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27 November - December 1950. The chinese had begun sending troops across the Yalu river 5 days after UN forces crossed the 38th parallel. Meanwhile, due to poor weather conditions and the rapid drive north, an 80 mile gap opened between the left flank of the 1st Marine division and the 8th Army to its west. Strung out along a single, vulnerable mountain road, the division was attacked by a massive force of Chinese. Two Chinese divisions hit the 5th and 7th Marines on the norther side of the resevoir, while another division attacked the 1st Marines on the southern side. The army units on the eastern side were also attacked and obliterated. The Marine positions held, often times through desperate close quarter and hand to hand fighting and with the help of nonstop artillery strikes and bombing runs. However, to the south 5 more Chinese divisions seized blocking positions and fully cut off the division. With the division fully cut off, and the UN forces reeling all across the front from the massive Chinese offensive, the X Corps Commander MajGen Almond ordered the 1st Marine Division to withdraw to the sea. Thus began an epic advance to the sea, in which the Marines fought thousands of chinese and the bitter cole. It took 13 days, but despite the overwhelming odds the 1st Marine division virtually destroyed 7 Chinese divisions and was able to escape the trap and evacuate at Hungnam with nearly all their equipment. 6,000 Marine casualties, over half from weather, and 37000 Chinese troops lost. Historians consider it the most successful withdrawal in Military history. In February of 1952 the Marines again acted as the spearhead for another northern offensive, but without air cover casualties quickly mounted all along the front. As such, the UN halted ground offensive ops, instead opting to bomb the chinese out of the war.