In November 1950, about five months after the Korean War began, as the U.N. forces under Gen Douglas MacArthur approached the Yalu River at the Chinese-North Korean border, China warned that it would not tolerate a unification of the peninsula under U.S.-U.N. auspices. After several weeks of threats and infiltrations, China’s People's Liberation Army entered North Korea the en masse in later November, launching viscous attacks, forcing MacArthur into a costly chaotic, retreat down the peninsula. [Source: “Worldmark Encyclopedia of Nations”, Thomson Gale, 2007]

In November 1950, 300,000 Chinese soldiers attacked American forces along the Chongchon Yalu and Rivers. Again Americans were caught disastrously unprepared. After a fierce battle at the Changjin (Chosin) Reservoir, they were pushed southwards as South Korean forces had been pushed before towards Pusan during the previous summer. The Chinese "volunteers" and the North Korean army pushed United States and South Korean forces out of North Korea within a month. North Korea eventually restored its authority over its domain. The Chinese halted their offensive in January 1951 after Seoul once again had fallen. It was a humiliating defeat for MacArthur and the Americans.

Even though the Chinese army was poorly equipped, it forced the U.S. into its longest retreat in military history — 195 kilometers (120 miles) down Korean peninsula. The Chinese attacked retreating vehicles with gauntlets of fire and bayonet attacks on men hanging on the sides of the retreating trucks. The Chinese and American often became so entangled in close range fighting that neither side could shoot without risking hitting one of their own guys. One survivor told the Washington Post, “We had to leave behind the dead and dying and wounded because there was no way to get them out...Troops were calling, ‘Help, don’t leave, we’re wounded.’”

The Chinese and North Korean forces pushed the United Nations forces south of the 38th parallel and pushed further south. They recaptured Seoul but were unable to maintain their suppliers and were pushed back north towards the 38th parallel by heavy United Nations air and artillery fire.

Refugees accompanied the United Nations forces retreat. A former North Korean told the Washington Post, "I crossed into the South on January 4, 1951. There was an American army unit heading south, so my whole family just joined up and went with them. We knew we would be slaves, in a way, if we had to live in the North.”

American Military Command Calls Off Yalu Offensive as Marines Fights Chinese

On Sunday, November 26, the Chinese Communist Forces (CCF, People’s Liberation Army) struck along a 300-mile front near the Yalu River, launching strong counterattacks against the U.S. I Corps and IX Corps and eventually throwing the entire 8th Army into retreat. At that time U.S. Marines were still marching towards the Yalu.

Robert Moskin wrote in American Heritage: “MacArthur was not troubled by intelligence reports of large Chinese forces building up on both sides of the Yalu. He ordered the 8th Army north on a climactic general offensive on the twenty-fourth. The civilian leadership and Joint Chiefs of Staff in Washington did nothing to stop him. To MacArthur it was the beginning of the end of this war. The general who was the chief of staff of X Corps later called its role in the offensive — to travel west over the freezing, treacherous mountains of North Korea to link up with the 8th Army — “insane.” [Source: Robert Moskin, American Heritage, Volume51, Issue7 November 2000]

Robert Moskin wrote in American Heritage magazine: “At 11:00am on November 28, Major General Smith arrived by helicopter and opened his forward headquarters. An hour later, Major General Almond flew in with his 25-year-old aide, 1st Lt. Alexander M. Haig, Jr. Almond conferred with Smith and promptly flew out in a helicopter to visit the Army’s 31st Infantry Regiment and 1st Battalion, 32d Infantry, which had been badly hurt east of the reservoir. There Almond told an incredulous Lieutenant Colonel Faith that the Chinese he had been fighting were only stragglers fleeing north. Almond pinned a Silver Star on Faith’s parka. As soon as Almond departed, Faith ripped off his medal and, cursing, threw it into the snow. [Source: Robert Moskin, American Heritage, Volume51, Issue7 November 2000]

“General MacArthur summoned Almond to Tokyo for a conference that night. At this past-midnight meeting of the chief field commanders, MacArthur asked Almond what he thought of the situation on his front, and Almond euphorically said he expected the 1st Marine and 7th Infantry divisions to continue their attacks and to reach the 8th Army. That, of course, was impossible. A mere four days after initiating his general offensive to the Yalu, MacArthur ordered Almond to end all offensive action and bring X Corps back to the coast.

“That night of November 28–29, Lieutenant Colonel Ridge expected the enemy to attack Hagaru-ri [near Chosin Reservoir] from the south. The men were in their foxholes and it had begun to snow again when, at 10:30pm , the Chinese sent up three red flares and, as predicted, attacked H and I Companies. The enemy’s losses were frightful, but shortly after midnight, in a pandemonium of trumpets and whistles, they broke through to H Company’s command post. A few Chinese got close enough to fire on engineers operating under floodlights on the airstrip. A group of engineers counterattacked, cleared the airstrip, and then went back to work.

“On the east side of the reservoir, lieutenant Colonel Faith’s U.S. Army battalion was also in a pitched battle. After the fight, Allan D. MacLean, commander of the 31st Infantry Regiment and Faith’s superior, disappeared. Much later it was determined that the Chinese had captured him, and he had died of his wounds. Lieutenant Colonel Faith was now in command east of the reservoir; the remnant of the Army battalions came to be called “Task Force Faith.” Task Force Faith waited for a relief force from Hagaru-ri to rescue them, but Major General Smith had no one to spare. The soldiers would receive Marine air support, but otherwise they would have to get out on their own.

Ugly Defeat at Chosin

Robert Moskin wrote in American Heritage magazine: Also on November 28, “G Company, 1st Marines, B Company, 31st Infantry, and the 41st Commando, British Royal Marines, arrived from the south at Koto-ri, 11 miles back down the MSR from Hagaru-ri. Colonel Puller gave Lt. Col. Douglas B. Drysdale, the Royal Marine unit’s commander, a task force to fight through to Hagaru-ri, where they were needed. Describing the Chinese positions to Drysdale, Puller memorably said, “They’ve got us surrounded. The bastards won’t get away this time.” [Source: Robert Moskin, American Heritage, Volume51, Issue7 November 2000]

“So began one of the ugliest episodes in Marine Corps history. Drysdale headed north the next morning. By late afternoon, after being joined by more platoons, he led a seemingly strong task force of 922 men and 141 vehicles, with 29 tanks. But in a snow-covered valley about five miles north of Koto-ri, enemy fire forced the convoy to halt. Drysdale later called the spot “Hell Fire Valley.”

“A mortar shell exploded an ammunition truck, creating a fire that split the column. The front section of the task force, 440 men with Drysdale in command, fought forward and reached Maj. Edwin H. Simmons’s roadblock on the Hagaru-ri perimeter. Of these men, 109 were casualties, including Drysdale. Those remaining in Hell Fire Valley were ordered to turn the vehicles around for a dash back to Koto-ri. The Chinese did not let them escape, and attacks severed the column into four groups.

“The Chinese kept the little perimeters pinned down until 4:30am, when they demanded that the trapped men surrender. The Marine Major John McLaughlin and the British Sergeant Patrick D. Murphy went out to parley, hoping to stall until air support returned with daylight. The Chinese gave them 10 minutes to decide. McLaughlin had little choice; none of his 40 remaining able-bodied men had more than eight rounds of rifle ammunition. He said he would surrender if the Chinese allowed the evacuation of the seriously wounded to Koto-ri. The Chinese agreed. All told, Task Force Drysdale had sustained an estimated 162 killed or missing and 159 wounded.

“On the afternoon of November 30, Major General Almond flew into Hagaru-ri and told Major General Smith and the Army commanders of the 7th Infantry Division that they should concentrate all their troops right there, and then withdraw to the coast. Almond was nervous and alarmed, clearly realizing that the survival of his command was at stake. He promised to resupply Smith by air and authorized him to destroy all equipment that would delay his withdrawal. Smith stiffly replied that he would fight his way out and bring out his wounded and his equipment.

Beginning of Retreat

Moskin wrote: “Also on November 28, “G Company, 1st Marines, B Company, 31st Infantry, and the 41st Commando, British Royal Marines, arrived from the south at Koto-ri, 11 miles back down the MSR from Hagaru-ri. Colonel Puller gave Lt. Col. Douglas B. Drysdale, the Royal Marine unit’s commander, a task force to fight through to Hagaru-ri, where they were needed. Describing the Chinese positions to Drysdale, Puller memorably said, “They’ve got us surrounded. The bastards won’t get away this time.” [Source: Robert Moskin, American Heritage, Volume51, Issue7 November 2000]

MacArthur had gambled and lost. He recklessly called for a general war with China, then got a grip on himself and decided he could give up Pyongyang and even Seoul and form a new defensive line — below the thirty-eighth parallel. He had taken 12,975 casualties. Meanwhile, Task Force Faith endured a fourth long night of battle. By now the soldiers were exhausted and short of every kind of ammunition. Many suffered from frozen feet and hands. Medical supplies were used up. The bodies of the dead lay in frozen rows four high.

“As the GIs formed their convoy to flee to Hagaru-ri, they could see the Chinese coming down off the hills and gathering along their breakout route. What followed was a nightmare. As soon as the convoy left the perimeter, it came under fire and men began to drop. The GIs, in uncoordinated groups, tried frantically to reach Hagaru-ri. Fragments of a grenade struck Lieutenant Colonel Faith above the heart. He died before he could reach safety.

“Hundreds of utterly exhausted survivors of Task Force Faith arrived at Hagaru-ri that first night, and more made it each day. Every one of them had endured the most extreme hardship and pain; only those with a very strong will to live survived. When a British correspondent suggested to Maj. Gen. Smith that this was a “retreat,” he replied quietly that since the Marines were surrounded, there was no rear and thus could be no retreat.

Breakout from Chosin

Moskin wrote: “On December 2, in temperatures that reached minus 24 degrees, U.S. Marine Lt. Col. Olin L. Beall, 52 years old and a 30-year veteran, went out on the reservoir ice for 12 hours with Pfc. Ralph Milton and Corpsman Oscar Biebinger (by midday, three more men had joined) and searched for survivors, despite sniper and automatic-weapons fire. They brought 319 men into Hagaru-ri. The next morning, after rescuing four more men on the reservoir, Beali went alone and unarmed to the silent string of trucks. He walked the length of the convoy and saw the wounded now lying frozen in each vehicle. No one was alive. [Source: Robert Moskin, American Heritage, Volume51, Issue7 November 2000]

“Of the approximately 3,000 American soldiers east of the Chosin, more than 1,000 had been killed or captured. Of the rest who reached Hagaru-ri, only 385 GIs were still strong enough to fight. They were organized into a provisional battalion attached to the 7th Marines. By now the Chinese had left the area of Task Force Faith and were digging in to meet the Marines on the road.

“The “breakout” of the 1st Marine Division began at 8:00am on Friday, December 1. Lieutenant Colonel Davis’s 1st Battalion, 7th Marines, broke off from the main body and began a dash eight miles across the ridgetops to relieve Captain Barber’s F Company on Fox Hill, where they were still holding open Toktong Pass. Davis, a soft-spoken Georgian who had fought on Guadalcanal, was about to lead his battalion into Marine Corps history. They started out at 9:00pm Each man carried an extra bandolier of ammunition and a sleeping bag while climbing the mountains through knee-deep snow at 16 degrees below zero. The Marines in front pounded the path into ice, while behind them men slipped and fell and climbed back up the ridges on hands and knees.

“Officers and noncoms had to shake and cuff the men to keep them awake after they collapsed in the snow during a pause for reorganization. They got up and pushed on. At 3:00am , Davis called a halt and organized a perimeter. The men took turns sleeping in the empty silence of the bleak, icy wasteland. The Marines on Fox Hill finally came through on the radio. Captain Barber, now commanding from a stretcher, wanted to send out a patrol to guide Davis in; the offer was declined. At 11:25am on December 2, B Company’s Marines picked their way over a sea of frozen Chinese bodies and entered F Company’s lines.

“Davis’s 1st Battalion, 7th Marines — known thereafter as the Ridgerunners of Toktong Pass — dug in on high ground around Fox Hill. Barber’s Marines stayed in their foxholes. Over five nights and days of fighting, they had given up 26 killed, 3 missing, and 89 wounded — just about half their strength. Of Barber’s 7 officers, 6 were wounded, and almost everyone suffered from frostbite. Only 82 of his original 240 men could still walk. Theirs was a stand that Marines would compare to Wake Island and Edson’s Ridge on Guadalcanal. Both Barber and Davis were awarded the Medal of Honor.

“As Davis was relieving Fox Hill, Lt. Col. Robert D. Taplett’s 3d Battalion, 5th Marines, was leading the main body down the MSR, fighting for every frozen yard. The hills looked deceptively peaceful under six inches of new snow on the afternoon of December 3, when the head of Taplett’s column came into Toktong Pass and met Davis’s battalion. Taplett’s three rifle companies were reduced in three days from 437 combat-able men to 194.

“As the first battle-weary, frozen men of the 1st Battalion, 7th Marines, neared Hagaru-ri that evening, they paused and closed ranks; the wounded who were able climbed down from the trucks. Reaching deep for some vestige of stamina and pride, they straightened their shoulders, dressed ranks, and marched into the perimeter. At 2:00pm on December 4, the last of the rear guard entered Hagaru-ri. It had taken the head of the column 59 brutal hours to fight through the 14 miles; the rear units needed 79 hours. They brought out with them some 1,500 casualties, nearly a third of them victims of frostbite. After the campaign, Major General Smith said that no members of the division had died as a result of exposure, but he attributed 62 amputations to the cold. Now Major General Smith had all three of his regiments at one place for the first time, 14,000 survivors. By nightfall on the fifth of December, 4,312 wounded and badly frostbitten men had been flown out. And 537 replacements had been flown in, many of them Marines wounded in the earlier Inchon and Seoul battles.

“The price the 1st marine division alone had paid from November 30 through December 4 was 164 killed, 55 missing in action, and 921 wounded. This totaled 1,140 battle casualties — plus another 1,194 nonbattle casualties. The need for reorganization was so compelling that the move south to Koto-ri did not begin until December 6. When a British correspondent suggested to Major General Smith that this was a “retreat,” he replied quietly that since the Marines were surrounded, there was no rear and thus could be no retreat. So much for rhetoric.

Battle at East Hill During the Breakout

Moskin wrote: “At 9:00am, Roise’s 2d Battalion, 5th Marines, went after the Chinese nearby on East Hill, from which they controlled the road south. This turned into the toughest battle of the entire breakout. The Marines’ firepower was devastating, and daylight revealed a carnage that exceeded anything they had witnessed in this campaign. The veteran Lieutenant Colonel Murray came up and said he saw more enemy dead there on East Hill than he had ever seen in one place before. [Source: Robert Moskin, American Heritage, Volume51, Issue7 November 2000]

“At 6:30am on December 6, the 7th marines started down the road to Koto-ri through a silvery fog. They fought most of that day and kept moving all night, fighting past a succession of strongpoints, roadblocks, and blown bridges. Between the cold and the enemy, staying alive was a full-time job. By the evening of December 7, Koto-ri was bursting with 11,700 Marines, 2,300 U.S. Army soldiers, 40 South Korean police, and 150 British Marines. During the previous two frantic days, the division had sustained another 616 casualties.

“Although the enemy remained quiet around Koto-ri, a frightening problem had to be solved before the force there could escape. The Chinese had blown up a bridge three and a half miles south of the town, and there was neither the time nor the equipment to replace it. With a cliff on one side and a sheer drop on the other, there was no space for a bypass. The gap of 16 feet (24 feet with the abutments) had to be spanned.

“Lt. Col. John H. Partridge, commander of the Marines’ 1st Engineer Battalion, studied the break from the air and figured it would require four 2,500-pound sections of an M-2 steel Treadway bridge. He requested that eight sections be dropped in case any were damaged. As it happened, one section broke and one fell into Chinese hands. The planes also dropped plywood panels to cover a gap running down the center of the bridge and make a roadway for the narrower vehicles.

“Six miles to the south, Lt. Col. Donald Schmuck’s 1st Battalion, 1st Marines, started hiking up from Chinhung-ni to clear the road of the enemy before the breakout. The Chinese 60th Division waited on the high ground commanding Funchilin Pass. Capt. Robert H. Barrow, the tall, lean Louisianian who commanded A Company, 1st Marines, and a future commandant of the Marine Corps, said much later: “They were clearly in a position to control, dominate, and absolutely stop the 1st Marine Division from moving south. They had to be dislodged.”

Icy Cliffs and Blocked Bridges

Moskin wrote: “B Company, 1st Marines, climbed the wooded western slope of a peak known as Hill 1081 and, trudging through the snow, seized an enemy bunker complex in a brief, savage fight. At the same time, Captain Barrow led A Company up an ice-covered, almost sheer cliff in the windswept blizzard, advanced along the icy, narrow razorback ridge, and enveloped an enemy strongpoint on one crest of Hill 1081. The two Marine companies very quickly lost 13 killed and 17 wounded. It took litter bearers hours to carry the wounded only 700 yards downhill. [Source: Robert Moskin, American Heritage, Volume51, Issue7 November 2000]

“December 9 broke cold and clear with still another blanket of new snow, and American planes went to work, first strafing and then crushing two bunkers with 265-pound bombs. Lieutenant Colonel Schmuck’s A and B Companies, 1st Marines, attacked the final peak of Hill 1081 and finished off two last stubborn bunkers with a grenade barrage covered with rifles and automatics. No Chinese surrendered; none got away. The Marines counted 530 Chinese bodies on the crucial, desperately defended ridge. Chinese troops, whose frozen fingers had to be broken from their rifles, were now frequently surrendering to the Marines.

“The Marines held the height that dominated Funchilin Pass. The fight for Hill 1081 had been the last large-scale Chinese effort to stop the Marines. Barrow’s A Company had only 111 able-bodied men left of the 223 he had led into battle. Around noon, the Treadway bridge sections arrived in place, and even Chinese prisoners were put to work constructing the abutments and laying the Treadways and the four-inch-thick plywood panels. By threethirty, the job was done, and by six the first vehicles had begun to inch across.

“Suddenly, an accident threatened every hope of escape. A tractor broke through the center plywood panel; the bridge became impassable. An expert tractor driver, Tech. Sgt. Wilfred H. Prosser, gingerly backed the machine off the wrecked bridge. Lieutenant Colonel Partridge calculated that if the Treadways were placed to make the gap just right, M-26 tanks could pass with two inches to spare and Jeeps with barely half an inch. Once the adjustments were made, engineers began guiding the vehicles over the bridge with flashlights. The column crossed the fragile span all night long. Marines, Korean refugees, and even cattle crunched southward on the crisp snow. By the next afternoon, the last elements had left Koto-ri. The Marine and Army tanks brought up the rear. Chesty Puller stayed until they started. His Jeep carried out several wounded and three dead Marines; Puller himself walked.

“After the last tanks crossed the bridge, the Chief Warrant Officer, Willie Harrison of the engineers, dropped the precious structure into the 2,000-foot-deep chasm.

U.S. Forces Reach the Korean Coast, Safe But Humiliated

Moskin wrote: “As the men reached Chinhung-ni, at the end of the mountains, the forward units immediately boarded trucks or narrow-gauge freight cars at Majon-dong to head for the coast. But with the shortage of vehicles, many men had to keep walking — and fighting. A Chinese explosive charge blew Pfc. Robert D. DeMott over the cliff beside the road. He was thought dead, but he landed unconscious on a ledge and later managed to climb up and walk among the Korean refugees to Chinhung-ni. He is believed to have been the final Marine out from the reservoir. [Source: Robert Moskin, American Heritage, Volume51, Issue7 November 2000]

“By midnight on December 11, the Marine divisions’ last elements were at Hungnam. Since leaving Koto-ri, the division had yielded 75 more dead, 16 missing, and 256 wounded. But the breakout was finally complete. The remaining job of leaving North Korea was enormous: More than 105,000 troops, 91,000 Korean refugees, 17,500 vehicles, and mountains of supplies were sea-lifted out. By December 14, the 22,215 Marines were on board ships, and the next day the last of the vessels set sail for Pusan, in southern South Korea. On the eighteenth, Marine Air Group 12's command post flew to Itami, Japan.

“Back home, the nation had feared that the Marines would be destroyed by the endless manpower of the Chinese. Had the 1st Marine Division been shattered or forced to surrender, it would have been a military catastrophe unparalleled in American history. Even without that, the campaign was called “America’s worst military licking since Pearl Harbor” in Newsweek, and Chesty Puller, who had earned his fifth Navy Cross — the only Marine ever awarded that many — wrote his wife on December 4: “The leadership, especially that of the higher command during this operation, has not been of top grade…”

“The saving grace was the truly heroic effort of disciplined, determined United States Marines and soldiers against a tough, able enemy and brutal cold. General MacArthur painted the withdrawal rose. He later wrote in a letter: “This was undoubtedly one of the most successful strategic retreats in history.…” Incredibly, he called the action “the most successful and satisfying I have ever commanded.”

“What he took satisfaction from is not easy to understand. Between October 26 and December 15, the 1st Marine Division alone had suffered 4,395 battle casualties — 718 dead, 192 missing, and 3,485 wounded in action — and 7,143 nonbattle casualties.

“The United States had fought its first war with the one year-old People’s Republic of China, and the United Nations forces had been ignominiously thrown out of North Korea. That Friday evening, December 15, President Truman went on the air to tell the American people that he would issue a proclamation the following morning declaring that a national emergency existed. He called on Americans to mobilize their military and industrial strength and not yield to aggression or appease evil in the world. The war would continue for more than three years; there would be heavy fighting, but never again anything like the bitter epic of Chosin.

Eyewitness Accounts of the American Retreat from the Chongchon River

Describing the fighting during the retreat from the Chongchon River in November 1950, Reginald Thompson wrote, "It was a game of blind man's bluff in these wild rugged irregular hills in which the enemy moved freely, easily eluding the groping arms of the Americans by day, and sweeping down upon them blind in the night, with devastating fury and magnificent discipline. Not a shot was fired by the Chinese until they were within thirty yards of the target." [Source: Eyewitness to History, edited by John Carey]

"Meanwhile the Americans were road-bound with the immense weight of useless weapons. The guns were rolled back. The great columns had gone into reverse. For a hundred miles the huge vehicles crammed the narrowing road lanes nose to tail."

For the Americans there "was no rest at night. Within five seconds of wild bugle calls, the attacks came in, seven men out of ten literally draped with percussion grenades on sticks, and the remaining three with automatic weapons. The lead battalion across the river was hit...A bazooka blew up an American tank...The jeeps had frozen solid to the ground, the men struggling in the shallows of the fording point with their unwieldy snow packs freezing in great blocks on their feet. And all the time the enemy machine-guns rasped their leaden terror through the night."

"From a military point of view it was a disaster. There was never any question of staying and meeting these attacks, or regaining the lost ground by day...These men acted as heroically as men may hope to behave but their attitude was always, quite openly: 'Let's get the hell out of here.'"

MacArthur's Resignation

MacArthur blamed the situation on faulty intelligence. He wanted to escalate the war and urged Truman to let him invade China. He even reportedly asked for 34 nuclear bombs to complete the job and suggested releasing a belt of radioactive cobalt to halt Chinese advances. He also insisted that he be given permission to naval blockade and bomb of China and allow Chang Kai-sheks forces to invade southern China.

Truman refused. Among other things, he wanted to keep the Soviet Union out of the war. He also had no desire to fight a war with a China. MacArthur accused the president of appeasement, saying "there is no substitute for victory," pushed conservative politicians to rebel against the presidency. Truman had no choice but to fire him.

Seven months after the brilliant Inchon landing, on April 11, 1951, MacArthur was forced to resign for refusing to follow Truman's orders and publicly criticizing him. Truman said, MacArthur “had grown so far out of sympathy with the established policies of the United States that there is grave doubt as to whether he could any longer be permitted to exercise the authority in making decisions that normal command functions would assign to a Theater Commander". Afterwards Truman’s approval rating sunk to new lows.

Later in 1951, MacArthur addressed a joint session of Congress, an unusual honor it itself, where he gave his famous "old soldiers never die, they just fade away" speech, which ended with him saying, "And like an old soldier of the ballad, I now close my military career and just fade away — an old soldier who tried to do his duty as God gave him the light to see that duty. Goodbye." Afterwards, the White House received 84,000 telegrams, half of which protested the dismissal.

Image Sources: Wikimedia Commons.

Text Sources: South Korean government websites, Korea Tourism Organization, Cultural Heritage Administration, Republic of Korea, UNESCO, Wikipedia, Library of Congress, CIA World Factbook, World Bank, Lonely Planet guides, New York Times, Washington Post, Los Angeles Times, National Geographic, Smithsonian magazine, The New Yorker, “Culture and Customs of Korea” by Donald N. Clark, Chunghee Sarah Soh in “Countries and Their Cultures”, “Columbia Encyclopedia”, Korea Times, Korea Herald, The Hankyoreh, JoongAng Daily, Radio Free Asia, Bloomberg, Reuters, Associated Press, BBC, AFP, The Atlantic, Yomiuri Shimbun, The Guardian and various books and other publications.

Updated in July 2021

This site contains copyrighted material the use of which has not always been authorized by the copyright owner. Such material is made available in an effort to advance understanding of country or topic discussed in the article. This constitutes 'fair use' of any such copyrighted material as provided for in section 107 of the US Copyright Law. In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, the material on this site is distributed without profit. If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond 'fair use', you must obtain permission from the copyright owner. If you are the copyright owner and would like this content removed from, please contact me.