OPERATIONAL STAGE During the latter part of May 1952, the new Com- manding General of the First Marine Aircraft Wing, General Jerome, was called to Fifth Air Force Headquarters and given a directive for expanding bac- teriological operations. The directive was given per- sonally and verbally by the new Commanding General of the Fifth Air Force, General Barcus. On the following day, May 25, General Jerome out- lined the new stage of bacteriological operations to the Wing staff at a meeting in his office at which I was present in my capacity as Chief of Staff. The other staff members of the First Marine Air- craft Wing present were: General Lamson-Scribner, Assistant Commanding General;, Colonel Stage, Inter- ligence Officer (G2); Colonel Wendt, Operations Officer (G3) and Colonel Clark, Logistics Officer (G4). The directive from General Barcus, transmitted to and discussed by us that morning, was as follows: A contamination bell was to be established across Korea in an effort to make the interdiction program effective in stopping enemy supplies from reaching the front lines. The Marines would take the left flank of this belt, to include the two cities of Sinanju and Kunuri and the area between and around them. The remainder of the belt would be handled by the Air Force in the centre and the Navy in the east or right flank. Marine Squadron 513 would be diverted from its random targets to this concentrated target, operating from K8 (Kunsan) stiff serviced by the Third Bomb Wing, using F7Fs (Tiger Cats) because of their twin engine safety. The Squadron was short of these aircraft but more were promised. The responsibility for contaminating the left flank and maintaining the contamination was assigned to the Commander of Squadron 513, and the schedule of operations left to the Squadron's discretion, subject to the limitations that: The initial contamination of the area was to be completed as soon as possible and the area must then be recontaminated or replenished at periods not to exceed ten days. Aircraft engaged on these missions would be given a standard night armed reconnaissance mission, usually in the Haeju Peninsula. On the way to the target, how- ever, these planes would go via Sinanju or Kunuri, drop their bacteriological bombs and then complete their normal missions. This would add to the security and interfere least with normal missions. Reports on this program of maintaining the conta- mination belt would go direct to the Fifth Air Force, reporting normal mission numbers so-and-so had been completed "via Sinanju" or "via Kunuri" and stating how many "superpropaganda" bombs had been dropped. Squadron 513 was directed to make a more accurate "truck count" at night than had been custom- ary in order to determine or defect any significant change in the flow off traffic through its operating area. General Barcus also directed that Marine Aircraft Group 12 of the First Marine Aircraft Wing was to prepare to enter the bacteriological program. First the ADs (Skyraiders) and then the F4Us (Corsairs) were to take part in the expanded program, initially, how- ever, only as substitute for the F7Fs.... General Jerome further reported that the Fifth Air Force required Marine Photographic Squadron I to continue their current bacteriological operations, oper- ating from K3 (Pohang). At the same time Marine Aircraft Group 33 at K3 was placed on a stand-by, last resort, basis. Owing to the distance of K3 from the target area, - large-scale participation in the, program by Marine Aircraft Group 33 was not desired. Because the F9Fs (Panthers) would only be used in an emer- gency, no special bomb supply would be established over and above that needed to supply the photographic re- connaissance aircraft. Bombs could be brought up from Ulsan in a few hours- if necessary. The plans and the ramifications thereof were discussed at General Jerome's conference and arrangements made to trans- mit the directive to the officers concerned with carry- ing out the new program. It was decided that Colonel Wendt would initially transmit this information to the commanders concerned and the details could be discussed by the cognizant staff officers as soon as they were worked out. FIRST MAW'S OPERATIONS Marine Night Fighter Squadron 513 Next day then, May 26, Colonel Wendt held a confer- ence with the Commanding Officer of Squadron 513 and, I believe, the K8 Air Base Commander and the Commanding Officer of the Third Bomb Wing, and discussed the various details. The personnel of the Fifth Air Force were already cognizant of the plan, having been directly informed by Fifth, Air Force Headquarters. Since the plan constituted for Squadron 513 merely a change of target and additional responsibility to maintain their own schedule of contamination of their area, there were no real problems to be solved. During the first week of June, Squadron 513 started operations on the concentrated contamination belt, using cholera bombs. (The plan given to General Jerome indicated that at a later, unspecified date-depend- ing on the results obtained, or lack of results-yellow fever and then typhus in that order would probably he tried out in the contamination belt.) Squadron 513 operated in this manner throughout June and during the first week in July that I was with the Wing, without any incidents of an unusual nature. An average of five aircraft a night normally covered the main supply routes along the western coast of Korea up to the Chong Chon River but with emphasis on the area from Phy6ngyang southward. They divert- ed as necessary to Sinanju or Kunuri and the area be- tween in order to maintain the ten-day bacteriological replenishment cycle. We estimated that if each airplane carried two bac- teriological bombs, two good nights were ample to cover both Sinanju and Kunuri and a third night would cover the area around and between these cities. About the middle of June, as best I remem- ber, the Squadron received a modification to the plan from the U.S. Fifth Air Force via the Third Bomb Wing. This new directive included an area of about ten miles surrounding the two principal cities in the Squadron's schedule, with particular emphasis on towns or hamlets on the lines of supply and any by-pass roads. Marine Aircraft Group 12 Colonel Wendt later held a conference at K6 (Pyongtaek) at which were present the Commanding Officer, Colonel Gaylor, the Executive Officer and the Operations Officer of Marine Aircraft Group 12. Colonel Wendt informed them that they were to make preparations to take part in the bacteriological opera- tions and to work out security problems which would become serious if they got into daylight operations and had to bomb up at their own base K6. They were to inform the squadron commanders concerned but only the absolute barest number of a additional personnel, and were to have a list of a limited number of hand-picked pilots ready to be used on short notice. Colonel Wendt informed them that an Air Force team would soon be provided to assist with logistic problems, this team actually arriving the last week in June. Before my capture on July 8, both the ADs (Skyraid- ers) and the F4Us (Corsairs) of Marine Aircraft Group 12 had participated in very small numbers, once or twice, in daylight bacteriological operations as a part of regular scheduled, normal day missions, bomb- ing up at K8 (Kunsan), rendezvousing with the rest of the formation on the way to the target. These mis- sions were directed at small towns in Western Korea along the main road leading south from Kunuri and were a part of the normal interdiction program. Marine Aircraft Group 33 Colonel Wendt passed the plan for the Wing's par- ticipation in bacteriological operations to Colonel Con- don, Commanding Officer of Marine Aircraft Group 33, on approximately May 27-28. Since the Panthers (F9Fs) at the Group's base at Pohang would only be used as 1ast resort aircraft, it was left to Colonel Condon's discretion as to just what personnel he would pass the information on to but it was to be an absolute minimum. During the time I was with the Wing, none of these aircraft had been scheduled for bacteriological mis- sions, though the photographic reconnaissance planes of the Group's VMJ-1 Squadron continued their mis- sions from that base. SCHEDULING AND SECURITY Security was by far the most pressing problem affect- ing the First Marine Aircraft Wing, since the operational phase of bacteriological warfare, as well as other types of combat operations, is controlled by the Fifth Air Force. Absolutely nothing could appear in writing on the subject. The word "bacteria" was not to be mentioned in any circumstances in Korea, except initially to iden- tify "superpropaganda" or "suprop." Apart from the routine replenishment operations of Squadron 513, which required no scheduling, bacterio- logical missions were scheduled by separate, top- secret, mission orders (or "FRAG" orders). These stated only to include "superpropaganda" or "suprop" on mission number so-and-so of the routine secret "FRAG" order for the day's operations. -Mission reports went back the same way by separate, top- secret dispatch, stating the number of "suprop" bombs dropped on a specifically numbered mission. Other than this, Squadron 513 reported their bac- teriological missions by adding "via Kunuri" or "via Sinanju" to their normal mission reports. Every means was taken to deceive the enemy and to deny knowledge of these operations to friendly personnel, the latter being most important since 300 to 400 men of the Wing are rotated back to the United States each month. Orders were issued that bacteriological bombs were only to be dropped in conjunction with ordinary bombs or napalm, to give the attack the appearance of a nor- mal attack against enemy supply lines. For added security over enemy territory, a napalm bomb was to remain on the aircraft until after the release of the bacteriological bombs so that if the aircraft crashed it would almost certainly burn and destroy the evidence. All officers were prohibited from discussing the sub- ject except officially and behind closed doors. Every briefing was to emphasize that this was not only a military secret, but a matter of national policy. I personally have never heard the subject mentioned or even referred to outside of the office, and I ate all of my meals in the Commanding General's small pri- vate mess, where many classified matters were dis- cussed. ASSESSMENT OF RESULTS In the Wing, our consensus of opinion was that results of these bacteriological operations could not be accurately assessed. Routine methods of assessment are by (presumably) spies, by questioning prisoners of war, by watching the nightly truck count very carefully to observe deviations from the normal, and by ob- serving public announcements of Korean and Chinese authorities upon which very heavy dependence was placed, since it was felt that no large epidemic could occur without news leaking out to the outside world and that these authorities would, therefore, announce it themselves. Information from the above sources is cor- related at the Commander-in-Chief, Far East level in Tokyo, but the over-all assessment of results is not passed down to the Wing level, hence the Wing was not completely aware of the results. When I took over from Colonel Binney I asked him for results or reactions up to date and he specifically said: "Not worth a damn." No one that I know of has indicated that the results are anywhere near commensurate with the effort, dan- ger and dishonesty involved, although the Korean and Chinese authorities have made quite a public report of early bacteriological bomb efforts. The sum total of results known to me are that they are disappointing and no good. PERSONAL REACTIONS I do not say the following in defence of anyone, myself included, I merely report as an absolutely direct observation that every officer when first informed that the United States is using bacteriological warfare in Korea is both shocked and ashamed. I believe, without exception, we come to Korea as officers loyal to our people and government and believ- ing what we have always been told about bacteriolog- ical warfare-that it is being developed only for use in retaliation in a third world war. For these officers to come to Korea and find that their own government has so completely deceived them by still proclaiming to the world that it is not using bacteriological warfare, makes them question mentally all the other things that the government proclaims about warfare in general and in Korea specifically. None of us believes that bacteriological warfare has any place in war since of all the weapons devised bac- teriological bombs alone have as their primary objec- tive casualties among masses of civilians-and that is utterly wrong in anybody's conscience. The spreading of disease is unpredictable and there may be no limits to a fully developed epidemic. Additionally, there is the awfully sneaky, unfair sort of feeling of dealing with a weapon used surreptitiously against an unarmed and unwarned people. I remember specifically asking Colonel Wendt what were Colonel Gaylor's reactions when he was first in- formed and he reported to me that Colonel Gaylor was both horrified and stupefied. Everyone felt like that when they first heard of it, and their reactions are what might well be expected from a fair-minded, self-respect- ing nation of people. Tactically, this type of weapon is totally unwar- ranted-it is not even a Marine Corps weapon-morally it is damnation itself; administratively and logistically as planned for use, it is hopeless; and from the point of view of self-respect and loyalty, it is shameful. F. H. Schwable, 04429 Colonel, U.S.M.C. 6 December, 1952