gov/library/center-for-the-study-of-intelligence/csi-publications/csi-studies/studies/vol.-55-no.-2/the-evolution-of-us-army-humint-intelligence-operations-in-the-korean-war.html]

"Within six months, the Army found itself facing two major intelligence disasters.... In response, the Army hastily improvised a clandestine human intelligence (HUMINT) organization, building on a small existing intelligence unit, the Korean Liaison Office (KLO). By the end of the Korean War, the Far East Command (FECOM) had fielded a large Army-controlled clandestine collection apparatus, closely linked with similarly large operations in the fields of partisan and psychological warfare. More important, the Army had begun to take steps to create a permanent and professional HUMINT service that could carry out positive intelligence collection operations."

Finnegan, John P. Military Intelligence: A Picture History. Arlington, VA: History Office, U.S. Army Intelligence and Security Command, 1985. 2d. ed. Washington, DC: GPO, 1992.

Petersen says that Finnegan's work "contains valuable narrative description of military intelligence developments." To Sexton, the work is a "balanced overview." [Pages 26-32 cover OSS operations; pp. 116-127 are devoted to the Korean War.] FILS 12.4 calls the book a "valuable introductory study of the subject."

Fisher, Maria Sudekum. "CIA Papers Show Agency Struggled in Korean War." Associated Press, 17 Jun. 2010. [http://www.washingtonpost.com]

On 16 June 2010, the CIA "released 1,300 documents," including "900 papers that either had not been made public earlier or contained new information..... The CIA documents were released on a CD-ROM distributed at the Harry S. Truman Library and Museum in Independence [MO] to participants at a two-day conference on the Korean War and were to be made available on the CIA's website. They include intelligence reports, correspondence and National Intelligence Estimates, and foreign media accounts of activity in the region."

"Baptism By Fire: CIA Analysis of the Korean War" (17 Jun. 2010) at http://www.foia.cia.gov: "This collection includes more than 1,300 documents consisting of national estimates, intelligence memo, daily updates, and summaries of foreign media concerning developments on the Korean Peninsula during 1947-1954. The release of this collection ... coincides with the 60th anniversary of the start of the war.... The release of these documents is in conjunction with the conference, 'New Documents and New Histories: Twenty-First Century Perspectives on the Korean War,' co-hosted by the Harry S. Truman Presidential Library and the CIA in Independence, Missouri."

Foot, Rosemary.

1. "The Sino-American Conflict in Korea: The U.S. Assessment of China's Ability to Intervene in the War." Asian Affairs 14 (Jun. 1983): 160-166.

2. The Wrong War: American Policy and the Dimensions of the Korean Conflict, 1950-1953. Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press, 1985.

The author includes coverage of so-called "Third Force" covert activities directed from Taiwan against the PRC and North Korea.

Fraham, Jill. SIGINT and the Pusan Perimeter. Ft. George G. Meade, MD: National Security Agency, Center for Cryptologic History, 2000. [http://www.nsa.gov]

"In August 1950, the war in Korea was not going well." The inexperienced soldiers of the the U.S. 8th Army "were trapped by North Koreans in a small corner of South Korea." However, Gen. Walton H. Walker had a secret weapon "that would help save the day: signals intelligence (SIGINT) from the Armed Forces Security Agency (AFSA) and the service cryptologic organizations.... With few other intelligence sources relating to North Korea available, SIGINT proved vital to the U.S. military efforts in the first months and throughout the war." Kruh, Cryptologia 28.2, finds that "[t]his relatively small [18 pages] publication is packed with a lot of information."

Futrell, Robert F. The United States Air Force in Korea 1950-1953. Rev. ed. Office of Air Force History. Washington, DC: GPO, 1983.

Petersen: "Extensive coverage of intelligence matters."

Gardella, Lawrence. Sing a Song to Jenny Next: The Incredible True Account of a Secret U.S. Raid into China. New York: Dutton, 1981.

Petersen: "Account of a purported 1952 covert operation in China, by a disillusioned participant."

Goncharov, Sergei N., John W. Lewis, and Xue Litai. Uncertain Partners: Stalin, Mao, and the Korean War. Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press, 1993.

According to Rich, WIR 15.1, the authors "reveal for the first time the creation of the Sino-Soviet alliance that led to involvement in the Korean invasion." In addition, they show that "a lack of accurate intelligence about the real prospects for North Korean success in the proposed invasion of South Korea indirectly injured the Soviet-Chinese relationship."

Goulden, Joseph C. Korea: The Untold Story of the War. New York: Time Books, 1982.

Petersen: "Goulden's treatment [of the Korean war] reflects use of archival sources in rendering sound judgment on intelligence matters."

 

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