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

WEDNESDAY, 1 SEPTEMBER 1943

ALASKA: Two P-40's attempting to intercept Japanese aircraft reported near Attu abort because of weather.

(Seventh Air Force): September 1 - 14, eight B-24's conduct daily sea-search operations from Canton.

(Tenth Air Force): A detachment of the 9th Photographic Squadron, Tenth Air Force, based at Pandaveswar begins operating from Dinjan, India with F-4's and F-5's. The 459th Fighter Squadron is activated at Karachi and assigned to the 80th Fighter Group. The squadron begins training with P-38's.

(Fourteenth Air Force): In China, 7 B-25's, supported by 8 P-40's, attack a Japanese destroyer at Shihhweiyao; no hits are scored on the ship but considerable damage is done to the surrounding dock area; 6 P-40's sink a small tanker down river from Ichang, damage 2 large boats between Ocheng and Shihhweiyao, and strafe cavalry troops at Ocheng; 3 other P-40's heavily damage a small ship at Swatow harbor and strafe the nearby airfield; 3 P-38's and a P-40 dive-bomb and strafe barracks at Yangsin, demolishing 3 buildings; and 2 nearby locomotives are also destroyed. The fighter-bombers then heavily damage a small steamer at Wuchang, sink 1 tug and damage another at Kutang, and blast a train and an AA position S of Puchi. During Sep 43, HQ 23d Fighter Group transfers from Kunming to Kweilin. During Sep 43, detachments of the 449th Fighter Squadron, 51st Fighter Group based at Lingling operate from Hengyang and Kweilin with P-38's.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC (Fifth Air Force): 70+ B-24's and B-25's hit the Alexishafen / Madang area, dropping 201 tons of bombs (heaviest by Fifth Air Force to date). Other B-25's hit Iboki Plantation, barges on the Bubui River in New Guinea, the Rein Bay on New Britain area and several villages in New Britain. B-17's bomb Labu , New Guinea. B-26's attack Cape Gloucester area. B-24's and B-25's strike targets in the Lesser Sunda . The 68th and 69th Troop Carrier Squadrons, 433d Troop Carrier Group, arrive at Port Moresby from the US with C-47's. The 432d Fighter Squadron, 475th Fighter Group, ceases operating from Port Moresby and returns to it's base at Dobodura with P-38's.


THURSDAY, 2 SEPTEMBER 1943
CHINA-BURMA-INDIA CHINA (Fourteenth Air Force): 10 B-25's and 5 P-40's bomb Hong Kong hit- ting the Kowloon area and attack shipping off Stonecutter's and in the Lai Chi Kok area.

SOUTH PACIFIC (Thirteenth Air Force): 24 B-25's and 60+ US Navy aircraft pound Vila, hitting AA and artillery positions and the area E of Ringa Cove on New Georgia. 18 B-24's, 20+ P-40's and P-39's, and 60+ USN planes attack Kahili; shore installations, the airfield, and bridges N of the strip are hit.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC (Fifth Air Force): B-25's, with P-38 escort, attack shipping at Wewak Harbor, claiming 1 vessel sunk and 2 left aflame; 10 enemy interceptors are claimed destroyed; barrage balloons offer some protection to the enemy ships. This is first AAF observation of Japanese use of such balloons in the Southwest Pacific Area. Lost are B-25D 41-30319, B-25D 41-30247, B-25D 41-30255 and P-38H 42-66563. On a bombing mission by 12 B-17s against Cape Glouchester Airfield, lost are B-17E "Craps For The Japs" 41-2653, P-38G "Dumbo!" 42-12847, L-4 piloted by Hayer, P-38H 42-66538. Also lost is B-24D "Battlin' Betts" 42-41099.

IJA: Wewak No. 7 Convoy is attacked by American aircraft. Nagato Maru (sunk), Hankow Maru (sunk), Aden Maru (damaged), Shinyu Maru, Yubae Maru, subchaser CH-26 and subchaser CH-26.

USMC: Lost is F4U 02602 (MIA).

FRIDAY, 3 SEPTEMBER 1943
CHINA-BURMA-INDIA CHINA (Fourteenth Air Force): 11 P-40's and 2 P-38's blast the barracks area at Pho Lu, French Indochina. HQ 68th Fighter Wing and 69th Bombardment Wing are activated at Kunming. Neither unit will be manned until Dec 1943.

SOUTH PACIFIC (Thirteenth Air Force): 20+ B-24's, 14 P-40's, and 30+ USN airplanes attack Kahili Airfield. Vila Airfield is bombed by 5 B-24's and 10 USN aircraft. P-40's strafe a wharf at Webster Cove on New Georgia.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC (Fifth Air Force): Heavy and medium bombers blast gun emplacements and terrace defenses in the Lae area. Other heavy bombers hit the Cape Gloucester area. Light raids are flown against targets on Ceram in the Moluccas and Timor in the Sunda .

SATURDAY, 4 SEPTEMBER 1943
AMERICAN ALASKA (Eleventh Air Force): HQ XI Bomber Command transfers from Amchitka to Adak.

CENTRAL PACIFIC (Seventh Air Force): The 19th Fighter Squadron, 318th Fighter Group, transfers from Kipapa Field to Stanley Field, Territory of Hawaii with P-40's.

CHINA-BURMA-INDIA CHINA (Fourteenth Air Force): Ten B-25's and eleven P-40's pound Tien Ho Airfield; 3 of 15 intercepting Zekes are claimed shot down.

SOUTH PACIFIC (Thirteenth Air Force): 23 B-25's hit the Dulo Cove area on New Georgia; 9 B-24's, 15 AAF fighters, and 20+ USN fighters hit the airfield on Ballale.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC (Fifth Air Force): The Allied offensive against Lae begins as forces land at Hopoi and the mouth of the Buso River; B-24's support the landings by pounding Lae Airfield, B-25's hit the Hopoi area and bomb Cape Gloucester Airfield; A-20's and Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) planes hit the airfield on Gasmata; supporting P-38's intercept 100+ enemy fighters and bombers, which are airborne despite the attacks on airfields, and claim 20 shot down. Lost was Beaufort A9-204, P-38H 42-66748

SUNDAY, 5 SEPTEMBER 1943

CHINA-BURMA-INDIA CHINA (Fourteenth Air Force): 15 fighter-bombers pound the marshalling yard SE of Lao Kay, French Indochina; 16 others hit barracks in the city.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC (Fifth Air Force): In the Lae / Nadzab area, 52 medium bombers and pounding of Lae Airfield by 24 heavy bombers; a smoke screen is laid over the area by A-20's. Next, 82 C-47'S drop US Army's 503rd Parachute Infantry Regiment paratrooper plus the Australian AIF 2/4th Field Gun Volunteers with short barrel 25 pounders at Nadzab. This is the first paratrooper drop in the Southwest Pacific Area. ; Nadzab Airfield is quickly put into operational condition and will subsequently become a major Allied airbase. Observing the drop, MacArthur, Kenney and Sutherland orbit the area aboard three B-17Fs. Lost is P-38H 42-66556 (pilot rescued)

RAAF: Two Beaufighters attack Cape Glouscester Strip. Lost is Beaufighter A19-33. That morning, Boston of 22 Squadron attack Gasmata being repaired. 10 Beauforts of 100 Squadron attack Gasmata Airfield. Three are shot down: Beaufort A9-374, Beaufort A9-183 and Beaufort 186. One crashes at its home base, and another Beaufort A9-362 crashes at Vivigani. They were escorted by 8 P-40s of 76 Squadron.

MONDAY, 6 SEPTEMBER 1943

CHINA (Fourteenth Air Force): In China, 6 fighter-bombers attack wharves, vessels, and destroy a small factory building in the Yoyang-Shihhweiyao area; 5 others hit trucks, trains, gun emplacements, and railway facilities in areas around Sintsiang and Puchi.

SOUTH PACIFIC (Thirteenth Air Force): B-25's and P-39's hit enemy positions at Kakasa on Choiseul; B-24's blast gun positions at Vila.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC (Fifth Air Force): In New Guinea, heavy bombers pound Lae Airfield and surrounding area, and medium bombers bomb and strafe enemy defenses in Lahang and vicinity, as Allied ground forces push toward Lae; US fighters claim eight enemy aircraft downed over Lae. B-25's fly a sweep against barges along the coast of New Britain in the Bismarck Archipelago and bomb targets on Timor. Crash landed is B-24D "Scorpion" 41-24073 (wounded, survived)

(13th AF, USN) Fighters and bombers fly a strike mission against a suspected a radar site on Morgusaia (Magusaiai). F4U Corsairs and F6F Hellcats (first combat mission in the South Pacific theater) fly top cover, including 14 F6F Hellcats from VF-33. Also escorting are eight P-39 Airacobras from the 68th Fighter Squadron, who claim five shot down. Lost are P-39N 42-18798 (MIA), P-38G 42-12850 (MA) and P-39N 42-19022 (MIA). TBF Avengers bomb and strafe the target area. Ensign Warren flying 50 miles southeast of Shortlands, due south of Fauro Island made contact with enemy aircraft and claimed one Zero shot down, the first Hellcat fighter victory in the South Pacific. Japanese records indicate a force of bombers and fighters attacked at 10:50 Tokyo time (12:50 local time). They claimed 12 fighters and 1 bomber as uncertain. The Japanese lost one plane crashed, 1 heavily damaged and 1 moderately damaged.

TUESDAY, 7 SEPTEMBER 1943
CBI (Tenth Air Force): B-25's attack Gokteik Viaduct, Burma, causing minor damage.

SOUTH PACIFIC (Thirteenth Air Force): In the Solomon, 2 B-25's bomb barge depot and supply area E of Ringa Cove on New Georgia.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC (Fifth Air Force): B-24's and B-26's bomb the Lae area; B-25's bomb and strafe nearby targets on road to Markham; P-38's successfully turn back enemy bombing attack on Morobe; and C-47's begin flying the Australian 7 Division to Nadzab. During an early morning takeoff, B-24D "Pride of the Cornhuskers" 42-40682 crashs and kills 59 and wounds 92 from Australian 2/33rd Infantry Battalion on the ground waiting to load into C-47s.

A-20's hit Gasmata area. The 70th Troop Carrier Squadron, 433d Troop Carrier Group, arrives at Townsville from the US with C-47's.

IJN: Thirty-six A6M Zeros from the 202 Kokutai escorted two Ki-46-II Dinahs piloted by Murumitsu Sasaki and the other by C. O. Captain Kuruyasu Ichikawa on a mission over Darwin. Over the target, intercepted by RAAF Spitfires.

RAAF: Spitfires take off to intercept Japanese aircraft attacking Darwin. Eight are lost including Spitfire LZ884 (pilot survived) and Spitfire EF558 (pilot killed).

U. S. Army: Sunk is MV Lakatoi.

WEDNESDAY, 8 SEPTEMBER 1943
(Seventh Air Force): B-24's patrolling from Canton fire on a flying boat scoring hits and a hut causing no visible damage.

(Tenth Air Force): Six B-24's mine the Rangoon River during the night of 8/9 Sep; and B-25's hit Gokteik Viaduct for the second consecutive day, scoring 5 hits at the base of the structure, which remains usable.

(Fifth Air Force): B-17's, B-24's, B-25's and B-26's pound the Lae area, and A-20's hit Salamaua. The Japanese at Salamaua are ordered to prepare to fall back to Lae in face of the approaching Australian 5 Division. Elements of the Australian 9 Division, moving west towards Lae, reach the flooded Busu River where the Japanese hold the west bank. Other heavy and medium bombers carry out light raids on targets in western part of New Guinea and in the Netherlands East Indies. Lost on a patrol mission to Wau is P-38H 42-66542 (MIA).

RAAF: Lost on a search mission is Hudson A16-233 (MIA)

THURSDAY, 9 SEPTEMBER 1943

ALASKA (Eleventh Air Force): At Umnak, Royal Canadian Air Force (RCAF) No 14 (Fighter) Squadron prepares to depart for British Columbia, Canada.

CHINA-BURMA-INDIA BURMA-INDIA (Tenth Air Force): B-24's again mine the Rangoon River during the night of 8/9 Sep.

CHINA (Fourteenth Air Force): Eight B-25's and eleven P-40's hit the White Cloud Airfield; Four P-38's bomb the docks at Whampoa; Eight P-40's and P-38's hit shipping on the Yangtze River shipping near Chiuchiang, Kichun, Wusueh, Ocheng, and Changanyi, and strafe targets of opportunity in the general area.

SOUTH PACIFIC (Thirteenth Air Force): 12 B-25's and 50+ USN dive bombers pound Vila Airfield and barges at Disappointment Cove on New Georgia. 18 B-24's, with fighter escort, bomb Kahili Airfield. 2 nearby coastal guns are also hit. Lost is F4U 02552.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC (Fifth Air Force): B-25's bomb and strafe coastal area from Alexishafen to Finschhafen and hit points on coast of New Britain. Lost is B-25D "Jelly Belly 2nd" 41-30516 (MIA). Heavy bombers attack Garove Island. Selaroe is hit by a light medium bombers strike. Lost on a training flight is B-24D "Joltin' Janie" 42-40065 (crew survived).

FRIDAY, 10 SEPTEMBER 1943

ALASKA (Eleventh Air Force): Nine B-24's fly from Adak to Attu in preparation for a mission to Paramushiru tomorrow.

CHINA-BURMA-INDIA BURMA-INDIA (Tenth Air Force): B-25's again bomb Gokteik Viaduct in Burma. The approaches are battered but the viaduct remains usable. The detachment of ground personnel of the 491st Bombardment Squadron (Medium), 341st Bombardment Group (Medium), at Gaya returns to base at Chakulia.

CHINA (Fourteenth Air Force): Ten B-25's and seven P-40's hit a cotton warehouse north of Wuchang and docks at Hankow; 9 of 20 intercepting Zekes are claimed destroyed; 9 P-38's bomb docks at Whampoa.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC (Fifth Air Force): B-25's attack barges along the New Britain coast. In New Guinea, the Australian 7 Division, having been flown to Nadzab in C-47's, begins a push east toward Lae. Lost is F-5A Lightning 42-13088 (MIA).

SATURDAY, 11 SEPTEMBER 1943

ALASKA (Eleventh Air Force): Twelve B-25's and 8 B-24's attack Paramushiru for the third and last time this year. Six B-24's bomb the Kashiwabara staging area; shipping is bombed and strafed in Kashiwabara Harbor and Paramushiru Straits; 1 freighter and 1 large transport are sunk while 1 transport and 2 cargo ships are damaged; 2 other cargo vessels sustain possible hits; targets hit on land include 2 buildings and an AA battery on Shimushu. Of 40 fighters intercepting, 13 are shot down and 3 more are probables. Two B-24's force land in the USSR including B-24A 40-2367 (crew interned in USSR), one with mechanical defect, the other after being hit; One B-24 is downed by AA fire; losses are seven B-25's Mitchells including B-25C Mitchell 42-53354 (MIA) and two B-24 Liberators including B-24D 41-23890 (MIA). This is the most disastrous day for the Eleventh Air Force. It will be another 5 months before it is able to strike at the Kurils again. The 77th Bombardment Squadron (Medium), 28th Composite Group, transfers from Adak to Amchitka with B-25's.

CHINA-BURMA-INDIA CHINA (Fourteenth Air Force): Ten B-25's and eleven P-40's attack the Hankow docks and Wuchang cotton mills; and 3 P-38's bomb ammunition and fuel depots at Tayeh and strafe warehouses and barracks at Yangsin.

SOUTH PACIFIC (Thirteenth Air Force): 18 B-25's pound the area W of Vila Airfield and west of Disappointment Cove on New Georgia. The Vila Airfield is hit again in the evening by 3 B-24's. 27 B-24's at 21,000' are escorted by 16 F6Fs of VF-33, 8 RNZAF P-40s, 18 F4Us, 8 P-39s, 7 P-40s, bomb Kahili Airfield at 12:15. B-24's and fighters claimed 7 aircraft shot down. The attacking fighters made no effort to attack the bombers. F4Us engage 15-20 Zekes and Tonys at 21-27,000' between Shortland and Fauro and claim 4 Zeks and 2 Tonys shot down. F6Fs engage 7 Zekes and Tonys claim 1 Zeke. Japanese claim 2 x B-24 and 14 fighters shot down and admit to the loss of one fighter and damage to tents on the ground in Mainichi newspaper report on September 13. Losses F6F Hellcat 25902 (MIA). F4U 02536 (rescued), F4U 02550 (MIA). Also, P-40's and P-39's support USN dive bombers in striking gun positions at Hamberi on New Georgia.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC (Fifth Air Force): B-24's bomb Makassar. Lost is B-24D "The Red Ass" 42-40524 (MIA). Australian Army forces cross the Francisco River to Salamaua Airfield as Japanese forces draw toward Lae.

RAAF: Lost is Seagull A2-19 (MIA).

SUNDAY, 12 SEPTEMBER 1943

ALASKA (Eleventh Air Force): HQ XI Fighter Command transfers from Elmendorf Field to Adak.

CHINA-BURMA-INDIA BURMA-INDIA (Tenth Air Force): The 90th Fighter Squadron, 80th Fighter Group, transfers from Karachi to Jorhat with P-40's. The squadron will fly it's first combat mission on 16 Sep.

CHINA (Fourteenth Air Force): In China, 8 P-38's bomb shipping in the Hong Kong area, four P-38s hit Yangtze River traffic at Chiuchiang, and 4 P-40's strafe barracks and destroy a locomotive W of Shihhweiyao.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC (Fifth Air Force): B-17's and B-24's pound Lae as the Japanese begin a withdrawal in the face of the Australian 9 and 7 Divisions moving in from E and W; the Australian 5 Division occupies Salamaua and surrounding area; the first Allied airplane lands at Salamaua Airfield; and B-25's strafe between Saidor and Langemak Bay. B-25's hit barges near Cape Gloucester and A-20's bomb a radio station on Gasmata. Lost on a training flight is B-26 40-1406 near Cape Killerton.

(RAAF) Bostons attack Gasmata. DB-7B "J is for Jessica" Serial Number A28-8 crash lands at Vivigani Airfield.

USN - At 18:50 4 F4U Corsairs strafe Kahili Airfield, attacking west to east at dusk. They claim 7 aircraft probably destroyed on the ground. One Betty was seen with wheels down, but could not be attacked. Slight anti-aircraft fire from aifield, intense anti-aircraft fire from destroyer, which was also strafed. All four F4U's returned. Lost are F4U 02338 (MIA) and B-26 "Reluctant Dragon" 40-1406 (survived).

MONDAY, 13 SEPTEMBER 1943

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC THEATER (Fifth Air Force): B-24's escorted by P-38's, bomb airfields and ammunition dumps in the Wewak area; and B-25's hit Lae. Lost are P-40N "Mr. Five by Five / Pumkins" 42-104977 (survived), P-38H 42-66837 (survived) and P-38H 42-66734 (KIA, BR).

USN - Strikes Rabaul. Lost is F4U Corsair 17435 (MIA).

RNZAF - Ditched off Guadalcanal is P-40M NZ3066 (pilot rescued)

TUESDAY, 14 SEPTEMBER 1943
CBI (Tenth Air Force): HQ 311th Bombardment Group (Dive) and it's 382d Bombardment Squadron (Dive) arrive at Nawadih from the US with A-36's. The group will fly it's first combat mission on 16 Oct.

CHINA (Fourteenth Air Force): Fifteen B-24's are dispatched to Haiphong. The first flight aborts due to bad weather but the second flight reaches the target area and bombs docks and shipping. four P 38's severely damage two vessels at Chiuchiang. The 25th Fighter Squadron, 51st Fighter Group, transfers from Dinjan, India to Yunnani with P-40's. The squadron's detachment at Jorhat also transfers.

SOUTH PACIFIC (Thirteenth Air Force): Allied airfields facilities on Guadalcanal, Barakoma Airifeld and Munda Airfield are attacked by Japanese airplanes throughout the day. B-24's, with AAF and USN fighter escorts, bomb Kahili Airfield three times during the day. 30+ B-24's unload on dispersal and revetment areas and on runways, causing considerable damage; 8 Japanese interceptors are claimed shot down. 3 B-25's bomb Vila Airfield and 2 B-24's and 6 Venturas attack the Vila area. P-39's join USN fighters and dive bombers in attack on Ballale Airfield. Lost are F6F Hellcat 8979 (rescued), F6F Hellcat 09024 (MIA) and P-40F 41-14107 (POW, executed).

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC (Fifth Air Force): B-25's attack Lae and barges in Hansa Bay; B-24's bomb Kendari. The detachment of the 6th Nighter Fighter Squadron, 15th Fighter Group, which has been operating from New Guinea since 18 Apr with P-70's, begins a movement back to it's base at Kipapa, Territory of Hawaii.


WEDNESDAY, 15 SEPTEMBER 1943

CHINA-BURMA-INDIA CHINA (Fourteenth Air Force): Five B-24's attack a cement plant at Haiphong; 50+ Japanese fighters attack the B-24's. Lost are B-24D "Mohawk" 42-40786, B-24D "Temptation" 41-24129 and B-24D "Daisy Mae" 41-24218; the one returning B-24 claims ten fighters downed. Six B-25's and fourteen P-40's attack a cotton mill in the Wuchang area.

SOUTH PACIFIC (Thirteenth Air Force): B-25's bomb Vila Airfield, Kahili and Kara Airfield. B-24's, with fighter escort, later pound the runway area of Kahili Airfield; others hit Parapatu Point on New Georgia. During the night, B-25's hit Kahili Airfield twice and heavy bombers bomb Buka Airfield and Ballale Airfield. During the day, Ballale Airfield is also hit by USN dive bombers, supported by AAF, USN and US Marine Corps (USMC) fighters; a bivouac area, revetments, supply dumps and gun positions are hit; the runway appears badly damaged by the strikes. Lost are F6F Hellcat 25883 (MIA), F6F Hellcat 26009 (rescued), F4U Corsair 17489 (rescued).

HQ 403d Troop Carrier Group arrives on Espiritu Santo from the US. A detachment of the 6th Night Fighter Squadron, 15th Fighter Group, that has been operating from Guadalcanal with P-70's since 28 Feb 43, departs for it's base at Kipapa, Territory of Hawaii. The 372d Bombardment Squadron (Heavy), 307th Bombardment Group (Heavy), that has been operating from Guadalcanal with B-24's since 5 Aug, returns to it's base on Espiritu Santo for R&R.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC (Fifth Air Force): B-24's, with P-38 escort, bomb airfields in the Wewak area, destroying 10 enemy aircraft on the ground; 14 more are claimed destroyed in air combat. B-17's bomb the Lae area lost is B-17F "Listen Here Tojo" 41-24552 and B-25's sink about 15 barges between Alexishafen and Finschhafen, blast an ammunition and supply dump near Bogadjim, and attack AA positions at Bostrem Bay.

THURSDAY, 16 SEPTEMBER 1943

FRIDAY, 17 SEPTEMBER 1943

CBI (Tenth Air Force): The 383d and 385th Bombardment Squadrons (Dive), 311th Bombardment Group (Dive), arrive at Nawadih from the US with A-36's. The 383d will enter combat on 16 Oct.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC (Fifth Air Force): B-25's carry out a coastal sweep against barges and villages from Reiss Point to Langemak Bay, New Guinea. Lost on a training mission is B-25D "The Little Gem" 41-30321.

USN: PV-1 Ventura 33214 (1 KIA, crew rescued 3 weeks later).


SATURDAY, 18 SEPTEMBER 1943

CENTRAL PACIFIC (Seventh Air Force): 24 B-24's, flying out of Funafuti and Canton bomb Betio and Maiana and Abemama during the night of 18/19 Sep. This action is part of a coordinated AAF-USN attack on Tarawa, aimed at preventing Japanese attacks on US installations at Baker and in the Ellice.

BURMA-INDIA (Tenth Air Force): The 71st Liaison Squadron, US Army Forces CBI, based at Ramgarh sends a detachment to Ledo with L-4's and L-5's.

CHINA (Fourteenth Air Force): 4 B-25's and 7 P-40's attack rail yards and blast furnaces at Shihhweiyao, China.

SOUTH PACIFIC (Thirteenth Air Force): B-24's bomb Naru Airfield and attack a phosphate plant and radio station on Nauru.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC (Fifth Air Force): A-20's hit Tami; B-26's and RAAF airplanes bomb and strafe Finschhafen. The 65th Troop Carrier Squadron, 54th Troop Carrier Wing, based at Port Moresby begins operating from Tsili Tsili with C-47's.

SUNDAY, 19 SEPTEMBER 1943

ALASKA (Eleventh Air Force): The 21st Bombardment Squadron (Heavy), 30th Bombardment Group (Heavy), begins a movement from Shemya with B-24's to Smoky Hill AAFld, Kansas where it will be inactivated on 1 Nov 43.

CENTRAL PACIFIC (Seventh Air Force): Twenty B-24s from Funafuti and Canton, bomb Tarawa and Abemama and obtain photo coverage of Betio. One B-24 is lost to interceptors.

SOUTH PACIFIC (Thirteenth Air Force): B-25's and USN dive bombers, covered by fighters, bomb Vila Airfield and a causeway, enemy positions, and ammunition dump at Disappointment Cove on New Georgia . Other B-25's bomb and strafe barge centers at Ringa Cove and Webster Coves on New Georgia.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC (Fifth Air Force): B-25's and B-26's pound Finschhafen in preparation for Allied landings on 22 Sep. B-17's and B-24's bomb Cape Gloucester Airfield and the surrounding area. B-24's and B-25's fly small strikes against Amboina, Selaroe and Penfoei.

RAAF - Lost to anti-aircraft fire over Cape Hoskins area is Beaufighter A19-133.

MONDAY, 20 SEPTEMBER 1943

CBI (Tenth Air Force): In Burma, B-24's bomb Sagaing and Naba. The 384th Bombardment Squadron (Dive), 311th Bombardment Group (Dive), arrives at Nawadih from the US with A-36's. The squadron will fly it's first mission on 17 Oct.

CHINA (Fourteenth Air Force): 27 Japanese bombers and 20 fighters attack the airfield at Kunming; 24 P-40's and 3 P-38's intercept, claiming 17 airplanes shot down; 1 US fighter is lost; damage to Kunming Airfield is negligible. The 16th Fighter Squadron, 51st Fighter Group, transfers from Kweilin to Hengyang with P-40's.

SOUTH PACIFIC (Thirteenth Air Force): First Lieutenant Henry Meigs II (of the 6th Night Fighter Squadron), flying a P-38 against Japanese night attackers over Bougainville, shoots down two G4M1 Betty bombers of the 702nd Kokutai within 60 seconds: G4M1 piloted by Itakura and G4M1 piloted by Kisuberi.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC (Fifth Air Force): B-25's and B-17's hit roads from Kaiapit to Madang, destroying 3 key bridges; P-39's strafe and dive-bomb the Bogadjim-Yaula area; and B-24's bomb Wewak and Boram airfields. B-25's hit Penfoei. Lost are P-38H "Mareelee II" 42-66851 (pilot rescued), P-38H 42-66833.

TUESDAY, 21 SEPTEMBER 1943

CHINA (Fourteenth Air Force): Eight B-25's and eight P-40's attack railroad yards and warehouses at Chiuchiang, causing considerable destruction.

SOUTH PACIFIC (Thirteenth Air Force): Twenty plus B-24's bomb the runway and revetment area at Buka Airfield. About 20 Japanese fighters intercept; 2 Zekes are shot down.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC (Fifth Air Force): A-20's, B-26's, and RAAF aircraft hit Tami Island and pound Finschhafen in preparation for the Allied amphibious assault on the following day; B-25's bomb and strafe the Bogadjim area and Langgoer. B-24's hit Cape Gloucester and a freighter near Talasea; A-20's and RAAF aircraft bomb Gasmata. Lost is P-40N 42-104984. The 70th Troop Carrier Squadron, 433d Troop Carrier Group, transfers from Townsville, Queensland, Australia to Attu, New Guinea with C-47's. Lost is B-24D "Nothing Sacred" 42-40509.

JAAF: Japanese bombers attack, two crashed and two others failed to return. US claims were for four bombers and several fighters claimed. Lost is P-40N 42-104984.

WEDNESDAY, 22 SEPTEMBER 1943

CBI (Tenth Air Force): In Burma, B-25's attack the Ye-u branch line railroad bridge over the Mu River between Ywataung and Monywa. Negligible damage is done to the target.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC (Fifth Air Force): After a preparatory naval bombardment, elements of the Australian 9 Division land at the mouth of the Song River N of Finschhafen and push to the S; B-25's pound defenses in the Finschhafen area; almost 90 fighters battle Japanese aircraft attacking the convoy; 38 enemy aircraft are claimed shot down. Lost is G4M1 Betty piloted by Uchibaba.

A-20's and B-25's hit Lae. B-24's and B-25's bomb the airfield on Gasmata; and B-24 hit Amboina.

THURSDAY, 23 SEPTEMBER 1943

ALASKA (Eleventh Air Force): Admiral Thomas C Kinkaid issues Operations Plan (Op Plan) 9-43 which reorganizes the Alaskan Army and Navy air strength. The Commanding General Eleventh Air Force becomes Commander of Task Force 90 (TF 90), composed of Task Group 90.1 (TG 90.1), designated the Air Striking Unit (comprising 16 medium bombers, 12 heavy bombers, 100 fighters) and of TG 90.2, designated the Air Search Group, a Navy air arm. For operations, the Eleventh Air Force is now under the jurisdiction of Commander Northern Pacific (COMNORPAC) Forces. There is no administrative change.

SOUTH PACIFIC (Thirteenth Air Force): 23 B-24's, 16 P-38's, and 60+ USN dive bombers, covered by AAF, USMC, USN, and Royal New Zealand Air Force (RNZAF) fighters, attack Kahili; Allied aircraft claim at least 9 fighters shot down. 21 B-24's bomb area from Stanmore Plantation to the mouth of the Vila River. P-39's strafe 2 barges, at Sasamunga and Malanono, leaving both aflame.

USMC: Lost during a force landing is F4U 55828.

SOUTHWEST (Fifth Air Force): B-25's bomb and strafe villages in the upper Markham River Valley. P-40's bomb Gasmata.

RAAF: Lost of Hoskins is Beaufort A9-256 (MIA)

FRIDAY, 24 SEPTEMBER 1943

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC (Fifth Air Force): B-24's fly a small strike against Sorong and Manokwari.

(Australian Army Z Force) Operation Jaywick: Using a captured vessel Kofuku Maru renamed MVĀ Krait under the command of Lieutenant Hubert Edward Carse departed Exmouth, Western Australia on September 2, 1943 a secret mission to attack Japanese shipping anchored in Singapore Harbor. Aboard were a total of fourteen crew and Australian Army "Z Force" (Z Special Unit) commandos under the command of Major Ivan Lyon. Arriving at Subor Island on September 24, 1943, at night three two man folboats were deployed that paddled into Singapore Harbor and attached limpet mines to Japanese vessels at anchor and hid when they exploded. Afterwards, the folboats paddled 80km to rendezvous with MV Krait on October 2, 1943. Returning, they were approached by a Japanese patrol boat in the Lombok Strait but not challenged and returned to Exmouth on October 19, 1943. The mission was completed without the loss of any personnel. References: AWM Operation Jaywick.

SATURDAY, 25 SEPTEMBER 1943

CBI (Tenth Air Force): The 436th Bombardment Squadron (Heavy), 7th Bombardment Group (Heavy), transfers from Bishnupur to Panagarh with B-24's.

SOUTH PACIFIC (Thirteenth Air Force): B-25's join USN TBF's and SBD's in pounding gun positions in the areas around Vila Airfield and Disappointment Cove on New Georgia.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC (Fifth Air Force): Nearly 40 B-17's, B-24's, and B-25's bomb installations and supply lines from Bogadjim to villages on the Ramu and Markham Rivers; A-20's and RAAF airplanes pound positions near Finschhafen as the Australian 9 Division, having crossed the Buni River the previous day, pushes S toward the town. B-25's bomb and strafe AA positions at Rein Bay on New Britain Island in the Bismarck Archipelago. The 66th Troop Carrier Squadron, 54th Troop Carrier Wing, transfers from Port Moresby to Nadzab, New Guinea with C-47's.

SUNDAY, 26 SEPTEMBER 1943

SOUTH PACIFIC (Thirteenth Air Force): 21 B-24's, covered by 14 P-38's, bomb a bivouac near Kahili; 30 P-40's and P-39's and 15 USN F4U's support 50+ USN dive bombers in a strike on the hangar area of the airfield at Kahili and gun positions at Kangu Hill and Jakohina.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC (Fifth Air Force): B-24's bomb But Airfield and Dagua Airfield; P-38's claim 9 enemy fighters shot down in the But-Dagua-Wewak areas; other B-24's hit Nubia and Potsdam Plantation.

MONDAY, 27 SEPTEMBER 1943

SOUTH PACIFIC (Thirteenth Air Force): 27 B-24's, 20+ P-40's and P-39's, and several USN fighters pound the Kahili area. P-39's over Choiseul strafe (and explode) 3 barges off Wogai Point, and strafe 2 others off Bambatana, leaving 1 ablaze.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC (Fifth Air Force): 117 B-24's and B-25's, escorted by 129 P-38's and P-40's, attack airfields and shipping in the Wewak area including But Airfield; about 40 aircraft are destroyed on the ground and 8 are claimed shot down in combat; the bombers claim 10 ships (totaling about 28,000 tons), 11 luggers, and a launch sunk. Sunk is Taisei Maru. Lost are B-25D 41-30434 (MIA) and B-25D 41-30636 (MIA). Finschhafen is bombed twice during the day.

JAAF: Ki-54 Hickory crashes into Lake Towada-ko

TUESDAY, 28 SEPTEMBER 1943

SOUTH PACIFIC (Thirteenth Air Force): 5 B-24 snoopers attack a convoy in N Solomons waters and claim several damaging hits. The convoy reverses its course.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC (Fifth Air Force): The Wewak area is again hit, the 40 attacking B-24's being escorted by 29 P-38's which claim 8 fighters shot down; A-20's and RAAF Vengeances attack the Finschhafen and Lae area; B-24's and P-39's hit a road near Bogadjim. The 21st Troop Carrier Squadron, 374th Troop Carrier Group, transfers from Port Moresby, New Guinea to Archerfield, Queensland, Australia with C-47's. The 39th Troop Carrier Squadron, 317th Troop Carrier Group, transfers from Archerfield to Port Moresby with C-47's.

WEDNESDAY, 29 SEPTEMBER 1943

CBI (Fourteenth Air Force): In Burma, nine B-24's bomb Myitkyina and Sadon during routine ferry trips over the Hump.

SOUTH PACIFIC (Thirteenth Air Force): On Choiseul P-40's, P-38's, and P-39's join USN fighters in supporting a strike by USN dive bombers on a barge depot at Kakasa; other P-40's strafe and set afire a barge off Sambi Point.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC (Fifth Air Force): B-24's on armed reconnaissance attack scattered shipping in the Netherlands East Indies and Solomon and Bismarck Seas. Lost on a training flight is B-25D "Axis Fate" 41-30053.

THURSDAY, 30 SEPTEMBER 1943

ANTISUBMARINE WARFARE (First Air Force): The 10th Antisubmarine Squadron (Heavy), 26th Antisubmarine Wing, ceases flying ASW patrols from Galveston, Texas with B-25's. The squadron will be redesignated 867th Bombardment Squadron and will transfer to the Central Pacific with B-24's in Jun 44.

CBI (Tenth Air Force): The 311th Bombardment Group (Dive) is redesignated 311th Fighter-Bomber Group. The 385th Bombardment Squadron (Dive) is disbanded at Nawadih; the 382d, 383d and 384th Bombardment Squadrons (Dive) are redesignated 528th, 529th and 530th Fighter-Bomber Squadrons.

CHINA (Fourteenth Air Force): 2 B-25's and 4 P-40's claim heavy damage to a gunboat at Ft Bayard, China.

SOUTH PACIFIC (Thirteenth Air Force): 16 B-24's, covered by 20+ P-38's and P-40's and a few US Navy F4U's, pound the Kahili Airfield area, hitting a supply and bivouac area NE of the runway. Six B-25's bomb Kakasa on Choiseul.

USN - (VMF-214) Four F4Us on a mission against Kolombangara spot three ships. The ships were actually PT-126, PT 124 and PT 116 and fired a recognition flare. The F4U piloted by Alexander opened fire and was shot down. Several crew on PT-126 were wounded in the friendly fire accident.

 

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