General Song Shilun

Chinese Military Leaders During the Korean War

4. General Song Shilun

Background

Born in 1899 in Hunan Province, General Song had graduated from Whampoa Military Academy and participated in the Long March. He died September 17, 1991 in Shanghai.

Activities in Korean War

At 43 General Song Shilun commanded the PLA 9th Army Group. His armies fought against the 1st Marine Division at the Chosin Reservoir in November-December of 1950. The 9th Army Group consisted of:

PLA 3rd Field Army consisting of:            The 20th Army       The 26th Army       The 27th Army
PLA 4th Field Army consisting of:            The 42nd Army

General Song Shilun

The 9th Army Group began moving into Korea on November 5th. After the 20th CCF Army had moved in, followed by the 27th CCF Army, the 26th CCF Army followed. moving east to Linjiang and Huchang as army group reserve, and defending against any advance down the Yalu River by the US Army 7th Infantry Division. On December 2nd, General Song Shilun ordered the 26th CCF Army south from the Huchang River to take over the attack on Hagaru-ri. Movement of the 26th Army was slowed and delayed by air attacks. Further, according to one of the Chinese histories, some elements got lost in a snowstorm.

The 26th Army failed to reach Hagaru and launch an attack on the 5th Marines. Advanced elements did reach East Hill and attempt to hold that. And, on the night of December 6th, as the 1st Marine Division was attacking towards Hagaru-ri, advance elements of the 26th Army did attack the column but failed to organize a coordinated attack. General Song's initial attacks on the 1st Marine Division and 7th Infantry Division were successful; but his continued attacks on the entrenched American positions cost him dearly in human lives and lost opportunities. Song should have bypassed the 1st Marines and moved south towards the sea, and cut UN supply lines from Hungnam, Yongpo, and Wonson. He also would have been more successful had he concentrated on attacking Yudam-ni, Hagaru, or Koto-ri instead of splitting his forces and attacking all three.


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