ICY HELL THE KOREAN WAR: PUSAN TO CHOSIN BY DONALD KNOX Harcourt Brace Jovanovich 697 pages; $24.95

Veterans of American wars have been memorialized in literature, lore and granite. But for the fighters in one bitter conflict, a 1985 commemorative postage stamp has had to suffice. The Korean War is not an event that has lingered in the public memory; its veterans, members of the silent generation, came home with their mouths shut, preferring to keep their angst private. This comprehensive history at last gives voice to their experience and their anguish. On June 25, 1950, Soviet-armed troops from the People's Democratic Republic of Korea charged across the 38th parallel in an attempt to unify the bleak peninsula...

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