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February 1943
Today in World War II Pacific History
Day by day chronology

MONDAY 1 FEBRUARY 1943

In the Aleutians, all missions are cancelled due to weather. Enemy aircraft bomb and strafe Amchitka harbor and shipping without inflicting damage.

CENTRAL PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS (Seventh Air Force) The 424th Bombardment Squadron (Heavy), 307th Bombardment Group with B-24s ceases operating from Funafuti Atoll in the Ellice and returns to Mokuleia.

CBI (Tenth Air Force) Seven B-24s of the India Air Task Force from Pandaveswar bomb the Arakan tea sheds on the Rangoon River near Rangoon Harbor. The 9th Photographic Reconnaissance Squadron, Tenth Air Force, with F-4s, is based at Pandaveswar with a detachment at Kunming. A detachment of the detachment begins operating from Kweilin sometime in February 1943. On 6 Feb 43, this squadron is redesignated the 9th Photographic Squadron.

SOUTH PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS (Thirteenth Air Force) P-38s, P-39s and P-40s, along with Navy and Marine aircraft, attack four destroyers from the so-called "Tokyo Express" north of Vangunu; unlike previous missions, these destroyers are dispatched to evacuate the Japanese troops from Guadalcanal. Hits on 2 of the ships cause fires. At night, 19 more destroyers come in, evacuate troops. Makigumo hits a mine and is scuttled. The others are away by dawn. B-17s attack shipping off Shortland-Bougainville, claiming 3 direct hits on cargo vessels. Lost are B-17E 41-9151 (MIA), B-17E "Eager Beavers" 41-9122 (MIA) and B-17E "Yokohama Express" 41-2442 (MIA). A fourth plane, piloted by a Capt. Thomas (72nd BS/5th BG), was badly damaged but managed to crash land at Guadalcanal. Two crew members (radio and bombadier) were wounded.

GUADALCANAL - Japanese begin to evacuate troops from Guadalcanal

USN: During a night attack, sunk are PT-37 and PT-111.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS (Fifth Air Force) In the Bismarck Archipelago, B-17s bomb the runway and aircraft dispersal areas at Rabaul, New Britain. A lone B-24 bombs the runway at Finchhafen, then flies east where it bombs the runway at Cape Gloucester Airfield and unsuccessfully attacks a ship in Open Bay.

TUESDAY, 2 FEBRUARY 1943

CBI (Tenth Air Force) In Burma, P-40s strafe aircraft, AA positions and targets of opportunity at Kentung. The 1st Troop Carrier Squadron, Tenth Air Force, attached to the India-China Wing, Air Transport Command, with C-47s arrives at Chabua from the U.S.

SOUTH PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS (Thirteenth Air Force) B-17s, along with escorting P-40s and P-38s, attack shipping off Shortland. Of 20 Japanese aircraft which intercept, 9 are claimed destroyed. Other B-26s, P-38s and P-39s attack Munda Airfield on New Georgia. The 18th Photographic Mapping Squadron, 4th Photographic Group with B-25s transfers from Dumbea, New Caledonia to Espiritu Santo. The bulk of the air echelon remains in the U.S. This squadron is redesignated 18th Photographic Squadron on 6 Feb 43.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS (Fifth Air Force) In the Bismarck Archipelago, B-17s bomb the airfield at Rabaul. B-24s attack shipping between Lolobau and New Britain and north of Open Bay, bomb Gasmata runway and hit Timika. In New Guinea, A-20s continue to bomb and strafe positions on the high points between Mubo and Komiatum. The 319th Bombardment Squadron (Heavy), 90th Bombardment Group with B-24s transfers from Iron Range, Queensland, Australia to Darwin, Northern Territory, Australia.

WEDNESDAY, 3 FEBRUARY 1943

SOUTH PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS (Thirteenth Air Force) P-39s, P-38s and P-40s, along with Navy and Marine aircraft, attack Munda Airfield.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS (Fifth Air Force) A-20s continue to strike along the Mubo-Komiatum Track. B-25s bomb Dobo on Wamar. B-17s and B-24s attack the runway on Gasmata, Simpson Harbor, the Cape Gazelle area and Cape Gloucester Airfield.

RAAF: Wirraway A20-504 force lands at Wau Airfield.

THURSDAY, 4 FEBRUARY 1943

(11th AF ) The weather reconnaissance aircraft over Kiska, jumped by 3 fighters, shoots 1 down. It is followed by 3 B-17s, 3 B-24s, 3 B-25s, 4 P-38s and 8 P-40s. The B-24s blast the North Head submarine base, and score near misses on a cargo ship. The B-25s hit the vicinity of the Main Camp area; 3 of 5 floatplanes which intercept are shot down. The P-40s strafe Kiska ground installations and sight a fighter strip southwest of Salmon Lagoon. Two Amchitka fighter patrols are flown; the first also strafes gun emplacements on Vega Point. Five enemy bombers strike Amchitka.

CBI (Tenth Air Force) In Burma, 6 B-25s, bombing from 6,000 feet, and seven B-24s, bombing from 14,500' attack the Myitnge bridge south of Mandalay, damaging the southern approach; 3 other B-25s bomb the Myitnge railroad shops.

SOUTH PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS (Thirteenth Air Force) A single B-17 joins Navy aircraft in pounding Kahili Airfield. Navy aircraft hit Munda Airfield. The second evacuation by the so-called "Tokyo Express" includes 22 destroyers covered by 25 Zekes comes down "The Slot". The destroyers are attacked 200 miles (320 km) north of Guadalcanal by 12 SBDs and 13 TBFs covered by 8 P-39s, 4 P-38s and 16 F4Fs; 1 destroyer is disabled and another slightly damaged. The P-39s get 1 Zeke, the F4Fs claim 6, the TBFs 2 and the SBDs 1; we lose 1 F4F, 1 SBD and 4 TBFs. An hour later, the same Express is hit by 12 SBDs escorted by 10 F4Fs and 4 P-40s from the 44th Fighter Squadron, 318th Fighter Group; 2 destroyers are slightly damaged. The P-40s claim 3 Zekes, the F4Fs 4 and the SBDs 2; we lose 1 P-40, 2 F4Fs and 2 SBDs. Lost is P-40F piloted by Carter. The destroyers successfully evacuate Japanese troops. The 70th Bombardment Squadron (Medium), 38th Bombardment Group (Medium) with B-26s returns to its base on Fiji after operating from Henderson Field since 9 Jan 43.

IJN: Lost is A6M2 6544.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS (Fifth Air Force) A-20s and B-25s bomb Lae Airfield and harbor and nearby AA positions, and hit forces in the Mubo, Komiatum, Zaka and Wau areas. Japanese forces begin retreating in disorder from the Wau area toward Mubo. Heavy bombers hit the airfields at Rabaul, Gasmata Airfield and Cape Gloucester Airfield, score hits on a vessel off Arawe, and attack small boats off Lorengau, sinking one boat. HQ 22d Bombardment Group (Medium) and the 19th and 33d Bombardment Squadrons (Medium) with B-26s transfer from Iron Range to Woodstock. The group, which has been in combat since Apr 42, ceased combat operations in Jan 43 for R and R. The B-26s of the 19th are overhauled and stripped of all paint and bear the title "The Silver Fleet." The 33d, and the group's other two squadrons, the 2d Bombardment Squadrons and 408th Bombardment Squadrons (Medium) at Reid River, begin transitioning from B-26s to B-25Ds.

FRIDAY, 5 FEBRUARY 1943

CBI (Tenth Air Force) Six B-24s bomb the railroad station area at Rangoon. P-40s bomb a railway cut west of Meza, and having blocked the line, strafe a halted train. Six B-25s attack the Myitnge bridge but fail to knock out the target but damage the approaches. P-40s hit targets of opportunity in the Kentung area.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS (Fifth Air Force) B-17s bomb Rabaul Airfield. Heavy bombers carry out individual attacks on shipping off Papua and New Britain and hit the town of Rabaul and the airfield at Gasmata. B-24s blast docks and shipping at Amboina. B-25s hit Dobo. A-20s continue to bomb and strafe forces around Zaka, Sappa, Mubo and Gona. Lost on a training flight is B-25C 41-12502.


SATURDAY, 6 FEBRUARY 1943

ALASKA (11th AF) A weather reconnaissance is flown over Kiska and Attu

CBI (Tenth Air Force) In Burma, 16 fighters follow the Mali River to Hpunkizup where they destroy about 20 trucks loaded with bridge repair equipment and completely decimate the village. Heavy bombers attack the bridge at Myitnge but fail to seriously damage the target.

SOUTH PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS (Thirteenth Air Force) The 370th and 424th Bombardment Squadrons (Heavy), 307th Bombardment Group based at Kipapa Field and Mokuleia Field respectively with B-24s begin operating from Bomber 1. The 371st Bombardment Squadron (Heavy), 307th Bombardment Group based at Wheeler Field with B-24s begins operating from Canton.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS (Fifth Air Force) A-20s bomb and strafe forces along the track from Mubo to Komiatum to Salamaua and hit the enemy in the Mambare River delta. An Australian coast watcher reports that there are 60+ Japanese aircraft on Lae Aerodrome; 7 B-25s, 1 B-24, 22 P-38s, 11 P-39s, 5 P-400s and 8 P-40s plus 5 Royal Australian Air Force Beaufighters to attack Lae airfield. When they arrive, they find the airfield empty; the Japanese were airborne attacking Wau Airfield.

A large Japanese air raid of 29 Ki-43 Oscars from the 11th Sentai and 9 Ki-48 Lilys from the 45th Sentai took off from Lae Airfield to attack Wau Airfield. The fighters were incorrectly identified by the Allies as 'Zeros'. During the raid, three C-47s arrived in the area and were about to land. Shot down by Ki-43 Oscars was C-47 "Early Delivery" 41-38658. The other two C-47s managed to evade the fighters and returned to Port Moresby. Escorted by eight P-39 Airacobras of the 35th FG, 40th FS and eight P-40Es of the 49th FG, 7th FS. One P-40E was damaged by a dozen machine gun hits.

On the ground, Wirraway A20-447 was destroyed on the ground and one stick of bombs fell along the strip, three were killed in the Air Cooperation Signals hut which received a direct hit. But the score was more than evened in the air where the fight waxed furious over the township itself and then swung off down the Bulolo Valley and out over the mountains.

Japanese claimed ten Allied aircraft shot down (2 claimed by WO Haruo Takagaki). Americans claimed 25 Japanese planes shot down (12 claimed by 40th FS and 7 by the 7th FS). In fact, Japanese losses were two Ki-43 Oscars shot down by fighters, and two by the 156th Light Anti-aircraft battery. Lost were: Major Katsuji Suguira (C.O.), Captain Shigenori Miyabashi, Tomechi Takaga and Ki-43 piloted by Sato. Three bombers were lost, one claimed by the 156th Light Anti-aircraft battery.

A single B-24 hits cargo vessels off Finschhafen and Powell Point, claiming 1 vessel destroyed, and attacks troop barges in Riebeck Bay, causing several casualties. The 80th Fighter Squadron, 8th Fighter Group with P-39s and P-400s transfers from Port Moresby to Mareeba. This unit has been operating in New Guinea since Jul 42.

JAAF - Lost is Ki-46 Dinah Setaguchi crashed into the sea north of Lee Point near Darwin.

RAAF: Lost on a training mission is Kittyhawk A29-136 (pilot injured, survived).

SUNDAY, 7 FEBRUARY 1943

(Eleventh Air Force) A B-17 flies weather reconnaissance over Kiska.

SOUTH PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS (Thirteenth Air Force) During the night, the third and last "Tokyo Express" comes down to Guadalcanal covered by a rain squall. The three Expesses have taken off 11,706 men from Guadalcanal to fight another day. The 12th Fighter Squadron, 15th Fighter Group with P-39s transfers from Efate to Guadalcanal.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS (Fifth Air Force) A single B-24 bombs Dobo and Babo, while another bombs Timika and Kaukenau. Lost after take off for an armed reconnaissance mission is B-24D "Yanks From Hell" 41-23755.

USMC - Crashed after take off is PB4Y-1 31958.

MONDAY, 8 FEBRUARY 1943

(Eleventh Air Force) A weather reconnaissance is flown over Kiska, Agattu, and Attu. Five B-24s and 5 B-25s bomb the Kiska Camp area and hit a water tank and buildings. Two B-25s bomb North Head through the overcast. Four P-38s and a B-25 patrol Amchitka.

CBI (Tenth Air Force) 18 B-24s of the India Air Task Force pound the Rangoon marshalling yard, wrecking locomotive ships and destroying the railroad station. Three other B-24s bomb the runway at Mingaladon Airfield.

SOUTH PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS (Thirteenth Air Force) In the Solomons, P-38s and Navy aircraft bomb Munda Airfield.

GUADALCANAL - Evacuation of some 11,000 Japanese troops from Guadalcanal is completed

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS (Fifth Air Force) A-20s pound Japanese forces in the Mubo area; B-25s bomb the Dobo town area. A single B-24 bombs the airfield at Gasmata.

TUESDAY, 9 FEBRUARY 1943

CENTRAL PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS (Seventh Air Force) HQ 318th Fighter Group transfers from Hickam Field to Bellows Field. The 19th Fighter Squadron, 18th Fighter Group with P-40s transfers from Bellows Field to NAS Barbers Point.

SOUTH PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS (Thirteenth Air Force) B-26s, escorted by P-38s and P-39s, pound Vila Airfield. Other P-38s join Navy aircraft in attacking Munda Airfield. Organized Japanese resistance ends on Guadalcanal at 1625 hours local and the is declared secure even though some isolated pockets of Japanese troops remain. Lost on a reconnaissance mission over Nauru is B-17F "My Lovin' Dove" 41-24450, crew rescued 50 days later.

The 69th Bombardment Squadron (Medium), 38th Bombardment Group (Medium) with B-25s and B-26s permanently transfers from the New Hebrides to Henderson Field and participates in the mission described above.

GUADALCANAL - Gen Patch's Cape Esperance envelopment force joins with western advance and Guadalcanal is declared secure

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS (Fifth Air Force) In the Celebes, B-24s bomb Kendari Airfield. In New Guinea, A-20s hit the Lahang area. P-400 piloted Latane crashes, he returns to duty six days later.

WEDNESDAY, 10 FEBRUARY 1943

ALASKA (Eleventh Air Force) The weather reconnaissance aircraft aborts the mission due to radio failure. Four B-24s, 2 B-17s, 8 B-25s and 8 P-38s attack Kiska; hits are observed on the landing strip and near the hangar and buildings. Two patrol missions, each by 4 P-38s and 1 B-25, are flown over the American-held Amchitka.

CBI (Tenth Air Force) In Burma, 8 B-25s bomb rolling stock at Maymyo.

SOUTH PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS (Thirteenth Air Force) P-38s and Navy aircraft attack Munda Airfield.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS (Fifth Air Force) HQ 90th Bombardment Group and its 320th and 321st Bombardment Squadron with B-24s transfer from Iron Range to Port Moresby.

THURSDAY, 11 FEBRUARY 1943

SOUTH PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS (Thirteenth Air Force) B-26s, P-38s and P-39s bomb Munda Airfield and Vila Airfield.

USN - The Vought F4U Corsair was flown on a combat mission for the first time when 12 planes of VMF-124 based on Guadalcanal escorted a PB2Y Dumbo to Vella Lavella to pick up downed pilots. The flight was uneventful. A team from U. S. Army intelligence team aboard PT-59 inspects the wreckage of Japanese submarine I-1.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS (Fifth Air Force) B-17s carry out a predawn harassing strike over Rabaul.

FRIDAY, 12 FEBRUARY 1943

Weather reconnaissance and attack missions against Kiska and a fighter patrol over Amchitka are broken off due to weather.

(Seventh Air Force) The 371st Bombardment Squadron (Heavy), 307th Bombardment Group with B-24s based at Wheeler Field ceases operating from Canton after six days.

CBI (Tenth Air Force) Seven B-24s of the India Air Task Force pound the Myitnge bridge area but fail to damage the bridge itself. This strike marks the first use of 2,000 pound blockbusters in the CBI Theater. Twelve other B-24s bomb the Mahlwagon marshaling yard and railway station at Rangoon. Twelve P-40s hit barracks near Lonkin.

SOUTH PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS (Thirteenth Air Force) P-38s, along with Navy aircraft, attack the Munda area, hitting AA at Rapa and setting fires at Kokengolo. B-26s and P-39s follow with a strike on the Munda Airfield.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS (Fifth Air Force) B-24s operating individually attack a sawmill at Ubili, a runway at Cape Gloucester, and the harbor and airfield at Rabaul, New Britain , and score a possible hit on a 6,000-ton vessel in the Solomon Sea between New Britain and Bougainville. Lost is B-24D 41-24017 (MIA).

SATURDAY, 13 FEBRUARY 1943

(11th AF) A weather reconnaissance is flown over Kiska, Attu, Agattu, Semichis and Buldir. Five heavy bombers, 6 medium bombers and 10 P-38s bomb and strafe Kiska targets including the Camp area, landing strip, and shipping. Of 5 float-type fighter which attack, P-38s shoot down 3. Four P-38s and one B-25 fly a patrol mission over Amchitka and Little Kiska; a B-25 shoots down a floatplane.This is was the last mission the B-17 was used in the Alaska theater in combat.

CBI (Tenth Air Force) Seven heavy bombers from Gaya bomb the Rangoon marshalling yard, scoring over 30 direct hits on the target. P-40s hit a headquarters at Lonkin, buring 12 barracks. Nine B-25s hit rolling stock in the marshalling yard at Paukkan and along the rail line from Shwebo to Sagaing.

SOUTH PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS (Thirteenth Air Force) This is the baptism of fire in the Solomons for the B-24s of the 424th Bombardment Squadron (Heavy), 307th Bombardment Group (Heavy) which has just come down from Hawaii. The F4U Corsair was used for the first time in combat in the South Pacific.

9 PB4Ys of VP-51 escorted by 4 P-38s and 11 F4Us of VMF-124 and 6 B-24s escorted by 4 P-38s and 7 P-40s of the 18th FG, 44th FS. Take off on separate missions to hit shipping in the Shortland-Kahilli-Buin area. The PB4Ys drop their bombs on a cargo ship at 1130 hours, score no hits and return to base with their escort. The B-24s attack a cargo ship from 14,000 feet just after 1200 scoring 1 hit. On the way to the target, 3 P-40s and 2 P-38s aborted the mission due to engine trouble, leaving the B-24s with an escort of 2 P-38s and 4 P-40s: P-40F 41-14825 piloted by Johnson (MIA), P-40F 41-14110 piloted by Morrissey (MIA), P-40F piloted by Lt. Jack Bade DSC, P-40F piloted by Lt. Bob Westbrook SS. This force is attacked by 39 enemey fighters over the target including Zeros and floatplanes. Lost are B-24D 41-23597 (some rescued, others MIA), B-24D 41-23980 (MIA), B-24D 41-23975 (MIA), P-38G piloted by Rist (MIA), P-38G piloted by Morton (rescued), P-38G piloted by Cramer (rescued) and P-38G piloted Lockridge (rescued).

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS (Fifth Air Force) In New Guinea, A-20s pound forces in and around Mubo while B-25s hit the Lae area. In the Bismarck Archipelago, a single B-24 bombs the sawmill area at Ubili and a B-17 hits targets of opportunity in the Rabaul area.

SUNDAY, 14 FEBRUARY 1943

MONDAY, 15 FEBRUARY 1943

In the Aleutians, a weather reconnaissance B-24 is soon called off due to weather. All other missions are cancelled. Six float-type Japanese aircraft bomb and strafe Allied held Amchitka , hitting the runway and causing casualties. The 18th Fighter Squadron, 343d Fighter Group with P-40s transfers from Adak to Amchitka.

CBI (Tenth Air Force) In Burma, B-24s strike the bridge at Myitnge for the second consecutive day but cause little damage.

SOUTH PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS (Thirteenth Air Force) B-26s, P-39s and P-40s attack Vila Airfield. B-24s, hindered by effective AA fire, bomb Kahili Airfield and Ballale Airfield; Two B-24s are lost.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS (Fifth Air Force) B-17s again bomb Rabaul town and hit the area nearby west of Simpson Harbor. A single B-17 attacks Rapopo Airfield. B-24s pound shipping and the town area at Amboina. B-25s pound supply dumps at Lahang. B-24s operating singly bomb the runway at Finschhafen, and claim a direct hit on a vessel in Stettin Bay. B-25s attack the Dili Town and Dili Airfield.

TUESDAY, 16 FEBRUARY 1943

ALASKA (Eleventh Air Force) Weather reconnaissance aircraft flies over Kiska, Attu, Agattu, Semicis and Buldir. Five B-24s, 6 B-25s, 6 P-38s and 1 B-25 photographic aircraft take off for Kiska but do not attack due to weather. One P-40, accompanying several P-38s on the Amchitka fighter patrol, lands on Amchitka Airfield; an afternoon patrol of 7 P-40s and 1 transport also land at the strip which is now safe for limited operations.


CBI (Tenth Air Force) In Burma, 18 P-40s hit targets of opportunity in the Nsopzup and Hpunkizup areas.

SOUTH PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS (Thirteenth Air Force) Rear Admiral Charles P Mason becomes Commander Aircraft Solomon (COMAIRSOLS) with operational control of all Royal New Zealand Air Force (RNZAF), USAAF, USMC and USN aircraft in the Solomons. Lost is B-24D "Bundles For Japan" 41-23965.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS (Fifth Air Force) B-17s bomb a warehouse at Ubili. B-25s bomb Lahang Airfield and strafe targets of opportunity on the Salamaua peninsula.

WEDNESDAY, 17 FEBRUARY 1943

In the Aleutians, weather cancels all missions and also the laying of mat at the Amchitka airstrip.

CBI (Tenth Air Force) The 2d Troop Carrier Squadron, Tenth Air Force with C-47s arrives at Yangkai from the U.S.

SOUTH PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS (Thirteenth Air Force) P-39s join Navy fighters and dive bombers in a strike against Munda Airfield. Single B-24s bomb Nusave plus Ballale Airfield and at Kahili Airfield.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS (Fifth Air Force) B-24s, operating individually, strike Gasmata Airfield and Pondo Harbor, Bobo and the sawmill at Ubili.

THURSDAY, 18 FEBRUARY 1943

ALASKA (Eleventh Air Force) A weather reconnaissance determines three ships at Attu to be friendly. P-40s on local patrol over Amchitka encounter and shoot down 2 enemy fighters. The 21st Bombardment Squadron (Heavy), 30th Bombardment Group operating under control of the 28th Composite Group with B-24s from Umnak begins operating from Amchitka.

SOUTH PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS (Thirteenth Air Force) B-24s pound Munda Airfield. B-17s attack the Kahili area and shipping nearby.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS (Fifth Air Force) B-24s unsuccessfully attack shipping off Cape Gloucester and Cape Orford. In New Guinea, B-25s bomb the Barar area. Individual B-24s bomb the Finschhafen landing ground and the Madang area. B-25s unsuccessfully attack shipping off Dili. The 21st Troop Carrier Squadron, 374th Troop Carrier Group with C-47s transfers from Archerfield Airdrome near Brisbane to Port Moresby.

NEIAF - Six 18 Squadron B-25s taking part in an operational mission over Dili. Lost is B-25D N5-144.

FRIDAY, 19 FEBRUARY 1943

(Eleventh Air Force) In the Aleutians, weather cancels all missions except limited weather reconnaissance.

CBI (Tenth Air Force) In Burma, P-40s dive-bomb a Japanese HQ at Hpunkizup and afterwards strafe a rail defile south of Meza, burying about 100 feet of track. Five B-25s bomb the rail terminal at Sagaing.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS (Fifth Air Force) B-17s bomb shipping and a seaplane base between Buin and Faisi and at Ballale and hit the Kahili Airfield. A-20s bomb and strafe forces in the Butibum and Angari areas. B-24s carry out single-plane attacks agains shipping at Salamaua, off Cape Gloucester, and at Gasmata. Lost is B-24D "Lady Luck" 41-11901.

SATURDAY, 20 FEBRUARY 1943

Reconnaissance over Kiska finds weather favorable and 5 B-24s, 7 B-25s and 8 P-38s take off to attack. The fighters hit the Main Camp area; the bombers bomb North Head, the Main Camp area and Kiska Airfield. The 11th Fighter Squadron, 343d Fighter Group with P-40s transfers from Fort Glenn to Adak Airfield.

CENTRAL PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS (Seventh Air Force) Three B-24s of the 307th Bombardment Group operating from Canton photograph Makin, Abaiang and Tarawa and attack shipping off Tarawa.

CBI (Tenth Air Force) In Burma, 17 P-40s bomb a factory, oil tanks, and railroad tracks at Sahmaw. Thirteen B-24s attack the Gokteik Viaduct but fail to damage the structure.

SOUTH PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS (Thirteenth Air Force) B-17s and PBYs bomb Ballale and Kahili. B-24s pound Vila. During the night of 19/20 Feb and day strikes, P-39s and Navy aircraft attack the Munda area, hitting the airfield and nearby Lambeti and Munda Point.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS (Fifth Air Force) B-17s bomb landing ground at Kahili and at Ballale, and Gasmata Airfield. Force landed returning from a mission are P-38G 42-12866, P-38 piloted by Douglas and P-38 piloted by Lidstrom. All three pilots were later returned to duty.

SUNDAY, 21 FEBRUARY 1943

Weather prevents all flying from Adak . Fighters based on Amchitka patrol Kiska.

SOUTH PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS (Thirteenth Air Force) USAAF, US Navy, US Marine Corps and Royal New Zealand Air Force (RNZAF) fighters from Guadalcanal provide air support as the 103d Infantry Regiment and 152d Field Artillery Battalion (105mm Howitzer Tractor-Drawn), 43d Infantry Division land on three beaches on Banika 30 miles northwest of Guadalcanal. The landings are unopposed; the 169th Infantry Regiment lands tomorrow. The 103d was a Maine National Guard unit activated in Feb 41; the 169th was a Connecticut NG unit activated at the same time. Airfields will be built. Fifth Air Force aircraft had aided this operation by bombing the Buin area including Kahili Airfield area and Ballale Airfield on Friday and Saturday.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS (Fifth Air Force) B-24s bomb the harbor and shipping at Ambon. A-20s bomb and strafe several occupied villages and tracks throughout the Mubo-Komiatum-Salamaua region. Lost on a training flight is B-25C "Draft Dodger" 41-12968.

RAAF: Lost in a crash landing is Spitfire A58-22 pilot slightly injured.

MONDAY, 22 FEBRUARY 1943

16 bombers and 8 fighters abort a mission against Kiska due to weather.

CBI (Tenth Air Force) B-24s mine the Gulf of Martaban between Pagoda Point and the mouth of the Rangoon River during the night of 22/23 Feb. Twenty four B-24s and RAF Liberators fly a diversionary strike against the city of Rangoon and the Mingaladon Airfield.

SOUTH PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS (Thirteenth Air Force) P-38s, P-39s and Navy aircraft hit the Rekata Bay area and barges in Sambi Bay on Santa Isabel.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS (Fifth Air Force) A B-24 attacks Lorengau Airfield. B-25s pound the Lae area while to the south A-20s hit forces at Buibuining, Waipali, Guadagasal and along trails in the surrounding areas. A single B-17 bombs Lae. The 36th Fighter Squadron, 8th Fighter Group with P-39s and P-400s transfers from Milne Bay to Mareeba. The 39th Troop Carrier Squadron, 317th Troop Carrier Group with C-47s transfers from Garbutt to Archerfield.

TUESDAY, 23 FEBRUARY 1943

17 bombers and 8 fighters bomb the Main Camp area on Kiska while an F-5A flies a photographic mission.

CBI (Tenth Air Force) Eight P-40s knock out the railroad bridge west of Myitkyina. Several B-24s attack the bridge at Myitnge; the strike fails to damage the structure itself but batters the southern approach. In India, 46 Japanese bombers and fighters are intercepted over Chabua Airfield by P-40s. In a running battle, the P-40s claim at least 14 aircraft shot down.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS (Fifth Air Force) In the Bismarck Archipelago, B-17s bomb Rabaul town and Simpson Harbor area. In New Guinea, A-20s continue to pound the occupied villages and trails in the Buibuining-Waipali and Guadagasal-Mubo areas. B-25s bomb and strafe Angari and Yangla.

WEDNESDAY, 24 FEBRUARY 1943

All except one mission of 4 P-40s, to Kiska are called off. The P-40s make no contacts, however.

CBI (Tenth Air Force) In Burma, P-40s knock out the southern span of the railroad bridge northeast of Pinbaw.

SOUTH PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS (Thirteenth Air Force) B-24s bomb Kahili and Faisi.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS (Fifth Air Force) In the Bismarck Archipelago, B-17s again hit shipping at Rabaul. A-20s continue to attack forces at the Guadagasal Saddle, Waipali, trails from Waipali to the Guadagasal Saddle and Mubo, and in the area of the Waria River mouth. B-25s pound Lae, Angari, Yangla, the Lahang landing strip, and smaller villages in the area. B-24s continue single-plane harassing strikes on shipping and airfields in coastal areas of Portugese and northeastern New Guinea and in the Solomon Sea off Cape Saint George. HQ 8th Fighter Group and its 35th Fighter Squadron P-39s and P-400s transfer from Milne Bay to Mareeba. Force landed is A-20A "Yellow Fever" 40-3153.

RAAF - After a reconnaissance mission, Hudson A16-245 ditches in Milne Bay due to bad weather.


THURSDAY, 25 FEBRUARY 1943

(Eleventh Air Force) Four P-40s sweep Kiska. Six B-24s and 5 B-25s bomb the Main Camp and North Head areas of Kiska.

CBI (Tenth Air Force) Fighters from Dinjan dive-bomb a bridge ten miles west of Myitkyina. A single span is knocked out and another damaged. B-24s again fail to damage the Myitnge Bridge. More than 40 Japanese aircraft attack Dinjan Airfield; 32 intercepting P-40s claim 14 destroyed and 15 probably destroyed. The 436th Bombardment Squadron (Heavy), 7th Bombardment Group with B-24s transfers from Gaya to Bishnupur.

SOUTH PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS (Thirteenth Air Force) P-38s, P-40s and F4Us sweep the Kahili area.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS (Fifth Air Force) Heavy bombers continue to attack shipping, airfields, and the town area at Rabaul. The airfield on Gasmata is also bombed. In New Guinea, A-20s again bomb and strafe forces at the Guadagasal Saddle and vicinity.

FRIDAY, 26 FEBRUARY 1943

CBI (Tenth Air Force) Dinjan based P-40s hit a bridge northeast of Pinbaw, destroying a span and damaging other parts of the bridge. The 492d Bombardment Squadron (Heavy), 7th Bombardment Group with B-24s transfers from Gaya to Bishnupur.

SOUTH PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS (Thirteenth Air Force) During the night of 25/26 Feb. P-38s and Navy aircraft hit Vila.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS (Fifth Air Force) B-17s and B-24s bomb the airfield on Gasmata. A-20s hit the Buibuining-Waipali area while a single B-17 bombs Lae Airfield and Salamaua Airfield. Other B-17s attack shipping off Wewak and Wewak Airfield. A single B-17 attacks shipping in Hixon Bay and Open Bay.

SATURDAY, 27 FEBRUARY 1943

(Eleventh Air Force) 6 B-24s, 6 B-25s and 4 P-38s bomb and strafe the Main Camp area on Kiska. On the return trip, a weather aircraft flies reconnaissance and makes a bombing and strafing run on Attu and nearby barges with negative results.

CBI (Tenth Air Force) In Burma, 24 P-40s bomb and strafe Waingmaw. Direct hits are scored on a warehouse and fuel and ammunition dump.

SOUTH PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS (Thirteenth Air Force) P-40s and P-38s join Navy aircraft in an attack on small vessels off Vella Lavella; hits are claimed on two vessels. Lost is P-40F piloted by Lewis. Damaged is Kirikawa Maru, the vessel is later scuttled.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS (Fifth Air Force) In New Guinea, B-25s hit Japanese-occupied villages in the Labu area. B-17s, operating individually, strafe a schooner off Matiu Point and bomb Finschhafen Airfield. An F-4 Lightning from the 6th PRG, 8th PRS makes a photographic run over Ballale at 32,500'


SUNDAY, 28 FEBRUARY 1943

ALASKA (Eleventh Air Force) Reconnaissance is flown over Kiska, Buldir, Semichis, Attu, and Agattu, with negative results. Six B-24s and 6 B-25s bomb the Main Camp area on Kiska.

CBI (Tenth Air Force) In Burma, P-40s from Dinjan knock out a bridge near Kazu and bomb and strafe Nsopzup. Eight B-25s hit the Thazi railroad junction. Six B-25s from Kunming, with fighter escort, bomb a storage area at Mangshih.

SOUTH PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS (Thirteenth Air Force) P-38s and Navy aircraft attack Vila Airfield. B-24s bomb Kahili Airfield and Ballale Airfield. Detachment B, 6th Night Fighter Squadron, 18th Fighter Group with 5 P-70s begins operating from Guadalcanal. This squadron is based in Hawaii.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS (Fifth Air Force) In New Guinea, a lone B-17 bombs Lae Airfield.

RAAF: Crashed is Catalina A24-25.

USN: TBF "Peggy" 06109 (MIA, two Prisoners, survived)

 

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