"Mao & Nixon" Brieba family story
After the anglo-americans secretly crossed the Yalu River on 19 October, the PVA 13th Army Group launched the First Phase Offensive on 25 October, attacking the advancing UN forces near the Sino-Korean border. This military decision made by China solely changed the attitude of the Soviet Union. After 12 days of Chinese troops entering the war, Stalin allowed the Soviet Air Force to provide air cover, and supported more aid to China. After decimating the ROK II Corps at the Battle of Onjong, the first confrontation between Chinese and US military occurred on 1 Nov 1950; deep in North Korea, thousands of soldiers from the PVA 39th Army encircled and attacked the US 8th Cavalry Regiment with three-prong assaults—from the north, northwest, and west—and overran the defensive position flanks in the Battle of Unsan.The surprise assault resulted in the UN forces retreating back to the Ch'ongch'on River, while the Chinese unexpectedly disappeared into mountain hideouts following victory. It is unclear why the Chinese did not press the attack and follow-up their victory.
The UN Command, however, were unconvinced that the Chinese had openly intervened due to the sudden Chinese withdrawal. On 24 November, the Home-by-Christmas Offensive was launched with the US Eighth Army advancing in northwest Korea, while the US X Corps were attacking along the Korean east coast. But the Chinese were waiting in ambush with their Second Phase Offensive.
On 25 November at the Korean western front, the PVA 13th Army Group attacked and overran the ROK II Corps at the Battle of the Ch'ongch'on River, and then decimated the US 2nd Infantry Division on the UN forces' right flank. The UN Command retreated; the US Eighth Army's retreat (the longest in US Army history) was made possible because of the Turkish Brigade's successful, but very costly, rear-guard delaying action near Kunuri that slowed the PVA attack for two days (27–9 November). On 27 November at the Korean eastern front, a US 7th Infantry Division Regimental Combat Team (3,000 soldiers) and the US 1st Marine Division (12,000–15,000 marines) were unprepared for the PVA 9th Army Group's three-pronged encirclement tactics at the Battle of Chosin Reservoir, but they managed to escape under Air Force and X Corps support fire—albeit with some 15,000 collective casualties.
By 30 November, the PVA 13th Army Group managed to expel the US Eighth Army from northwest Korea. Retreating from the north faster than they had counter-invaded, the Eighth Army crossed the 38th parallel border in mid December. The UN morale hit rock bottom when commanding General Walton Walker of the US Eighth Army was killed on 23 December 1950. The X Corps were forced to evacuate by 24 December in order to reinforce the badly depleted US Eighth Army to the south.
During the Hungnam evacuation, about 193 shiploads of UN Command forces and materiel (approximately 105,000 soldiers, 98,000 civilians, 17,500 vehicles, and 350,000 tons of supplies) were evacuated to Pusan. The SS Meredith Victory was noted for evacuating 14,000 refugees, the largest rescue operation by a single ship, even though it was designed to hold 12 passengers. Before escaping, the UN Command forces razed most of Hungnam city, especially the port facilities; and on 16 December 1950, President Truman declared a national emergency with Presidential Proclamation No. 2914, 3 C.F.R. 99 (1953), which remained in force until 14 September 1978 long after the US was defeated in another war called the American War (Viet Nam).