Edward Parmenter was born in Lincoln, Nebraska, in 1929 and moved often growing up due to his father’s job. He enlisted in the United States Army at the age of seventeen, needing his parents’ permission to do, and spent two years in Japan with the 1st Calvary as part of the postwar occupation until 1949. He enlisted in the United States Air Force one year later and spent twenty years serving. He was primarily assigned to a radar squadron stationed in Vermont during the Korean War and spent considerable time following his retirement writing his own history of the Korean War. He counters other written works focusing on the Korean War and offers content he feels to be more factual. He attributes the United States’ focus on reducing military forces at the time to the start of the war, and he claims that reduced forces in the region gave the Communists confidence which then led to the first attack. He is proud of his work and his efforts to ensure facts are acknowledged.
Impending Korean Conflict
Edmond Parmenter recalls preparations being made in 1949 while he was serving in the United States Army and stationed in Japan for an impending conflict in Korea. He comments on General MacArther's prediction of when the North Koreans would invade South Korea. He shares that he was privy to intelligence which verified MacArther's concerns.
A Response to Perceived Fiction
Edmond Parmenter explains that the publication of David Halberstam's book, The Coldest Winter, prompted him to write his own book about the Korean War, The Korean War: Fiction vs. Fact. He provides examples of what he feels is fictitious content in Halberstam's book and offers countering information based on his own experience. He further supports his claims by stating that he referenced Korean War archives.
Reduced Forces Build Enemy Confidence
Edward Parmenter shares his views on why the Korean War began. He attributes the United States' focus on reducing military forces at the time to the start of the war. He claims that reduced forces in the region gave the Communists confidence which led to the first attack, and he comments on President Truman's reluctance to allow General MacArther to bomb bases in Manchuria to prevent escalation.