COMBAT CHRONOLOGY OF THE US ARMY AIR FORCES

December 1942

TUESDAY, 1 DECEMBER 1942

AIRCRAFT MENTIONED IN THIS REPORT:

  • A-20, Douglas Havoc
  • B-17, Boeing Flying Fortress
  • B-24, Consolidated Liberator
  • B-25, North American Mitchell
  • B-26, Martin Marauder
  • C-47, Douglas Skytrain
  • DB-7, Douglas Boston Mk III
  • F-4, Lockheed Lightning
  • P-38, Lockheed Lightning
  • P-400, Bell Airacobra
  • P-47, Republic Thunderbolt

AMERICAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Sixth and Eleventh Air Forces): In the Aleutian Islands, a B-24 flies reconnaissance over the Semichis and Attu Islands. Weather prevents any other flights. The detachment of the 52d Fighter Squadron, 32d Fighter Group that has been operating from Seymour Island, Galapagos Islands with P-40s since 5 Jun 42 returns to France Field, Canal Zone. The detachment of the 57th Fighter Squadron, 54th Fighter Group with P-39s that has been operating in Alaska since 20 Jun 42 returns to it base at Harding Field, Baton Rouge, Louisiana.

CHINA-BURMA-INDIA THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Tenth Air Force): The 9th Photographic Reconnaissance Squadron flies its first combat mission with F-4s from its base at Karachi, India with a detachment at Kunming, China; the squadron arrived at Karachi on 24 Jul.

EUROPEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Eighth Air Force): Major General Ira C. Eaker replaces Major General Carl Spaatz as Commanding General Eighth Air Force. Spaatz flies to Algeria to serve as air adviser to Lieutenant General Eisenhower, Commanding General European Theater of Operations. Headquarters 78th Fighter Group and its 82d, 83d and 84th Fighter Squadrons is established at Goxhill England upon arrival from the US. The three squadrons are equipped with P-38Gs but begin transitioning to the P-47C in Jan 43 and enter combat with their P-47s on 13 Apr 43. Headquarters 315th Troop Carrier Group and its 34th and 43d Troop Carrier Squadrons is established at Aldermaston, England upon arrival from the US. The air echelon is flying their C-47s across the North Atlantic with the first aircraft arriving on 12 Dec. Headquarters 322d Bombardment Group (Medium) and its 449th, 450th, 451st and 452d Bombardment Squadrons (Medium) is established at Rougham, England upon arrival from the US. The air echelon with B-26C-6s will not depart the US until Mar 43; they will fly their aircraft via the southern route with the last aircraft arriving until 29 May 43. The group will not fly it's first combat mission until 14 May 43.

MEDITERRANEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

WESTERN MEDITERRANEAN

(Twelfth Air Force): In Tunisia, DB-7s and later B-17s, bomb El Aouina Airfield with P-38s escorting both forces. In the Djedeida area, P-38s on a sweep attack tanks northwest of the town. A German counterattack is launched toward Tebourba, inflicting heavy tank losses on the BLADE Force, which, along with part of the US 1st Armored Division, was prepared to attack Tunis on the following day.

SOUTH PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS

Headquarters 5th Bombardment Group (Heavy), and its 23d Bombardment Squadron (Heavy) with B-17s transfers from the Territory of Hawaii to Espiritu Santo Island, New Hebrides Islands.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Fifth Air Force):: In New Guinea, A-20s, B-25s, B-26s and P-400s pound the Buna area, but Allied ground troops fail in another attempt to capture the village. The Australian 21 Brigade, however, turns back from Giruwa three large groups of Japanese reinforcements destined for Gona, then attacks and takes Gona, forcing the enemy back to Gona Mission for a final stand. In Australia, HQ 33d Troop Carrier Squadron, 374th Troop Carrier Group with C-47s is established at Brisbane upon arrival from the US. A detachment has been operating from Cairns since 1 Nov and will remain there until 10 Dec.

WEDNESDAY, 2 DECEMBER 1942

AIRCRAFT MENTIONED IN THIS REPORT:

  • A-20, Douglas Havoc
  • B-17, Boeing Flying Fortress
  • B-24, Consolidated Liberator
  • B-25, North American Mitchell
  • B-26, Martin Marauder
  • DB-7, Douglas Boston Mk III
  • F-5, Lockheed Lightning
  • P-38, Lockheed Lightning
  • P-400, Bell Airacobra

AMERICAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Eleventh Air Force): In the Aleutians, a B-24 finds Semichi and Attu unchanged during a reconnaissance run; a B-26s on reconnaissance finds Kiska closed by fog.

EUROPEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Eighth Air Force): The 13th Photographic Reconnaissance Squadron arrives at Podington, England from the US. The squadron, which was scheduled to go to North Africa with the 3d Photographic Group, is reassigned to the Eighth Air Force due to lack of equipment, personnel and aircraft and will remain in England for the rest of the war. The squadron will be equipped with F-5s and will fly it's first combat mission on 28 Mar 43.

MEDITERRANEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

WESTERN MEDITERRANEAN

(Twelfth Air Force): In Tunisia, DB-7s and B-26s bomb the El Aouina Airfield; B-17s hit the Sidi Ahmed Airfield and Bizerte harbor; and B-25s attack AA guns near the Gabes Airfield. P-38s provide escort and fly reconnaissance missions and sweeps, claiming eight aircraft and one tank destroyed. The British First Army withstands another German counterattack on Tebourba. Headquarters 320th Bombardment Group (Medium) is established at La Senia, Algeria upon arrival from England.

SOUTH PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Army Forces in South Pacific Area): Area): Headquarters 17th Photographic Reconnaissance Squadron, 4th Photographic Group with the air echelon of A and B flights arrives Noumea, New Caledonia Is. The air echelons of C and D flights will remain in the US until Jan 44.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Fifth Air Force):: In New Guinea, A-20s, B-17s, B-25s and P-400s attack four destroyers off Guna and Gona, and the airfield and positions in the Buna area and between Watutu Point and Cape Killerton. As a result of this attack, the destroyers, originally bound for Gona with 800 reinforcements, lands the troops near the mouth of the Kumment River twelve miles to the north. After a bombardment of Gona, Allied ground forces attack in strength but are again halted short of the village.

THURSDAY, 3 DECEMBER 1942

AIRCRAFT MENTIONED IN THIS REPORT:

  • A-20, Douglas Havoc
  • Bf 109, Messerschmitt
  • B-17, Boeing Flying Fortress
  • B-25, North American Mitchell
  • Bf 109, Messerschmitt
  • DB-7, Douglas Boston Mk III
  • P-38, Lockheed Lightning
  • P-400, Bell Airacobra
  • Pete, Mitsubishi F1M, Navy Type 0 Observation Seaplane
  • SBD, Douglas Dauntless
  • Spitfire, Vickers Supermarine
  • TBF, Grumman Avenger

AMERICAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Eleventh Air Force): In the Aleutians, two bombers and several fighters fly reconnaissance over Semichis, Kiska and Attu Islands. There is a constant air alert for US forces on Adak.

MEDITERRANEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

WESTERN MEDITERRANEAN

(Twelfth Air Force): In Tunisia, B-17s of the 97th Bombardment Group (Heavy) hit the docks and shipping at Bizerte harbor; radar warned the Germans of the approach of the bombers and Bf 109s jumped the escorting P-38s shooting down three with two more missing; two Bf 109s are shot down. DB-7s, with P-38s as escort, bomb the El Aouina Airfield. Spitfires and P-38s fly patrols and photographic reconnaissance over wide areas of Northwest Africa, and carry out fighter sweeps during which several ground targets, including the Gabes, Tunisia Airfield, are attacked. The British First Army withdraws from Tebourba as German forces, through continuous attacks, occupy the city during the night of 3/4 Dec.

SOUTH PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Army Forces in South Pacific Area): In the Solomons, eight SBDs, seven TBFs and fighters attack the Tokyo Express 150 miles northwest of Guadalcanal; one destroyer is slightly damaged; and ten Petes are shot down, four by three P-39 pilots of the 67th Fighter Squadron, 347th Fighter Group. US losses are one TBF, one SBD and one fighter.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Fifth Air Force):: In New Guinea, A-20s, B-25s and P-400s bomb and strafe Sanananda Point and the Buna areas and attack a small torpedo boat in Dyke Acland Bay. During the night of 3/4 Dec, B-17s bomb airfields at Lae and Salamaua. On the ground, the US roadblock on the Soputa-Sanananda trail remains precarious as the Japanese maintain attacks from all sides and hold off US reinforcements. In the Bismarck Archipelago, a lone B-17s attacks a submarine 75 miles southeast of Rabaul, New Britain Island.

FRIDAY, 4 DECEMBER 1942

AIRCRAFT MENTIONED IN THIS REPORT:

  • B-17, Boeing Flying Fortress
  • B-24, Consolidated Liberator
  • B-26, Martin Marauder
  • F-4, Lockheed Lightning
  • PBY, Consolidated Catalina
  • P-38, Lockheed Lightning

AMERICAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Eleventh Air Force): In the Aleutians, seven B-24s and nine B-26s escorted by 16 P-38s take off upon a Navy PBY report of a surface force southeast of Amchitka Island. At the interception point, the area is searched without results. The PBY pilot later report he saw "clouds." Reconnaissance is flown over Attu, Agattu, Semichi, Kiska and Amchitka Islands.

MEDITERRANEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

EASTERN MEDITERRANEAN

(Ninth Air Force): In Italy, 20 B-24s of the 98th and 376th Bombardment Groups (Heavy), in the first attack by the USAAF against Italy, hit the Italian fleet and docks at Naples; hits are scored on numerous harbor installations, a railroad yard, and three or four ships, including a battleship.

WESTERN MEDITERRANEAN

(Twelfth Air Force): In Tunisia, B-17s bomb shipping and docks at Bizerte while B-26s, with fighter escort, attack the same target a half hour later. B-17s, F-4s and P-38s fly reconnaissance, while other P-38s attack vehicles and troop concentrations, mainly in the Gabes and Sfax areas.

SATURDAY, 5 DECEMBER 1942

AIRCRAFT MENTIONED IN THIS REPORT:

  • A-20, Douglas Havoc
  • B-17, Boeing Flying Fortress
  • B-24, Consolidated Liberator
  • B-25, North American Mitchell
  • DB-7, Douglas Boston Mk III
  • F-4, Lockheed Lightning
  • P-38, Lockheed Lightning
  • P-39, Bell Airacobra
  • P-40, Curtiss

AMERICAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Eleventh Air Force): In the Aleutians, reconnaissance missions over Attu, Agattu, the Semichis, Amchitka and Kiska turns up nothing.

MEDITERRANEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

EASTERN MEDITERRANEAN

(Ninth Air Force): The 82d and 434th Bombardment Squadrons (Medium), 12th Bombardment Group (Medium) with B-25s transfer from Egypt to Gambut, Libya.

WESTERN MEDITERRANEAN

(Twelfth Air Force): In Tunisia, B-17s bomb the docks and shipping at Tunis; B-25s hit the Sidi Ahmed Airfield; and DB-7s follow shortly with a raid on Sidi Ahmed while another small force of DB-7s hits Faid. Each raid is escorted by P-38s. P-38s fly reconnaissance over wide areas of Tunisia, a B-17 photographs the Sousse-Sfax-Gabes, Tunisia area while an F-4 flies photographic reconnaissance over southern Sardinia

SOUTH PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Army Forces in South Pacific Area): The following Seventh Air Force units are transferred to the Army Forces in South Pacific Area:

  • 5th Bombardment Group (Heavy) with its 23d, 31st, 72d and 394th Bombardment Squadrons (Heavy) with B-17s.
  • The 394th is enroute from Hawaii to Fiji; all others are on Espiritu Santo Island, New Hebrides Islands with the 72d Bomb Sq operating from Guadalcanal.
  • 11th Bombardment Groups (Heavy) with its 26th, 42d, 98th and 431st Bombardment Squadrons (Heavy) with B-17s.
  • The 26th is on Efate Is while the 42d and 98th are on Espiritu Santo Is, all in the New Hebrides Islands.
  • The 431st is on Viti Levu Island, Fiji Islands.
  • 12th Fighter Squadron, 15th Fighter Group with P-39s and the 44th Fighter Squadron, 318th Fighter Group with P-40s, both on Efate Island, New Hebrides Islands.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Fifth Air Force):: In New Guinea, A-20s and B-25s pound the Buna area. Allied ground forces again fail to take the village, but some elements push to within 50 yards of Buna, some break through to the sea, and others invest the west bank of Entrance Creek; Buna is thus completely isolated. In the Bismarck Archipelago, B-24s bomb Kavieng Airfield on New Ireland Island.

SUNDAY, 6 DECEMBER 1942

AIRCRAFT MENTIONED IN THIS REPORT:

  • B-17, Boeing Flying Fortress
  • B-24, Consolidated Liberator
  • B-25, North American Mitchell
  • DB-7, Douglas Boston Mk III
  • F-4, Lockheed Lightning
  • P-38, Lockheed Lightning
  • P-39, Bell Airacobra
  • P-40, Curtiss

AMERICAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Eleventh Air Force): Reconnaissance is flown over Attu, Agattu, Amchitka, Kiska and the Semichis Islands. The 18th Fighter Squadron, 343d Fighter Group with P-40s transfers from Alaska to Adak Island, Aleutian Islands.

EUROPEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Eighth Air Force): On Mission 24, 103 heavy bombers are dispatched against France. Nineteen are dispatched against the Abbeville/Drucat Airfield; six bomb the target with one aircraft lost. Sixty six are dispatched against the Atelier d'Hellemmes locomotive works at Lille; 36 bomb the target with the loss of one aircraft. Eighteen other aircraft fly a diversion.

MEDITERRANEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

EASTERN MEDITERRANEAN

(Ninth Air Force): In Libya, B-24s sent to attack shipping at Tobruk fail to locate the target due to bad weather, but a few bombers manage to bomb Misurata and two enemy airfields. Meanwhile, P-40s fly top cover for RAF aircraft attacking Marble Arch. HQ, 12th Bombardment Group (Medium) and its 81st and 83d Bombardment Squadrons (Medium) with B-25s moves from Egypt to Gambut, Libya.

WESTERN MEDITERRANEAN

(Twelfth Air Force): In Tunisia, DB-7s, with fighter escort, bomb the bridge over the Medjerda River at El Bathan. P-38s and F-4s fly patrols and reconnaissance missions over parts of Algeria and Tunisia. In ground fighting in Tunisia, a German attack penetrates positions of the US 1st Armored Division, which is operating with the British First Army, on the El Guettar Mountains. HQ, 15th Photographic Mapping Squadron, 3d Photographic Group with B-17s and F-4s arrives at La Senia, Algeria from England. "A" Flight has been operating from Algeria since 18 Nov; "B" and "C" Flights remain in the US until Jan 44.

SOUTH PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Army Forces in South Pacific Area): In the Solomon Islands, P-39s strafing Munda on New Georgia Island discover trucks, steam rollers and other construction equipment, and evidence of two airfields under construction. B-17s will bomb Munda 21 times in December and continue to hit it in Jan 43, as the Japanese continue to work at building the strips despite the constant air strikes.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Fifth Air Force): In the Bismarck Archipelago, B-17s bomb Lakunai Airfield and the town of Rabaul on New Britain Island. In New Guinea, B-25s bomb Lae Airfield.

MONDAY, 7 DECEMBER 1942 (Anniversary of Pearl Harbor)

AIRCRAFT MENTIONED IN THIS REPORT:

  • B-17, Boeing Flying Fortress
  • B-24, Consolidated Liberator
  • B-25, North American Mitchell
  • DB-7, Douglas Boston Mk III
  • F-4, Lockheed Lightning
  • P-38, Lockheed Lightning
  • P-40, Curtiss
  • SBD, Douglas Dauntless

AMERICAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Eleventh Air Force): A reconnaissance mission is flown over the Semichis and Attu Islands; reconnaissance of Kiska Is is aborted due to weather.

MEDITERRANEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

WESTERN MEDITERRANEAN

(Twelfth Air Force): In Tunisia, B-17s, escorted by P-38s, attack docks and shipping at Bizerte. Escorted DB-7s attack tanks in the Tebourba-El Bathan area where elements of the British First Army continue to be hard pressed. Other DB-7s sent to bomb at La Hencha and Sousse abort because of bad weather. P-38s and P-40s fly numerous reconnaissance missions over the Sousse-Sfax-Gabes area and patrols over Oran, Algeria while B-17s and F-4s fly photographic reconnaissance over the Sousse-Sfax-Gabes area and the Tunis-Bizerte area. Ground fighting subsides as German attacks in the Tebourba area decrease in intensity. The air echelons of the 328th and 330th Bombardment Squadrons (Heavy), 93d Bombardment Group (Heavy), based in England with B-24s, begins operating from Tafaraoui, Algeria on TDY.

SOUTH PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Army Forces in South Pacific Area):  In the Solomons, 13 SBDs attack the Tokyo Express; three destroyers are damaged for the loss of one SBD. The 69th Bombardment Squadron (Medium), 38th Bombardment Group (Medium) with B-26s moves from New Caledonia Island to Efate Island, New Hebrides Islands.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Fifth Air Force): In New Guinea, B-25s pound the area around Buna as ground forces attack the village and clear a trench at the southern edge; B-25s also hit the airfield at Lae. B-17s attack a wrecked vessel off Gona and a tanker off Gasmata Island, Bismarck Archipelago.

TUESDAY, DECEMBER 8, 1942

AIRCRAFT MENTIONED IN THIS REPORT:

  • A-20, Douglas Havoc
  • B-17, Boeing Flying Fortress
  • B-24, Consolidated Liberator
  • B-25, North American Mitchell
  • B-26, Martin Marauder
  • P-38, Lockheed Lightning
  • P-40, Curtiss

AMERICAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Eleventh Air Force): In the Aleutians, an attempted bombing mission of Attu and Kiska Islands by six B-24s and six B-26s, escorted by eight P-38s, is forced back by weather. An uneventful reconnaissance is flown by a B-24 and a B-26 over Attu, Agattu, Amchitka, Kiska and the Semichis Islands.

EUROPEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Eighth Air Force): An VIII Bomber Command study of air attacks on submarine pens indicates that available US bombs are incapable of penetrating roofs of the pens from any bombing level low enough to maintain accuracy.

MEDITERRANEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

EASTERN MEDITERRANEAN

(Ninth Air Force): In Libya, P-40s fly fighter-bomber missions in the battle area east of El Agheila; the American claim seven enemy aircraft shot down.

WESTERN MEDITERRANEAN

(Twelfth Air Force): In Algeria, fighters of the 31st and 52d Fighter Groups patrol in the Oran-La Senia-Tafaraoui area. Weather prevents operations of all bomber and fighter units in eastern Algeria. The British First Army receives permission to withdraw from areas west of Tebourba and east of Medjez el Bab to more favorable positions slightly to the west from which to prepare for the move on Tunis.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Fifth Air Force): In New Guinea, A-20s and B-25s pound AA positions at Buna and the area around Buna Mission and Cape Endaiadere as ground forces attack bunker positions on the southern end of Buna. P-38s hit a wrecked vessel off Gona. In the Bismarck Archipelago, B-24s bomb the airfield on Gasmata Island, off the southern coast of New Britain. Six destroyers carrying troops to reinforce the Buna-Gona, New Guinea beachhead are bombed by B-17s and a lone B-24 and turn back to Rabaul, New Britain Island.

WEDNESDAY, 9 DECEMBER 1942

AIRCRAFT MENTIONED IN THIS REPORT:

  • B-17, Boeing Flying Fortress
  • B-26, Martin Marauder
  • B-29, Boeing Superfortress
  • P-38, Lockheed Lightning
  • P-40, Curtiss

AMERICAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Second, Sixth & Eleventh Air Forces): In the Aleutians, the daily weather aircraft cannot return to base due to a sudden snow squall and crash-lands at Atka Island. An attempted bombing mission to Kiska Harbor by three B-26s and six P-38s is forced back by weather. The 51st Fighter Squadron, 32d Fighter Group with P-40s transfers from the Canal Zone to Seymour Island, Galapagos Islands. The squadron leaves a detachment at Guatemala City, Guatemala. The 19th Bombardment Group (Heavy) and its 30th Bombardment Squadron (Heavy) establish HQ in the US after transferring from Australia without personnel and equipment. These units were stationed at Clark Field, Luzon on 7 Dec 41 and fought through the Southwest Pacific until decimated. They will become replacement training units until 1944 when they will re-equipped with B-29s and return to the Pacific in early 1945.

MEDITERRANEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

EASTERN MEDITERRANEAN

(Ninth Air Force): In Libya, P-40s fly a fighter sweep over the El Agheila region.

WESTERN MEDITERRANEAN

(Twelfth Air Force): In Tunisia, heavy rains stop most air operations in eastern Algeria and Tunisia; a few P-38s fly reconnaissance south of Gafsa. In Algeria, P-40s fly an intercept mission over Youks-les-Bains, damaging one enemy aircraft.

SOUTH PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Army Forces in South Pacific Area): In the Solomons, B-17s bomb the airfield at Munda, New Georgia Island. No aircraft are lost. On Guadalcanal, Solomon Islands, command passes from Lieutenant General Vandegrift, USMC, Commanding General First Marine Division (Reinforced), to Major General Patch, USA, Commanding General Americal Division. The battle-weary Marines gradually withdraw from Guadalcanal during Dec.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Fifth Air Force): In New Guinea, B-26s pound the Buna area as ground forces prepare for the final assault on the village. P-40s hit the area along the Sanananda-Soputa trail. In nearby Gona, following air and artillery bombardment, Australian forces overcome resistance, taking the village in hand-to-hand combat.

THURSDAY, 10 DECEMBER 42

AIRCRAFT MENTIONED IN THIS REPORT:

  • B-17, Boeing Flying Fortress
  • B-26, Martin Marauder
  • C-47, Douglas Skytrain
  • P-38, Lockheed Lightning
  • Zeke, Mitsubishi A6M, Navy Type 0 Carrier Fighter

AMERICAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Eleventh Air Force): In the Aleutians, the weather aircraft which crashlanded at Atka Island yesterday is sighted on the west end of the island, its fuselage broken off aft of the wings. The crew, later brought back, is unharmed except for light injuries to Lieutenant General William Lynd, a visiting Inspector General. An uneventful reconnaissance covers Attu, Kiska and the Semichis Islands. Four B-26s and six P-38s abort a bomb run to Kiska due to weather.

MEDITERRANEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

EASTERN MEDITERRANEAN

(Ninth Air Force): P-40s of the 57th Fighter Group claim one enemy aircraft destroyed.

WESTERN MEDITERRANEAN

(Twelfth Air Force): Due to heavy rains and waterlogging of airfields, aerial activity in the Algeria-Tunisia area practically ceases. On the ground, Allied troops repulse another armored and infantry attack on Medjez el Bab. During the night of 10/11 Dec, elements of the British 78 Division and the US 1st Armored Division begin a withdrawal to the Bedja area to refit. The Americans sustain heavy loss of equipment as they withdraw. HQ 3d Photographic Group is established at La Senia, Algeria after transfer from England.

SOUTH PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Army Forces in South Pacific Area): In the Solomons, eleven B-17s escorted by eight P-38s of the 339th Fighter Squadron, 347th Fighter Group, attack ships in Faisi Harbor on Shortland Island; one tanker is hit; six Zekes are claimed destroyed, five by P-38s and one by a B-17.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Fifth Air Force): The detachment of the 33d Troop Carrier Squadron, 374th Troop Carrier Group with C-47s operating from Cairns, Queensland, Australia returns to their base at Brisbane, New South Wales preparatory to moving to New Guinea.

FRIDAY, 11 DECEMBER 1942

AIRCRAFT MENTIONED IN THIS REPORT:

  • B-17, Boeing Flying Fortress
  • B-24, Consolidated Liberator
  • B-25, North American Mitchell
  • B-26, Martin Marauder
  • P-38, Lockheed Lightning
  • P-40, Curtiss

AMERICAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Eleventh Air Force): In the Aleutians, an uneventful reconnaissance covers Attu, Agattu, Amchitka, Kiska and the Semichis Islands. Three B-26s and four P-38s rebomb and strafe a previously bombed cargo vessel in Kiska Harbor, scouting two more direct hits. The P-38s also strafe and bomb Kiska Harbor submarine base and seaplane hangars, camp area and nearby gun emplacements.

CHINA-BURMA-INDIA THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Tenth Air Force): In the Andaman Islands, B-24s of the India Air Task Force attack shipping at Port Blair, with negative results.

MEDITERRANEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

EASTERN MEDITERRANEAN

(Ninth Air Force): In Italy, B-24s bomb the harbor and surrounding areas at Naples with good results. In Libya, P-40s fly several fighter-bomber missions and sweeps over the battle area in preparation for the ground assault on El Agheila which General Montgomery schedules for 14 Dec.

WESTERN MEDITERRANEAN

(Twelfth Air Force): The Twelfth Air Force creates five area commands covering Northwest Africa from the west coast of Morocco to the east coast of Tunisia. From west to east they are:

  • Moroccan Composite Wing (Colonel Rosenham R Beam)
  • Western Algerian Composite Wing (Colonel Lawrence P Hickey)
  • Central Algerian Composite Wing (Colonel Paul L Williams)
  • XII Bomber Command (Colonel Charles T Phillips)
  • XII Fighter Command (Brigadier General Blackburn)

In Tunisia, B-25s with fighter escort, attack the rail bridge at La Hencha while P-38s fly sea patrol off the north coast and over the Gulf of Tunis and reconnaissance over the Sousse region. Spitfires sweep over Medjez el Bab and Bone.

SOUTH PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Army Forces in South Pacific Area):  In the Solomons, B-17s bomb the airfield at Munda, New Georgia Island with no losses.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Fifth Air Force): In New Guinea, B-26s bomb the airfield and targets of opportunity in the Buna area while B-25s and B-26s attack the Lae Airfield.

SATURDAY, 12 DECEMBER 1942

AIRCRAFT MENTIONED IN THIS REPORT:

  • A-20, Douglas Havoc
  • B-17, Boeing Flying Fortress
  • B-24, Consolidated Liberator
  • B-26, Martin Marauder
  • C-47, Douglas Skytrain
  • P-38, Lockheed Lightning
  • P-39, Bell Airacobra
  • P-40, Curtiss
  • SBD, Douglas Dauntless

AMERICAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Eleventh Air Force): In the Aleutians, an attempted photographic reconnaissance mission over Kiska Island by a B-24 and two P-38s returns without result due to weather. Another reconnaissance B-24 is turned back by a weather front west of Buldir Island. The detachment of the 42d Fighter Squadron, 54th Fighter Group, which has been operating in Alaska with P-39s since Jun 42, returns to its base at  Harding Field, Baton Rouge, Louisiana.

EUROPEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Eighth Air Force): During Mission Number 25, 90 bombers are dispatched to bomb two targets in France; 78 aircraft are dispatched to the Rouen-Sotteville Marshalling Yard; 17 attack the target with the loss of two aircraft. A diversion is flown against the Abbeville/Drucat Airfield by 12 aircraft but the target is overcast and the aircraft return without attacking.

MEDITERRANEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

EASTERN MEDITERRANEAN

(Ninth Air Force): In Libya, P-40s fly sweeps and attack ground forces in the El Agheila and Brega area. In Italy, RAF Liberators, under IX Bomber Command operational control, attack the dock area at Naples.

WESTERN MEDITERRANEAN

(Twelfth Air Force): In Tunisia, B-17s, with P-38 escort, bomb the rail facilities and harbor area at Tunis; B-26s on a mission to bomb at Sousse or La Hencha abort due to very bad weather; and P-38s and P-40s fly widespread reconnaissance operations. HQ 64th Troop Carrier Group and its 16th, 17th and 35th Troop Carrier Squadrons, which have been operating from North Africa since Nov, are established at Blida, Algeria upon arrival from England.

SOUTH PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Army Forces in South Pacific Area):  In the Solomon Islands, B-17s begin a series of daily attacks on the Japanese airfields nearing completion at Munda, New Georgia Island. Nine SBDs join the attack which is the first by the USMC.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Fifth Air Force): In New Guinea, A-20s strafe barges off Sanananda Point while B-17s bomb the airfields at Lae and Salamaua.

SUNDAY, 13 DECEMBER 1942

AIRCRAFT MENTIONED IN THIS REPORT:

  • A-20, Douglas Havoc
  • B-17, Boeing Flying Fortress
  • B-24, Consolidated Liberator
  • B-25, North American Mitchell
  • B-26, Martin Marauder
  • Bf 109, Messerschmitt
  • C-47, Douglas Skytrain
  • P-38, Lockheed Lightning
  • P-40, Curtiss

AMERICAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Eleventh Air Force): In the Aleutians, a largely negative reconnaissance is flown over Attu, Agattu, Kiska, Amchitka and the Semichis Islands by two B-24s and two P-38s.

MEDITERRANEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

EASTERN MEDITERRANEAN

(Ninth Air Force): In Libya, aircraft of the Western Desert Air Force, including more than 100 P-40s, fly strafing and bombing missions against ground forces which begin withdrawing from El Agheila during the early morning. The 57th Fighter Group claims two Bf 109s for the loss of one P-40. The British 51 Division penetrates the eastern defenses of El Agheila.

WESTERN MEDITERRANEAN

(Twelfth Air Force): Over Tunisia, 15 B-17s of the 97th Bombardment Group (Heavy) hit the harbor and docks at Tunis. Over Bizerte, ten B-17s of the 301st Bombardment Group (Heavy) bomb the harbor and docks; they are followed shortly by 19 B-24s of the 93d Bombardment Group (Heavy), which are TDY from England, which attack the same targets. Meanwhile, six B-25s of the 310th Bombardment Group (Medium) hit the harbor area at Sousse while B-26s blast a bridge north of Sfax; P-38s escort both missions. Other P-38s attack several targets including vehicles north of Gabes and a schooner off Cape Dimasse.

In other action, P-38s, P-40s and Spitfires fly reconnaissance and patrols over much of Northwest Africa and C-47s fly 17 transport missions between various points in Northwest Africa. The 380th Bombardment Squadron (Medium), 310th Bombardment Group (Medium) with B-25s, moves from Mediouna, French Morocco to Telergma, Algeria and flies its first combat mission.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Fifth Air Force): In New Guinea, a Japanese convoy of five destroyers is detected off Madang, as it attempts to bring in reinforcements for the beachhead in the Buna area. B-17s and B-24s attack as it moves south but fail to deter its progress. Meanwhile A-20s bomb and strafe the Cape Killerton area while B-17s bomb the Salamaua area. In the Bismarck Archipelago, B-26s hit the airfield on Gasmata Island.

MONDAY, 14 DECEMBER 1942

AIRCRAFT MENTIONED IN THIS REPORT:

  • A-20, Douglas Havoc
  • B-17, Boeing Flying Fortress
  • B-24, Consolidated Liberator
  • C-47, Douglas Skytrain
  • DB-7, Douglas Boston Mk III
  • F-4, Lockheed Lightning
  • P-38, Lockheed Lightning
  • P-40, Curtiss

EUROPEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Eighth Air Force): An Inspector General report states that the drain of stocks from the Eighth Air Force for the purpose of equipping the Twelfth Air Force in Northwest Africa is hindering greatly the training and combat program of the Eighth Air Force.

MEDITERRANEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

EASTERN MEDITERRANEAN

(Ninth Air Force): In Libya, P-40s continue to pound retreating German forces east of El Agheila. The 57th Fighter Group claims one enemy aircraft destroyed. As the British 7 Armored and 51 Infantry Divisions push west, the New Zealand 2 Division pushes southwest and rounds the enemy's right flank, then heads northwest towards the coast to cut off their retreat.

WESTERN MEDITERRANEAN

(Twelfth Air Force): Over Tunisia, B-24s bomb the harbor and shipping at Bizerte while B-17s hit similar targets at Tunis. DB-7s made two attacks on the marshaling yard at Sfax escorted by P-38s and P-40s. P-38s attack vessels off the northern Tunisian coast, the road between Tunis and Bizerte, a train near Kerker, trucks near Chaaba, and El Djem, and a train near La Hencha. P-40s fly sweeps; F-4s carry out photographic reconnaissance over areas of Tunisia; and C-47s fly 19 transport missions between various points in Northwest Africa. The 86th Bombardment Squadron (Light), 47th Bombardment Group (Light) with A-20s moves from Mediouna, French Morocco to Youks-les-Bains, Algeria and enters combat.

SOUTH PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Army Forces in South Pacific Area): In the Solomons, B-17s attack Buin, Bougainville Island with no losses.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Fifth Air Force): In New Guinea, the five Japanese troop-carrying destroyers attack by Fifth Air Force aircraft yesterday, reach the mouth of the Mambare River and unload without being detected. However, medium and light bombers and fighters, along with Royal Australian Air Force aircraft, subsequently deliver damaging blows against these troops and their supplies and also hit forces along the Kumusi River in the Cape Endaiadere area and along the Mambare River. The five destroyers are attacked off Cape Ward Hunt by medium and heavy bombers. Attacks are also carried out agains the Lae Airfield and the airfield on Gasmata Island, Bismarck Archipelago.

On the ground, American troops capture Buna.

TUESDAY, 15 DECEMBER 1942

AIRCRAFT MENTIONED IN THIS REPORT:

  • A-20, Douglas Havoc
  • B-17, Boeing Flying Fortress
  • B-24, Consolidated Liberator
  • B-25, North American Mitchell
  • B-26, Martin Marauder
  • C-47, Douglas Skytrain
  • F-4, Lockheed Lightning
  • P-40, Curtiss

MEDITERRANEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

EASTERN MEDITERRANEAN

(Ninth Air Force): Over Tunisia, nine B-24s of the 376th Bombardment Group (Heavy), opening the Ninth Air Force offensive against Tunisian ports, hit the railroad yard, repair shop, and roundhouse at Sfax dropping 72x500 pound bombs. Over Libya, B-25s and P-40s strike at retreating troops and vehicles between El Agheila and Merduma, as the New Zealand 2 Division drives to the coast in the Merduma area to obstruct the retreating Germans. Over Italy, Royal Air Force Liberators, operationally controlled by the IX Bomber Command, hit Naples harbor during the night of 15/16 Dec.

WESTERN MEDITERRANEAN

(Twelfth Air Force): Over Tunisia, B-26s attack El Aouina Airfield while B-17s bomb the harbor area and other B-17s hit the harbor at Bizerte. F-4s fly several photographic reconnaissance missions over coastal Tunisia covering the area from Bizerte to Gabes; fighters fly routine patrols; and C-47s carry out numerous courier and transport missions in Northwest Africa.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Fifth Air Force): In New Guinea, A-20s hit Japanese forces along the Mambare River while a B-24 bombs a wrecked ship at Gona.

WEDNESDAY, 16 DECEMBER 1942

AIRCRAFT MENTIONED IN THIS REPORT:

  • A-20, Douglas Havoc
  • B-17, Boeing Flying Fortress
  • B-24, Consolidated Liberator
  • B-25, North American Mitchell
  • B-26, Martin Marauder
  • C-47, Douglas Skytrain
  • DB-7, Douglas Boston Mk III
  • P-38, Lockheed Lightning
  • P-40, Curtiss
  • Zeke, Mitsubishi A6M, Navy Type 0 Carrier Fighter

MEDITERRANEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

EASTERN MEDITERRANEAN

(Ninth Air Force): In Libya, P-40s fly fighter-bomber missions and sweeps over the battle area as the enemy, breaking into small detachments, manages to withdraw from El Agheila positions after hard fighting and heavy losses. Meanwhile, B-25s hit troop concentrations and transport targets. Detachments of the 328th, 330th and 409th Bombardment Squadrons (Heavy), 93d Bombardment Group (Heavy) based at Hardwick, England with B-24s, move from Tafaraoui, Algeria to Gambut, Libya; the three squadrons, which have been in Algeria since 7 Dec, will remain attached to the IX Bomber Command until Feb 43.

WESTERN MEDITERRANEAN

(Twelfth Air Force): In Tunisia, DB-7s bomb the rail junction east of Mateur and hit the town area of Massicault and the nearby vehicle dispersal area; P-38s attack ships off the north coast scoring a hit on one vessel; other P-38s fly reconnaissance mission, exchanging ineffective fire with enemy aircraft; and the 86th Bombardment Squadron (Light), 47th Bombardment Group (Light) flies its first mission with A-20s. The 4th Troop Carrier Squadron, 62d Troop Carrier Group with C-47s moves from Tafaraoui, Algeria to Casablanca, French Morocco. The 18th Troop Carrier Squadron, 64th Troop Carrier Group establishes HQ at Blida, Algeria upon arrival from England. The air echelon has been operating from Maison Blanche, Algeria since 11 Nov.

SOUTH PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Army Forces in South Pacific Area): In the Solomons, B-17s of the 5th Bombardment Group (Heavy) attack the airstrip at Munda, New Georgia Island. They are met by 16 Zekes; the B-17s claim four Zekes with the loss of one B-17.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Fifth Air Force):  In New Guinea, A-20s and B-26s hit forces in the Buna area and at the mouth of the Kumusi River, and strafe barges on the lagoon shoreline south of the Kumusi's mouth. Meanwhile, B-24s attack a wreck off Gona, a cargo vessel in the Bismarck Sea, and a destroyer, two cargo ships and two tankers in the Solomon Sea, southeast of Cape Orford.

THURSDAY, 17 DECEMBER 1942

AIRCRAFT MENTIONED IN THIS REPORT:

  • A-20, Douglas Havoc
  • B-17, Boeing Flying Fortress
  • B-24, Consolidated Liberator
  • B-25, North American Mitchell
  • B-26, Martin Marauder
  • DB-7, Douglas Boston Mk III
  • F-4, Lockheed Lightning
  • P-38, Lockheed Lightning
  • P-39, Bell Airacobra
  • SBD, Douglas Dauntless
  • Spitfire, Vickers Supermarine

AMERICAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Eleventh Air Force): In the Aleutians, a reconnaissance sortie is flown over Attu, Agattu, Kiska, Amchitka and the Semichis Islands. Two attacks by five B-24s, two B-25s and four B-26s--the second attack escorted by eight P-38s--take off for Kiska Island. On the first mission, four B-24s, gets through and hit the submarine base area, marine railway, buildings, and communication facilities. The second mission aborts due to weather. P-38s and B-24s also fly offshore patrol between Vega Point and Little Kiska.

CHINA-BURMA-INDIA THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Tenth Air Force): China Air Task Force aircraft bomb Lashio, Burma.

MEDITERRANEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

WESTERN MEDITERRANEAN

(Twelfth Air Force): In Algeria, French Admiral Jean Darlan announces that French Fleet units at Alexandria, Dakar and North African ports are joining the Allies. In Tunisia, 36 B-17s hit the harbors and docks at Tunis and Bizerte, claiming damage to both targets and the destruction of one vessel and three aircraft at Tunis. DB-7s and A-20s hit military installations north and west of Gabes Airfield and the landing ground near Sidi Tabet; B-25s and B-26s sent on a shipping raid in the Gulf of Tunis fail to find the target; and P-38s and Spitfires escort all bombing missions. Other P-38s on a sea mission off the northern Tunisia coast engage German aircraft in combat, claiming one destroyed; other P-38s and F-4 fly reconnaissance over Tunisia.

SOUTH PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Army Forces in South Pacific Area):  On Guadalcanal, Solomon Islands, the US 132d Infantry Regiment open preliminaries for an offensive with an attack on positions in the Mount Austen area which overlooks Henderson Field; the enemy offers bitter resistance. USAAF aircraft, especially P-39s, and USMC SBDs, provide support and continue to do so as the offensive progresses from coastal supply points, hitting reinforcements moving through the jungle, and destroying ammunition dumps.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Fifth Air Force): In New Guinea, B-26s bomb Buna Mission while US ground forces make fruitless attacks on the Triangle now dubbed "Bloody Triangle."

FRIDAY, 18 DECEMBER 1942

AIRCRAFT MENTIONED IN THIS REPORT:

  • A-20, Douglas Havoc
  • B-17, Boeing Flying Fortress
  • B-24, Consolidated Liberator
  • B-26, Martin Marauder
  • C-47, Douglas Skytrain
  • DB-7, Douglas Boston Mk III
  • Liberator, Consolidated (RAF B-24)
  • P-38, Lockheed Lightning
  • P-40, Curtiss

AMERICAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Eleventh Air Force): In the Aleutians, a B-24 flies reconnaissance over Kiska, Attu, Agattu and Semichis Islands.

MEDITERRANEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

EASTERN MEDITERRANEAN

(Ninth Air Force): In Libya, P-40s fly reconnaissance and patrol as the British Eighth Army's lead division, the New Zealand 2 Division, clashes with the enemy rear guards at Nofilia. In Tunisia, B-17s hit shipping and harbor installations at Sousse while RAF Liberators, under the control of IX Bomber Command, follow with a raid on the same target during the night of 18/19 Dec.

WESTERN MEDITERRANEAN

(Twelfth Air Force): In Tunisia, 36 B-17s with 16 P-38s of the 1st Fighter Group as escort , hit Bizerte harbor and shipping offshore; a direct hit is scored on one vessel. AA and attacks by fighters result in the loss of one B-17 and four P-38s; three enemy fights are destroyed and others damaged. B-26s with P-38 escort attack the marshaling yard at Sousse, hitting the station, roundhouse and other buildings, tracks, and a train; heavy AA accounts for the loss of two B-26s. DB-7s with fighter escort hit the landing ground and dispersal area near Mateur and attack the railroad yards in the town. P-38s and P-40s fly reconnaissance missions and sweeps and attack ground targets, including a train north of Sfax and trucks near Sainte-Marie-du-Zit.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Fifth Air Force): In New Guinea, A-20s hit positions at Kurenada in the Cape Endaiadere area while Allied ground forces launch a concerted assault. B-17s attack a convoy in Astrolabe Bay off Madang, while B-24s bomb the Alexishafen area and other B-24s bomb the airfield at Lae and attack the convoy off Madang and a transport northwest of Lorengau.

SATURDAY, 19 DECEMBER 1942

AIRCRAFT MENTIONED IN THIS REPORT:

  • A-20, Douglas Havoc
  • B-17, Boeing Flying Fortress
  • B-24, Consolidated Liberator
  • B-25, North American Mitchell
  • DB-7, Douglas Boston Mk III
  • P-38, Lockheed Lightning
  • Zeke, Mitsubishi A6M, Navy Type 0 Carrier Fighter

AMERICAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Eleventh Air Force): In the Aleutians, two B-24s fly reconnaissance and patrol over Amchitka and Kiska Islands. Four escorting P-38s turn back due to weather and mechanical difficulties.

MEDITERRANEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

WESTERN MEDITERRANEAN

(Twelfth Air Force): Rain curtails most aerial operations. In Tunisia, A-20s and DB-7s, with fighter escort, hit the marshaling yard at Sfax. In Algeria, fighters fly routine patrols in the Oran area.

SOUTH PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Army Forces in South Pacific Area): In the Solomon Islands, B-17s, escorted by P-38s, hit the airfield at Munda, New Georgia. They are attacked by 20 Zekes; the Americans claim three Zekes with no American losses.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Fifth Air Force): In New Guinea, A-20s and B-25s hit the Buna Mission area in which Australian forces attacking The Triangle are halted by fierce crossfire. B-17s and B-24s attack warships, transports and cargo vessels off Madang in Astrolabe Bay and north northwest of Finschhafen off the coast of Huon Peninsula. Meanwhile, B-25 bomb the Lae Airfield.

SUNDAY, 20 DECEMBER 1942

AIRCRAFT MENTIONED IN THIS REPORT:

  • A-20, Douglas Havoc
  • B-24, Consolidated Liberator
  • B-25, North American Mitchell
  • B-26, Martin Marauder
  • C-47, Douglas Skytrain
  • P-38, Lockheed Lightning
  • P-40, Curtiss

AMERICAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Eleventh Air Force): In the Aleutians, four B-26s, five B-24s, five B-25s and nine P-38s make a coordinated bombing, strafing, and incendiary attack on Kiska Harbor installations and vicinity, especially on the submarine base and near the marine railway and gun emplacements. A direct hit is scored on a probable ammunition dump. P-38s also strafe a previously damaged cargo ship off Trout Lagoon. One B-24 and two P-38s fly photographic and reconnaissance patrol over Attu, Agattu, Semichis and Amchitka Islands.

CHINA-BURMA-INDIA THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Tenth Air Force): In Burma, China Air Task Force bombers hit Lashio. In India, Japanese aircraft bomb Calcutta and vicinity, hitting docks, shipping and airfields in the area.

EUROPEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Eighth Air Force): During Mission Number 26, 80 B-17s and 21 B-24s are dispatched to attack the Luftwaffe air depot at Romilly-sur-Seine; 72 bomb the target with the loss of six B-17s to German fighters.

MEDITERRANEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

EASTERN MEDITERRANEAN

(Ninth Air Force): In Tunisia, B-24s sent to attack the harbor at Sousse abort the mission due to weather; three bombers hit a wrecked vessel north of Sfax.

WESTERN MEDITERRANEAN

(Twelfth Air Force): In Tunisia, operations are severely curtailed as a result of heavy rains. C-47s maintain transport and courier service while fighter fly reconnaissance and scramble missions.

SOUTH PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Army Forces in South Pacific Area): The 44th Fighter Squadron, 318th Fighter Group with P-40s based at Efate Island, New Hebrides Islands begins operating from Guadalcanal Island, Solomon Islands. The squadron will fly its first combat mission tomorrow, 21 Dec.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Fifth Air Force): In New Guinea, A-20s and B-25s pound Giropa Point and the area around Buna Mission near which are located strong bunker positions. After preparatory bombardment Australian forces again assault the positions, attacking twice under cover of smoke, but are beaten back. A decision is made to bypass The Triangle.

MONDAY, 21 DECEMBER 1942

AIRCRAFT MENTIONED IN THIS REPORT:

  • B-17, Boeing Flying Fortress
  • B-24, Consolidated Liberator
  • B-25, North American Mitchell
  • B-26, Martin Marauder
  • C-47, Douglas Skytrain
  • F-4, Lockheed Lightning
  • Ju 88, Junkers
  • Liberator, Consolidated (RAF B-24)
  • P-38, Lockheed Lightning
  • P-39, Bell Airacobra
  • P-40, Curtiss

AMERICAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Eleventh Air Force): In the Aleutians, one B-24s flies an uneventful reconnaissance over Amchitka, Kiska, Semichis and Attu Islands. A B-24 and two P-38s abort a photographic mission due to weather. A detachment of the 56th Fighter Squadron, 54th Fighter Group, which has been operating P-39s in Alaska since 20 Jun 42, returns to its base at Harding Field, Baton Rouge, Louisiana.

CENTRAL PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Seventh Air Force): The air echelon of the 371st Bombardment Squadron (Heavy), 307th Bombardment Group (Heavy) based at Wheeler Field, Territory of Hawaii with B-24s, flies to Midway Island.

MEDITERRANEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

EASTERN MEDITERRANEAN

(Ninth Air Force): In Tunisia, B-24s of the 93d Bombardment Group (Heavy) abort a mission against Sousse harbor due to weather. Six RAF Liberators, under operational control of the IX Bomber Command, attack the harbor; results are not observed. In Libya, light forces of the British Eighth Army overtake the enemy rearguard at Sirte and are halted temporarily.

WESTERN MEDITERRANEAN

(Twelfth Air Force): In Tunisia, weather prevents B-17s from bombing Sfax or the secondary target, Gabes. P-40s destroy a tank and several cars and trucks with trailers in the Kairouan area; F-4s fly three photographic reconnaissance missions over the area between Bizerte and Gabes. In Algeria, P-38s scramble over Youks-les-Bains and shoot down two Ju 88s and C-47s continue transport and courier missions. HQ 17th Bombardment Group (Medium) and its 37th Bombardment Squadron (Medium) with B-26s is established at Telergma, Algeria upon arrival from the US. The 379th, 381st and 428th Bombardment Squadrons (Medium), 310th Bombardment Group (Medium) with B-25s moves from French Morocco to Telergma, Algeria.

SOUTH PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Army Forces in South Pacific Area): In the Solomons, B-17s attack two cargo ships near Kahili, Bougainville Island; a direct hit is scored on one ship. No B-17s are lost. The 70th Fighter Squadron, 347th Fighter Group, based on Fiji with P-39s, begins operating from Guadalcanal Island, Solomon Islands. The squadron flies its first combat mission today.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Fifth Air Force): In New Guinea, B-17s attack vessels in Finschhafen harbor while B-24s carry out single-bomber strikes on a cargo ship north of Finschhafen and barges at the mouth of the Mambare River and off Cape Ward Hunt.

TUESDAY, 22 DECEMBER 1942

AIRCRAFT MENTIONED IN THIS REPORT:

  • B-17, Boeing Flying Fortress
  • B-24, Consolidated Liberator
  • B-25, North American Mitchell
  • B-26, Martin Marauder
  • F-4, Lockheed Lightning
  • Liberator, Consolidated (RAF B-24)
  • P-39, Bell Airacobra
  • P-40, Curtiss

AMERICAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Eleventh Air Force): In the Aleutians, all missions including a B-24 weather reconnaissance weather run are cancelled due to weather.

CENTRAL PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Seventh Air Force):  Detachments of the 370th, 372d and 424th Bombardment Squadrons (Heavy), 307th Bombardment Group (Heavy) based in the Territory of Hawaii with B-24s arrives on Midway Island. During the night of 22/23 Dec, 26 B-24s bomb Wake Island from 2,500 to 8,000 feet, dropping 135x500 pound bombs. The total length of the mission, from Hawaii and return, was over 4,300 nautical miles. No aircraft were lost.

CHINA-BURMA-INDIA THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Tenth Air Force): In Burma, China Air Task Force aircraft bomb Lashio.

MEDITERRANEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

EASTERN MEDITERRANEAN

(Ninth Air Force): In Tunisia, B-24s of the 93d Bombardment Group (Heavy) and RAF Liberators are dispatched agains the harbor at Sousse; only two bombers reach the target, the others are forced to return to base due to weather, but a few manage to bomb Monastir and the railroads at Mahdia.

WESTERN MEDITERRANEAN

(Twelfth Air Force): In Tunisia, a solid overcast prevents B-17s from bombing Bizerte or alternate targets of Sousse and Sfax. P-40s shoot up a train in Kairouan and destroy trucks on the Sfax-Faid road. F-4s continue reconnaissance bwteen Bizerte and the Gabes-Medenine area. On the ground, the British 5 Corps of the First Army renews the drive on Tunis. 2 Coldstream Guards attack Djebel el Ahmera (Longstop Hill) northeast of Medjez el Bab. The 432d Bombardment Squadron (Medium), 17th Bombardment Group (Medium) with B-26s establishes HQ at Telergma, Algeria upon arrival from the US.

SOUTH PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Army Forces in South Pacific Area):  The 26th Bombardment Squadron (Heavy), 11th Bombardment Group (Heavy) with B-17s transfers from Efate Island, New Hebrides Islands to Espiritu Santo Island, New Hebrides Islands. The 67th Fighter Squadron, 347th Fighter Group, which has been operating from Guadalcanal Island, Solomon Islands with P-39s since 22 Aug, returns to its base on New Caledonia Island.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Fifth Air Force): In New Guinea, B-25s bomb Maimba mission and the village near Buna when Japanese ground forces continue to resist stubbornly; B-17s hit a ship in the harbor at Arawe. In the Bismarck Archipelago, a single B-24 attacks a transport off Gasmata Island.

WEDNESDAY, 23 DECEMBER 1942

AIRCRAFT MENTIONED IN THIS REPORT:

  • A-20, Douglas Havoc
  • B-17, Boeing Flying Fortress
  • B-24, Consolidated Liberator
  • B-25, North American Mitchell
  • B-26, Martin Marauder
  • P-38, Lockheed Lightning
  • Spitfire, Vickers Supermarine

MEDITERRANEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

EASTERN MEDITERRANEAN

(Ninth Air Force): The 324th Fighter Group and its 314th and 316th Fighter Squadrons with P-40s establish HQ at El Amiriya, Egypt upon arrival from the US. The group will fly its first combat mission on 26 Mar 43.

WESTERN MEDITERRANEAN

(Twelfth Air Force): In Tunisia, total cloud cover causes B-17s, escorted by P-38s, to abort the bombing mission against Tunis and Bizerte Airfields. On the ground, elements of the US 1st Infantry Division, after relieving 2 Coldstream Guards on Djebel el Ahmera, are forced to withdraw by a German counterattack. In Algeria, Spitfires fly routine patrol over the Oran-Tafaraoui area. The 34th Bombardment Squadron (Medium), 17th Bombardment Group (Medium) with B-26s establishes HQ at Telergma, Algeria upon arrival from the US.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Fifth Air Force): In New Guinea, A-20s strafe troops near Gona and at Woiba Islands while B-24s attack a cargo ship at Arawe. In the Bismarck Archipelago, B-25s bomb Cape Gloucester Airfield on New Britain Island and attack a ship at Pilelo Island. B-24s carry out single-bomber attacks on a transport west southwest of Cape Orford, a vessel northwest of Lorengau and the Cape Gloucester Airfield.

THURSDAY, 24 DECEMBER 1942 (CHRISTMAS EVE)

AIRCRAFT MENTIONED IN THIS REPORT:

  • A-20, Douglas Havoc
  • B-17, Boeing Flying Fortress
  • B-24, Consolidated Liberator
  • B-26, Martin Marauder
  • F4F, Grumman Wildcat
  • P-38, Lockheed Lightning
  • P-39, Bell Airacobra
  • P-40, Curtiss
  • P-47, Republic Thunderbolt
  • SBD, Douglas Dauntless

AMERICAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Eleventh Air Force): In the Aleutians, the reconnaissance aircraft over Kiska finds shipping there unchanged. Weather cancel all other missions.

CENTRAL PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Seventh Air Force):  The detachments of the 370th, 371st, 372d and 424th Bombardment Squadrons (Heavy), 307th Bombardment Group (Heavy) that have been operating from Midway Island with B-24s return to their bases in the Territory of Hawaii.

EUROPEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Eighth Air Force): The first P-47s arrive in England however, because of VHF radio and engine difficulties, the P-47s are not sent into combat until Apr 43.

MEDITERRANEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

EASTERN MEDITERRANEAN

(Ninth Air Force): In Tunisia, B-24s sent to bomb Tunis abort due to weather. In Italy, B-24s attack the harbor at Naples during the night of 23/24 Dec; one aircraft bombs Taranto.

WESTERN MEDITERRANEAN

(Twelfth Air Force): In Algeria, French Admiral Jean Darlan is assassinated in Algiers; General Henry Giraud becomes acting French ruler of African colonies. In Tunisia, four P-40s attack a bridge north of Gabes. During a conference with Lieutenant General Eisenhower, Lieutenant General Sir Kenneth A Anderson, Commanding General British First Army, decides to cease the attack on Tunis until after the rainy season. On the ground, British forces retake positions on Djebel el Ahmera. HQ 33d Fighter Group transfers from French Morocco to Telergma, Algeria. HQ 95th Bombardment Squadron (Medium), 17th Bombardment Group (Medium) with B-26s is established at Telergma, Algeria upon arrival from the US. The squadron will enter combat on 30 Dec. HQ 95th, 96th and 97th Fighter Squadrons, 82d Fighter Group with P-38s is established at Tafaraoui, Algeria upon arrival from the UK. The squadrons will enter combat tomorrow.

SOUTH PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Army Forces in South Pacific Area): In the Solomons, nine SBDs, nine P-39s, four P-38s and  four F4Fs attack the airstrip at Munda, New Georgia Island.; they are met by 14 Zekes. The Americans claim 14 Zekes shot down, seven by two F4F pilots while four P-39s pilots of the 12th Fighter Squadron, 15th Fighter Group get five and a P-38 pilot of the 70th Fighter Squadron, 347th Fighter Group got one. The SBDs destroyed ten Zekes on the ground as they were taking off. There are no US losses.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Fifth Air Force): In New Guinea, A-20s strafe troops near Kel Kel and along the northern bank of the Amboga River and trail. B-24s, operating singly, bomb Lae, a schooner in Vitiaz Strait, and the harbor at Arawe. In the Bismarck Archipelago, B-17s and B-24s hit shipping and the airfield at Gasmata Island.

FRIDAY, 25 DECEMBER 1942 (CHRISTMAS DAY)

AIRCRAFT MENTIONED IN THIS REPORT:

  • B-17, Boeing Flying Fortress
  • B-24, Consolidated Liberator
  • F-4, Lockheed Lightning
  • P-38, Lockheed Lightning
  • P-40, Curtiss
  • Zeke, Mitsubishi A6M, Navy Type 0 Carrier Fighter

AMERICAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Eleventh Air Force): In the Aleutians, a B-24 takes photographs of Kiska and Attu Islands and unsuccessfully bombs five barges between Gertrude Cove and Kiska Harbor. The B-24 then sights eight float Zekes; three Zekes unsuccessfully attempt to attack the B-24. HQ 344th Fighter Squadron, 343d Fighter Group with P-40s transfers from Elmendorf Field, Anchorage to Ft Randall, Cold Bay.

EUROPEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Eighth Air Force): HQ 24th Composite Wing is activated in Iceland to control all USAAF units on the island.

MEDITERRANEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

WESTERN MEDITERRANEAN

(Twelfth Air Force): In Tunisia, P-40s bomb a troop concentration at Sfax while P-38s sent to bomb a convoy off northern Tunisia fail to sight any ships. On the ground, the Germans retake Djebel el Ahmera. HQ 12th Photographic Reconnaissance Squadron, 3d Photographic Group with F-4s moves from French Morocco to Algiers, Algeria.

SOUTH PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Army Forces in South Pacific Area):  In the Bismarck Archipelago, six B-17s, of the eleven dispatched, bomb Rabaul Harbor on New Britain Island. Two aircraft score three hits on a large cargo ship, while four bomb wharves and airfields. There are no US losses. HQ 394th Bombardment Squadron (Heavy), 5th Bombardment Group (Heavy) with B-17s is established on Fiji upon arrival from the Territory of Hawaii.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Fifth Air Force):  In the Bismarck Archipelago, a B-17 attacks a submarine in Wide Bay off New Britain; one B-24 attacks runways at Cape Gloucester Airfield. In New Guinea, a B-24 bombs Lae.

SATURDAY, 26 DECEMBER 1942

AIRCRAFT MENTIONED IN THIS REPORT:

  • A-20, Douglas Havoc
  • B-17, Boeing Flying Fortress
  • B-24, Consolidated Liberator
  • B-25, North American Mitchell
  • Fw 190, Focke Wulf
  • OA-10, Consolidated Catalina
  • P-38, Lockheed Lightning
  • P-40, Curtiss
  • Zeke, Mitsubishi A6M, Navy Type 0 Carrier Fighter

AMERICAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Eleventh Air Force): In the Aleutians, six B-24s and nine P-38s attack Holtz Bay but do not find the eight float Zekes seen there yesterday; the P-38s strafe Attu installations at minimum altitude. while the B-24s bomb Sarana Bay. AA fire downs on P-38 and damages another. Later, six B-25s and four P-38s over Kiska and Gertrude Cove abort due to low ceiling. An OA-10 flies reconnaissance over northeast Kiska.

CHINA-BURMA-INDIA THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Tenth Air Force):  In Thailand, 12 India Air Task Force B-24s bomb the railroad station, dock area, arsenal, and power plant at Bangkok. In Burma, China Air Task Force B-25s hit Lashio. In China, a large force of enemy aircraft attempt to raid Yunnani Airfield. They are intercepted by P-40s of the 16th Fighter Squadron, 51st Fighter Group, and four Japanese aircraft are shot down.

MEDITERRANEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

EASTERN MEDITERRANEAN

(Ninth Air Force): In Tunisia, B-24s are dispatched agains Tunis harbor during the night of 26/27 Dec; three hit the primary target while two others bomb Sousse and Sfax.

WESTERN MEDITERRANEAN

(Twelfth Air Force): In Tunisia, B-17s, with fighter escort, hit the harbor and shipping at Bizerte; heavy AA and fighter attacks account for two B-17s and two P-38s shot down; P-38s claim two Fw 190s destroyed. Other B-17s, with P-40 escort, bomb the harbor and shipping at Sfax; three enemy vessels are claimed sunk. P-38s on reconnaissance attack locomotives and motor vehicles south of Tunis and west of Sousse. P-40s strafe barges off Sousse, destroying one of them, and strafe ground targets during reconnaissance over the Kairouan-Sousse-Kasserine area. During the night of 26/27 Dec, C-47s drop a detachment of US paratroops at a bridge north of El Djem. HQ 27th Bombardment Group (Light) and its 16th, 17th and 91st Bombardment Squadrons (Light) with A-20s is established at Ste-Barbe-du-Tlelat, Algeria upon arrival from the US. The group will enter combat on 6 Jun 43.

SOUTH PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Army Forces in South Pacific Area):  Brigadier General Francis P Mulcahy, USMC, arrives on Guadalcanal Island, Solomon Islands, with the Second Marine Aircraft Wing and assumes operational control of all aircraft on the island, including those of the USAAF and USN.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Fifth Air Force): In the Bismarck Archipelago, heavy bombers carry out single-bomber attacks against Cape Gloucester Airfield on New Britain Island and attack shipping off New Britain. In New Guinea, heavy bombers carry out single-bomber attacks against Finschhafen and Madang. Japanese aircraft from Rabaul, New Britain Island attack Doboduru but are driven off by US fighters.

SUNDAY, 27 DECEMBER 1942

AIRCRAFT MENTIONED IN THIS REPORT:

  • B-17, Boeing Flying Fortress
  • B-24, Consolidated Liberator
  • B-26, Martin Marauder
  • P-38, Lockheed Lightning
  • P-40, Curtiss
  • Spitfire, Vickers Supermarine
  • Val, Aichi D3A, Navy Type 99 Carrier Bomber
  • Zeke, Mitsubishi A6M, Navy Type 0 Carrier Fighter

AMERICAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Eleventh Air Force): In the Aleutians, two B-24s flying reconnaissance over Kiska and Amchitka Islands abort in bad weather.

MEDITERRANEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

WESTERN MEDITERRANEAN

(Twelfth Air Force): In Tunisia, B-17s, escorted by P-38s, bomb the shipping and dock facilities at Sousse, damaging docks and warehouses and claiming direct hits on four vessels while P-38s and P-40s fly several reconnaissance missions. In Algeria, Spitfires patrol Oran and Bone. On the ground, the British First Army repels an attack in the Medjez el Bab area.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Fifth Air Force): In the Bismarck Archipelago, B-17s pound shipping at Rabaul, New Britain Island. In New Guinea, B-26s hit targets in the Gona area while a single B-24 hits the runway at Finschhafen. In their first significant action in the Pacific, a dozen P-38s of the 39th Fighter Squadron, 35th Fighter Group engage some 24 Japanese aircraft, claiming nine Zekes and two Vals shot down for one P-38 damaged.

MONDAY, 28 DECEMBER 1942

AIRCRAFT MENTIONED IN THIS REPORT:

  • B-17, Boeing Flying Fortress
  • B-24, Consolidated Liberator
  • B-25, North American Mitchell
  • B-29, Boeing Superfortress
  • F-4, Lockheed Lightning
  • P-38, Lockheed Lightning
  • P-40, Curtiss
  • Spitfire, Vickers Supermarine

AMERICAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Second and Eleventh Air Forces):  In the Aleutians, icing conditions and low visibility prevent all flying. HQ 93d Bombardment Squadron (Heavy), 19th Bombardment Group (Heavy) is established at Pocatello, Idaho. This squadron was at Clark Field, Luzon, Philippine Islands on 7 Dec 41, and after being decimated in continuous fighting in the Southwest Pacific, the unit is transferred without personnel and equipment to the US. The squadron will be a replacement training unit until Apr 44 when it is re-equipped with B-29s and returns to Guam in Jan 45.

CHINA-BURMA-INDIA THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Tenth Air Force): In Burma, China Air Task Force B-25s, with fighter support, hit Magwe.

MEDITERRANEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

EASTERN MEDITERRANEAN

(Ninth Air Force): In Tunisia, during the night of 27/28 Dec and also during the day, B-24s, including RAF Liberators under IX Bomber Command operational control, bomb the harbor at Sousse, hitting vessels and dock installations. On the ground, British Army patrols reach a point east of Buerat, overlooking Wadi el Chebir, without opposition.

WESTERN MEDITERRANEAN

(Twelfth Air Force):  In Tunisia, B-17s bomb the dock and harbor installations at Sousse. while P-38s fly escort; P-38s and P-40s on patrol and reconnaissance missions claim four enemy aircraft downed in combat and several vehicles destroyed at various points; and F-4s fly reconnaissance over the Tunis, Sousse and Sfax areas. In Algeria, Spitfires patrol the Oran and Bone areas.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Fifth Air Force): In the Bismarck Archipelago, B-24 bomb Rabaul on New Britain Island and Gasmata Island.  In New Guinea, B-24s bomb Lae. HQ, 33d Troop Carrier Squadron, 374th Troop Carrier Group with C-47s, moves from Australia to Port Moresby, New Guinea.

TUESDAY, 29 DECEMBER 1942

AIRCRAFT MENTIONED IN THIS REPORT:

  • A-20, Douglas Havoc
  • B-17, Boeing Flying Fortress
  • B-24, Consolidated Liberator
  • DB-7, Douglas Boston Mk III
  • P-38, Lockheed Lightning
  • P-39, Bell Airacobra
  • P-40, Curtiss

AMERICAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Eleventh Air Force): In the Aleutians, a B-24 flies a negative reconnaissance over Rat and Amchitka Islands. A scheduled attack on Kiska Island and the reconnaissance mission over Amchitka Island are cancelled by bad weather.

CHINA-BURMA-INDIA THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Tenth Air Force):  In Burma, twelve B-24s attack shipping in the vicinity of Rangoon.

MEDITERRANEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

EASTERN MEDITERRANEAN

(Ninth Air Force): In Tunisia, B-24s sent to bomb Tunis harbor during the night of 29/30 Dec find the target obscured by clouds and attack Sousse instead.

WESTERN MEDITERRANEAN

(Twelfth Air Force): In Tunisia, B-17s attack Sousse docks and harbor; P-38s provide escort. DB-7s and A-20 hit bridges at La Hencha while escorting P-40s strafe flatcars and a locomotive at Sainte-Juliette. P-38s attack a tank depot southeast of Pont-du-Fahs; DB-7s and A-20s follow with an attack on the same target. P-38s and P-40s fly reconnaissance missions and patrols over wide areas of Algeria and Tunisia.

SOUTH PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Army Forces in South Pacific Area):  In the Solomons, six P-39s and USMC aircraft attack cargo vessels in the New Georgia group. Two vessels are sunk by the P-39s.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Fifth Air Force): In New Guinea, A-20s strafe forces and occupied areas at Lokanu and along the west bank of the Amboga River while B-24s carry out single-bomber attacks on the Lae Airfield. In the Bismarck Archipelago, B-24s also carry out single-bomber attacks on the airfield on Gasmata Island.

WEDNESDAY, 30 DECEMBER 1942

AIRCRAFT MENTIONED IN THIS REPORT:

  • A-20, Douglas Havoc
  • B-17, Boeing Flying Fortress
  • B-24, Consolidated Liberator
  • B-25, North American Mitchell
  • B-26, Martin Marauder
  • B-29, Boeing Superfortress
  • DB-7, Douglas Boston Mk III
  • F-4, Lockheed Lightning
  • PBY, Consolidated Catalina
  • P-38, Lockheed Lightning
  • P-40, Curtiss
  • Zeke, Mitsubishi A6M, Navy Type 0 Carrier Fighter

AMERICAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Second and Eleventh Air Forces):  In the Aleutians, B-25s and 14 P-38s approach Kiska Harbor at minimum altitude for a bombing and strafing attack. Two ships and three submarines, newly arrived, are covered by Zekes. Four of the Zekes engage the approaching P-38s in a dogfight; two P-38s are shot down and four Zekes are listed as probables. The B-25s meanwhile attack the ships with unobserved results; one B-25 is shot down off Little Kiska. A Navy PBY picks up survivors, but fails to return to base. Kiska Harbor is then attacked once more by five B-24s, four B-25s and four B-26s. They claim hits on both vessels observing explosions on the smaller ship. A B-24 photographs Amchitka while a weather reconnaissance of Near Island is cancelled due to weather. Aerial reconnaissance observes for the first time Japanese use of a smoke screen at Kiska Harbor. HQ 28th and 435th Bombardment Squadrons (Heavy), 19th Bombardment Group (Heavy) are established at Pocatello, Idaho. These squadrons were at Clark Field, Luzon, Philippine Islands on 7 Dec 41 and were decimated in continuous fighting in the Southwest Pacific. HQs is transferred without personnel and equipment and re-equipped with B-17s, they became replacement training units until they were again re-equipped with B-29s in 1944; the squadrons returned to Guam in Jan 45.

EUROPEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Eighth Air Force): During Mission Number 27, 77 bombers are dispatched to the submarine base at Lorient, France; 40 aircraft attack with the loss of three B-17s to German fighters. The submarine base shows the cumulative effect of repeated bombardment.

MEDITERRANEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

WESTERN MEDITERRANEAN

(Twelfth Air Force): In Tunisia, B-17s with P-38 escort, attack docks and the marshaling yard at Sfax; B-25s, escorted by P-38s, follow with an attack on the same marshaling yard. DB-7s hit a troop concentration near Gabes, this attack being followed by an A-20 raid on the airfield. During the afternoon, more DB-7s, with P-38 and P-40 escort, hit Gabes, concentrating on the airfield. A-20s hit a fuel dump at El Aouinet; on the return flight, escorting P-40s strafe near El Guettar. P-40s and F-4s fly uneventful reconnaissance missions. In Libya, P-38s fly two reconnaissance missions to Tripoli, one flight destroying several truck on the return trip.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Fifth Air Force):  In the Bismarck Archipelago, B-17s bombs shipping at Rabaul, New Britain Island. In New Guinea, A-20s strafe forces in the Duvira Creek area while B-24s carry out single-bomber attacks on the airfield at Lae, Madang Village, and troops and vehicles at Wewak. A B-17 strafes a schooner in Jacquinot Bay.

THURSDAY, 31 DECEMBER 1942 (NEW YEAR'S EVE)

AIRCRAFT MENTIONED IN THIS REPORT:

  • A-20, Douglas Havoc
  • B-17, Boeing Flying Fortress
  • B-24, Consolidated Liberator
  • B-25, North American Mitchell
  • B-26, Martin Marauder
  • Liberator, Consolidated (RAF B-24)
  • PBY, Consolidated Catalina
  • P-38, Lockheed Lightning
  • P-40, Curtiss

AMERICAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Eleventh Air Force): In the Aleutians, six B-24s covered by nine P-38s, attack Kiska Harbor, hitting two cargo vessels; one of six intercepting Japanese aircraft is probably shot down. A B-25 searching for the Navy PBY missing since yesterday also flies reconnaissance over Semisopochnoi, Segula, Little Sitkin, Gareloi and Amchitka.

CHINA-BURMA-INDIA THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Tenth Air Force): In Burma, P-40s on armed reconnaissance hit railroad targets of opportunity from Naba to Pinbaw.

MEDITERRANEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

EASTERN MEDITERRANEAN

(Ninth Air Force): In Tunisia, B-24s, including RAF Liberators, bomb shipping and the dock area at Sfax with good results.

WESTERN MEDITERRANEAN

(Twelfth Air Force): In Tunisia, light bombers, with fighter escort, make two attacks on Sousse, bombing the railroad yards and docks. Escorted B-17s hit the harbor area of Sfax while B-26s, with fighter escort, hit the airfield area at Gabes and shipping and rail bridges in the Bizerte-Tunis area. P-38s and P-40s, flying reconnaissance, destroy several vehicles.

SOUTH PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Army Forces in South Pacific Area):  In the Solomons, B-26s of the 69th Bombardment Squadron (Medium), 38th Bombardment Group (Medium), escorted by P-38s and P-39s, attack the airfield at Munda, New Georgia.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Fifth Air Force): In New Guinea, A-20s strafe forces in the Sanananda and Giruwa area and along the Amboga River. B-26s pound forces on the north shore of the Markham River near its mouth, while A-20s strafe parked aircraft at Lae. In the Bismarck Archipelago, B-24s operating singly, bomb the airfield on Gasmata Island and attack shipping in Wide Bay and Saint George Channel