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

MONDAY, 1 FEBRUARY 1944

WEDNESDAY, 2 FEBRUARY 1944

THURSDAY, 3 FEBRUARY 1944

FRIDAY, 4 FEBRUARY 1944

SATURDAY, 5 FEBRUARY 1944

SUNDAY, 6 FEBRUARY 1944

MONDAY, 7 FEBRUARY 1944

TUESDAY, 8 FEBRUARY 1944

WEDNESDAY, 9 FEBRUARY 1944

THURSDAY, 10 FEBRUARY 1944

FRIDAY, 11 FEBRUARY 1944

SATURDAY, 12 FEBRUARY 1944

SUNDAY, 13 FEBRUARY 1944

MONDAY, 14 FEBRUARY 1944

TUESDAY, 15 FEBRUARY 1944

WEDNESDAY, 16 FEBRUARY 1944


BURMA-INDIA (Tenth Air Force): In Burma, A-36s and P-51s hit supply dumps, troop concentrations and an encampment area near Myitkyina, Kamaing, Tonkin and Walawbum; B-25s and P-51s destroy 3 locomotives at Kyaingkwin. 118th Tactical Reconnaissance Squadron, AAF, India-Burma Sector (attached to Tenth Air Force), arrives at Gushkara, India from the US with P-51s.

CHINA (Fourteenth Air Force): 2 B-25s knock out a railroad bridge at Yen Bay, French Indochina and damage 2 other bridges to the S near the coast. 74th Fighter Squadron, 23d Fighter Group, based at Kweilin with P-40s, sends a detachment to Liuchow.

PACIFIC OCEAN AREA (POA, Seventh Air Force): B-24s from Tarawa bomb Wotje and Taroa; P-40s from Makin fly two bombing-strafing strikes against Jaluit; A-24s bomb Mille.

USN: American forces make an amphibous landing at Eniwetok. On the first day of "Operation Hailstone" carrier aircraft catch a fleet of Japanese merchant vessels and warships by surprise attack aganist Truk. 400 tons of bombs and torpedo rained down on the lightly defended base. After a day of attacks, forty ships and thousands of men went to the bottom. USN carrier aircraft claim 200 enemy aircraft and 20 ships including Gyoraitei No.10.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA (SOPAC, Thirteenth Air Force): Twelve B-24s escorted by 30+ P-38s and USN F4Us, pound the runway at Vunakanau Airfield.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA (SWPA, Fifth Air Force): 40+ B-25s attack a convoy off New Hanover and sinks Sanko Maru, HA-52 Type B Midget Submarine and CH-39. 30+ B-24's bomb Panapai Airfield and Kavieng and some hit Cape Balangori and Talasea. 19 B-24s and B-25s bomb Halong. P-40s hit shipping and barges in the Wewak area. Transfers in New Guinea: HQ 345th Bombardment Group (Medium) from Dobodura to Nadzab; 25th Liaison Squadron, 5212th Photographic Wing (Provisional), from Lae to Nadzab with L-5s. Lost is P-39N Airacobra 42-18812 (MIA).

USN: Carrier aircraft conduct a fighter sweep over Truk. Lost is F6F 65894 (MIA).

THURSDAY, 17 FEBRUARY 1944

BURMA-INDIA (Tenth Air Force): In Burma, 38 A-36s and P-51s on armed reconnaissance hit troops and supplies from Lonkin to Kamaing; Six P-51s hit supply areas along roads around Lonton and Manywet; 2 others hit a road junction near Maingkwan; 2 B-25s and 6 P-51s strike a road bridge, railroad station, and rail cars in the Pyingaing area; 2 B-25s and 6 P-51s attack but fail to damage a bridge near Ye-u.

CHINA (Fourteenth Air Force): Four B-25s on a sweep of the Gulf of Tonkin score 2 direct hits on a freighter at Vinh, damage a bridge approach and locomotive at Yen Xuon Station, and destroy a locomotive at Yen Ly Station.

PACIFIC OCEAN AREA (POA, Seventh Air Force): B-24s from Tarawa and Abemama hit Ponape, Kusaie and Jaluit. P-40s strafe floatplanes off Emidj.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA (SOPAC, Thirteenth Air Force): 20 P-40s join 40+ USN fighters in covering an attack by 70 USN dive bombers on shipping in Keravia Bay; eight Japanese aircraft are claimed shot down; two USN fighters are lost. Fighters hit Queen Carola Harbor, Kessa Plantation and a bridge north of Kahili.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA (SWPA, Fifth Air Force): Forty B-24s bomb Panapai Airfield and Talasea. 16 B-25s claim two surface vessels and a submarine sunk off New Hanover. 16 P-47's strafe targets of opportunity in the Alexishafen area. HQ 6th Photographic Reconnaissance Group moves from Port Moresby to Nadzab.

IJN: G4M1 Betty departs Rabaul with six Allied POWs aboard flying via Truk and then onward to Japan.

USN: Battle of Karavia Bay: during the night of February 17-18, Task Group 38.4, composed of the destroyers USS Farenholt (DD-491), USS Buchanan (DD-484), USS Lansdowne (DD-486), USS Lardner (DD-487) and USS Woodworth (DD-460) conducted a shore bombardment of targets on East New Britain near Rabaul. They fired on gun batteries at Praed Point (141 rounds) and a gun battery at Raluana (56 rounds). Heavy gunfire was observed from Simpson Harbor and Karavia Bay areas. On February 18, 1944 at 1:24am torpedoes were fired through the center of the mine field across the entrance to Karavia Bay. At 1:26am to to the south into Vunapopo bivouac and supply area (244 rounds), cleared Credner Island. At 1:36am observation plane dropped a stick of bombs on Cape Gazelle shore batteries. At 1:37am ceased firing Vunapopo area, shifted to Cape Gazelle shore battery (firing 284 rounds) which had opened fire on the formation. At 1:40am opened fire on Cape Gazelle shore batteries, then passed the center of channel between Duke of York Islands and Cape Gazelle. At 2:00am on the fantail of USS Lardner, the bloomer on the No. 4 gun had caught fire from the heat generated while firing and was quickly extinguished. At 2:30am an unidentified plane reported. Until 5:15am, “bogies” were reported at intervals, singly and in groups (about four) one dropped flares on starboard beam at about 3:10am. One “bogie” approached as close as as 3 miles. Due to heavy overcast and rain squalls, the Squadron Commander felt reluctant to allow the ship to return fire and reveal our presence, at 3:35am cleared St. George's Channel. During the destroyer attack, at least one A6M Zero piloted by Komachi took off from Tobera Airfield armed with two 60 kg wing bombs and made several strafing runs on the first destroyer and made a bomb and strafing run on the second destroyer until all his ammunition was expended then departed. References Siege of Rabaul page 24, Imperial Japanese Navy Aces page 33.

Task Force 58 (TF-58) under the command of Vice Admiral Marc A. Mitscher carrier aircraft aircraft attack Truk Lagoon. 400 tons of bombs and torpedo rained down on the base. The U. S. claims 200 enemy aircraft destroyed and 20 ships sunk. Sunk are: Gosei Maru, Fujiyama Maru, Hoki Maru, Fujikawa Maru, Hoyo Maru, Tachikaze, Aikoku Maru, Nagano Maru (partial list). Lost is TBM-1C Avenger 25270 (MIA).

FRIDAY, 18 FEBRUARY 1944

BURMA-INDIA (Tenth Air Force): In Burma, 40+ B-25s, A-36s and P-51s attack the town of Ye-u and nearby bridge, bivouacs N of Laban, bridges in the Pyingaing area and along the Mu River, supply and troop concentrations at Waingmaw radio station and a supply area near Kamaing and gun emplacements SE of Taihpa Ga; the strikes are generally successful. 58th Fighter Squadron, 33d Fighter Group, arrives at Karachi from Italy; they will be equipped with P-47Ds.

CHINA (Fourteenth Air Force): Four B-25s on a sweep of the Gulf of Tonkin damage two large boats north of Bakli Bay, destroy an ammunition dump at Phu Ly and knock out a nearby railroad bridge.

USN: "Operation Hailstone" for the second day, carrier aircraft catch a fleet of Japanese Merchant vessels and warships by surprise in Truk Lagoon. 400 tons of bombs and torpedo rained down on the lightly defended base. After a day of attacks, forty ships and thousands of men went to the bottom. Sunk are San Francisco Maru and Sankisan Maru.

USN: American forces land on Engebi and secure most of the island after a six hour battle.

PACIFIC OCEAN AREA (POA, Seventh Air Force): P-40s from Makin bomb and strafe Jaluit and Mille. US forces land on Engebi Island in Eniwetok Atoll.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA (SOPAC, Thirteenth Air Force): 34 B-25s and 18 B-24s, both forces with fighter escorts, pound Vunakanau Airfield; two B-25s and four P-38s hit Tobera. Lost on an experimental strafing mission over Buka is B-25H Mitchell Number 321, two of the crew and a dead body were rescued by PBY Catalina NZ4013.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA (SWPA, Fifth Air Force): B-25s and RAAF Beaufighters hit Koepang, P-39s strafe targets of opportunity at Madang and Cape Raoult, New Britain Island. 499th Bombardment Squadron (Medium), 345th Bombardment Group (Medium), moves from Dobodura to Nadzab with B-25s. Lost is B-25C "Hellzapopin II" 41-12464 (MIA).

SATURDAY, 19 FEBRUARY 1944

BURMA-INDIA (Tenth Air Force): 60+ A-36s and P-51s and a few B-25s hit a variety of targets in Burma; targets including fuel and supply dumps at Manywet and in the Shaduzup area, the Tonkin-Kansi road and a junction west of Manywet, the Mu River bridge at Ye-u, railroad cars and tracks, locomotives, and river traffic between Monywa and Natyekan and between Alon and Segyi; rail and road traffic in the Bhamo and Hukawng Valley-Kamaing areas is also hit.

CHINA (Fourteenth Air Force): B-24s, B-25s, and P-40s fly sea sweeps over wide-spread coastal areas from the Formosa Straits to French Indochina, claiming 3 ships sunk and others damaged; railroad bridges, trains, and other targets of opportunity near coastal areas are also attacked.

PACIFIC OCEAN AREA (POA, Seventh Air Force): B-24s from Tarawa and Makin pound Ponape and Kusaie; B-25s from Tarawa hit Wotje while Makin based P-40s bomb and strafe Mille. US forces land on Eniwetok Island.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA (SOPAC, Thirteenth Air Force): 20 P-40s and 40+ USN fighters escort about 70 USN dive bombers in an attack on Lakunai Airfield; fighter cover claims 22 Japanese aircraft shot down; 6 B-24s bomb the same target immediately afterward; 14 B-24s, with P-38 and USN fighter escort, hit Tobera Airfield. 12th Fighter Squadron, 18th Fighter Group, based on Guadalcanal with P-38s, begins operating from Stirling. 69th Bombardment Squadron (Medium), 42d Bombardment Group (Medium), moves from the Renard Field to Stirling with B-25s.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA (SWPA, Fifth Air Force): 12 B-25s attack shipping SW of New Ireland Island, claiming a small freighter and a patrol boat sunk and other vessels damaged. 7 A-20s hit shipping at Kavieng. Single B-24s and B-25s carry out armed reconnaissance over wide areas of the Bismarck Sea. 26th Photographic Reconnaissance Squadron, 6th Photographic Reconnaissance Group, from Dobodura to Finschhafen with F-5s (detachment is at Port Moresby); 35th Fighter Squadron, 8th Fighter Group, from Finschhafen to Cape Gloucester with P-40s. Crashed is C-47A Dakota 42-24398 (2 KIA, 2 WIA rescued).

SUNDAY, 20 FEBRUARY 1944

BURMA-INDIA (Tenth Air Force): Bad weather limits operations to a routine patrol over Sumprabum, Burma. HQ 33d Fighter Group and 60th Fighter Squadron arrive at Karachi from Italy; they will be equipped with P-47Ds.

PACIFIC OCEAN AREA (POA, Seventh Air Force): Nine B-25s from Tarawa bomb Wotje Airfield; P-40s from Makin strafe and bomb runways at Mille Airfield and small vessels at Mille.

USN - After the strikes on Truk, a small unit composed of USS Enterprise, one cruiser, and six destroyers under the command of Rear Admiral J. W. Reeves separated from the main force and launched two air strikes against Jaluit.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA (SOPAC, Thirteenth Air Force): 35 B-25s, with fighter escort, pound Lakunai Airfield. P-39s attack barge traffic, which has greatly increased off SE and NW Bougainville Island, claiming 20 of the craft sunk. 18th Combat Mapping Squadron, 4th Photographic Group (Reconnaissance), is inactivated on Espiritu Santo Island.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA (SWPA, Fifth Air Force): 38 B-24s bomb the Alexishafen to Hansa Bay area. Eighteen B-24s bomb Laha Airfield, and 12 others hit shipping off Kavieng. Transfers in and out of New Guinea: HQ Fifth Air Force advance echelon and HQ V Bomber Command from Port Moresby to Nadzab; HQ 8th Fighter Group from Finschhafen to Cape Gloucester; 498th Bombardment Squadron (Medium), 345th Bombardment Group (Medium), from Dobodura to Nadzab with B-25s.

MONDAY, 21 FEBRUARY 1944

BURMA-INDIA (Tenth Air Force): In Burma, 50+ P-51s and A-36s and a few B-25s hit a command post at Shingban, the town of Mohnyin, a bridge at Loilaw, a camp at Shaduzup, 2 bridges at Namkwin, and warehouses and other buildings at Kawlin and Wuntho; fighter-bombers attacking a fuel dump at Pin Hmi drop bombs in the wrong area; B-25s, escorted by RAF Spitfires and Hurricanes, score effective hits on a tunnel on the Maungdaw-Buthidaung road.

PACIFIC OCEAN AREA (POA, Seventh Air Force): B-24s from Tarawa and Abemama hit Ponape, Kusaie, and Jaluit. B-25s from Abemama bomb Maloelap. P-40s from Makin hit Mille. US forces gain complete control of Eniwetok. 9th Troop Carrier Squadron, Seventh Air Force, arrives at Hickam Field from the US with C-47s.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA (SOPAC, Thirteenth Air Force): 15 B-24s bomb Lakunai Airfield; 4 others, with fighter support, attack the airfield at Rapopo; 20 P-38s join USN fighters in covering a USN dive bomber strikes on Lakunai gun positions. In the Bougainville Island area 3 B-24s bomb Kara Airfield while P-39s hit buildings at Tsundawan and in the area south of Tabut, and bomb barges and jetty in the Matchin Bay area.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA (SWPA, Fifth Air Force): Almost 30 A-20s hit Madang and the Hansa Bay area. On New Britain Island, P-39s hit Raiven Plantation; 40+ B-24s bomb the Rein Bay and Eleonora Bay areas; others attack shipping off New Hanover sinking Kokai Maru and Kowa Maru. Lost on a transport flight is B-25D "Available Jones" 41-30374 (MIA). Crashed in an emergency landing attempt is L-5A "Termite" 42-98085 (survived). Lost is P-47D Thunderbolt 42-22941 (rescued).

TUESDAY, 22 FEBRUARY 1944

BURMA-INDIA (Tenth Air Force): 70+ B-25s, P-51s, and P-40s again hit a variety of targets in Burma; bridges are severely damaged or put out of use at Zawa, Tindeinyan, Ye-u, Namkwin, and Loilaw; warehouses and supply dumps are hit at Segyi and at Chantha, and the Pahok road and railroad junction are blasted; also hit are targets of opportunity at Kawlum and along the Walawbum-Kamaing road.

CHINA (Fourteenth Air Force): P-40s on armed reconnaissance strafe Kengtung Airfield, China and nearby truck convoy. At Bhamo, Burma a large rivercraft is hit and left sinking.

PACIFIC OCEAN AREA (POA, Seventh Air Force): One B-24 bombs Kusaie. Eight A-24s and nine P-40s from Makin bomb Mille; One P-40 launches rockets against Mille Airfield targets in the first such attack by a Seventh Air Force aircraft.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA (SOPAC, Thirteenth Air Force): 20 P-40s and 40+ USN fighters cover 70 USN dive bombers attacking Keravia Bay shipping; 40+ B-24s, with fighter escorts, bomb Lakunai and Keravat Airfields. 370th Bombardment Squadron (Heavy), 307th Bombardment Group (Heavy), moves from Carney Field to Munda with B-24s.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA (SWPA, Fifth Air Force): 30+ B-25s and P-39s attack the Madang area. 60+ B-25s and B-24s pound Iboki Plantation in support of US Marines (USMC) advancing on the area from Natamo (and who capture Perry Island). 319th Bombardment Squadron (Heavy), 90th Bombardment Group (Heavy), moves from Dobodura to Nadzab with B-24s.

USN: Lost F6F Hellcat 40671.

WEDNESDAY, 23 FEBRUARY 1944


BURMA-INDIA (Tenth Air Force): In Burma, 14 B-24s bomb airfields and other targets at Akyab and Dabaing; 3 B-25s and 12 P-51s hit a radio station at Man Pang; 4 other P-51s hit warehouses at Chantha.

CHINA (Fourteenth Air Force): Four B-25s attack two ships in the Gulf of Tonkin and hit railroad cars and engine shed at Van Trai Station, French Indochina. 4 P-40s strafe Lashio Airfield.

PACIFIC OCEAN AREA (POA, Seventh Air Force): P-40s from Makin bomb Mille; two small boats are destroyed by strafing; B-25s from Abemama hit Taroa. B-24s from Makin and Tarawa bomb Kusaie and Ponape and Jaluit.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA (SOPAC, Thirteenth Air Force): 4 B-24s on armed reconnaissance strafe the Cape Saint George area and bomb buildings and pier at Labur Bay and 4 B-24s attack bivouacs in the upper Saua River area. 9 B-25s, with USN fighter support, bomb Vunakanau Airfield; 10 other B-25s hit Keravat Airfield; 16 P-38s dive-bomb the Vunapope supply area and some attack the town of Rabaul; this is the first P-38 bombing raid on the Rabaul area; (P-38s, now free from constant responsibility of guarding bombers against interceptors, will continue to dive-bomb the Rabaul area through Apr 44; during the latter part of this campaign against the famed Japanese garrison, which is to be bypassed by Allied ground forces, P-39s will add their strength due to completion of a runway at Nissan Island (Green Island); by 20 Aprll only 120 of 1,400 buildings in Rabaul will still be standing).

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA (SWPA, Fifth Air Force): Almost 50 A-20s and B-24s blast Wewak Airfield, buildings, and AA positions in the Wewak area. Units moving from Dobodura to Nadzab: HQ 90th Bombardment Group and 320th, 321st and 400th Bombardment Squadrons with B-24s; 500th and 501st Bombardment Squadron (Medium), 345th Bombardment Group (Medium), with B-25s.

USN: U.S. air attacks against Rota, Tinian and Saipan. U.S. caotures Engebi.

THURSDAY, 24 FEBRUARY 1944

ALASKA (Eleventh Air Force): 3 B-24s from Shemya search for enemy shipping; 1 B-24 crashes during takeoff, the others find nothing.

BURMA-INDIA (Tenth Air Force): In Burma, 6 B-25s hit bridges and trains between Pintha and Kinu; 1 bridge is damaged and several boxcars are destroyed; Thirteen B-24s bomb the marshalling yard at Mandalay and targets of opportunity at Akyab, Monywa, and Pakokku; P-51s, A-36s and P-40s attack bridges, radio stations, supply dumps, bivouacs, troop concentrations, railroad by-passes, AA positions, and other targets at Seton, Sinkan, Ye-u, Kawlin, Loilaw, Namkwin, Shaduzup, and the Mogaung-Kamaing area.

CHINA (Fourteenth Air Force): Six P-40s on armed reconnaissance strafe Myitkyina Airfield.

PACIFIC OCEAN AREA (POA, Seventh Air Force): P-40s from Makin strafe and bomb the runway at Mille Airfield and radio installation on Mille; B-25s from Tarawa pound Wotje Airfield.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA (SOPAC, Thirteenth Air Force): On New Britain Isladn, 22 B-25s, with fighter escort, pound Rabaul; 9 minutes later 12 P-38s glide-bomb Rabaul; 2 minutes afterward 11 B-24s pound the same target; 6 other B-24s bomb Rapopo; P-40s and USN fighters escort USN dive bombers in a strike on Vunapope; P-39s attack Monoitu Mission. 394th Bombardment Squadron (Heavy), 5th Bombardment Group (Heavy), based on Guadalcanal with B-24s, begines operating from Munda.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA (SWPA, Fifth Air Force): 23 B-24s and 39 A-20s thoroughly pound the Hansa Bay area. Nearly 20 other B-24s bomb Nubia Airfield and Awar Airfield. In preparation for the Allied landing, 50+ B-25s and B-24s pound Momote, Lorengau and other targets in the Admiralty Islands. 80th Fighter Squadron, 8th Fighter Group, moves from Dobodura to Cape Gloucester with P-38s.

USN: PT-193 and PT-146 attack gun positions at Astrolabe Bay and search for targets off Madang.

RAAF: Twelve Vengeances from 23 Squadron escorted by twelve P-40 Kittyhawks attack anti-aircraft gun positions around Hansa Bay. Lost are Vengeance A27-275 (MIA) and Vengeance A27-276 (KIA, POW, executed, MIA). In Australia, lost was P-40E Kittyhawk A29-94 (pilot survived).

USMC: Lost is FG Corsair 13212.

FRIDAY, 25 FEBRUARY 1944

ALASKA (Eleventh Air Force): Three B-24s from Shemya are over Matsuwa shortly after midnight 24/25 Feb on a photographic reconnaissance and bomb run; the mission is not completed due to weather.

BURMA-INDIA (Tenth Air Force): In Burma, 8 B-25s and 4 P-51s attack bridges at Meza, Sinthe, and Natmauk, causing light damage to the bridges and destroying 3 locomotives and several railroad cars. 91st Fighter Squadron, 81st Fighter Group, arrives at Karachi from Italy; they will be equipped with P-47Ds and enter combat on 16 June.

CHINA (Fourteenth Air Force): In French Indochina, sixteen P-40s attack docks, railroad yards and warehouses at Hongay; in the harbor 1 large boat is sunk and another damaged; 2 P-40's hit a cargo vessel at Campha Port, leaving it sinking; 2 others bomb and strafe Weichow Island.

PACIFIC OCEAN AREA (POA, Seventh Air Force): P-40s out of Makin bomb and strafe targets at Jaluit; B-25's from Tarawa and Abemama hit Mille and Wotje; B-24s from Abemama and Tarawa pound Ponape.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA (SOPAC, Thirteenth Air Force): P-39s on armed reconnaissance bomb an AA position at Monoitu, hit the Aitara area, and attack a barge in the Cape Gazelle area; 20+ B-25s hit Matupi and Rapopo; 21 B-24s and 17 P-38s follow shortly with another strike on Rapopo.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA (SWPA, Fifth Air Force): B-25's pound Lorengau and the Alexishafen-Madang areas and Momote Airfield and A-20s bomb Alexishafen Airfield. HQ 85th Fighter Wing arrives at Gusap from the US. Lost is P-40N Warhawk 42-105306 (pilot KIA).

JAAF: Shot down is Ki-21 Sally between Kavieng and Rabaul.

SATURDAY, 26 FEBRUARY 1944

ALASKA (Eleventh Air Force): XI Bomber Command (Air Striking Group Task Group 90.1) is directed to conduct armed photographic reconnaissance missions in the Kurile Islands, day or night, as weather permits. HQ 28th Bombardment Group (Composite) moves from Adak to Shemya.

BURMA-INDIA (Tenth Air Force): In Burma, 15 B-25s and P-51s demolish warehouses in Naba and Hopin, attack bridges at Yeu, Bawgyo and Tantabin, and strafe railroad cars and tracks at Tangon, Namyao, and Pyintha; the Tantabin bridge is rendered unusable while approaches of the Ye-u and Bawgyo bridges are damaged.

CHINA (Fourteenth Air Force): Eleven B-25s from Nanning, China attack targets at Tourane, destroying 5 warehouses and a hangar at Tourang Airfield and a locomotive and four buildings at the railroad yard.

PACIFIC OCEAN AREA (POA, Seventh Air Force): B-25s from Tarawa and Abemama attack Wotje and Jaluit; P-40s from Makin bomb and strafe targets on Mille. 27th and 38th Bombardment Squadrons (Heavy), 30th Bombardment Group (Heavy), based on Nanumea begin operating from Abemama and Makin respectively with B-24s.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA (SOPAC, Thirteenth Air Force): P-40s join USN fighters in covering a USN dive bomber strike on Vunapope supply and shipping facilities; 22 B-25s, with fighter support, follow up with the day's second strike on Vunapope; shortly afterwards, seventeen P-38s strike the same target; twelve P-39s bomb and strafe Monoitu, Ruisei, Makapeko and Mawareka.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA (SWPA, Fifth Air Force): B-24s bomb Wewak and Momote; B-25s, along with P-39s, hit the Madang-Alexishafen area and A-20s hit Angorum.

SUNDAY, 27 FEBRUARY 1944


BURMA-INDIA (Tenth Air Force): In Burma, 30+ P-51s and A-36s and 2 B-25s hit ammunition dumps near the Kamaing-Walawbum road, warehouses, railroad and power facilities, bridges, and targets of opportunity in the Ye-u and Tindeinyan areas.

CHINA (Fourteenth Air Force): In French Indochina, 4 B-25s fly a sea sweep from Vinh to Nam Dinh, bombing the Nam Dinh distillery and railroad yards; no ships are sighted. 8 P-40s hit the railroad bridge at Puchi, China, rendering it unusable.

PACIFIC OCEAN AREA (POA, Seventh Air Force): A-24s and P-40s from Makin pound Jaluit and Mille, while B-25s from Abemama hit Wotje and Mille; B-24s from Makin and Tarawa bomb Ponape.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA (SOPAC, Thirteenth Air Force): 16 P-39s strafe barges and other targets of opportunity along the southwest coast of Bougainville throughout the day. Vunapope is attacked by 21 B-24s and 24 B-25s (both forces supported by fighter escorts) and by 14 P-38s; P-40s and USN fighters cover a USN dive bomber strike on Lakunai AA positions. 3 P-38s strafe a radar station at Cape Saint George. Lost is P-38 pilot 1st Lt. George I. Gombert, Jr. (MIA).

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA (SWPA, Fifth Air Force): Colonel Jarred V. Crabb becomes Commanding General V Bomber Command. 30+ B-24s, with P-40 support, hit Boram Airfield, Wewak Airfield and Tadji Airfield, 27 B-25s hit the Hansa Bay area, and over 30 A-20s attack Alexishafen and Marakum village with RAAF 24 Squadron Vultee Vengances attack Alexishafen. Lost returning from the mission is Vengance A27-83. 30+ other B-25s attack Momote, Lorengau and other targets. P-39s maintain armed reconnaissance over New Britain. Lost on a reef is SS President Grant.

RAAF: Lost is Vultee Vengeance A27-83.

MONDAY, 28 FEBRUARY 1944

ALASKA (Eleventh Air Force): 3 B-24s from Shemya search for enemy shipping; 1 B-24 crashes during takeoff, the others find nothing.

BURMA-INDIA (Tenth Air Force): In Burma, 6 B-25s hit bridges and trains between Pintha and Kinu; 1 bridge is damaged and several boxcars are destroyed; Thirteen B-24s bomb the marshalling yard at Mandalay and targets of opportunity at Akyab, Monywa, and Pakokku; P-51s, A-36s and P-40s attack bridges, radio stations, supply dumps, bivouacs, troop concentrations, railroad by-passes, AA positions, and other targets at Seton, Sinkan, Ye-u, Kawlin, Loilaw, Namkwin, Shaduzup, and the Mogaung-Kamaing area.

CHINA (Fourteenth Air Force): Six P-40s on armed reconnaissance strafe Myitkyina Airfield.

PACIFIC OCEAN AREA (POA, Seventh Air Force): P-40s from Makin strafe and bomb the runway at Mille Airfield and radio installation on Mille; B-25s from Tarawa pound Wotje Airfield.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA (SOPAC, Thirteenth Air Force): 22 B-25s, with fighter escort, pound Rabaul; 9 minutes later 12 P-38s glide-bomb Rabaul; 2 minutes afterward 11 B-24s pound the same target; 6 other B-24s bomb Rapopo; P-40s and US Navy fighters escort USN dive bombers in a strike on Vunapope; P-39s attack Monoitu Mission. 394th Bombardment Squadron (Heavy), 5th Bombardment Group (Heavy), based at Carney Field with B-24s, begins operating from Munda Airfield.

Father Benson writes in Prisoner's Base and Home Again:
"Feb 28. March of of 100 Liberators and 200 dive-bombers. Earth trembled. We all expected the end. Entrance to the tunnels blown in. 20 great craters in the banana grove. All been living in tunnels for eight days now... That raid on the 28th was the most terrible and agonizing we ever had to endure."

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA (SWPA, Fifth Air Force): 23 B-24s and 39 A-20s thoroughly pound the Hansa Bay area. Nearly 20 other B-24s bomb Nubia Airfield and Awar Airfield. In preparation for the Allied landing, 50+ B-25s and B-24s pound Momote, Lorengau and other targets. 80th Fighter Squadron, 8th Fighter Group, moves from Dobodura to Cape Gloucester with P-38s. Lost are B-24D "Milk Run/Hit Parader" 42-41087 (MIA) and B-24J 42-100292 (MIA).

RAAF: Eleven Vengence bomb Alexishafen Airfield, returning lost is A-31 Vengence A27-83 (crew survived).

TUESDAY, 29 FEBRUARY 1944

BURMA-INDIA (Tenth Air Force): In Burma, 7 B-25s knock spans out of 2 bridges N of Taungtha and damage bridges S of Myingyan and between Panaing and Mahlaing; 7 B-25s and 4 P-51s bomb a radio station at Sinkan, score near misses on a bridge below Kawlin, and knock out 2 bridges in the Ye-u area. 40+ P-51s, A-36s and P-40s hit a supply area S of Seton, camp and stores near Mogaung (at Pagoda Peak), and railroad station at Myitkyina.

CHINA (Fourteenth Air Force): In China, 23 B-24s pound the warehouse area at Yoyang, causing several fires and secondary explosions; 12 B-25s bomb Yoyang railroad yards; 16 P-40s provide support; 2 B-25s on a sweep of the NE China coast sink 3 sampans and damage a merchant ship at Siachwan Tao; 6 P-40s bomb and strafe ammunition dumps at Kunlong; 12 P-38s and P-51s sink a large motor launch NE of Anking, strafe barracks and 3 tugs in the Teian area, hit barracks NW of Nanchang and strafe railroad installations at Yangsin; 4 P-40s hit a barracks W of Nanchang; 2 B-25s sink a large river craft on the Yangtze River near Chiuhsienchen and damage 2 more nearby.

PACIFIC OCEAN AREA (POA, Seventh Air Force): B-24s bomb Maloelap, Mille and Wotje; B-25s hit Jaluit and Mille; P-40s attack Mille.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA (SOPAC, Thirteenth Air Force): 23 B-25s, with USN fighter escort, pound the Rabaul area; later 12 P-38s hit targets in the same area. 16 AAF fighters, along with 16 USN fighters, hit targets of opportunity throughout S Bougainville and Shortland. Numerous other fighters, in forces of varying sizes, attack barges and scattered targets of opportunity throughout the N Solomons, Bismarck Archipelago, and waters in between.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA (SWPA, Fifth Air Force): Allied amphibious forces land on Los Negros, temporarily taking Momote Airfield and then falling back to the beachhead on Jamandilai Point; weather prevents full air support but seven B-24s and 8 B-25s manage to attack enemy positions and guns; Other B-24s and A-20s hit Erima, Wewak, Tadji, Awar and Hollandia. Lost is B-24D 42-72899 and B-25D "BAR-FLY" 41-30593.

RAF: Liberators bomb Rangoon. Over the target, enemy fighters intercept the formation. Lost is Liberator VI "Daring Diana" BZ962 (MIA).



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