On Desperate Ground

On Desperate Ground

The Marines at the Reservoir, the Korean War's Greatest Battle

Book - 2018
Average Rating:
Rate this:
5
Draws on archival research, declassified documents, and first-person survivor interviews to chronicle the contributions of Marine soldiers during a pivotal Korean War battle.
Publisher: New York : Doubleday, [2018]
Edition: First edition.
ISBN: 9780385541152
0385541155
Branch Call Number: 951.9042 SI13
Characteristics: xiii, 394 pages, 16 unnumbered pages of plates : illustrations, map ; 25 cm

Opinion

From the critics


Community Activity

Comment

Add a Comment
b
Bududo
Feb 16, 2019

The writing is smooth and the pace keeps the story moving. The background beginning with the Inchon landing was helpful if somewhat lengthy compared with the amount of attention devoted to the action at Chosin. It was good to get first hand accounts from perspectives all up and down the chain of command. It could be improved with a better account of the reinforcement effort up the MSR (just how did things break apart into three parts?) as well as the retreat especially the rear guard which must have been pretty intense.

m
mammothhawk229e
Jan 02, 2019

General MacArthur's & General Ned Almond's hubris (both) & racial superiority attitude (latter) plus victory disease after Inchon invasion almost caused US lead UN army's greatest defeat if not for cagey Marine General Oliver Prince Smith's preparation against worst case scenario or FUBAR in layman terms.
It was a Pyrrhic victory at best for Chinese communists because although they drive UN army away, they suffered more casualties & created a new legend for Marine X corps.
I enjoyed non-fiction book.

l
Lchagan
Nov 25, 2018

Eminently readable work; Sides is an exceptional writer. In On Desperate Ground he presents an overview of the Korean War's fateful Winter of 1950. He introduces some remarkable individuals from this campaign including then MajGen Oliver P. Smith, USMC along with a Lee Bae-Suk, a Korean whose boldness and English language skills led to his family's successful transition from the North to Seoul. Well worth reading, but I must also recommend East of Chosin by Roy Appleman for a much better account of the American forces trapped outside of the Marine Corps' boundary North of Hagaru, and also Donald Knox's two volume Korean War histories that also covers the war's beginning, near US defeat before Pusan, and the Eighth Army's efforts in the West while this account's actions were occurring in the East.

s
StarGladiator
Oct 19, 2018

An incredibly well written account of an epic event during the Korean War, and Mr. Sides' characterization of Gen. MacArthur was superlative. [I often wondered how a perennial screw-up like MacArthur could consistently get promoted and continue in the military, but found out that his uncle, a Wall Street financier, was one of the richest men in America at that time - - perhaps some family influence? MacArthur should have been courtmartialed after the slaughter of women, children and men at the Bonus Marchers Village in Anacostia.]
I have not read all of Mr. Sides' books, but his Ghost Soldiers was also outstanding.
______________________________________________________
If the Army or the Navy
Ever look on Heaven's scenes,
They will find the streets are guarded
By United States Marines.
______________________________________________________
Excellent recounting of the absolute embodiment of the Marine spirit: Lt. Chew-Een Lee!

s
StarGladiator
Oct 17, 2018

An incredibly well written account of an epic event during the Korean War, and Mr. Sides' characterization of Gen. MacArthur was superlative. [I often wondered how a perennial screw-up like MacArthur could consistently get promoted and continue in the military, but found out that his uncle, a Wall Street financier, was one of the richest men in America at that time - - perhaps some family influence? MacArthur should have been courtmartialed after the slaughter of women, children and men at the Bonus Marchers Village in Anacostia.]
I have not read all of Mr. Sides' books, but his Ghost Soldiers was also outstanding.
______________________________________________________
If the Army or the Navy
Ever look on Heaven's scenes,
They will find the streets are guarded
By United States Marines.
______________________________________________________
Excellent recounting of the absolute embodiment of the Marine spirit: Lt. Chew-Een Lee!
https://static.smithsonianchannel.com/site/image-bin/images/0_0_136060/0_0_136060_sch-29_724x368.jpg

Age

Add Age Suitability

There are no ages for this title yet.

Summary

Add a Summary

There are no summaries for this title yet.

Notices

Add Notices

There are no notices for this title yet.

Quotes

Add a Quote

There are no quotes for this title yet.

Explore Further

Browse by Call Number

Recommendations

Subject Headings

  Loading...

Find it at MCPL

  Loading...
[]
[]
To Top