Triumph at Kapyong: Canada's Pivotal Battle in Korea

Dan Bjarnason

Published by Dundurn, 2011
ISBN 10: 1554888727 / ISBN 13: 9781554888726
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April 24th, 1951,was a lonely, moon-lit night in Korea. On a godforsaken hill, a few hundred surrounded Canadian soldiers waited for the fight of their lives to begin. Soon, Chinese communist troops in their thousands, swarmed around them, plunging straight towards the Korean capital, Seoul. These Canadians were all that blocked the way.

This is the story of the first battle by Canada’s first soldiers in the Korean War: the 2nd Battalion of Princess Patricia’s Canadian Light Infantry. These volunteers were straight from Central Casting: truck drivers, construction workers, kids just out of high school, and bored farm boys. Outnumbered and outgunned, this people’s army of amateurs beat off some of the toughest troops on earth.

This battle that’s become a legend takes its name from a nearby peanut-sized village: Kapyong.

It’s become a mythic Canadian story, except this is mythology that is true and real.

From the Inside Flap: April 24th, 1951, was a lonely, moonlit night in Korea. On a godforsaken hill, a few hundred surrounded Canadian soldiers waited for the fight of their lives to begin. These volunteers -- truck drivers, construction workers, kids just out of high school -- outnumbered, they beat off some of the toughest troops on earth.

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Title: Triumph at Kapyong: Canada's Pivotal Battle ...
Publisher: Dundurn
Publication Date: 2011
Binding: Paperback
Book Condition: Good

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Bjarnason, Dan
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Bjarnason, Dan
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Book Description Dundurn, 2011. Condition: Very Good. Former Library book. Great condition for a used book! Minimal wear. Seller Inventory # GRP68981283

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Book Description Dundurn. Paperback. Condition: GOOD. Spine creases, wear to binding and pages from reading. May contain limited notes, underlining or highlighting that does affect the text. Possible ex library copy, that’ll have the markings and stickers associated from the library. Accessories such as CD, codes, toys, may not be included. Seller Inventory # 2894959168

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Book Description Dundurn. Paperback. Condition: Good. A copy that has been read, but remains in clean condition. All pages are intact, and the cover is intact. The spine may show signs of wear. Pages can include limited notes and highlighting, and the copy can include previous owner inscriptions. At ThriftBooks, our motto is: Read More, Spend Less. Seller Inventory # G1554888727I3N00

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Dan Bjarnason
Published by Dundurn Group Ltd, Canada (2011)
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Book Description Dundurn Group Ltd, Canada, 2011. Paperback. Condition: New. Language: English. Brand new Book. Afghanistan is not Canada's first war in Asia. We've been there before, a half century ago . in Korea. And it was a meat grinder, scarcely remembered now . a war in which on one hilltop, on one April night, freshly-minted Canadians soldiers made a desperate stand that prevented catastrophe. In all, twenty-five thousand Canadians fought in Korea. By the time the shooting stopped, more than five hundred had been killed on lonely hilltops and in desolate ravines. Five hundred . in only two years. In Canada's war in Korea, there were no Vimy Ridges or Normandys. In Korea, Canadians were shot down in their fours and fives mostly, on patrols and in ambushes. It was largely a war at night in small groups. But not always. There were sometimes terrifying battles where outposts were swamped by Chinese human wave attacks. This is the story of one such battle . Canada's first in Korea, in April 1951, on a barren and rocky hill near a nothing village called Kapyong on the edge of nowhere. It's the story of 700 men, all volunteers, in the 2nd Batallion of Princess Patricia's Canadian Light Infantry. They'd signed up specifically to fight in Korea . and now on this April night, they found themselves surrounded by thousands of Chinese soldiers sweeping around their positions. In April 1951, the Chinese launched an offensive plunging straight for the South Korean capital, Seoul. Other allied positions collapsed around the Canadians. Only the lonely Patricias blocked the road. And now it was their turn for the Chinese treatment. The Patricias had the wrong weapons and were trained in the wrong tactics for this war. Most were utter amateurs. This was a true People's Army -- cab drivers, lumberjacks, farm boys and adventurers. They were up against a seasoned enemy, better armed and with immense battle savvy, fresh from their victories in the Chinese Civil War. And yet in a terrifying battle in the dark that had the feel of Thermopylae . with several hundred against several thousand, with hand-to-hand fighting with bayonet's and shovels, with foxholes lost and retaken, with calling down artillery fire on their own positions, they held. The Patricia's that night changed the course the war could have taken. Kapyong is about what did not happen. The Canadian positions did not collapse. Kapyong did not fall. Seoul was not captured. The Chinese breakthrough went nowhere. And so, the Korean War did not end abruptly in April 1951. For the Chinese, Kapyong had simply been too much. By dawn they had abandoned the field. Incredibly, the Patricia's casualties were ten dead and 23 wounded. Chinese dead, although unknown, must have been in the many hundreds. At no point had there been talk among the Canadians of breaking out . they had simply decided to tough it out on their hilltop. The Kapyong story sparkles with qualities that Canadians believe make up their national character: sacrifice, courage, initiative, modesty and an uncomplicated rock-solid belief in themselves. It is the story of the Patricias' cool and cranky commander, James Stone, a World War Two veteran of the Italian campaign who applied his mountain warfare savvy to the wilds of Korea. It's the story of Ken Barwise, who single-handedly recaptured a lost machine gun from the Chinese. It's the story of Smiley Douglas who reached for a live grenade which landed in the midst of his platoon. It exploded just as he tossed it free, blowing off his hand. It's the story of Michael Levy, who had fought as a teenager against the Japanese in Malaya as a guerrilla. At Kapyong he was the heroic platoon commander who called in artillery on his own position. The Patricias survived because they believed they were the best soldiers on the hill that night. They bet their lives on it. They won the bet. Seller Inventory # AAC9781554888726

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Bjarnason, Dan; Clarkson, Adrienne (foreword); Mansbridge, Peter (foreword)
Published by Dundurn Press, Toronto, Ontario, Canada (2011)
ISBN 10: 1554888727 ISBN 13: 9781554888726
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Book Description Dundurn Press, Toronto, Ontario, Canada, 2011. Soft Cover. Condition: VG. First Edition Paperback. 195pp. with b/w illustrations. Previous owners small address label on three pages, small curl at corners, light creasing from page handling and light soil to outer edges. Wraps have light edge/rub wear and light creasing. Actual book for sale pictured. 15.3 x 22.9 x 1.3g, wt500g Size: 8vo - over 7¾" - 9¾" tall. Seller Inventory # 024642

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