soldiers were
getting
sick. Obviously the Americans
and their allies
were
gaining
the upper hand.
Things
quickly
fell
apart for the North
Koreans
after this
point.
The 1-1S
October issue
of the
AFSA
Semi-Monthly
Report
of the Office of
Operations reported
the
disintegration of
some of the North
Korean
military net-
works. The
16-3r
October
issue
report-
ed that AFSA
analysis
was now centered
on
North
Korean
police
co mmunicatio ns
since North Korean
military
traffic had
virtually disappeared.
The issue further
reported
the enemy Supreme Command, now in
Sinuiju, and the
North Koreans
were
being driven
farther
and farther north
by the
IIN attacks.
CRITICISMS OF
THE A-F'SA
EFFORTS
In spite
of such obvious successes, several individuals
questioned
the
praise given
AFSA
for SIGINT successes
during the
Korean War. For
example, in June 1952
Creneral James A. Van
Fleet,
commanding
general
of
the U.S. 8th
fu*y,
wrote:
"Today,
our
intelligence
operations in Korea have not
yet
approached the
standards that we
reached in
the
final
year
of
lWorld
War II]." The
director of
NSA
concurred
with
this observation
in March 1953.
The achievements of SIGINT during World War II were far
superior to those
in
the
Korean
War.
However,
this observation
A
North Korean
prisoner
of war
captured
by U.5. Marines
near
Naktong
River.
15
mllst
lle
considered
in light of the situation
in
"Iune
rg5ei" At
the
start of World
War II, analysis of Japanese
and Gerinan
communications
had
been
going
on for or/er
a
decade"
By contrast,
in-depth
anaiysis
of North l{orean commuirications
did not start
until
after the
war
began on
25
June
rg5o.
Other
individuals
give
credit to the
service elements
in Korea
for
the SIGINT
successes
during the
r'r'ar. The
problem
with this
view is that until
mid-September rg5o, ASAPAC
and AFSA were
the only entities
available to support the U.S./LfN
effor1. The {irst
ASA
personnel
did
not
arrive
in Itorea
untitr
18 September
r95o,
long
after the
rnessages
so vital to General Walker
in
the
Pusan
Perimeter
carnpaign
had
been delivered.
The
6oth
Signal Sewice
Company out
of
Fort Lewis, Washington,
did
not arrive
in Korea
until
g
October
rg5o
and did
not
start operations
until
16
October"
There
were two
groups
on the
ground
in 1(orea in the early days of
war: the Air Force
Security Service and a South
Korean SIGINT
group
working
with an American civilian
named
Nichols. These
entities, however,
elid no
analysis
and concentrated
mostly on
intercepting
and
translating
North Korean
communications.
While
their work
provided vital tactical intelligence to the
UN effort, they
simply did
not have the talent and materials to handle
serious
iong-
term
projects.
AFSA did"
Still other
people
argue that the success against
North
Korean
communications
in the early days of the war was
due to the
poor
state of North
Korean communications security.
This
is
partially
true. The North
Koreans were
actually sending
highly classified
materials, like battle
p1ans,
in
the c1ear.
However, to
go
from
almost
no
effolt
against
Norlh Korean
communications
to
the
ability to
provide
significant amounts of
valuable
intelligence in
a
matter
of six weeks
was an amazing feat, especially
since at the
beginning of the
war there were no full-time North
Korean analysts
or
linguists.
This
situation
provides
a
great
testament
to the
abilities of the AFSA
analysts who accomplished so
much in such
an
incredibly
short
time.
But did
this success
really
belong to ASAPAC and
not AFSA? In
studying the individual
reports, it is
sometimes
difficult to
determine exactly
who
processed
a
particular
message,
AFSA
or
'ja

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