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American missions against Yawata Steel Works
June 15, 1944 - August 8, 1945

June 15, 1944
(20th AF) B-29's bomb take off from China to raid the steel works at Yawata, with the exception of the Eleventh Air Force's raids on the Kurile Islands, this is the first air attack against Japan since the Doolittle Raid during Apr 1942. 47 B-29s operating out of Chengtu, Chian, bomb the primary target, the Imperial Iron and Steel Works at Yawata, Japan. The Twentieth's first combat loss during a bombing mission results when Japanese fighters destroy a B-29 down with engine trouble at Neihsiang Airfield, China.

August 20, 1944
(20th AF) Chengtu, China-based B-29s bomb the Imperial Iron and Steel Works at Yawata during the day, followed by 10 more during the night of 20/21 Aug, 5 hitting targets other than the primary. Intercepted by 87 JAAF fighters. In addition to the twin-engine fighters of the 4th FR, these included Ki-84s of the 16th Flying Brigade (51st and 52nd FRs), Ki 61s of the 59th FR and a few (Ki-43s fighters of the 48th FR. The Japanese navy was represented by 33 Zero fighters and four Gekko night fighters from 352nd Kokutai. Japanese army fighters claimed 12 sure victories for two fighters lost. Navy fighters claimed four including two by Lt (j.g.) Sachio Endo whose Gekko went down in a crash landing with Endo surviving. B-29 claimed 15 Japanese fighters destroyed. Fourteen B-29s are lost, including 1 to AA and 4 to enemy aircraft (1 by air-to-air bombing and two from a single ramming by a Ki-45 piloted by Sgt Nobe); B-29 gunners claim 17 air victories. Lost are: B-29 "Gertrude C" 42-6368, B-29 "Calamity Sue" 42-6368, B-29 42-24474, B-29 "Praying Mantis" 42-6286 (MIA, ran out of fuel and crashed at Shsi-Ling, China), B-29 "O'Reily's Daughters" 42-6264.

August 8, 1945
(20th AF) Mission 319: Shortly before 1200 hours, 221 B-29s drop incendiaries on Yawata destroying 1.22 sq mi (3.16 sq km), 21% of the city; 6 others hit alternate targets.

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