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tv   Book TV  CSPAN  February 20, 2011 11:00pm-12:00am EST

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and once we have those in mind we can start thinking who needs to get more funds or more power and whether we need someone who will be highlighting the merited companies and let them do their job without publicizing the connections to the u.s. government. . .
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global solutions and justify entirely as i called the approach the of thinking about the political power of the internet. >> i think that is probably a perfect note to end on, and i always thought it was absolutely rich that someone who comes from belarus and has thought about this if utopia of the 20th century should be guiding us through our or i should say pushing us against our own a utopian emphasis when it comes to the big story of the next century so thank so much. is a great book and you can follow him on a twitter and foreign policy. he's doing a big book tour everywhere. the profile coming up in the
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doherty into mauro says leading an entire generation towards the near future and i don't know if that is true or not -- right, they missed the had land, they switched the headline but i think this book is as you can see from tonight's discussion going to get a lot attention and i think you can pick up and thinks once again to the host. thank you. [applause] contributing editor to foreign policy and the boston review. for more information, visit his website, .
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up next patrick o'donnell talks of the marines to mcgeorge company, one of the most highly decorated units in the korean war. he discusses his book at borders bookstore in west like ohio. it's a little over 50 minutes. >> good evening. i'm here to introduce you to the author of "give me tomorrow," pat o'donnell and tell you a little about him. for the past ten years, pat o'donnell has been capturing him history of american combat veterans from world war i to afghanistan. he has personally conducted 4,000 oral histories and has written seven books on modern war and espionage. he has co-produced or has written 15 history channel documentary's and was a historical consultant for band
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of brothers. his award winning best-selling author of seven books most importantly he was in combat and volunteered to go to iraq on his own. he was a service man. he went as a historian and he just happened to be with the marines in the battle fallujah. i don't know if you know where that is, but i was the big battle in iraq. he volunteered to go to iraq on his own dime and captured the story. he fought in the 2004 battle, battles in iraq, where he tried to save the life of the marine when they were caught in an ambush. in the give me tomorrow he has written a book that captures george company's experiences in korea. i was a member of torch company,
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and i waited 60 years for this man to come along because nobody told our story. i couldn't understand why in the battle like chosin reservoir, which i'm sure all of you know, because it isn't taught anywhere, and if you know when it's because you want to find out about things, but the chosin reservoir had the most number of medals given enough for any battle, and it is a two week battle with the chinese that just came into the korean war, and they surrounded us with 150,000 against 15,000 of us and they were sent there to annihilate us. well, i am here said they didn't complete their mission. i would like to introduce you to pat o'donnell. [applause]
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>> thank you. i'm so thrilled so many people are here tonight that i know. i really appreciate that support for me it is a really personal kind of day. about six years ago almost to the day, i returned from iraq from the battle fallujah and that's the genesis of this entire book. for me, it was a very personal battle. i was there as a volunteer. i went over as a historian, but i was in uniform and i ended up fighting house-to-house with 31 in the first platoon. it was more less a matter of survival, and, you know, it's a battle that's still lingers on for me and every member of the first platoon and, you know, whenever january rolls around or
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november, i just remember that day and it's something that doesn't go away quite easily, and i asked my parents not to come to the camp when i returned in january, 2005. it was sort of a weird experience. i was completely alone, and you know, when you come home from war alone, it's sort of indescribable. everybody was there with their family members and, you know, i kind of walked across this little bridge. they had some yellow ribbons, and it was a surreal experience until i met some of the men, the senior marines from george company who asked me who i was first and they wanted to know more, and i explained to them i was a historian with 3-1 and they said to me 3-1 carried our
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battle in the battle of fallujah which was news to me. i didn't know what was or what the whole story was. then they said to me do you need a ride? sissons yes, it was 24 miles away from the nearest tree station or transportation. it was camp pendleton, there were no cabs or really any other way to get around so they took me towards the train station and asked me if i would like to go to lunch. at lunch to talk about fallujah, and then they said to me george company has quite an interesting story also. he held off a chinese regiment at a place called east hill in the chosin reservoir. as a historian, i was astounded. how could a company of 200 men hold of that regiment of only 3,000 -- almost 3,000? that right there was a thread
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that caught my interest. and by -- for me the story come to me then. i became curious and the next thing i knew i was invited to the george company reunion the next year and they said of why don't you just come on over and start just, you know, be our guest and i began interviewing the members of george company and i found the most remarkable story that i think i have ever come across in my entire career. the thing that really struck me was a gentleman by the name of what goes to local was the george company first sergeant during the korean war. and and the men told me that zulo died during korea and i like how could it be? how could somebody basically by and that was for me the most interesting story line. i started to ask more questions
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and i found out that rocco zulo was the soul of this company and was the sergeant that had to lead them up a road, 12-mile road he used a 50 caliber machine gun and asked if that's a bazooka and at the end of the road, brought the men to safety and they found out that there were marines that came out to greet them and they felt they made it big in reality it was the chinese soldiers dressed as marines and they were shot and started shooting at the company and rocco zulo was shot in the stomach three or four times and was basically pronounced dead. they took his body and put him in the morgue and thought he was dead until the reunion when they
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found this man basically he was alive. somebody pulled him out of the morgue from another company, and from there, begins this amazing saga that i chronicled, and it starts with this reunion in 1986 and then it goes back to the time of the summer of 1950. for those of you that don't remember the summer of 1950, it was kind of a lot like today. basically world war ii ended. there had been a massive budget deficit and everything was about cutting the budget. everything. there was -- we had run up a major deficit during world war ii and was about cutting the deficit and the armed forces. we went from 12 million men in arms to basically less than a million. weapons systems went out the
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door so when north korea attacked on june 25th in the summer of 1950, america was completely unprepared for it. they cross the 30th parallel with over ten divisions and 200t34 tanks and they quickly overran the sola and they were pushing deep into the korean peninsula. at this time, president truman reacted. there were a number of resolutions that were passed, and america was at war along with the u.n. and several other countries like australia and britain came to the south to stem the number three and tied up was quickly over running the country. and north korea nearly overran south korea. there was a perimeter calvo pusan perimeter and the south was reduced to this tiny perlmutter that the tip of south
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korea and at any point it looked like the dam was going to break in the north was going to overrun the south. basically truman appointed one of the legends in the pacific, general macarthur, to stem the tide. initially the 24th infantry division was thrown in and they were equipped with 2.36 bazookas it bounced off the tee 34, they didn't have hardly any effect at all, and it was a delayed game. they were treating time for space. the answer came in the form of the marine corps. first to the marine provisional brigade was sent over and they acted as if all your brigade to plug the gaps, but it was in the summer of 1950 that george company, which is the focus of this book was formed, and it's a story about men that had no
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training at all in most cases as well as some veterans of world war ii, but many of them were reservists, and it's not like the reservists of today where people have professional military training they go and train, the reserves of 1950 had no military training at all. in fact, they had some parade ground training and many didn't know how to fire a weapon or throw a grenade. so it was in the summer of 1950 that the george company was born and rocco zulo, the man i told you that basically dhaka in the chosin reservoir had to form this company over night from a man like bob who just talked who had some experience as a marine but many of these men had no training at all and they had to weld a company that could fight overnight. so in august, 1950, basically these men were trained up by the
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combat veteran who had survived in the guadalcanal and they were rushed over to japan and they were rushed into one of the greatest amphibious assault in history. this is one of these amazing stories where only two days in the year the tides were right the landing craft could land in the harbor without getting beached a mile from the shore and macarthur basically went against the advice of his generals and admirals and decided the time it would be turned, and it was here that the george company would see its first blood. the men were assembled on the landing craft and they hit the beach and they were in the first wave. bob was one of the men on the
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first wave and, you know, it wasn't quite omaha beach, the certainly did have resistance come and these were some of the first members of george company to die, and bob remembers the first people and it's one of those memories that never has left him and as george company landed on the beach, they pushed inland towards seoul and they were the first unit that made their way up. it was the actual center of the city, and was the only road that could support the tanks. and 26 as well as the sherman tanks so capturing the road was ki and george company basically pushed down the road in a somewhat similar house-to-house fighting as fallujah and as they
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move their way down this road they encountered quite a bit of north korean resistance in the house is, but the first test, the first of five against enemy regiments came on the night they entered the city and merely reinforced battalion over 600 or 700 men from north korea backed up with tanks and self propelled guns a salted george company and they held the line. this tiny company with bazookas and 30 caliber machine guns basically held the line against the team 34 tanks and self propelled guns and the stock to the north koreans first offensive in the city basically that might.
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what makes george company special is that this is the first time of five that to the did this come five times against five in many regiments and they won three medals of honor. basically from here the company was depleted after seoul house-to-house fighting, then they moved the other side of the korean peninsula and macarthur made one of the mistakes many military historians as he divided his command. he said general ohlman in charge of the ten core and then he pushed general walker of north with the eighth army to pursue what was left of the north koreans, which had basically the perimeter they had broken out and the north koreans were in tatters. at this point basically the corrine and war changes
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dramatically. the game changer was the entry of china into the war and macarthur had basically told president truman that the chinese would not intervene, and even though intelligence had indicated that it would, a lot of that information wasn't set up the chain of command were it was dismissed or denied. there's a lot of different theories about it, but the men of the eighth army as well as the tenth corps or pushing north towards the river and into basically one of the great traps of the 20th century. instead of, you know, 50 or 60,000 chinese, the macarthur anticipated crossed the river almost 300 to 400,000 chinese soldiers marched 150 miles over the rugged terrain, hit in their movement and lead basically an insidious trap for both of the eighth army as well as bob's
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unit at the chosin reservoir. and it's here that george company makes one of its epic great stands that basically the first marine division is task for moving out towards and put chosin reservoir is over 70 while rhodes that goes up towards the reservoir towards the border with china. the first marine division is pushing along this road. anybody that's familiar with the operation during world war to describe a similar in the sense that a single road or a couple of roads basically determine the the entire offensive coming and when that took place, it became very, very dangerous because it was susceptible to attacks from the flanks and that is exactly
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what the chinese did, they surrounded the first marine division, and this division, first marine division was basically out numbered 8-1 or 20 for 1. it's not like world war ii where we had the advantage of almost every situation. these men were outnumbered, and it's here that george company makes one of its epic stands but it at first has to break through and let me explain that for a net. the center of gravity in the chosin reservoir is where the first marine division had its supplies and headquarters. it was kind of the heart and soul and the only place the division can consolidate if it was attacked so it had to be held at all costs. what happened is in late november the chinese attacked the force. they attacked these are made on the other side of korea and the
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attack the first marine division in the other side, and basically they were being overwhelmed and held to be held at all costs. the only unit for one of the few that were in reserve was george company, some royal marine commandos and other kind of cats and dogs units. they had to be enforced and these men had to go up to 12-mile road and if you remember the beginning of the conversation i talked about this guy named rocco zulo, and it's here that zulo makes -- they assemble them in the task force drysdale and they have to move up the road at all costs. they have to break through tall costs to reinforce hatari. instead of me telling you the story, i am going to have bob tells that story and put you in his boots as they went up that
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road. >> the was a very cold road. it is between 20 to 30 below zero, snow-covered, ice cover, it was a narrow road, and they wanted us and the chinese held the high ground for divisions between us. they were not all going to give us but most of them had to shoot down as we were going up this road. so, with no food the weapons are sluggish, the grenades, some of the grenades wouldn't explode. we had a chaotic time, and as they were blowing up our trucks, the men on the trucks had to go on other trucks and if you have ever been in a traffic jam ucb
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accordion affect, and the trucks stopped and start growing again as they broke through another roadblock and the chinese are shooting down at you and you're telling your men to take whatever cover the confined behind a tighter on the truck or some hill that's close by, and this went on for 12 hours and rocco zulo -- the reason why we mentioned him so much is that we knew nothing about combat. he was a veteran of world war ii, guadalcanal, and all we could say is we will do what he does, and he was a kind of leader that would tell you not to do it, but to follow me and we will do.
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he didn't send anybody anywhere. he said come on, let's go. that's why she was so powerful. whenever he got shot, it really took the heart out of us and said if rocco zulo can buy anybody can buy the that is why we was priced 40 years leader to see him alive. as we wind up this road, the chaos that was involved of all of these trucks blowing up, there was 150 vehicles in this convoy, and you couldn't maneuver, you just had to protect your truck, and they were on both sides said there was like 12 men to a truck and to go from each site to see where the pressure was the greatest that's where you would put your machine guns and some of them didn't have machine
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guns. the bits and pieces that were thrown into the convoy somebody had to go up this road. we were the only ones there. so it wasn't a pleasant task but we finally made its. then there were no warm showers or hot food, just ice and snow and did chinese and life chinese on the hill. so they told us to get some sleep because tomorrow morning at 8:00 we have to take this place called east hill. there was nobody else there to do. that's why we had to get their and that was our weakest spot at haggar rue. if the hill sailed the whole division could and if the chinese got all these supply that is what they needed for their victory because they were running out of ammunition, too.
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so we couldn't even walk up the hill. it was i discovered, previous traffic made it like a sliding board, so we had the trenching tools and the bayonets carving not places to put your feet to grab ahold and pull each other up. when we finally got to the military crest of the hill and the chinese hello the topographical crest which is up higher point, and we sought out and we knew the chinese would be coming at us that night. we couldn't dig fossils so we got ten dead chinese bodies and stacked them are none of us to give some protection against the bullets and the weather and a was a machine squad leader and had a beautiful field of fire for that night and the of your
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machine was up above and we had a good crossfire going. so we knew they would be coming in full force. the worst thing that could happen in combat from the machine gun is for his weapon and not to fire. my weapon froze up and i'm yelling at my men to throw hand grenades to stop them from penetrating power lines, and as i was working on the gun trying to get it to fire, five chinese showed up, and fortunately i was down i grabbed my helmet and slept a couple of them in the face with it and probably boosted their nose and shot the other come and then they broke through. we couldn't hold such a mass of
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men without machine gun fire. as it turned out, the other machine gun was shot in both his legs and he couldn't walk. so the was part of the deal. then the commandos and some other marines and forced us to hold the hill because it was crucial to the marines getting out of their research for -- reservoir. this was at the code which was the next town down where we had just come from, and whoever controlled the hill controlled everything. but like i said, it was 17 medals of honor given out in this battle, 70 navy crosses, and they probably could have been out twice this money that whenever there's nobody to verify what somebody has done,
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we had a thousand marines killed , 115,000 marines 12,000 casualties. they were all dead. if you're shot in the army could still fight just as long as you don't have a broken bone. so it was a group of men. we didn't know each other when we started and it turned out we were just brothers and you know what happens when you pick on a brother, you're going to get the other brothers after you and that is what happened at chosin as the chinese take on the wrong brothers and rocco zulo was our big brother. he always looked after us. i was so happy to see him 40 years later at a reunion. i couldn't believe it. he was dead as far as i was
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concerned and they took him away. but the marines meted out, and you'll notice this pain i have on my lapel. this is the star and where the marines after they came back fighting in their regiments fought back to haggar roux and jumped up from us and we all fought down to the town called coterie and the was the last place on the reservoir. this star was shining as the marines were coming to coterie and that is the symbol of the chosen few marines from this battle. so if you ever see it, that's what it means. and all of the merchandise has of this on their as their symbol
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another thing very few people know about is when we came out of north korea ordered out 100,000 north korean civilians, 100,000 big dust to take them with us. the to the chinese and the north korean government as much as we did. and to show you how badly we hurt the chinese, that 150,000 men the chinese army consisted of, one of their generals said they only had 55,000 effective after the battle out of 150,000. that is how devastated they were. so they were hurt pretty bad by us. but anyhow, i was getting back to the 100,000 civilians the wanted to come out and our
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leader said after we get the man knelt, send the ships back and they went back and put 100,000 dockery and civilians on the ships and brought them out to south korea to be the reason they heeded the chinese and the north koreans is because they were normal people. they didn't want the war or know what was about but the new that the north koreans and the chinese for kicking them out of their houses, beating their food, killing their livestock, with a version of the head colin and they wanted out. so we brought them out and the rest is history again. but of course, people don't talk about the korean war. it's the forgotten war. and that's the sad thing about the greatest battle ever fought that i have ever read about,
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there's another battles, the alamo, the wake island and these places either surrendered or got killed or veldt number the enemy but they are chosen we were outnumbered 15-1 contant rutka one in most cases, so i could never understand why the history books don't mention this. a lot of the stuff i'm sure you never heard before. but pat brought this out in the book and i want to thank him again. thank you very much. [applause] >> thank you. for me the greatest compliment i could ever get is for the veterans of george company and they presented me with a plaque as well as an original score,
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the only original scarf left of bloody george on november 10th the marine corps birthday than they did a kid a monument to the 149 men that the white and george company during the the korean war let me just kind of recap a little bit. george company held the east hill against all odds, and hagerty as we mentioned was the key point the first marine division as well as the other armies in the reservoir could consolidate. for three days they held the hill against all odds against 20-1 in most cases the regimen or more. they were then shipped down towards the field and they held the perimeter around the field. what's important about the airfield is they bought time on the east hill to be completed and the reinforcements could
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then be brought in to hagerty and the wounded could be brought out and the men like rocco zulo found by another marine unit was shipped out and spent several years in the va hospital without his man knowing in the george company would ever happened and then they should up 35 years later at the first union. here at the reserve for the fifth and the seventh marines fought their way back down towards hagerty and the division consolidated in the unit then moved basically towards the ocean and they were evacuated. the story of george company doesn't end there. it goes on through the rest of the war and the george company made a number of of their epic stands. hill my note to for instance in
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1951 the chinese launched an all-out offensive, and once again, george company held the hill and allowed other marine units within the area to withdraw and a continued to another place called boulder city, the last day of the war where the chinese began -- the hit or miss a stock's well under way. it was about to be signed. the chinese launched an all-out attack with an entire regiment against george company at a place called boulder city. it was a tiny little outpost pretty much nobody remembers, but they had nearly 30 men killed on a single day george company saw quite a bit of action. 149 men were killed during the course of the war. three medals of honor given to the company but like the men of afghanistan and iraq, they came
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home and pretty much nobody cared and they went about their business. they hung up their uniforms and most of the marines, this went into the normal civilian life and of the story really never went anywhere. was in the minds of these men and for me it was a great honor to meet men like bob. jul consider a great friend. and it was an honor to have the chance to tell their extraordinary story. thank you very much for coming. what i would like to do now is open up the floor to anyone that has questions. >> could you give an overview of what the conditions were like and what the terrain was? was it similar to what is in afghanistan or in the swiss alps?
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what was it like and what was the weather like? [inaudible] >> the focal point of this book is the battle for the chosin reservoir which baulked highlighted and gave the boots on the ground, and that was in november and december of 1950. in many accounts it was one of the coldest winters on record. the temperature dipped 20 come 30, 40 below zero and the men were a club with some of the worst equipment that we had. in fact they were under equipped. they were given the surplus should tax and uniforms from the battles -- which completely didn't prepare them at all. in fact, many of these men that fought in the chosin reservoir if they had frostbite it's immediately admitted. it is assumed that they received
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frostbite in one way or another and bob has on his feet and his hands mainly because of the equipment so bad kind of picture fighting in antarctic a basically without a tent, without hardly any comment at all, and by the way, you are out numbered 20-1 coming and that is what it was like incurred via and in many cases these men didn't have any food, the water was effectively snow on the ground. many of the men subsisted on tootsie roll pops, it is a standing joke that every reunion they go to a handout little to see rules to each other. >> excuse me, not pops. >> tootsie rolls. >> yeah, but you know the point. as you mentioned, bob, this is a raw card thing that had to two
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to three minutes to get melted basically, so its -- this is an extreme -- this is a book about survival as much as it's about combat. it's about war and its aftermath, and i really hoped with "give me tomorrow" to tell all of those that fought in the korean war so people would have a better understanding of what these men went through, which they are agreed he -- heroes. >> i would like to thank you for writing this book. my all-time research to be correlative was in a chosen marine and i think that he felt a little bit underappreciated. but my question was do you feel that -- i realize the bird and the scope of the book is about george company, but do you feel the success that they had
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spurred macarthur to push them as far north as fast as they did? do you feel the war would have gone different if there had been no resistance or if it had been different outcome? >> that is a jury could hypothetical question. it could have been a more protracted war like the war eventually ended up. >> through the chosin reservoir it also touches upon the years of 1951 through 52 and 53 where the war became a kind of stalemate and both sides fought along with the parallel and they didn't gain much ground so, you know, history we don't know how history could have turned out, but knowing macarthur and his strategy was to hit them where
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they aim effectively, and she was going to do an amphibious landing at some point because the united states had the day those assets at their disposal which the north koreans and the chinese didn't have, so i think there definitely was going to be a landing at some point, perhaps if the landing had been more contested history would have changed, we don't know. >> i will give you a little bit of background on macarthur's decisions. he didn't believe his intelligence -- he didn't believe in his intelligence that the chinese were massing on the manchurian border. the intelligence showed that there was over 500,000 chinese on the border, and his egotistical mind could not conceive the chinese coming against his army. when he sent us of -- there was
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a point where he told the joint chiefs of staff at between the west coast and the east coast is about 90 miles. at that point we had enough men to put a good defensive line across and stop. that is what he told the joint chiefs of staff twice. well, he wanted to get all of north korea. north korea opens up to 650 miles, okay, from 90 miles to 650 miles apart. on the left flank at the reservoir when we were at the reservoir he was 80 miles through mountains to the closest allied force on the left flank. on the right flank it was 150 miles to the closest army
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units so to surround us it was no big deal, and the way the chinese did it is they would carry white sheets and the most snow covered so whenever the alarm went off that an airplane or spotter plane was looking for them they had a blow or whistle or bugles and cover-up and anybody moved would be shot. so that's how they were able to infiltrate and him not know that they were all around us. but we have been fighting them for some time. i think the first time we ran into the chinese is before we went on the plateau, the chosin reservoir plateau, and there was a division that had one of the regiments and we killed over 1,000 chinese at that time and probably gave 5,000 or 6,000 casualties in total.
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and they didn't believe macarthur and his staff, wouldn't believe we were fighting chinese. why they didn't is beyond me. we showed them. we captured how many prisoners? and that's one of the things that disappointed me and knowing that during the second war we were so powerful that our army was so great that we can lose a war to these chinese. the army on the west coast or the west side a for me, they actually ran from the chinese. they didn't put up any defense. they ran all the way back to seoul and the marines were left up by themselves, and if we were getting out the had to fight away and somebody says retreat there is no retreat, you can't retreat for the divisions behind you. there were less troops going up
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to the river than coming back, and they were there. they're set purpose as a leader had said to annihilate the marines because they knew if they could annihilate the marines then they could defeat the army, and the marines put up that battle and decimate their army, the whole mind the army was out of action until april the following year before they even came at to play again. had we not put up the stand they could have just swung around and defeated the army and there would be no more south korea. because what would stop them? we had nothing. any other questions? >> you were a veteran of the chosin reservoir. thank you for coming.
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>> one of the special things about marines one does something and somebody does something better as we try to keep up with him. but the marines at the chosin reservoir disobeyed orders, the army general to doubt the best you can. these and now we are not coming out unless we come out fighting to get a slice it to the general disability orders and were in trouble but that's the wave of marines work. you get the job done or you don't -- your not supposed to be there. one of the things i was wondering about here is what kind of metals -- what do you get when you are a veteran? you get a hat, a mess of metals and stuff like that? but one of the things veterans need to get is this thing they call disability payment. the disability payment available to the veterans, you will be surprised now these $2,700 a
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month tax free $2,700 a month tax free. but governor gives you a hard time sometimes to get those, but this chosen group had a lot of frozen people and so forth and it took some people many months to get approval on. this is where we the people need to take advantage of is when you have somebody going into the military and do something, make sure they are taken care of properly. taken care of properly. why do we go into the military? why do we have fights with these other countries? it's very simple. other people did a great job of helping us become individuals, liberty and justice for all. we fought each other in the united states and then we finally said freedom is
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something everyone needs to have so you find the people giving to other countries and fighting freedom for other people and it's because other people get things that we benefit from commesso never turn that down. now one of the wonderful things we have many marines that start their training at paris island, south carolina which is a basic training thing, but few in the other after world war ii and korea go back for what? what will they go back for? they became a drill instructor because they learn how marines go through things and those are the things that are very important. some of us are very fortunate we got in world war ii, got educated, and then we got training, called back for korea and therefore the various other things taking place with the big
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thing you want to know -- >> let me just -- i'm sorry sir, the was a very good statement but let me move on to the next question then. if we have another question in the audience >> i would just like to make a statement. i received disability in the korean war $123 a month and it's very difficult to get disability. this gentleman said. by the way the u.s. army was also in korea. spec we certainly want to honor the sacrifices in the caribbean and the look brings out one task force that was on the other side of the chezem reservoir that fought during violently and made their way to words and as i mentioned before the book is really not just about george company in particular, it is also trying to capture the
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entire career in a war and the sacrifices the army veterans as well as marine veterans made. do we have any other questions? yes, sir. >> just wondered if you could tell us a little about yourself, your background, and how you got into writing books. >> sure. >> and what it means to you. >> it means a lot to me. it's not a job, this is my passion. it's not work for me at all. when i was 4-years-old i picked up a book on the world war ii and the dinosaur book and i was kind of sunk in the immediately. next thing you know i have a library of 800 or 900 books on world war ii, and it just sort of topic consumed me and when we or another and i started reading about military history specifically and it was after
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college that instead of reading the books about the military history, i started to interview the men themselves that fought these, and it wasn't about what they did. i started to find out about the feelings and emotions so many of these men had felt, and it began with world war i veterans, members of the 82nd airborne division and it just went from there and i created a web site called the drop zone and it's an oral history project where i volunteer my time i didn't get paid to do it to capture these stories. as bob mentioned earlier i interviewed about floatels and members of america's armed forces as well as german and japanese veterans, and i just started to these interviews and the next thing you know the men themselves said weigel you write a book, and i just kind of fell
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into it by accident and wrote my first book called beyond the dollar back in 1999 which was a bestseller for simon schuster, and here i am today. it's really not about the books, it's about the journey. i really enjoy the people i met and the places i've gone. it's not about the destination so to speak. it's the journey and the people i met who have been extraordinary. i have made some really extraordinary friends. >> i would like to ask any close air support? >> a lot. >> whenever it was and snowing, the blue angels were always of us, and without them we couldn't
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have gotten out. they paved the way and softened up the enemy and the salles but we couldn't see. we were stuck to the roads, and they were up high. and they could see providing the weather is good but in the winter we always have snow clouds and a lot of cold weather and snow. without them -- i just want to mention about the air force see 47 planes called them the gooney birds but the c47 planes could carry out 25 wounded marines out of had through. they took out 4,500 on a runway that was ice and snow. it wasn't a normal run way, and
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it was shorter than what was required the pilot said we are going to try and i will tell you this one story about this one pilot. he came in and solve some marines he couldn't get on so said come on, put them on, we will take out 28. the next trip he saw more marines and said put them on. he took out 30 some, and the final trip he had 40 some marines, wounded marines in his plane. on the short runway in this weather, and he got them all out. over 4500, that is 200 some flights had to come in and shot at, so they deserve a lot of credit, too.
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>> just to kind finalize things here to get thank you all for coming and i just want to emphasize that, you know, "give me tomorrow stock" i hope people get their own what is out there and find out what they did during the korean war and this isn't the forgotten war. thank you very much. bob and i are going to sign a few books now. [applause] >> book tv has covered several even to patrick o'donnell including and "after words" program with creek atkinson. to watch these programs online visit and search patrick o'donnell of the top of the page. we are of the national press club talking with charles ogletree about his book the presumption of guilt. can you tell me what made you decide to write about the incident with henry louis gates?
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>> a lot of people e-mail me, texts and faxes sitting this happened to my grandmother, my niece, my uncle, cousin, brother, and was an amazing reaction, and because it was professor dates, not jamal into was an issue because my former student and our president, barack obama, came to his defense and that created a national issue. but since i write a lot about issues of race and justice it was a natural thing to do, and i wanted people to say professor bates can get a vested in such regions like this when it gives to forms of ied in his own house and the only crime is arguing the police officer in his house what happens to those who don't have a lawyer and have power and the six blowers that case and the broad issue that profiling has happened through the nation's history. >> did you learn anything this surprise you when you were researching the book?
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>> the first is interesting. everyone thought the woman who were originally called, her name was lucille, was the nosy neighbor, she was racial profiling. in fact when we got the transcript what we learned she is the hero, i see people, calling, but i don't know if they live there or work there, but for the white, black or hispanic? she said i don't know i think one is hispanic but i don't know. the police officer report says the black machine ever says that. so all of these things we thought we knew in july, 2009, investigation research and analysis showed that it wasn't the real story and that is why the book has been important. the last chapter is called 100 ways to look at a black man because all of these calls and faxes and other material or received, most of the people who got in contact with me about racial profiling work professional black men. i started doing research on


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