Halsey ordered the remainder of the task force to return to base and directed the rest of his naval forces to take station in the Coral Sea, south of Guadalcanal, to be ready to counter the perceived Japanese offensive.
Directly after the court closed the case, Marshall sent a letter to Secretary Forrestal asking why only blacks were assigned the task of loading munitions; why had they not been trained for that task; why were they forced to compete for speed; why were they not given survivor's leaves; and why had they not been allowed to rise in rank.
This was because Soviet workers often had to find their own ways of working around problems that made their efforts difficult, such as building their own tools to carry out tasks that could not be performed with the tools provided, or by devising entirely new production processes of their own when existing processes were not suitable.
Due to his close control over the Memorial, none of its staff knew what his plans had been and it was unclear how to continue key tasks such as completing the Roll of Honour, classifying and displaying items collected during World War II and managing the Memorial's finances.
UN assets were shuffled in order to cover this retreat, and as part of the force tasked with covering the UN retreat Missouri was moved into Hungnam on 23 December to provide gunfire support about the Hungnam defense perimeter until the last UN troops, the U.S.
At the time, Princeton was operating with TF 77, and with other carriers in the task force who were involved in a bombing campaign against North Korean supply lines, troop concentrations, and infrastructure; additionally, the carriers were flying close air support missions for ground forces fighting against the North Korean forces.
The border clearers' task was aided unofficially by German civilians from both sides of the former border who scavenged the installations for fencing, wire and blocks of concrete to use in home improvements.
Fletcher, Yorktown's commanding officer, Captain Elliott Buckmaster, and their staffs had acquired first-hand experience in organizing and launching a full strike against an enemy force at Coral Sea, but there was no time to pass these lessons to Enterprise and Hornet which were tasked with launching the first strike.