, there were 874 small-scale conflicts between the two Koreas before the outbreak of the all-out war in June 1950. Although many conflicts were “accidental events”, they were inevitable under the situation at that time. The mengjinpu naval battle in August 1949 was one of them, and the conflict was triggered by a rubber boat.
article is excerpted from the 13th edition of the global times on October 30, 2012. Author: Aijia. Original title: the Korean naval war triggered by a rubber boat in 1949.
in 1948, with the support of the United States and the Soviet Union, the Republic of Korea and the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea were successively established. Since then, The Korean Peninsula has become a powder keg that could be detonated at any time. According to statistics, before the outbreak of the all-out war in June 1950, there were as many as 874 small-scale conflicts between the two Koreas. Although many conflicts were “accidental events”, they were inevitable under the situation at that time. The mengjinpu naval battle in August 1949 was one of them, and the conflict was triggered by a rubber boat.
in the summer of 1949, the South Korean navy was busy preparing for the ship watching style at sea, but on the evening of August 10, Robert’s rubber boat, head of the US military advisory group in South Korea, accidentally disappeared. Originally, it was not a big deal, but the rubber boat was sent by the U.S. Department of defense, and Robert took the rubber boat to Li CHENGWAN more than once and said, “when the president wants to use it, I will lend it to you immediately”. Li CHENGWAN, who loves fishing, even plans to go fishing in the rubber boat after the ship viewing. At this point, the South Korean Navy began to worry. Incheon garrison dispatched a large number of ships to launch a cast net search in the waters of Yanping Island, Deji island and bailing Island, but there was no harvest. Robert, who knew this, immediately informed Li CHENGWAN, because in September 1948, four ships of the South Korean Navy went to North Korea, and the officers and soldiers of two battalions under the eighth regiment of the army also went to North Korea.
Li Yingjun, then chief of staff of the South Korean army and sun Yuanyi, chief of staff of the Navy, were called to Lee Seung Wan. “What’s the matter? Are the chief of staff of the South Korean army and Navy all here to help Kim Il Sung? The ships with Tai Chi Flag on the East China Sea have run past, and now the rubber boats with stars and stripes flag on the West Sea (Yellow Sea) have gone north again… Is it decent to go on like this?” Li CHENGWAN’s words are full of thorns. After coming out of qingwatai, Han Mingzhu, then director of the South Korean naval intelligence headquarters, encouraged sun Yuanyi to say that the matter must be related to North Korea and should carry out retaliatory operations against North Korea, and said that he would personally command the operations. In order to save face, sun Yuanyi agreed almost without thinking.
at this time, major Li Tairong, captain of the West Sea Intelligence Department of the South Korean navy, found the rubber boat in the Korean mengjinpu port through reconnaissance, and proposed that the best plan to recapture the rubber boat was to carry out surprise operations in the dark. Sun yuan immediately ordered Xian Mingzhu to draw up a battle plan. According to the operation plan, Xian Mingzhu will personally command the special combat forces, including 20 secret service members, and cover the operation with six ships of the first boat team of Incheon police headquarters.
in the early morning of August 16, 1949, the combat force composed of Zhongwu public ship, United battalion ship and more than 20 secret service members left Incheon port. In order to avoid the surveillance network of the North Korean navy, the South Korean Navy sailed around the south of paekyong island and the west of mengjinpu and arrived at its destination on the 17th. At about 5 a.m. that day, the South Korean Navy secret service members rushed to mengjinpu port in five rubber boats. The alert members of the North Korean Navy coast post soon found them. The North Korean navy soldiers on duty shot at the rubber boat on which the South Korean secret service members were riding with machine guns. At this time, four of the five high-speed rubber boats stayed at sea because of the sudden failure of the engine, and only one continued to approach the shore.
at this time, the reinforcements of the North Korean Navy arrived and began to shoot at the sea with mortars. The four anchored South Korean Navy rubber boats were blown up and all the secret service members on the rubber boats fell into the sea. The rubber boat that was about to land was in a lonely position. While shooting, Xian Mingzhu on board ordered his team members to rush forward. While he was concentrating on directing the battle, he was shot in both legs and fell on the boat. At this time, Kong Zhengzhi, the captain of the jms-302 United warship of the South Korean navy, who came to the war, sailed to the shore in a rubber boat and fired heavy machine guns at the North Korean army. The camp ship under his command also began to approach the shore, and used the powerful firepower on the ship to suppress the firing of the North Korean navy on the shore, and gradually approached the position of ham Myung soo. The other five ships also seemed to be inspired to quickly approach the shore of mengjinpu port.
at this time, several guard boats of the North Korean Navy also surrounded, and the two sides fought fiercely at sea. Due to the obvious firepower advantage of South Korean naval ships, the North Korean Navy appears to be a little outnumbered. In the fierce battle, four guard boats were hit and sunk, five officers and soldiers were captured, and the coastal post was also severely damaged. Kong Zhengzhi took the opportunity to command his subordinates to conduct reconnaissance on the shore, but he did not find the rubber boat. This has greatly disappointed the South Korean navy. However, Kong Zhengzhi and others believed that the war against the DPRK had been won, so they turned around and returned.
after Kong Zhengzhi and others returned to the land, they tried to boast their achievements to the top of the Navy. Therefore, although they failed to bring back the rubber boat, Li CHENGWAN still commended the officers and soldiers participating in the war. The most unexpected thing for Koreans is that the rubber boat finally returned to South Korea in January 1950. It turned out that all this was done by a corporal named an Shengjia of the Incheon Police Department of the South Korean navy. He left the team and drove a rubber boat to North Korea to meet his relatives. In the spring of 1950, he returned home in a rubber boat and sneaked into Seoul to hide secretly. Later, he was captured and sentenced by the South Korean Navy spy team.
in the view of Koreans, the mengjinpu battle is a successful retaliatory battle against North Korea in South Korea’s history. Only one of the more than 20 Navy officers and soldiers, including special agents, was injured. Since this incident occurred on the eve of the “June 25 war”, it is also considered to be one of the fuses of the Korean War. It is said that at that time, the US government directly warned Li CHENGWAN that the government had caused great trouble and asked Li CHENGWAN to make an apology