Chinese Hordes and Human Waves

A Personal Perspective of the Korean War 1950-1953

Brigadier Brian Parritt

Date Published :
December 2014
Publisher :
Pen and Sword
Illustration :
16pp b/w plates
Format Available    QuantityPrice
Binding. : Paperback
ISBN : 9781783373727
Pages : 224
Dimensions : 9 X 6 inches
Stock Status : In stock
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The North Koreans’ attack on their Southern neighbors shocked and surprised the World. The conflict rapidly escalated with China soon heavily involved on one side and the United States and United Nations on the other.

The author, then a young Gunner officer, found himself in the midst of this very nasty war. He describes first hand what it was like to be at the infamous Battle of the Hook, where UN troops held off massed attacks by the Communists. Few outside the war zone realized just how horrific conditions were.

As a qualified Chinese interpreter and, later, a senior military intelligence officer, Parritt is well placed to analyze why the Commonwealth got involved, the mistakes and successes and the extreme risk that the war represented.

This is not only a fine memoir but a unique insight into a forgotten War.

About The Author

Brigadier Brian Parritt served as a Gunner Officer in Korea 1952-53. He took part in the Third Battle of The Hook and as the Forward Observation Officer in a company level night attack by the 1st King's Regiment where he was wounded. He then transferred to the Intelligence Corps and held senior intelligence appointments in Libya, Cyprus, the Far East and Northern Ireland. His final post was for five years as Director of the Intelligence Corps.


"This is an important book that can be appreciated by readers across all levels of understanding of political and military strategy, and may be used as a primer for many Americans whose exposure to what is often referred to as “America’s forgotten war” is limited to the television program M.A.S.H. It offers an engaging first-person account of the author’s entry into the military brotherhood, and his character-forming experiences in balancing the concepts of duty and honor against the realities of life and death during the bloody and confusing conflict in Korea. In addition, the author draws upon his expertise and experience as an intelligence professional to provide an insightful assessment of the key personalities, and their flawed political and military decisions, that led to and sustained this bloody conflict…should be required reading for all American political and military leaders. This is especially true for those who may ultimately be responsible for crafting policies and programs to successfully engage the leadership of both Koreas regarding the future of their respective countries, and to avoid repeating the mistakes of the past”"

- Ronald J. Thomason, Vice President - Strategic Programs, Maritime Security Council

“…gives a vivid description through a subaltern`s eyes of life on the front line in the National Service army of the 1950s. Much of his account will resonate with those in today`s army: the long periods of inactivity interspersed with moments of adrenaline rush; the harsh climate and tough living conditions; the ubiquitous days-to-do `chuff charts`; the effect on morale of close friends killed; the lack of visceral hatred for the enemy… fascinating on a number of levels…. provides valuable insights into the War, and into warfare in general. It is highly readable, and written with great modesty.

- The British Army Review

“… excellent and useful short work about the Korean War, a very unpleasant and brutal conflict, now almost forgotten… well written, carries the reader along, and much wisdom is presented with a light touch. It also includes a fine selection of photographs and a useful bibliography.”

- Dr Anthony Clayton

"This is an important book, one that sheds further light on a war that is nowhere near as well known as it should be."

- Destructive Music

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