War: One Star for Mike

"He'll either be a general or a dead colonel," cracked G.I.s last summer about the hottest regimental commander among U.N. forces in Korea. At Taegu's bloody "bowling alley," John Hersey Michaelis (rhymes with regale us), better known as "Mike," and his redoubtable 27th Infantry (Wolfhound) Regiment, now better known as "The Fire Brigade," fought bravely and brilliantly to help hold the Pusan perimeter. Sinewy Mike Michaelis won a battlefield promotion to full colonel, and the D.S.C. for "extraordinary heroism" under fire.

It was the second time West Pointer Michaelis had won a temporary eagle. In World War II, he jumped with the...

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