Korea: The Dark Days

By Andrew Phillips All Rights Reserved ©

Action / Adventure

Chapter Seven

Chapter Seven: A United frontier

November 1st opened with a bang. We launched an offensive as large as the town of Atansa, over 600,000 men in both armies. My army had 350,000 while the other was 250,000 men. We had 6,000 tanks as they had 4,000. We started off with the shelling of Gyeongju. We planned on to skip the one town in between and take Busan. The shelling took over 6 hours, as we had planned to give the S. Korean defenders hell.

We then proceeded to launch the offensive and within days took the city from the Southern defenders, killing over 100,000 soldiers and citizens. The remaining 150,000 soldiers fell back to the two cities on the coast, which one we would ignore, which would be a fatal flaw. Busan was next, with the armies cutting off the South.

The Southern defenses were starting to lose momentum, and the Southerners were rioting in the deep south cities, trying to end a war and work an agreement out with us, but until that happened, we had the order to decimate any defenders in our path. So we then had to drive 2 kilometers to Busan, and actually take Busan. On November 15th, we finally engaged in one of the biggest battles of this war. 650,000 Southerners from 3 different armies, vs my Army group. This is what caused us to lose timing on the offensive to take Busan and was our fatal flaw for the November offensive.

In this area called Masan, we engaged in the biggest battle. So we were going towards Busan, with our army ready for the win, and with high hopes to. When suddenly, we notice a huge army about 2 kilometers away.

“Stop, and have thirty men go scout the area.” I ordered.

So I went with the thirty men, and we got as close up to 30 meters. The Southern army was intimidating, and we knew it was much larger than ours. Due to losing over 100,000 men to the battles around Busan, we knew that this would be tougher on us.

So we requested that we could get 200,000 reserved men for the battle, which we knew would be lengthy. I then ordered a defensive retreat into a small town, and to delay the assault to the city of Masan. We were spread out over 600 meters, which would be the worst idea I came up with.

On November 16th, battle finally begun. The Southern offensive launched a barrage of Artillery on our position for 16 hours, and throughout the night, they had called in 2 more divisions to help them surround our positions.

I was in the downtown area of the town and We had a giant hill that was able to overlook our entire positions. The south didn't waste much on waiting us, so they immediately attacked our positions after the barrage. I ordered ⅓ of the army to fall back, and get help. I pulled the rest of my army to defend the city, and draw some time for us to be able to hang on until reinforcements arrived.

Me and 6 of my higher soldiers deliberated in the city hall, and witnessed the battle unfolding on the first day. The Southerners had managed to cut us off from three ways; intentionally making a fourth way exit possible, but they would have about 50,000 waiting on the ridge to make it impassable, and to force us to not retreat, but fall in the city.

I was torn between to fight or command an army to keep our hopes alive. So for the first day, I watched from the hill, as the Southerners quickly gained ground on our army.

Then, I decided to retreat the next day. I decided we would attempt the breakout. Now, I had originally started with 250,000 men, but we had sent off 115,00 for a rescue garrison, and many have died. So this army was weak and I knew I had to get us out.

“Okay, we're gonna take our chances and go through the opening they have created. I hope that all of us men will take the enemy guarding the ridge head on, and hopefully we can break out.” I said, trying to remain cool headed.

So this would be determining the fate of our army, Group B. On November 20th, we decided to do it, two days after we had sent a emergency army for the backup garrison.

So my generals and I, got the word out to fall back to the opening, and to expect heavy fighting on our way out. So all 90,000 men that were left, we had a job to do. So we quickly ran for the ridge, evading the enemy closing in from three directions in the town.

We then ran for the ridge, which we could see had Machine guns and everything.

“Start shooting no matter what!” I shouted as I took cover and began shooting my gun.

My gun didn't have the range I wanted to, but I aimed at a soldier sitting over a rope ladder, over the ravine under him. And I shot him, and he fell over 20 meters down, more than likely dying. The fighting got intense, and I realized that the other army was coming from behind of us.

“Anyone who is not entangled in the battle up there, come back here!” I yelled.

So we could form a two way defensive front. I was then forced to take the back side as well, as we needed defenders fast. I sat by a bush and begun to shoot at people trying to take us out.

“We need men back here!” I yelled, trying to keep my focus to hold them off longer. Men were coming to the back to face the city and defenders coming.

My combat weapon was probably not enough to hold back almost 200,000 men, but I needed my men to help. I noticed my lines being torn to shreds by the Southerners machine guns that were camouflaged.

I was getting nervous, as the men were approaching us from the town, and the distance was getting smaller. I could say about 2400 men were trying to defend our men in the back towards the town. I was hearing yelling and cries from our soldiers dying on the streets. I was nervous.

“GUYS WE NEED MEN BACK HERE!” I ordered, screaming over the comms.

About 600 men ran to us. I mean, 1000 could probably hold back for 15-20 minutes, but it was not enough. I was hiding in my bush, picking people off, and I realized I was running out of ammunition. Then, I realized that there was a path and we could possibly run that path, and hide.

“THIS WAY!” I shouted.

I ran from the main battle scene, and others followed suit. I then noticed that their soldiers also started to trickle into the wooded area to counter us. I started to shoot through the trees, trying to shoot at anyone I could.

“Form a defensive perimeter right here.” I said, thinking fast as we were running out of options. The area I chose was surrounded by logs and sticks and was not enough to hold out for 5+ hours.

“Get the ammo to the guns! Quickly!” I yelled to my men, as we had machine gunners attempting to hold off the Southern men. Other of our men were attempting to run into the forest, and some were getting shot.

“The enemies are filing into the woods. We can’t hold out out there!” a younger soldier said. We were shooting at the other men trying to destroy us. After 20 minutes, our machine guns started to run out of bullets.

“Sir, we’re running out of bullets!” somebody yelled. We had no other choice but to start retreating away from the path.

The soldiers we had were starting to fall back away from the road. I heard about 12700 men had managed to get out of the open and some went the other way.

“Let’s go! Fall towards the river about a few hundred meters.” I yelled, as one of the machine gunners fell. The fighting on the main road had died out as our main forces had gotten killed and the rest of them had escaped into the woods on both sides.

I quickly threw a grenade at the enemy, waited for the explosion and started running.

My men and I were running down thin paths, and we were trying to evade the enemy soldiers from killing and surrounding us. I also knew that they knew I was there, So they definitely wanted me alive. I kept shooting, and trying to pick off people shooting at us.

I tripped on my way down a path and smashed into the ground, and I lost my pistol, and 2 bags of ammunition. Another soldier helped me up. I had about 800 bullets remaining for my ariska. I quickly waved the guy away and provided cover, as the men who were following us were getting within range to pick us off.

I went through 3 clips and I believe I had killed 14 men to hold off the advance, and I tossed a grenade into their paths so I could get away. I managed to keep up with our guys, and we stopped in a small open area, and i yelled “Count. Say a number in order” we got to 9302.

This running continued for 40 minutes, and then finally, we reached a stream that lead to the Nakdong river.

The stream was deep, as my scouting reports had up to 3 meters deep, so I was screwed since I couldn't swim. I then realized me and my men, whoever had decided to follow, we would be trapped. I kept shooting at the southern men, about 40 meters up stream or coming in from the woods. But I then noticed, they were also coming in from the other side of the stream. I started shaking, realizing that my army could be decimated because of me.

“Quick, try to push down stream. There's a river a kilometer away.” I said, trying to remain calm, but powerful.

Obviously were outnumbered and surrounded, and I think we had up to 7500 still fighting with me. We had little options left and it was becoming scarier.

“Let's go!” I said. “We need to get to the river.”

I started running towards the East where the river would be. Men were falling and dropping like flies, bullets were flying and everything, and I was scared for my life. Suddenly, a soldier jumped out from the trees and got on me, punched me in the face.

A soldier of mine shot him and he died. He helped me up and we charged forward, into the stream of men who were running. Every now and then I would shoot.

Finally, just as we thought it couldn't get any worse, we saw soldiers coming at us from the forest, and then as we got ready to shoot at them, we heard the roar of tanks and trucks from the shore. “Drop your weapons!” The people yelled over speakers. We stopped and got close to each other. “WE said, drop them!” I lowered mine, and my men did too. “Drop them!” a voice yelled. “What makes you think I will?” I yelled across the stream.

“Very well” the guy said. We all raised our weapons, about to shoot each other, I was shaking from the immense pressure on me.

“You have 5 seconds to lower them, or you all get killed.” The voice yelled. I looked around us, and I could see enemies coming in towards us from the forest.

I looked again at the stream and saw men pointing guns at us. We were definitely outnumbered. I then thought about us jumping into the stream and possibly attempting to escape the river.

“Five...Four...Three...Two...One”

I readied my weapon and opened fire. The trucks started shooting at us, and killed several of my men, as well as the others in the forest. I started to run towards the stream, and a man toppled me, and got on me.

“Think you’re going to escape, Hu-Ku?!” I looked up at him, and others were by him. The gunfire had stopped mainly, men were surrounded on the little beach and they were now in the hands of Southern soldiers.

“Your time is done.” The soldier said as others prepared to handcuff me, and several other men. I had blood running down my head.

Suddenly, I heard the roar of tanks and a plane, and gunfire. The soldiers on the other side opened fire in the opposite direction, and a plane flew overhead and started shooting at the Southern soldiers.

I ducked, and then heard the shouts of men, coming from the stream shore on the other side. I then realized it was my men. They were flanking from behind and opened fire on the enemy. I quickly got out of the person’s grip and stabbed him in the arm. My men were jumping up and surprising the enemy soldiers and attacking them. On the other side of the forest we could hear gunshots and we saw fighter planes flying above. I grabbed my gun and ran for the water, attempting to get out of the way of the chaos. Me and several other men sat in the water and aimed at the enemy in front of us. I opened fire on men attempting to kill our men, and I kept killing them. The warplanes dropped a few bombs into the forest near the shores, causing the enemy to be stuck in a trap. The enemy was baffled as my men started to jump over into our side, and after ten minutes, the area was now silent. I sat down, and my men rushed over to us who survived the battle confrontation. My men crossed over the stream in the tanks, and we had five hundred men left from the battle.

We also knew the plane attacked the forest and we knew we may have had to go in and look for survivors. So I lead the search for survivors. It took four hours, but the smoke and fire finally forced us to leave as the flames were getting too out of control. We found 200 men in the forest.

The plane that had bombed the area reported that there was no fighting on the ridge, that there was dead bodies all over, but no sign of fighting. Over 5,000 men had surrendered at the ridge, and we knew that it was a awful and gone wrong operation. I had several wounds and had a bullet wound in my shoulder that I didn't notice. The offensive that was supposed to bring the end of South Korea had failed, even though my garrison had rescued the remainder of those who did not surrender. I was responsible for those who were killed in the fight around Masan. And So I was told I would probably have to go to Pyongyang to be questioned by the leader. I was only 20, twenty year olds make mistakes, right? Well, as we were leaving, I realized that the area had taken over 400,000 souls and the offensive had killed a lot of men. It was unbelievable.

I could see smoke for kilometers coming from the forest and the city. But all I knew was; I was in deep shit for the failed invasion and the death of about 250,000 men and 20,000 had surrendered to the Southern forces, which was absolutely terrifying. I had several wounds to patch up too, and I was scared to death, what would the country think of me? I had no clue, but I closed my eyes on the way to Pyongyang, and hoped that I would be spared. When I woke up about 10 hours later, I was still in the truck, and we were still driving, but I could see the lights of Pyongyang in the distance, and there was trucks driving as well, to Pyongyang, and I could see them coming out too. A medical soldier was attending to me in the truck, and gave me a IV and painkillers. I knew that this war was gonna be costly, and it was. And I started freaking out, cause I knew I would be sent somewhere If I damaged the offensive. I started shaking, and then all of the sudden, the truck stopped and I was being pulled out to the street.

“HELP!” People were yelling.

A doctor who had been on a medical truck that was leaving was able to attend, but I was drifting out of it.

“Hu-Ku! Yong! STAY WITH US!” The Doctor Shouted.

I started seeing images of the dead in the forest and around the battlefield. I suddenly woke up in a hospital bed, in Pyongyang. It was 10 days later, and I had taken an extreme panic attack.

Kim Jong-Un and his top generals were informed I was awake, and they came to my hospital room. Kim didn't look mad at all. I knew this was not the case, and prepared to be possibly shot. I had witnessed executions all over my lifetime, but I didn't think it would happen.

“Hu-Ku…” Un said, shaking his head.

He then repeated my name louder, and then shouted

“WHAT THE HELL WERE YOU THINKING!!!!!!! MOVING YOUR TROOPS INTO THE CITY!!!!! YOU COULD HAVE RETREATED!!!!!!!!! YOU KNOW WHAT HAPPENS IF YOU RETREAT!!!!!! IT MEANS YOU COULD'VE EASILY GOTTEN THOSE REINFORCEMENTS AND GOT THE BATTLE WON!” He then started yelling.

I couldn't take it, all the stress had finally made me break.

“AT LEAST I’M NOT RESPONSIBLE FOR THE MILLIONS YOU AND YOUR FAMILY HAVE KILLED, I KNOW WHAT YOU HAVE DONE IN THOSE CAMPS, YOU WANNA-BE GOD. YOU SHOULD YELL AT YOURSELF, CAUSE IF YOU WOULD'VE JUST STOPPED AFTER THE SANCTIONS AGAINST US IN 2016, WE WOULD BE A PART OF SOUTH KOREA AND THERE WOULDN'T BE FIGHTING.” I shouted in rage.

We both looked at each other, stunned. I knew I would probably be hurt after that. But he just walked out of the room, and his second hand man ran after him. The other two stood there with their eyes widened, and had their guns drawn incase there was a execution. But there wasn't, and I would live that night.

The next day, the supreme leader came into my room, and ordered his two soldiers he had extracted to watch me, out. We had to have a “Chat” And I understood. After a three hour long chat, we shook hands, agreeing that it was mutual fault.

And I was only 21, as I had just turned 21 a few days ago. But the war, we had just lost over 500,000 men in the past two weeks. It was only gonna take a turn for the worst. We were then informed the South had won the other battlefront to split the South, and on January 7th, it was official, the United Nations and the Americans were gonna enter the war.

I knew, that this would never be the same. I was shaking when I heard the news, and it would be only two years before I was sitting here in this courtroom giving these testimonies.

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