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January 1944
Today in World War II Pacific History
Day by day chronology

SATURDAY, 1 JANUARY 1944
(CBI) BURMA-INDIA (Tenth Air Force): In Burma, 6 B-25's, along mith 16 P-38's, attack a bridge on the Mu River between Ywataung and Monywa; Major Robert A Erdin, piloting the lead B-25, pulls up during his bomb run to avoid a tree; he releases his bombs as he noses up, and topples 2 spans of the bridge into the river; subsequent tests prove this a good bridge-bombing maneuver; the tactic is refined and the squadron [the 490th Bombardment Squadron, 341st Bombardment Group] becomes so proficient as to gain the sobriquet "Burma Bridge Busters." Further N, 11 A-36's and 15 P-5l's pound Myitkyina Airfield. The 315th Troop Carrier Squadron is activated at Dinjan assigned to the Tenth Air Force and equipped with C-47's.

CHINA (Fourteenth Air Force): 4 P-40's bomb and strafe targets of opportunity in Indochina, including barracks and rafts along the Yuan River in the Cam Duong-Lao Kay area.

PACIFIC OCEAN AREA (POA, Seventh Air Force): 16 P-39's strafe the harbor of Mille Atoll and attack shipping N of the atoll; 2 small vessels are heavily damaged. During the month of Jan 44, HQ VII Bomber Command transfers from Funafuti Atoll to Tarawa Atoll.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA (SOPAC, Thirteenth Air Force): 868th Bombardment Squadron is activated to work directly under the XIII Bomber Command. The unit, equipped with radar equipped B-24's used for night missions, becomes known as the "Snooper Squadron." They will fly their first mission on 4 Jan; they used their airborne radar for low-level attacks at night, and for pathfinder operations. 15 B-24's, escorted by 70+ P-38's and US Navy (USN) F6F's, bomb Lakunai Airfield; fighter and AA opposition is heavy, with 80-90 fighters attempting interception. US airplanes claim 20 fighters shot down; 1 B-24 is shot down and 2, severely damaged, crash land at Torokina. Allied fighters join USN dive bombers in support of ground forces in the Torokina area. Six B-25's and two B-24's bomb Kahili and 4 B-24's hit Manob, both on Bougainville.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA (SWPA, Fifth Air Force): 120+ B-24's, B-25's and A-20's pound the Saidor area in preparation for an Allied invasion; other B-25's bomb Madang and Alexishafen. A-20's continue to hit troop concentrations in the Cape Gloucester area; B-25's hit positions at Borgen Bay; and P-39's strate barges along New Britain's N coast. HQ 312th Bombardment Group arrives at Gusap from the US. The 500th Bombardment Squdron (Medium), 345th Bombardment Group (Medium), transfers from Port Moresby to Dobodura with B-25's.

SUNDAY, 2 JANUARY 1944
BURMA-INDIA (Tenth Air Force): In Burma, 27 B-25's and 16 P-39's hit a fuel plant and work shops at Yenangyaung and set the oilfield aflame; 13 B-24's also hit the refinery, causing a large fire, and bomb a power station; 4 other B-24's bomb Akyab on the W coast; about 30 A-36's and P-51's score hits on the Loilaw bridge approaches and bomb the towns in the vicinity.

CHINA (Fourteenth Air Force): 8 P-40's bomb and strafe Japanese HQ and barracks at Hopang, China.

PACIFIC OCEAN AREA (POA, Seventh Air Force): Seven B-24's, staging through Tarawa Atollto bomb Maloelap; Ditched is B-24D "St. Quentin Quail" 42-41205 (KIA / POW). Nine B-25G's hit targets on Jaluit, lost is B-25G 42-64893 (MIA) and P-39's strafe shipping at Mille Atoll.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA (SOPAC, Thirteenth Air Force): Twenty-four B-25's bomb Buka supply area on Buka. 30+ Allied fighters sweep Rabaul area claiming 11 airplanes shot down; Lost is F4U 03828 piloted by Captain N. S. Blount of VMF-321.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA (SWPA, Fifth Air Force): Elements of the US 32nd Infantry Division make an amphibious landing at Saidor, following a preparatory naval bombardment; Bad weather prevents preparatory air strikes, but 80+ B-24's and A-20's pound positions in coordination with the landings; the harbor and airfield are captured. Other B-24's bomb Pombelaa, Celebes and Amboina , Moluccas . B-25's and B-26's bomb Madang. P-40's strafe Hoskins Airfield, AA positiona, barges, and supply dump at Cape Hoskins.

MONDAY, 3 JANUARY 1944
(CBI) BURMA-INDIA (Tenth Air Force): In Burma, 22 A-36's and P-51's hit warehouses and dump area at Sahmaw; 19 B-25's, along with 16 P-38's, bomb a pumping station at Yenangyaung, setting oil tanks afire; 10 B-24's follow with a strike on the same target, causing explosions and leaving the target in flames.

CHINA (Fourteenth Air Force): In China, 28 B-24's attack the railroad yards at Lampang; 5 fighter-bombers attack the town of Pingkai.

PACIFIC OCEAN AREA (POA, Seventh Air Force): 24 A-24s from Makin dive-bomb AA positions and radar and radio facilities on Mille Atoll. Twenty supporting P-39's strafe runways and oil storage.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA (SOPAC, Thirteenth Air Force): 30+ Allied fighters sweep the Rabaul area claiming 6 Zekes shot down. 6 B-24's bomb Kavieng and several others abort due to bad weather. 6 B-25's bomb Moisuru bivouac area near Kahili, and fifteen B-25s hit supply areas near the Buka Passage. 23d Bombardment Squadron (Heavy), 5th Bombardment Group (Heavy), begins movement from Bomber 1 to Munda Airfield with B-24's.

(USN, USMC) Gregory 'Pappy' Boyington commanded 46 fighters, including 8 F4Us from VMF-214, 12 F4Us from VMF-211 and 16 F6F from VF-33 flying from Ondonga. Several planes aborted due to mechanical failures (three from VMF-214). The fighters reached Rabaul for a fighter sweep, flying from 20,000 - 24,000 feet, spotting Zeros below, they dove to intercept (probably 29 Zeros of the 253 Kokutai).  Also, 27 Zeros of the 204 Kokutai already in the air, joined the fight. Boyington's F4U 17915 and his wingman F4U 02723 were both shot down and listed as missing in action.  Boyington survives the war as a POW.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA (SWPA, Fifth Air Force): 50+ B-24's and B-25's bomb the Alexishafen area. 20+ A-20's hit positions at Borgen Bay. 388th Bombardment Squadron, 312th Bombardment Group, transfers from Port Moresby to Gusap with P-40's; first mission is 13 Jan; they will transition to A-20's in February. Lost is P-47D piloted by Ghramm (KIA).

RAAF: Force landed is Beaufighter A19-144.

TUESDAY, 4 JANUARY 1944
PACIFIC OCEAN AREA (POA, Seventh Air Force): Eighteen B-24's, staging through Tarawa Atoll bomb Emidj. HQ 30th Bombardment Group transfers from Nanumea to Abemama.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA (SOPAC, Thirteenth Air Force): B-24's bomb Sohano, concentrating on the seaplane base and supply area. B-25's pound gun positions at Tonolai and bomb Chabai. P-39's, (RNZAF) Ventura's and night fighters, operating individually or in small flights, hit targets on Bougainville, including barges at Mutupina Point and along the Jaba River, and areas around Buka, Bonis, Poporang , Papas, and Banin. 40+ Allied fighters attack the Rabaul area and claim at least ten airplanes shot down.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA (SWPA, Fifth Air Force): 100+ heavy and medium bombers bomb Alexishafen, Madang, and Bogadjim areas and hit troops and supplies between Finschhafen and Saidor. B-25's attack artillery positions in the Cape Gloucester area. B-24's and B-25's hit shipping at Koepang and in nearby waters. 421st Night Fighter Squadron, V Fighter Command, arrives at Milne Bay, New Guinea from the US with P-70's; first mission is 29 Feb.

WEDNESDAY, 5 JANUARY 1944
(CBI) BURMA-INDIA (Tenth Air Force): In Burma, 3 B-25's, supported by 8 P-38's, attack the Mu River bridge between Monywa and Ywataung which is being rebuilt; hits are scored on the E bank near the bridge and several sheds are set afire; the escorting fighters damage several nearby railway cars, strafe the nearby town, set a barge afire, blow up 4 tin buildings, and claim a river steamer sunk. 20th Tactical Reconnaissance Squadron and 24th Combat Mapping Squadron, AAF India-Burma Sector, arrive at Guskhara from the US with P-40's and F-7's respectively; first missions are 31 Jan and in Mar 44 respectively.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA (SOPAC, Thirteenth Air Force): B-25's bomb concentrations around Choiseul Bay, New Georgia and Hahela Mission on southern Buka, while B-24's attack Tonolai, Kahili supply areas, Fauro and Poporang building area.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA (SWPA, Fifth Air Force): B-24's and medium bombers bomb Alexishafen, Madang, and Bogadjim areas and attack barges from Finschhafen to Saidor; and P-39's hit barges and gun positions during a sweep from Sio to Bogadjim.

USN: Lost is PBY Catalina 08377.

THURSDAY, 6 JANUARY 1944
(CBI) BURMA-INDIA (Tenth Air Force): In Burma, P-51's and A-36's carry out ground support missions at Sumprabum and Taihpa Ga and hit a cavalry bivouac and dumps at Kamaing; 12 P-40's attack a supply dump S of Sahmaw Junction and strafe Pahok.

CHINA (Fourteenth Air Force): In China, 2 B-25's bomb a troop ship on the Yangtze River, NE of Tungting Lake; the vessel is reported as sunk.

PACIFIC OCEAN AREA (POA, Seventh Air Force): 78th Fighter Squadron, 15th Fighter Group, transfers from Haleiwa Field to Stanley Field with P-40's.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA (SOPAC, Thirteenth Air Force): P-38's sweep the Rabaul area claiming 9 Zekes shot down during a running battle over the Cape Gazelle area. B-25's and RNZAF Ventura's bomb and strafe targets in the Choiseul Bay area, New Georgia, including jetty areas and buildings at Tarekekori, targets on Morgusaia and gun positions on Kondakanimboko .

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA (SWPA, Fifth Air Force): B-24's and B-25's bomb Alexishafen and Bogadjim areas; A-20's attack targets along the road from Bogadjim to Yaula; B-25's attack targets of opportunity on the Huon Peninsula and others hit the Borgen Bay area; and P-39's strafe barges at Borgen and Rein Bays. 389th Bombardment Squadron, 312th Bombardment Group, transfers from Port Moresby to Gusap with P-40's; first mission is 14 Jan; they transition to A-20's in February.

USN: Lost is PBY Catalina 08432 near Daru Island.

FRIDAY, 7 JANUARY 1944
(CBI) BURMA-INDIA (Tenth Air Force): In Burma, 7 B-25's and 15 P-38's pound the Lanywa area, hitting the oil plant and storage tanks, causing several fires, and strafe several AA positions; 19 A-36's and P-51's bomb supply and troop concentrations at Nanyaseik.

CHINA (Fourteenth Air Force): In China, 4 B-25's and 6 P-40's sink 2 large boats on the Yangtze River S of Hukow and sink a large powerboat, a barge, and a small ore craft at Shihhweiyao; Eleven P-38's claim between 30 and 40 sampans destroyed along the river from Hankow to Chiuchiang; and 2 B-25's on a sea sweep claim a 300-ft (91 m) passenger vessel sunk S of Hong Kong. HQ 341st Bombardment Group (Medium) transfers from the Tenth Air Force to the Fourteenth Air Force and moves from Kurmitola to Kunming.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA (SWPA, Fifth Air Force): B-24's, B-25's, P-39's, and P-47's bomb the Alexishafen-Madang area, hit Erima, Bogadjim, and targets along the Bogadjim Road, attack positions from Weber Point to Vincke Point, and strafe huts and barges near Saidor. B-24's bomb the Cape Gloucester area and A-20's hit forces near Arawe, lost is A-20G 42-54088. B-24's also hit Lorengau and Boela.

SATURDAY, 8 JANUARY 1944
(CBI) BURMA-INDIA (Tenth Air Force): In Burma, 20 P-51's and A-36's knock out a bridge N of Hopin, destroy a warehouse and railroad tracks in the area, and destroy a locomotive and damage numerous railroad cars at Tigyaingza.

CHINA (Fourteenth Air Force): 22d Bombardment Squadron (Medium), 341st Bombardment Group (Medium), transfers from Chakulia to Yangkai with B-25's.

PACIFIC OCEAN AREA (POA, Seventh Air Force): Fifteen B-24's staging through Tarawa bomb shipping and shore installations at several locations on Wotje, Maloelap and Jaluit. 2 B-25's from Tarawa hit shipping and gun positions on Jaluit.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA (SOPAC, Thirteenth Air Force): B-24's bomb Kahili; and B-25's hit concentrations on Siposai and Kondakanimboko.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA (SWPA, Fifth Air Force): B-24's, medium bombers, and a few fighters, attack the Madang area, bomb Uligan Harbor, lost is B-25D 42-87286 and hit Bogadjim and the Bogadjim Road. On New Britain, fighters strafe the Sag Sag sawmill in the Cape Gloucester area and B-25's and A-20's hit positions near Arawe. B-24's bomb Kendari and other targets on Celebes.

SUNDAY, 9 JANUARY 1944

(CBI) BURMA-INDIA (Tenth Air Force): 21 P-51's and A-36's attack the Loilaw, Burma area, severely damaging a bridge, hitting an ammunition storage building, and scoring direct hits on large barracks. CHINA (Fourteenth Air Force): In China, 9 fighters strafe 6 steamboats and many smaller craft on the Yangtze River at Puchi; 2 B-25's on a sea sweep bomb a 200' vessel S of Swatow, reporting the ship destroyed. 8 fighter-bombers hit Sadon, Burma and in French Indochina, 4 bomb the Atson railroad yards and Lao Kay railroad station.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA (SOPAC, Thirteenth Air Force): B-25's hit Buka Seaplane Base and the Kahili supply area; fighters strafe the Cape Dunganon area and along the Ramusian River W of Teop. 7 squadrons of Allied fighters cover a USN dive bomber strike on Tobera; 2 squadrons of B-24's pound Vunakanau Airfield. Six B-25's bomb Taharai Airfield, New Ireland and afterwards some hit targets of opportunity. Transfers from Espiritu Santo to Munda Airfield: 23d and 72d Bombardment Squadrons (Heavy), 5th Bombardment Group (Heavy), with B-24's. 371st and 372d Bombardment Squadrons (Heavy), 307th Bombardment Group (Heavy), with B-24's.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA (SWPA, Fifth Air Force): Fighters and bombers attack Alexishafen, Madang, Bogadjim, Uligan Harbor, and the area E of Saidor; and Cape Beechey is strafed by P-40's. Transfers in New Guinea: 36th Fighter Squadron, 8th Fighter Group, from Nadzab to Finschhafen with P-47's. 498th Bombardment Squadron (Medium), 345th Bombardment Group (Medium), from Port Moresby to Dobodura with B-25's.

USN: Lost is PBY Catalina 08436 and F6F Hellcat 25853.

RNZAF: Lost is P-40N NZ3121

MONDAY, 10 JANUARY 1944

(CBI) BURMA-INDIA (Tenth Air Force): In Burma, 12 A-36's and P-51's hit a bivouac area at Nanyaseik; and 15 P-40's attack a bridge at Namti, damaging railroad tracks and the S approach to the bridge. During the night of 9/10 Jan, Seven B-24's lay mines in the Menam River estuary near Bangkok and in the Rangoon River estuary. B-24's during the day bomb marshalling yard and airfield in the Bangkok area and hit the main jetty at Akyab. 9 B-25's mine the Mokpalin, Burma ferry crossing over the Sittang River. 315th Troop Carrier Squadron, Tenth Air Force, transfers from Dinjan to Sylhet with C-47's.

CHINA (Fourteenth Air Force): In China, 8 P-51's bomb the approach to the Kienchang bridge and attack a troop train N of Teian damaging the train and killing an estimated 100 soldiers; Three B-25's and eight P-40's sweep the area from Anking to Chiuchiang, sinking a large motor launch, two 100' barges, and a tug on the Yangtze River, and attacking a bridge at Teian and tracks south of Chiuchiang; 2 B-25's and 4 P-40's attack shipping on the Yangtze River near Wusueh, sinking a launch and leaving 3 tankers burning. 491st Bombardment Squadron (Medium), 341st Bombardment Group (Medium), transfers from Chakulia to Yangkai with B-25's.

PACIFIC OCEAN AREA (POA, Seventh Air Force): Four P-39's from Makin strafe Mille Atoll; 1 of the P-39's drops two 500-lb bombs on the fuel storage area; during the night of 10/11 Jan, sixteen B-24's, staging through Tarawa from Ellice bomb Maloelap; Four B-24s staging from Canton via Baker hit Mille. 392nd Bombardment Squadron (Heavy), 30th Bombardment Group (Heavy), transfers from Canton to Abemama with B-24's.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA (SOPAC, Thirteenth Air Force): Major General Hubert R Harmon, Commanding General, begins a heavy bomber campaign of night strikes. 5th Bombardment Group night raids sending 20 B-24's on a strike against Lakunai Airfield, after a morning raid by 10 B-24's against nearby Vunakanau Airfield. Five B-24's hit the Kahili supply area, while four hit the Chinatown area of Buka. AAF and USN fighters cover a USN dive bomber strike against Cape Saint George.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA (SWPA, Fifth Air Force): 100+ heavy, medium, and light bombers, and fighters attack Madang, Alexishafen, and Bogadjim areas and the coastline from Madang to Sio. P-39's strafe scattered villages and barges on New Britain. B-25's bomb Koepang. Transfers to Nadzab New Guinea: 33d Bombardment Squadron (Medium), 22d Bombardment Group (Medium), from Dobodura with B-25's; squadron will be redesignated 33d Bombardment Squadron on 3 Feb and transition to B-24's. 69th Troop Carrier Squadron, 433d Troop Carrier Group, from Port Moresby with C-47's.

USMC: Ditched off Gizo is SBD Dauntless 06738 (crew rescued).

RAAF: Lost is Boomerang A46-53 (survived).

TUESDAY, 11 JANUARY 1944

(CBI) BURMA-INDIA (Tenth Air Force): In Burma, 36 A-36's, P-51's, and P-40's pound an encampment containing about 4,900 troops and a large quantity of supplies, causing considerable damage by accurate bombing and strafing.

CHINA (Fourteenth Air Force): Before daylight 14 Japanese bombers hit the airfield at Suichwan, China; during the morning 3 medium bombers and 15 fighters follow up with a second strike; 7 P-51's and 5 P-40's intercept the second attack, claiming 3 medium bombers shot down. 8 B-24's bomb Takao Harbor, aluminum plant, and Takao Airfield; 1 bombs oil storage at Swatow, China. 4 B-24's mine Takao Harbor and Hong Kong Harbor; 1 B-24 is lost.

PACIFIC OCEAN AREA (POA, Seventh Air Force): In the Marshall , 9 B-25's from Tarawa Atoll hit 5 vessels and land installations at Maloelap; a 5000-ton cargo ship and a small vessel are sunk; Four P-39's from Makin dive-bomb and strafe runways on Mille Airfield.

USN - U.S. Naval aircraft based in the Gilbert and Ellice attack Japanese installations on Kwajalein Atoll prior to invasion.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA (SOPAC, Thirteenth Air Force): About 90 Allied fighters cover 60+ USN dive bombers attacking Cape Saint George area. Two flights of P-39's strafe targets of opportunity from Numa Numa to Koromira, Bougainville.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA (SWPA, Fifth Air Force): B-25's, P-39's, and P-40's hit Uligan Harbor, barges and the road near Bogadjim, the Hansa Bay area, and the town of Alexishafen.

WEDNESDAY, 12 JANUARY 1944

(CBI) BURMA-INDIA (Tenth Air Force): In Burma, 20+ B-25's and P-38's hit the marshalling yard at Letpadan, damaging warehouses, engine sheds, and other buildings; the fighters also strafe Myohaung, setting 3 buildings afire. 27th Troop Carrier Squadron, Tenth Air Force (attached to the Troop Carrier Command, Eastern Air Command), arrives at Sylhet, India from the US with C-47's.

CHINA (Fourteenth Air Force): 14 B-24's bomb the Bangsue marshalling yard at Bangkok. HQ 69th Composite Wing transfers from Kunming to Tsuyung.

PACIFIC OCEAN AREA (POA, Seventh Air Force): 21 A-24s from Makin dive-bomb AA positions and the storage area on Mille and 20 supporting P-39's strafe the runways at Mille Airfield.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA (SOPAC, Thirteenth Air Force): 13 B-25's of the 42d Bombardment Group on their first mission against the Rabaul area, bomb Vunakanau Airfield in the early morning, and 16 B-24's hit Lakunai Airfield during the night of 12/13 Jan; 19 B-24's, with an escort of about 50 fighters, pound other targets and Tobera Airfield. Three flights of P-39's bomb and strafe Teop, Inus Point, Numa Numa, and Piano Mission; other aircraft on armed reconnaissance and sweeps hit several targets of opportunity throughout the Bougainville area. Lost is B-25C 42-32319.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA (SWPA, Fifth Air Force): B-24's and B-25's attack Alexishafen area and A-20's hit Warai. B-24's attack Balikpapan; Makassar and Dili. Lost is P-39Q 42-19949 (MIA) on a local flight.

RAAF: Damaged in for landing is Spitfire A58-178.

USMC: Lost is FG Corsair 13212 (MIA).

THURSDAY, 13 JANUARY 1944

(CBI) BURMA-INDIA (Tenth Air Force): In Burma, 6 P-51's hit troop concentrations at Lalawng Ga and bomb Maran Ga and Shaduzup; 27 P-40's attack a communication center and dumps along the Kamaing-Mogaung road; and four P-51's and a B-25 pound the airfield and supply area at Myitkyina Airfield.

CHINA (Fourteenth Air Force): Two B-25's on a sweep from Hong Kong to Hainan attack four large boats, several warehouses, a radio station, and a car at Fort Bayard, China; 1 of the vessels explodes; 6 P-40's on armed reconnaissance strafe 4 pack trains of about 15 animals each between Lungling and Tengchung.

PACIFIC OCEAN AREA (POA, Seventh Air Force): 9 B-25's from Tarawa attack harbor shipping at Wotje; 21 A-24s from Makin dive-bomb dock, barracks, and storage area on Mille; some of the 16 escorting P-39's strafe ground targets, and ten P-39's carry out strafing mission over Mille.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA (SOPAC, Thirteenth Air Force): HQ Thirteenth Air Force moves from Espiritu Santo, New Hebrides to Guadalcanal. During predawn hours 11 B-25's bomb Tobera, Rapopo, the Wide Bay area, and coast south of Rapopo. P-39's strafe Tinputs, Bougainville.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA (SWPA, Fifth Air Force): HQ V Fighter Command transfers from Port Moresby to Nadzab and Major General Paul B Wurtsmith becomes Commanding General, V Fighter Command. 130+ B-24's, B-25's and P-40's attack Alexishafen. B-24's bomb Gasmata. B-24's and B-25's strike Kaukenau and Timoeka and score hit on a freighter off Tanimbar, Moluccas.

USMC: Lost is F4U Corsair 18045

FRIDAY, 14 JANUARY 1944

(CBI) BURMA-INDIA (Tenth Air Force): Bad weather limits operations to fighter patrols in the Sumprabum, Burma area.

CHINA (Fourteenth Air Force): Four B-25's on a coastal sweep from Pakhoi to Haiphong, bomb a group of buildings on Weichow ; 2 B-24's damage 2 vessels near Saint John Island.

PACIFIC OCEAN AREA (POA, Seventh Air Force): 12 B-24's, staging through Tarawa bomb Kwajalein; 3 B-25's from Makin fly a mission against shipping off Wotje; 2 of the B-25's attack 2 small vessels, sinking 1 and damaging the other; the other B-25 bombs Wotje Airfield and building on the southern part of Wotje.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA (SOPAC, Thirteenth Air Force): During the night of 13/14 Jan, 15 B-24's take off to bomb Vunakanau and Lakunai, Rabaul, Rapopo and Malaguna; just before dawn. Some meet bad weather and bomb alternate targets on New Ireland and Buka. Lost is B-25D 41-30566. Twelve B-25's hit Au and Cape Gazelle and Buka. P-39's join USN SBD's in bombing Wakunai, Bougainville. 70+ Allied fighters support a strike by 50+ USN & USMC dive bombers against shipping in Simpson Harbor; the fighters claim 27 aircraft shot down. Lost are SBD-5 35971, F4U 17722, F4U 17807 and SBD 36230 (pilot MIA gunner POW, executed).

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA (SWPA, Fifth Air Force): 50+ B-24's, B-25's, and P-40's hit the Alexishafen and Erima area. On New Britain, B-24's bomb Cape Busching; B-25's attack targets of opportunity along the N coast, and A-20's strike villages along the S coast.

USN: SBD 36230

IJN: Ditched is G4M1 Betty 6107.

SATURDAY, 15 JANUARY 1944

(CBI) BURMA-INDIA (Tenth Air Force): 4 P-40's and a B-25 over N Burma hit a train at Pinwe.

CHINA (Fourteenth Air Force): 2 B-25's on a sea sweep along the French Indochina coast bomb the Hongay power plant and sink a gunboat in a nearby cove to the SW; a coal grading building at Campha Port is also bombed. 2 B-25's on a sweep off the SE China coast sink a wooden vessel off Swatow and damage the lighthouse on Nampana . 2 others shoot down a Japanese bomber N of Chikhom, China.

PACIFIC OCEAN AREA (POA, Seventh Air Force): 9 B-25's from Tarawa Atoll flying at deck-level bomb and strafe shipping and shore installations at Maloelap; 2 vessels are hit and the oil dump, hangars, other buildings, and runways are damaged; 1 B-25 crashes at sea after being hit by AA fire.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA (SOPAC, Thirteenth Air Force): On Bougainville in the Solomon , 24 B-25's, with 60 fighters escorting, pound East Cape; and P-39's attack barges and trucks at Chabai. HQ 347th Fighter Group and it's 339th Fighter Squadron transfer from Guadalcanal to Stirling with P-38's.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA (SWPA, Fifth Air Force): B-24's and B-25's pound Uligan Harbor; P-40's, P-47's, and B-25's hit the Madang, Alexishafen, Erima, and Bogadjim area. Enemy positions along the S coast of New Britain are attacked by B-25's and P-39's. 499th Bombardment Squadron (Medium), 345th Bombardment Group (Medium), transfers from Port Moresby to Dobodura, New Guinea with B-25's.

SUNDAY, 16 JANUARY 1944

(CBI) CHINA (Fourteenth Air Force): 8 P-40's attack the town of Pingkai, China and strafe targets of opportunity in the surrounding valley area.

PACIFIC OCEAN AREA (POA, Seventh Air Force): 25 A-24s, 16 P-39's, and 8 P-40's from Makin strike Mille Atoll; A-24s bomb and strafe AA positions and storage areas, the P-40's bomb and strafe barracks and AA emplacements and the P-39's strafe runways; 2 P-39's are lost: P-39Q 42-19469 and P-39 ?; P-39's sent up on interceptor missions claim 3 Japanese airplanes destroyed over Mille and Makin. Transfers: 28th Photographic Reconnaissance Squadron, Seventh Air Force from the US to Kipapa Field with F-5's. 431st Bombardment Squadron (Heavy), 11th Bombardment Group (Heavy), from Funafuti Atoll to Tarawa Atoll with B-24's.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA (SWPA, Fifth Air Force): Madang, Erima, and Bogadjim areas are hit by B-25's, A-20's, and P-40's; P-39's strafe the area from Sio to Bogadjim; and B-25's bomb the area N from Cape Croisilles. Lost are B-25G 42-64827, B-25D "Exotic Express" 41-30179, B-24D 42-72804 and P-40N 42-105909. B-24's and B-25's attack positions near Arawe. B-24's carry out a light raid on the harbor of Amboina.

Over Saidor, P-40s from the 8th FG, 35th FS intercept Ki-43 Oscars from the 59th Sentai and 63rd Sentai plus Ki-61 Tonyd from the 68th Sentai. They claim 19 confirmed kills and 3 probables. This combat set the wartime record for 5th Fighter Command for victories claimed by a single squadron during a single engagement.

JAAF - Ki-61 Tony of the 68th Sentai strafe American airfields in the Markham Valley. On the return flight, Ki-61 Tony 388 was intercepted by P-38s and shot down.

MONDAY, 17 JANUARY 1944

(CBI) BURMA-INDIA (Tenth Air Force): In Burma, A-36's and P-51's support ground forces in the Shaduzup-Ngamaw Ga area and near Taro; others bomb supply dumps, warehouses, and rolling stock at Sahmaw; and P-40's hit Myitkyina Airfield. Transfer: HQ 7th Bombardment Group from Pandaveswar to Kurmitola.

PACIFIC OCEAN AREA (POA, Seventh Air Force): 9 B-25's from Abemama bomb and strafe Mille, hitting the runway, AA positions, radio tower, warehouse area, lagoon dredges and possible oil dumps. 4 P-40's from Makin bomb and strafe the Mille Airfield.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA (SOPAC, Thirteenth Air Force): AAF and US fighters support 48 SBDs and 18 TBFs attacking shipping in Simpson Harbor off Rabaul; they claim 18 Japanese airplanes; Kanshin Maru is sunk. 10 Allied fighters are lost. Japanese Zeros from the 204th Kokutai at Lakunai Airfield and 16 Zeros from the 252nd Kokutai at Tobera Airfield intercept. Lost are eight P-38s from the 339th and 44th FS, who claim six victories and five probables. Lost are P-38J piloted by Munson (MIA), P-38J 42-67785 (MIA), P-38J 42-67179 (MIA), P-38J 42-67611 (MIA), P-38H 42-66680 (MIA), P-38H 42-66897 (MIA), P-38H 42-66897 (rescued), P-38J 42-67171 (MIA), F6F 26031 (MIA), SBD-5 28316 (MIA), TBF-1C 24363 (MIA). Damaged are TBF-1 24489 and SBD-5 35933. Also lost is F-5A 42-12984 (survived)

During the night of 17/18 Jan, a few B-24's, in 2 flights, bomb the Rabaul area, while 2 RNZAF Ventura's bomb the Kalakapisi coast watcher station on Choiseul.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA (SWPA, Fifth Air Force): 47 B-24's and B-25's bomb the Hansa Bay area; B-25's bomb Nubia; P-39's strafe the Rai Coast; and B-24's bomb Bandanaira, Celebes.

TUESDAY, 18 JANUARY 1944

(CBI) BURMA-INDIA (Tenth Air Force): In Burma, 12 P-38's hit the airfield and satellite field at Meiktila Airfield; 18 B-24's and 9 B-25's bomb the encampment area at Kyaukchaw; 17 A-36's and P-51's hit troops, dumps, and workshops at Sawnghka; 11 P-40's attack troops and stores at Shaduzup; 3 transport aircraft are lost to Japanese fighters during a supply dropping mission SE of Sumprabum.

CHINA (Fourteenth Air Force): In French Indochina, 2 B-25's bomb the railroad yard and wharf at Campha Port and oil storage facilities at Mon Cay.

PACIFIC OCEAN AREA (POA, Seventh Air Force): 12 B-25's from Abemama attack barracks area, runway and gun position on the north part of Mille; 25 A-24s and 8 P-40's from Makin pound the oil storage area on the south side of Jabor; the P-40's also strafe a radio station in the target area.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA (SOPAC, Thirteenth Air Force): 34 B-25's supported by 70+ fighters, pound Tobera; and single B-24's on armed reconnaissance bomb the Maliai, Vunakanau, and Lakunai areas. Lost is P-38J 42-67155

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA (SWPA, Fifth Air Force): Hansa Bay area is bombed by 40 B-24's. 70+ B-25's pound the Madang and Bogadjim areas and positions around Shaggy Ridge; 55 P-38's and P-40's engage a like number of Japanese fighters over Wewak, claiming 12 shot down. Lost are P-38H 42-66534, P-38H 42-66545 and P-38H 42-66554. Other B-24's bomb Laha, Celebes . HQ 345th Bombardment Group transfers from Port Moresby to Dobodura.

WEDNESDAY, 19 JANUARY 1944

(Tenth Air Force): 16 B-24's bomb the marshalling yard and Don Maung railroad station at Bangkok. In Burma, 4 P-40's hit the town of Wakshang; 26 A-36's and P-51's hit targets along roads from Ngamaw Ga to Maingkwan to Mashi Daru. CHINA (Fourteenth Air Force): 14 P-40's and 2 B-25's attack the barracks area at Mon Cay, French Indochina.

PACIFIC OCEAN AREA (POA, Seventh Air Force): 17 B-25's from Tarawa Atoll, hit Mille Atoll; flying at low altitude, the B-25's score hits on gun positions, fuel dumps, and the airfield area in general; AA fire claims. Lost is B-25G 41-30613 and B-25G ??-?????

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA (SOPAC, Thirteenth Air Force): Attacks during the day are limited to isolated strikes on shipping and other targets of opportunity by aircraft on armed reconnaissance over Bougainville , New Ireland, and Saint George Channel. During the night of 19/20 Jan, 11 B-24's, in 2 waves, fly strikes against Rabaul and Vunakanau.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA (SWPA, Fifth Air Force): 57 B-24's bomb Boram; 17 more bomb Amboina and Halong; and 2 others score hits on freighter near Aitape. 65 B-25's, along with RAAF airplanes, pound positions in the Shaggy Ridge area. 2 P-39's bomb barges in the Cape Raoult, New Britain area. 25th Photographic Reconnaissance Squadron, 6th Photographic Reconnaissance Group begins transfer from Brisbane to Lae with F-5's. Lost are A-20G 42-86620, A-20G 42-86724, B-24J "Doodlebug" 42-73117 and B-24J "Paper Doll" 42-73187.

THURSDAY, 20 JANUARY 1944

(CBI) BURMA-INDIA (Tenth Air Force): In N Burma, 40+ A-36's and P-51's hit storage dumps along the railway in the Mogaung area and billets and warehouse area at Mohnyin. In S Burma, 16 P-38's and 6 B-25's knock out a railroad bridge, pipeline, and railroad tracks in the Nattalin area.

CHINA (Fourteenth Air Force): 2 B-24's on sweep from Hong Kong to Swatow, China, attack a freighter and a tanker, which are reported sinking.

PACIFIC OCEAN AREA (POA, Seventh Air Force): 13 B-24's, staging through Tarawa hit Wotje during the night of 19/20 Jan. Lost is B-24D "Sexy Sue" 41-23938. Eight B-25's from Abemama bomb Rakaaru; other B-25's sent from Tarawa Atoll against shipping at Ailinglapalap Atoll, abort because of bad weather; 9 P-40's from the Gilbert strafe a corvette and a schooner at Jaluit Atoll, mortally damaging both vessels; 4 other P-40's bomb Mille Atoll. HQ 11th Bombardment Group and 98th Bombardment Squadron transfer from Funafuti and Nukufetau respectively to Tarawa with B-24's.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA (SOPAC, Thirteenth Air Force): Several targets on Bougainville are bombed by 2 squadrons of B-24's. 18 B-25's, with about 70 escorting fighters, pound the airfield, fuel dump and gun positions, at Vunakanau Airfield. Lost are F4U 02402, F4U 17914 and F4U 55835. Also B-25C "Skilla" 42-64570 and P-38J 42-67618. HQ 42d Bombardment Group (Medium) and 75th Bombardment Squadron (Medium) transfer from the Renard Field to Sterling with B-25's.

IJN: Shot down is A6M Zero piloted by Ishida.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA (SWPA, Fifth Air Force): 37 B-25's and a B-24 bomb and strafe the Hansa Bay area; 60+ B-25's hit positions on Shaggy Ridge; and P-39's strafe troops at Weber Point. 25 A-20's hit positions between Borgen Bay and Rein Bay, New Britain, and hit barge hideouts and enemy held areas on Gasmata. Transfers in New Guinea: HQ 71st Reconnaissance Group from Port Moresby to Nadzab; "A" flight of the 110th Reconnaissance Squadron (Fighter), 71st Reconnaissance Group, based at Port Moresby, begins operating from Gusap with P-39 Airacobras. Lost is P-39Q 42-19041 (KIA).

FRIDAY, 21 JANUARY 1944

(CBI) BURMA-INDIA (Tenth Air Force): In Burma, 11 P-40's score near misses on the Loilaw bridge and strafe Budagon nearby, starting several fires. 16 A-36's and P-51's support ground forces near Sumprabum, and 11 more bomb forces SW of Kamaing.

PACIFIC OCEAN AREA (POA, Seventh Air Force): During the night of February 20-21, sixteen B-24's staging through Tarawa Atoll bomb targets on Kwajalein. On take off, B-24J "Miss Bee Haven" 42-72982 crashed killing seven of the crew and twenty minutes later B-24J "Galloping Gus" 42-72999 crashed killing the entire crew. Six B-25s from Tarawa hit Arno Atoll, and twelve other B-25s bomb Aur Atoll; Nine B-25's from Abemama hit gun positions, barracks, and runways on Mille Atoll; 23 A-24s and 11 P-40's from Makin attack gun positions, ammunition and oil storage, barracks, and two small vessels at Jaluit.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA (SOPAC, Thirteenth Air Force): 38 B-24's pound the runway and revetment area at Borpop Airfield. P-39's strafe Kara and Kahili; and RNZAF Ventura's and B-24's on armed reconnaissance bomb Kalakapisi, Nukiki, and Buka.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA (SWPA, Fifth Air Force): B-25's, A-20's, and P-39's bomb the Madang area, and strafe villages near Saidor and troops from Reiss Point to Erima. On New Britain, B-25's and P-39's strafe barges from Cape Raoult to Rein Bay and hit targets of opportunity along the the N coast; single B-24's on armed reconnaissance blast a control tower at Hoskins Airfield, and hit ships near Kavieng and at Lorengau. Two B-24's bomb Waingapoe, Sunda. Lost is B-25G Mitchell 42-64807.

SATURDAY, 22 JANUARY 1944

AMERICAN ALASKA (Eleventh Air Force): HQ 343d Fighter Group transfers from Amchitka to Attu.

(CBI) BURMA-INDIA (Tenth Air Force): In Burma, 16 B-24's bomb an encampment at Prome; 16 A-36's and P-51's and a single B-25 attack communications and supply dumps between Kumnyen and Ngamaw Ga; 12 A-36's and P-51's support ground forces in the Sumprabum area; 11 P-40's severely damage the Namkwin railroad bridge. 492d Bombardment Squadron (Heavy), 7th Bombardment Group (Heavy), transfers from Panagarh to Madhaiganj with B-24's.

CHINA (Fourteenth Air Force): 11 P-40's and 5 P-51's strafe the newly opened Nanchang Airfield, killing about 20 troops and destroying an airplane and a truck; 12 P-38's knock out bridges at Shektan and Sheklung.

PACIFIC OCEAN AREA (POA, Seventh Air Force): In the Marshall , 18 B-24's, flying from Tarawa hit targets on Kwajalein, Jaluit and Mille; 10 B-25's from Abemama hit Maloelap; 9 others, flying out of Tarawa, bomb shipping and shore installations at Wotje; 3 B-25's are lost during the day's missions; 10 Japanese aircraft are claimed shot down.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA (SOPAC, Thirteenth Air Force) / USMC: 27 B-25's, escorted by 90+ fighters including 16 Corsairs from VMF-321 (11 F4U Corsairs and 5 FG Corsairs) plus P-38s, P-40s and F6Fs, attack Lakunai Airfield, doing considerable damage to runway and revetment areas; they claim 18 Japanese aircraft; 1 B-25 and 4 fighters are lost. Also, 6 B-25's and 30+ B-24's pound the town of Rabaul. Lost are FG Corsair 13270 (MIA) and FG Corsair 14212 (rescued)

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA (SWPA, Fifth Air Force): B-25's strafe villages, bridges, and barges from Cape Gourdon to Cape Croisilles and hit shipping at Papitalai, Los Negros sinking a small vessel and a barge and severely damaging a jetty. A-20's, P-40's and RAAF aircraft hit numerous scattered targets of opportunity on New Britain. Lost on a test flight is P-38G 42-12711.

SUNDAY, 23 JANUARY 1944

(CBI) BURMA-INDIA (Tenth Air Force): In Burma, 19 B-24's, in 2 waves, attack shipping at Mergui, claiming a 350-ft (107 m) vessel and 2 small boats destroyed; 6 B-25's and 16 P-38's knock out a bridge at Myittha, damage a bridge at Samon, and damage several trucks and railroad cars; 28 A-36's and P-51's and a single B-25 pound supply dumps at Kamaing and Mogaung, achieving excellent results; Sixteen P-40's hit Myitkyina Airfield, railroad cars at Pidaung, and a railroad bridge at Loilaw.

CHINA (Fourteenth Air Force): 28 P-40's and 9 B-25's from Kweilin pound Kai Tek Airfield in the Hong Kong-Kowloon area; and two B-25's heavily damage 3 merchant vessels south of Wenchow.

PACIFIC OCEAN AREA (POA, Seventh Air Force): 21 B-25's from Tarawa and Abemama hit Taroa; the B-25's claim 3 fighters shot down; 23 B-24's, flying out of Makin and Abemama bomb Wotje at dusk; 1 B-24 bombs Mille during return flight after developing engine trouble.

USMC / SOUTH PACIFIC AREA (SOPAC, Thirteenth Air Force): 80 AAF, USN and US Marine Corps fighters support 60+ USN SBD Dauntless on a strike against Lakunai Airfield and Matupi Harbor. They claim 30+ Japanese aircraft; 3 Allied fighters are lost including F4U Corsair 50166 (pilot rescued); later, 40+ fighters sweep the Rabaul area. During the night of 23/24 Jan, 7 B-25's hit Tobera and Lakunai. Twenty P-39's strafe targets of opportunity in the Shortland area. 67th Fighter Squadron, 347th Fighter Group, transfers from Woodlark to Russells with P-39's.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA (SWPA, Fifth Air Force): 35 B-24's, with fighter escort, bomb Wewak; 50 Japanese fighters intercept; in the ensuing air battle US aircraft claim 12 of the fighters shot down; 5 US fighters are lost lost is P-40N piloted by Crowley; P-39's strafe barges and AA positions at Uligan Harbor and on the Rai Coast, lost is P-39 piloted by McAlarney. In New Britain, A-20's hit forces and AA positions near Cape Raoult and Gasmata. B-24's hit Flores. 25th Liaison Squadron, V Bomber Command attached to 512th Photographic Wing (Provisional), begins moving from Brisbane to Lae with L-5's. Lost are P-38H 42-66539 (MIA), P-38J 42-67152 (MIA) and P-38H 42-66852 (MIA).

USMC: Lost is F4U Corsair 49891 (POW).

MONDAY, 24 JANUARY 1944

(CBI) CHINA (Fourteenth Air Force): In China, B-25's on sea sweeps claim sinking of a merchant ship W of Nampang , 2 freighters, a cargo-passenger vessel, and a coastal cargo boat anchored in Li-Shan Bay, and a cargo- passenger vessel at Paichuan .

PACIFIC OCEAN AREA (POA, Seventh Air Force): In the Marshall , 24 A-24s from Makin supported by 12 P-39's and 7 P-40's, hit gun positions, storage areas, and barracks on Mille Atoll. In the late afternoon, 8 B-25's, staging through Makin bomb Wotje Airfield. During the night of 24/25 Jan, 9 B-25's from Tarawa Atoll and 12 B-24's from the Ellice bomb several targets in Maloelap. 1 other B-24 bombs Mille Atoll.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA (SOPAC, Thirteenth Air Force): A large concentration of USAAF, USN, USMC, and RNZAF fighters support USN and USMC TBF's dive-bombing shipping in Simpson Harbor and Keravia Bay; several 300- to 500-ft (91 to 152 m) vessels are damaged or sunk; US aircraft claim 20+ fighters shot down.

USMC: Ditched is F4U 02285, pilot rescued.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA (SWPA, Fifth Air Force): 40+ B-24's bomb airfields at Wewak and Boram; 50+ B-25's and P-47's hit Madang and troops in the vicinity and bomb the Hansa Bay area; 38 other B-25's attack shipping and harbor installations on Manus. HQ 22d Bombardment Group (Medium) and 19th Bombardment Squadron (Medium) transfer from Dobodura to Nadzab with B-26's. They are transitioning to B-24's and will be redesignated a Heavy unit on 3 Feb.

TUESDAY, 25 JANUARY 1944

(CBI) CHINA (Fourteenth Air Force): B-25's on sweeps of the E China coast claim a patrol boat, a tanker and 2 freighters sunk S off Wenchow. Lost on a routine flight are B-24J "Hot As Hell" 42-73308 (MIA) and B-24J "Haley's Comet" 42-73242 (MIA).

PACIFIC OCEAN AREA (POA, Seventh Air Force): 24 A-24s from Makin supported by 12 P-39's, attack gun positions on Mille Atoll; 8 B-25's from Tarawa Atoll bomb a vessel and shore targets at Taroa; later, in a dusk attack, 18 B-24's flying out of the Gilberts bomb Kwajalein Atoll, hitting runways and AA positions. 26th Bombardment Squadron (Heavy), 11th Bombardment Group (Heavy), transfers from Nukufetau to Tarawa with B-24's.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA (SOPAC, Thirteenth Air Force): 19 B-24's, following 3 which drop flares, attack Lakunai Airfield during the late evening. 106th Reconnaissance Squadron (Bombardment), Thirteenth Air Force (attached to 42d Bombardment Group (Medium)) transfers from Guadalcanal to Stirling Airfield with B-25's. It will be redesignated 100th Bombardment Squadron (Medium) on 9 May. 419th Night Fighter Squadron, 18th Fighter Group, based on Guadalcanal , sends a detachment to Bougainville with P-70's.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA (SWPA, Fifth Air Force): 50+ B-24's pound the Hansa Bay area; 37 B-25's bomb Alexishafen and Madang; and P-39's strafe barges on the Rai Coast. P-40's and A-20's hit Gasmata. 50+ B-25's bomb Lorengau and Momote. Lost is B-25D "Dittum Dattum (II)" 41-30312 (MIA).

USMC: Lost on a ferry flight due to a tropical storm were 22 F4U Corsairs from VMF-422 including: F4U 18075 (rescued), F4U 18054 (rescued), F4U 18025 (MIA), F4U 18024 (MIA), F4U 18015 (MIA), F4U 17990 (MIA), F4U 17945 (MIA), F4U 17833 (KIA), F4U 55807, F4U 55872, F4U 55913, F4U 55906, F4U 55892, F4U 55883, F4U 55869, F4U 55825, F4U 55818, F4U 55817, F4U 18116 (rescued), F4U 55886,

WEDNESDAY, 26 JANUARY 1944

(CBI) BURMA-INDIA (Tenth Air Force): In Burma, 15 B-24's bomb Maungdaw; 7 B-25's and 3 fighters hit a camp at Razabil and attack targets of opportunity between Maungdaw and Buthidaung.

CHINA (Fourteenth Air Force): Eighteen P-40's from Kunming bomb and strafe the airfield and barracks at Kengtung.

PACIFIC OCEAN AREA (POA, Seventh Air Force): 9 B-25's from Makin hit several targets in Maloelap; about 20 fighters attack the formation; 12 P-40's, meeting the returning B-25's over Aur Atoll, join the battle against the fighters, claiming 10+ destroyed; the B-25's claim 5 shot down; several more are destroyed on the ground or while taking off during the bombing raid. 9 B-25's from Tarawa Atoll hit Aineman in Jaluit Atoll, and nearby shipping.

USN - Carrier planes from Task Force 58 bomb targets in the Marshall Islands prior to invasion.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA (SOPAC, Thirteenth Air Force): 80+ Allied fighters cover a strike by 50+ USN dive bombers on the Lakunai area AA positions and revetments; 3 Allied fighters are lost; 20+ Japanese airplanes are claimed shot down.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA (SWPA, Fifth Air Force): 42 B-24's bomb Momote and Lorengau. 140+ B-24's, A-20's, P-39's, and P-40's hit the Alexishafen-Madang area. 18 B-25's bomb Bogia village. On New Britain , A-20's hit the Cape Raoult area and P-40's strafe barges along the N coast. 26th Photographic Reconnaissance Squadron, 6th Photographic Reconnaissance Group, transfers from Brisbane, Australia to Dobodura, New Guinea with F-5's; first mission is 10 Feb.

THURSDAY, 27 JANUARY 1944

PACIFIC OCEAN AREA (POA, Seventh Air Force): Six B-25's from Tarawa hit Nauru, and nine staging through Makin hit Wotje; 23 A-24s, supported by 10 P-39's, pound Mille Atoll; and 7 B-24's, staging through Makin bomb Taroa in a dusk attack.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA (SOPAC, Thirteenth Air Force): 19 B-25's, with and escort of 60+ AAF and USN fighters, pound Lakunai Airfield; 6 US fighters are lost; US aircraft claim 20+ Japanese fighters shot down. On Bougainville P-39's ranging over a wide area, strafe targets of opportunity at Motupena, Gazelle Harbor, and Buka. 2 squadrons of B-24's blast concentrations at Sulphur Creek in the Rabaul area of New Britain. 72d Bombardment Squadron (Heavy), 5th Bombardment Group (Heavy), based at Munda ceases operating from Guadalcanal with B-24's.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA (SWPA, Fifth Air Force): Forty-one B-24's bomb Lorengau. Almost 70 B-25's, A-20's, and P-39's, along with several RAAF aircraft attack the Madang and Bogia areas. B-24's hit a freighter and the town area at Dili and shipping at Sorong and MacCluer Gulf. 39th Fighter Squadron, 35th Fighter Group, transfers from Nadzab to Gusap with P-47's.

RAAF: Lost on a strafing mission in an aerial collision are P-40N A29-523 and P-40N A29-530.

FRIDAY, 28 JANUARY 1944

PACIFIC OCEAN AREA (POA, Seventh Air Force): 9 B-25's, staging through Makin bomb Taroa; B-24's, staging through Tarawa and Makin and taking off at varying intervals, carry out several hours of strikes against Wotje, Kwajalein, Maloelap, and Jaluit.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA (SOPAC, Thirteenth Air Force): AAF and USN fighters support a USN dive-bomber attack on targets in the Rabaul area; 5 P-38's are lost including P-38J 42-67783; Allied aircraft claim about 30 aircraft shot down; at Lakunai Airfield, one of the targets, 20-30 parked aircraft are destroyed and several AA positions are destroyed or damaged; and 25 B-25's, covered by 12 P-38's, pound Tobera Airfield. 16 P-39's strafe the Shortland area. HQ 307th Bombardment Group transfers from Carney Field to Munda. Also the 424th Bombardment Squadron (Heavy), 307th Bombardment Group (Heavy), based at Carney Field with B-24's begins operating from Munda.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA (SWPA, Fifth Air Force): B-25's attack targets of opportunity from Bogia to Cape Croisilles. A-20's attack in the Cape Gloucester area; P-40's hit Hoskins Airfield; and P-39's strafe barges in Rein Bay. HQ 417th Bombardment Group and 672d, 673d, 674th and 675th Bombardment Squadrons arrive at Cape Sudest, from the US with A-20's; first mission is 27 Mar. Lost is B-25G 42-64881 (MIA).

SATURDAY, 29 JANUARY 1944

CBI) BURMA-INDIA (Tenth Air Force): In Burma, 13 B-24's, supported by 16 P-38's, bomb gasoline plants at Yenangyaung, causing large fires; 1 B-24 later bombs Akyab; 6 B-25's attack bridges at Meza and Pyintha, damaging the former and blasting railroad approaches to the latter.

USN - Four groups of Task Force 58 (Rear Admiral M. A. Mitscher), opened the campaign to capture the Marshalls with heavy air attacks on Maloelap, Kwajalein, and Wotje. On the first day the defending enemy air forces were eliminated and complete control of the air was maintained by carrier aircraft during the entire operation.

PACIFIC OCEAN AREA (POA, Seventh Air Force): As a US invasion force approaches the Marshalls, B-24's, attacking from bases in the Gilberts maintain day and night attacks (both multiple-plane missions and single-plane attacks at intervals) against Maloelap, Jaluit, Aur, Wotje, and Mille. 9 B-25's from Tarawa Atoll also carry out a strike against shipping and shore installations at Wotje. 18 A-24s, supported by 12 P-40's, hit Jaluit. 12 P-39's, operating in flights of 4 aircraft, patrol and strafe Mille all day to deny the use of the airfield to the enemy.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA (SOPAC, Thirteenth Air Force): About 60 Allied fighters cover a strike by 40 USN dive bombers on Tobera, lost is TBF Avenger 47748; Lakunai Airfield is pounded by 19 B-24's, escorted by P-38's and USN fighters; at Tobera and Lakunai, Allied aircraft claim 20+ Japanese shot down.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA (SWPA, Fifth Air Force): 40+ B-25's bomb Bogia and Nubia Airfield. 45 A-20's hit positions in the Cape Gloucester area. Ground looped at Finschafen is B-17E "Yankee Diddl'er" 41-2458.

SUNDAY, 30 JANUARY 1944

(CBI) BURMA-INDIA (Tenth Air Force): In Burma, 6 B-25's attack bridges at Meza, Zawchaung, and N of Kyungon; Meza bridge is put out of commission, Kyungon bridge demolished, and Zawchaung bridge damaged; a locomotive and tender are destroyed at the latter target; and a single B-25 attacks vehicles and other targets of opportunity between Taihpa Ga and Tsumhpawng Ga.

CHINA (Fourteenth Air Force): 20 P-40's fly armed reconnaissance over E Burma. 8 of them strafe buildings at Loi wing Airfield, Burma.

PACIFIC OCEAN AREA (POA, Seventh Air Force): In the Marshall , P-40's and P-39's maintain patrols over Mille Atoll, bombing and strafing the airfield to prevent its use by the enemy against invading US forces; B-24's maintain all-night strikes against Kwajalen Atoll in preparation for the invasion the following morning; the invasion of Majuro begins during the night of 30/31 Jan.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA (SOPAC, Thirteenth Air Force): 20 P-39's attack Kunrai, Bougainville. 26 B-25's, with large fighter cover, bomb Lakunai Airfield; 18 B-24's, supported by fighters, hit Vunakanau Airfield; 50 Allied fighters support a USN dive bomber strike on shipping in the Rabaul area; altogether 20+ Japanese fighters are claimed shot down.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA (SWPA, Fifth Air Force): 34 B-25's bomb the Hansa Bay area and Nubia. A-20's fly a barge sweep along the N coast and P-39's strafe barges and fuel dumps at Rein Bay. 90th Bombardment Squadron, 3d Bombardment Group , transfers from Dobodura to Nadzab with A-20's.

RAAF: Bostons from 22 Squadron bomb Linderhafen. Over the target, hit by anti-aircraft fire over the target and lost near Cape Dampier is A-20C Boston A28-27. Also lost is Avro Anson LT294.

MONDAY, 31 JANUARY 1944

ALASKA (Eleventh Air Force): In the Aleutians, 5 bombers fly a negative sea-search mission.

PACIFIC OCEAN AREA (POA, Seventh Air Force): US Army and USMC troops land on Kwajalein Atoll, under overall command of Admiral Raymond A Spruance, the USAAF hits other atolls. 19 A-24s bomb Mille Atoll airfield, over which P-39's and P-40's maintain all-day cover and harassment; 9 P-40's carry out a strafing mission against Jaluit; during the night of 31 Jan/1 Feb, 8 B-24's, attacking at intervals, bomb Wotje.

USN - Aircraft from the carriers flew cover and anti-submarine patrols for attack shipping and assisted two fast carrier groups, providing air support for landings on Kwajalein. Sunk is "Ski Area Dolphin Wreck".

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA (SOPAC, Thirteenth Air Force): 40+ Allied fighters cover a strike by USN dive bombers on Tobera; 8 enemy aircraft are claimed shot down; this strike is immediately followed by an attack by 17 B-24's, with fighter support, on the same target. The detachment of the 17th Photographic Reconnaissance Squadron, 4th Photographic Group (Reconnaissance), operating from Munda with F-5's, returns to base on Guadalcanal.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA (SWPA, Fifth Air Force): A-20's attack Uligan Harbor and P-39's strafe Bogadjim, Bostrem Bay, and landing strip at Alexishafen. B-24's hit a motor vessel off Ceram. 89th Bombardment Squadron, 3d Bombardment Group, transfers from Dobodura to Nadzab with A-20's.

 

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