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Let Slip the Dogs of War: A Memoir of the 1st Raider Company, Korea, 1950–51

by John W. Connor

Merriam Press Military History

eBook - ISBN 9781576386347 - $4.99

Paperback - ISBN 978-1475034219 - $14.95

Hardcover not available

On July 15, 1950, only a few weeks after North Korea invaded South Korea with overwhelming force, General Douglas MacArthur authorized the creation of a Provisional Raider Company to blow up bridges and railway tunnels behind enemy lines. Of 800 potential volunteers, 115 made the cut and endured weeks of grueling amphibious and demolitions training.

On September 9, they and a small contingent of British Commandos left to conduct a raid at Kunsan, South Korea. On subsequent assignments, the Raiders went ashore at Inchon with the Marines, and with the X Corps at Wonsan. They conducted long-range intelligence-gathering patrols in which they also inserted and removed Korean agents.

During the Chosin Reservoir campaign they were assigned to take and hold open the mountain passes for the withdrawal of the Marines and the 7th Division.

The Raiders were evacuated from North Korea on December 14, 1950, and assigned anti-guerrilla activities in South Korea. At Chang-to they were cut off and surrounded by two North Korean regiments.

On April 1, 1951, all Ranger and Special Operations units were disbanded because the Army high command believed they were not being utilized properly.

This is the story of that unit as told by one of its members, John Connor. In about seven months of almost continual combat, they managed to accumulate four battle stars, a bronze arrowhead for a combat assault landing, Presidential Unit citations from both the U.S. Navy and the Republic of Korea, along with a special commendation from the commanding general of X Corps for imposing losses on the enemy far in excess of their own numbers.

Basic Training
Occupation Duty
Camp McGill
Inchon and Kimpo
North Korea
Chosin Reservoir
South Korea
The Battle at Chang-to
Business as Usual
Satellite photo of Korean Peninsula at night
Surrender leaflet and news article
Presidential Unit Citation
Personal message to General Collins from GHQ, 1950
Fragmentary order to Colonel Ely
Commendation to CO, Special Activities Group
Permanent orders to John Connor

214 6x9-inch pages, 31 photos, 7 documents, 2 maps

Let Slip the Dogs of War: A Memoir of the 1st Raider Company, Korea, 1950–51

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