Combat Chronology of the US Army Air Forces

March 1944

AIRCRAFT MENTIONED IN THIS REPORT:

  • A-20, Douglas Havoc
  • A-24, Douglas Dauntless
  • A-36, North American Apache
  • B-17, Boeing Flying Fortress
  • B-24, Consolidated Liberator
  • B-25, North American Mitchell
  • B-26, Martin Marauder
  • B-29, Boeing Superfortress
  • Beaufighter, Bristol (RAF)
  • C-47, Douglas Skytrain
  • CG-4, Waco Hadrian
  • F-5, Lockheed Lightning
  • F-6, North American Mustang
  • F-7, Consolidated Liberator
  • Hurricane, Hawker (RAF)
  • L-1, Stinson Vigilant
  • L-4, Piper Cub
  • L-5, Stinson Sentinel
  • P-38, Lockheed Lightning
  • P-39, Bell Airacobra
  • P-40, Curtiss
  • P-47, Republic Thunderbolt
  • P-51, North American Mustang
  • P-61, Northrop Black Widow
  • PBY, Consolidated Catalina
  • Spitfire, Vickers Supermarine
  • TG-5, Aeronca
  • UC-64, Noorduyn Norseman
  • Vengeance, Vultee
  • Ventura, Lockheed
  • Wellington, Vickers (RAF)

WEDNESDAY, 1 MARCH 1944

AMERICAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

ALASKA

(Eleventh Air Force): In the Aleutian Islands, XI Strategic Air Force (Provisional) is activated at Shemya Island. It includes all units of the XI Bomber Command and XI Fighter Command stationed at Near Island, and is only a tactical operating agency without administrative functions.

CARIBBEAN

(Sixth Air Force): Detachment of 32d Fighter Squadron, Antilles Air Command, operating from Dakota Field, Aruba returns to Hato Field, Curacao with P-39s.

CHINA-BURMA-INDIA THEATER OF OPERATIONS

BURMA-INDIA

(Tenth Air Force): In Burma, 8 P-40s score 3 hits on a bridge at Namkwin; 4 others hit the Myitkyina Airfield dispersal area; 56 A-36s and P-51s attack stores and personnel areas at Sawnghka. 93d Fighter Squadron, 81st Fighter Group, arrives at Karachi, India from Italy; they will be equipped with P-47Ds and enter combat on 14 Aug. Moves in India during March: 90th Fighter Squadron, 80th Fighter Group, from Jorhat to Moran with P-40s; 118th Tactical Reconnaissance Squadron, AAF, India-Burma Sector (attached to Tenth Air Force), based at Gushkara, India, sends detachments to Chakulia and Kharagpur with P-51s (first mission is 28 Mar).

CHINA

(Fourteenth Air Force): 14 B-25s and 16 P-40s pound a military zone in the NE part of Nanchang, China.

EUROPEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

STRATEGIC OPERATIONS

(Eighth Air Force): HQ and HQ Squadron, VIII Air Force Services Command is redesignated as HQ and HQ Squadron, Air Service Command, US Strategic Air Forces in Europe (USSTAF), after functioning as such during Jan and Feb 44 while redesignation was being authorized. 8th Strategic Air Depot Area is redesignated VIII Air Force Services Command. Mission 243: 5 of 5 B-17s drop 250 bundles of leaflets on Brest, Tours, Lorient, Nantes and Reims at 2005-2115 hours without loss. During Mar, HQ 491st Bombardment Group (Heavy) and 852d, 853d, 854th and 855th Bombardment Squadrons (Heavy) move from North Pickenham to Metfield, England with B-24s; first mission is 2 Jun.

TACTICAL OPERATIONS

(Ninth Air Force): IX Troop Carrier Command establishes a Pathfinder school to provide pre-invasion training in all navigational aids. Moves in England: HQ 71st Fighter Wing from Greenham Common to Andover; HQ 366th Fighter Group from Membury to Thruxton; 12th and 15th Tactical Reconnaissance Squadrons, 67th Tactical Reconnaissance Group, from Aldermaston to Chilbolton with F-6s; 390th Fighter Squadron, 366th Fighter Group, to Thruxton from the US with P-47s (first mission is 14 Mar); 402d and 485th Fighter Squadrons, 370th Fighter Group, from Aldermaston to Andover with P-38s (first mission 1 May). Moves in England during March: HQ 438th Troop Carrier Group and 87th, 88th, 89th and 90th Troop Carrier Squadrons from Welford to Greenham Common with C-47s.

MEDITERRANEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

STRATEGIC OPERATIONS

(Fifteenth Air Force):For the 5th consecutive day, bad weather forbids all operations except reconnaissance missions. Moves in Italy during Mar: HQ 55th Bombardment Wing (Heavy) to Spinazzola from the US; HQ 305th Bombardment Wing (Heavy) from Spinazzola to Bari.

TACTICAL OPERATIONS

(Twelfth Air Force): Twelfth Air Force undergoes a reorganization as a result of the loss of several operational units (see 14 Feb 44). XII Troop Carrier Command (Provisional), consisting of a single wing, is disbanded and its personnel absorbed into the 51st Troop Carrier Wing and other units, the 51st Troop Carrier Wing being placed under the administrative control of Twelfth Air Force. HQ XII Bomber Command is reduced to 1 officer and 1 enlisted man as other personnel are transferred to the 57th Bombardment Wing, which along with the 42d Bombardment Wing (Medium), is placed under the administrative control of Twelfth Air Force. HQ XII Bomber Command will exist as a retaining cadre until 10 Jun 44 when it is officially disbanded. In Italy, P-40s attack gun positions and vehicles in the US Fifth Army battle area; P-40s and Spitfires of XII Air Support Command maintain cover over the Anzio beachhead area. P-47s attack a 2000-ton vessel in the Adriatic Sea. HQ 57th Fighter Group and 65th and 66th Fighter Squadrons move from Amendola to Cercola, Italy with P-47s. During March, the detachments of the 347th Fighter Squadron, 350th Fighter Group, operating from Capodichino, Italy with P-39s returns to base on Corsica.

PACIFIC OCEAN AREA

(Seventh Air Force): A-24s and P-40s from Makin Island, Gilbert Islands, hit Jaluit and Mille Atolls, Marshall Islands while B-25s pound Maloelap Atoll, Marshall Islands. During March, 531st Fighter Squadron, Seventh Air Force, moves from Makin Island to Bellows Field, Oahu, Territory of Hawaii with A-24s.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA

(Thirteenth Air Force): In the Solomon Islands, B-24s bomb Kahili, Bougainville Island; P-38s hit Ballale and Buka Islands; P-39s bomb and strafe Monoitu Mission, Bougainville Island.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA

(Fifth Air Force): In the Admiralty Islands, about 30 B-24s and B-25s hit Los Negros Island and Lorengau, Manus Island. Other B-24s and B-25s drop supplies to Allied pound forces on Los Negros. In New Guinea, 100+ B-24s, B-25s, A-20s, and fighter aircraft, along with Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) aircraft, pound Hansa Bay, Awar Point, an airfield in the Wewak area, and enemy installations and positions at Madang, Alexishafen, and Saiba. Detachment of 26th Photographic Reconnaissance Squadron, 6th Photographic Reconnaissance Group, ceases operating from Port Moresby and returns to Finschhafen, New Guinea with F-5s. Moves in New Guinea during Mar: HQ 309th Bombardment Wing (Heavy) from Lae to Saidor; 17th Reconnaissance Squadron (Bombardment), 71st Reconnaissance Group, from Dobodura to Finschhafen with B-25s; 65th Bombardment Squadron (Heavy), 43d Bombardment Group (Heavy), from Dobodura to Nadzab with B-24s.

THURSDAY, 2 MARCH 1944

AMERICAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

ALASKA

(Eleventh Air Force): 9 B-24s fly a futile shipping search over the Kurile Islands; turned back by a weather front, they either jettison or bring back their bombs.

CHINA-BURMA-INDIA THEATER OF OPERATIONS

BURMA-INDIA

(Tenth Air Force): In Burma, 5 P-51s bomb artillery positions in the Maingkwan area; 20 P-40s hit a fuel dump at Myitkyina, artillery at Shingban, and trucks on a road near Walawbum; 8 A-36s and P-51s hit an encampment on Pagoda Peak near Mogaung. HQ 81st Fighter Group arrives at Karachi, India from Italy.

CHINA

(Fourteenth Air Force): In French Indochina, 4 B-25s sink a small steamer near Mon Cay and bomb railroad shops and coal treating plant at Campho. In China, 10 P-38s damage 2 bridges and strafe 2 barracks areas N of Nanchang; 2 P-40s bomb and strafe the airfield and barracks at Kengtung.

EUROPEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

STRATEGIC OPERATIONS

(Eighth Air Force): Mission 244: 1. 327 B-17s are dispatched to the Franfurt am Main marshalling yard; only 101 hit the primary target because of PFF failures; 103 hit Frankfurt Offenbach, 49 hit Ludwigshafen, 20 hit Limburg, 12 hit Fischbach and 8 hit other targets of opportunity; 8 B-17s are lost with 1 KIA, 5 WIA and 80 MIA. 154 B-24s are also dispatched to the same target; 36 hit the primary and 46 hit targets of opportunity; 1 B-24 is lost and 3 damaged beyond repair; casualties are 16 KIA, 4 WIA and 11 MIA. The bombers claim 2-0-2 Luftwaffe aircraft. Escort is provided by 33 P-38s, 445 Eighth and Ninth Air Force P-47s and 111 P-51s; 1 P-38 is damaged; the P-47s claim 13-2-3 Luftwaffe aircraft, 3 P-47s are lost and 7 damaged, 2 pilots are MIA; the P-51s claim 4-0-1 Luftwaffe aircraft, 2 P-51s are damaged and 1 pilot is MIA. 2. 84 of 106 B-17s dispatched hit the air depot at Chartres, France; 1 B-17 is lost and 12 damaged; casualties are 1 WIA and 10 MIA. This mission is escorted by 89 P-38s, 145 Eighth and Ninth Air Force P-47s and 47 Ninth Air Force P-51s; they claim 2-0-0 Luftwaffe aircraft on the ground; 1 P-38 is lost. Mission 245: 5 of 5 B-17s drop 250 bundles of leaflets on Caen, Amiens, Rouen, Chartres and Rennes, France at 2015-2054 hours without loss. HQ 92d Combat Bombardment Wing (Heavy) moves from Camp Blainey to Sudbury, England.

TACTICAL OPERATIONS

(Ninth Air Force): In France, 353 B-26s attack NOBALL (V-weapon) targets, Tergnier, and Amiens/Glisy and Rosieres-en-Santerre Airfields in morning and afternoon missions. Moves in England: 79th Troop Carrier Squadron, 436th Troop Carrier Group, from Bottesford to Membury with C-47s; 391st Fighter Squadron, 366th Fighter Group, from Membury to Thruxton with P-47s (first mission is 14 Mar).

MEDITERRANEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

STRATEGIC OPERATIONS

(Fifteenth Air Force):459th Bombardment Group (Heavy) (with B-24s) becomes operational, giving the Fifteenth Air Force 13 heavy bomber groups on combat status. In Italy, nearly 300 B-17s and B-24s, escorted by 150+ P-38s and P-47s, support the US Fifth Army's Anzio beachhead, bombing the Cisterna di Roma-La Villa area, Velletri, and troop concentrations, guns and other military targets in the battle area at several points, including the Stazione di Campoleone and Carroceto areas.

TACTICAL OPERATIONS

(Twelfth Air Force): In Italy, B-26s attack an assembly area E of Carroceto and, with B-25s, bomb guns and an assembly area NW of Cisterna di Roma, A-20s hit troops in the beachhead battle area; P-40s and A-36s blast troops and guns throughout the Anzio battle area, also hitting Cisterna and Littoria; P-40s and A-36s fly uneventful cover over Anzio. P-47s hit a motor vessel off Sibenik, Yugoslavia leaving it burning.

PACIFIC OCEAN AREA

(Seventh Air Force): B-24's from Makin and Abemama Islands, Gilbert Islands bomb Ponape and Kusaie Islands, Caroline Islands. B-25s bomb Maloelap Atoll.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA

(Thirteenth Air Force): On New Britain Island in the Admiralty Islands, P-40s join USN fighters in covering a USN dive bomber strike on shipping installations in the Keravia Bay area; 12 B-25s pound Rabaul while 11 others, with USN fighter support, bomb Rapopo; shortly afterwards, 20 escorted B-24's blast the town area of Rabaul; 14 P-38s follow immediately with a strike on the same target. P-39s hit Japanese-occupied Piano and Monoitu Missions on Bougainville Island. 67th Fighter Squadron, 347th Fighter Group, based in the Russell Islands, begins operating from Bougainville Island with P-39s; the squadron will convert to P-38s in Apr.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA

(Fifth Air Force): In New Guinea, 80+ B-24s and P-40s hit the Hansa Bay area, the airstrip at Nubia, and the Madang- Alexishafen area. 60+ B-25s and A-20s pound enemy forces on Los Negros Island as Allied ground forces occupy Momote Airfield; P-47s providing cover for the B-25s claim 7 enemy fighters shot down.

FRIDAY, 3 MARCH 1944

AMERICAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

ALASKA

(Eleventh Air Force): In the Aleutian Islands, 9 B-24s take off from Shemya Island to search for enemy shipping, but return due to heavy icing and squalls; 6 P-40s fly a search mission between Shemya and halfway to Attu Island; and HQ XI Bomber Command moves from Adak Island to Shemya Island.

ZONE OF INTERIOR

President Franklin D Roosevelt announces that the Italian Fleet will be divided equally among the US, UK and the USSR.

CHINA-BURMA-INDIA THEATER OF OPERATIONS

BURMA-INDIA

(Tenth Air Force): In Burma, 22 B-25s, some supported by Royal Air Force (RAF) Spitfires and Hurricanes, bomb the Ft White area; 10 B-25s and 4 P-51s pound airfields at Katha, Mawlu and Shwebo; 12 B-25s and 8 P-51s hit railroad targets and a warehouse at Kyaikthin and Kyunhla; 14 B-24s covered by 22 P-40s hit airfields at Lashio, Hsenwi and Loiwing; 70+ P-40s, A-36s, P-51s, and B-25s hit fuel storage, supply areas, roads, and other targets over widespread areas of Burma, including Shingban, Myitkyina, Zigyun, Mogaung, Manywet, and Washawng; 6 P-38s attack the Okshitpin bridge but the target is not damaged.

CHINA

(Fourteenth Air Force): P-40s damage a coal grading building at Campha Port, French Indochina.

EUROPEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

STRATEGIC OPERATIONS

(Eighth Air Force): Mission 246: 555 B-17s and 193 B-24s are dispatched to industrial areas and aviation industry plants at Berlin, Erkner and Oranienburg but deteriorating weather and dense contrails force the formations to abort or seek targets of opportunity, i.e.: 1. 9 of 555 B-17s are lost, 61 hit Wilhelmshaven and 14 hit targets of opportunity; casualties are 2 KIA, 3 WIA and 83 MIA. 3. 2 of 193 B-24s are lost and only 4 hit targets of opportunity; casualties are 3 KIA, 8 WIA and 20 MIA. The bombers claim 3-1-1 Luftwaffe aircraft. Escort is provided by 89 P-38s, 484 Eighth and Ninth Air Force P-47s and 130 Eighth and Ninth Air Force P-51s; claim and loses are: 1. 1 P-38 is lost and 1 damaged; 1 pilot is MIA. 2. 1 P-47 is damaged beyond repair and 13 damaged; 1 pilot is WIA. 3. P-51s claim 8-1-3 Luftwaffe aircraft; 6 P-51s are lost; 5 pilots are MIA. During a CARPETBAGGER mission on the night of 3/4 Mar, 2 B-24s are lost.

TACTICAL OPERATIONS

(Ninth Air Force): In France, 218 B-26s bomb airfields at Laon/Couvron, Beauvais/Tille, Rosieres-en-Santerre, Roye/Amy and Montdidier, and military installations at Juvincourt-et-Damary and Berneval-le-Grand. Moves in England: HQ 434th Troop Carrier Group and 71st, 72d, 73d and 74th Troop Carrier Squadrons from Fulbeck to Aldermaston with C-47s; HQ 436th Troop Carrier Group and 80th, 81st and 82d Troop Carrier Squadrons from Bottesford to Membury with C-47s.

MEDITERRANEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

STRATEGIC OPERATIONS

(Fifteenth Air Force):Around 200 B-17s and B-24s, with 50+ P-47s as escort, hit targets in Italy; the B-17s hit the Rome, Littorio and Tiburtina marshalling yards; the B-24s hit Canino landing ground and Viterbo and Fabrica di Roma air depots; 80+ B-24s and 100+ P-38s abort because of bad weather.

TACTICAL OPERATIONS

(Twelfth Air Force): In Italy, B-25s bomb Rome/Ostiense and railroad stations at San Benedetto de Marsi; weather cancels light and other medium bomber operations; P-40s hit gun positions in the N Anzio beachhead area while A-36s attack the train and tented area between Magliano Romano and Rome; other P-40s fly patrol over the Anzio beachhead area. 64th Fighter Squadron, 57th Fighter Group, moves from Amendola to Cercola, Italy with P-40s.

PACIFIC OCEAN AREA

(Seventh Air Force): B-24s out of Makin Island bomb Ponape Island. B-25s from Tarawa Atoll, Gilbert Islands, hit Maloelap Atoll. This date marks the beginning of Operation FORAGER, the capture of the S Marianas Islands (Saipan, Tinian, and Guam Islands) for bases for B-29 strikes against Japan. Seventh Air Force aircraft maintain neutralization strikes against airfields in the Caroline Islands and continue hitting Wake Island and the bypassed Marshall Islands.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA

(Thirteenth Air Force): On New Britain island, P-40s and USN fighters cover a USN dive bomber strike on Rabaul and Simpson Harbor; 24 B-25s follow with an attack on Rabaul, which later in the day is bombed by 20 B-24s. 5 P-38s bomb radar installations at Cape Saint George on New Ireland Island, Admiralty Islands, while 10 bomb Buka Airfield, Buka Island, Solomon Islands. P-39s hit targets of opportunity on the E part of Shortland Island, Solomon Islands and the W part of Buka Island.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA

(Fifth Air Force): In New Guinea, 30+ B-24s hit the Hansa Bay and Alexishafen areas while 20 P-39s attack Madang and Bogadjim and 22 A-20s pound Erima. 14 A-20s and B-25s hit enemy positions on Los Negros Island.

SATURDAY, 4 MARCH 1944

CHINA-BURMA-INDIA THEATER OF OPERATIONS

BURMA-INDIA

(Tenth Air Force): In Burma, 60+ A-36s, P-51s and P-40s, and a single B-25 bomb dumps, roads, bivouac area, and other targets in the Seton, Sawnghka, Pinbaw and Walawbum areas; numerous fighters carry out patrol and armed reconnaissance sorties in the Sumprabum area. 459th Fighter Squadron, 80th Fighter Group, moves from Kurmitola to Chittagong, India with P-38s.

CHINA

(Fourteenth Air Force): In China, 5 B-25s and 23 P-40s (16 of them Chinese) pound the airfield at Kiungshan; the airfield is heavily damaged and several parked aircraft are destroyed; 17 Japanese aircraft are claimed shot down; 4 P-38s and 2 Chinese B-25s claim a freighter, a tanker, and a motor launch sunk in the Shihhweiyao and Wuhu areas; 6 waves of Japanese aircraft bomb the airfield at Suichwan, causing considerable damage. In French Indochina, 6 B-25s bomb the Thanh Hoa chromium mine and Campha Port; 2 P-40s strafe railroad yards and warehouses at Hongay and Campha Port; 5 P-40s are dispatched to bomb Cao Bang but because of bad weather attack Chinese-held Lungchow, China by mistake.

EUROPEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

STRATEGIC OPERATIONS

(Eighth Air Force): Mission 247: 502 B-17s are dispatched to hit industrial areas in the suburbs of Berlin; bad weather forces aircraft to either turn back or hit targets of opportunity and only 1 wing attacks the primary target and a total of 249 bomb. 15 B-17s are lost, 1 is damaged beyond repair and 120 damaged; casualties are 3 KIA, 11 WIA and 141 MIA. Targets: 100 hit Bonn, 35 hit Cologne, 33 hit Dusseldorf, 30 hit Berlin/Klein Machnow, 7 hit Frankfurt and 33 hit other targets of opportunity. B-24s were also dispatched but abort because of the weather. Escort is provided by 86 P-38s, 563 Eighth and Ninth Air Force P-47s and 121 Eighth and Ninth Air Force P-51s; 24 fighters were lost. Details are: 1. P-38s: 4 lost, 2 damaged beyond repair, 1 damaged; casualties are 1 KIA and 4 MIA. 2. P-47s claim 3-1-3 Luftwaffe aircraft in the air and 1-0-0 on the ground; 4 P-47s are lost, 1 damaged beyond repair and 5 damaged; casualties are 3 MIA. 3. P-51s claim 5-2-1 Luftwaffe aircraft; 16 P-51s are lost, 1 damaged beyond repair and 1 damaged; casualties are 1 KIA and 16 MIA. CARPETBAGGER operations are flown during the night of 4/5 Mar.

TACTICAL OPERATIONS

(Ninth Air Force): In France, 251 B-26s and 21 A-20s scheduled to bomb Malines marshalling yard and Bernay Saint Martin Airfield abort the mission because of heavy cloud cover over the targets. HQ 84th Fighter Wing moves from Keevil to Beaulieu, England.

MEDITERRANEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

TACTICAL OPERATIONS

(Twelfth Air Force): In Italy, weather cancels most operations; P-40s fly a few sorties against gun emplacements in the battle area, and others uneventfully patrol the Anzio area.

PACIFIC OCEAN AREA

(Seventh Air Force): P-40s from Makin Island bomb and strafe runways at Mille Atoll. B-25s from Tarawa Atoll bomb airfield installations and runways in Wotje Atoll, Marshall Islands.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA

(Thirteenth Air Force): On New Britain Island, P-40s join USN fighters and dive bombers in a strike on AA positions and targets of opportunity in the Rabaul area; 4 patrolling Royal New Zealand Air Force (RNZAF) Venturas hit targets of opportunity along both coasts and at Vunalama and Mandres Plantations; 48 B-25s and 12 P-38s, along with 20+ USN fighters, hit the Rabaul town area in 3 closely spaced attacks. P-38s also attack targets of opportunity on Duke of York Island, Admiralty Islands. 12 P-39s hit Monoitu and targets of opportunity along the SW coast of Bougainville Island. RNZAF Venturas join USN planes in attacks on Japanese embarkation ports around Choiseul Bay, New Georgia Island, Solomon Islands. Shortland Island targets of opportunity are hit by P-40s on patrol.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA

(Fifth Air Force): 20+ A-20s and B-25s support ground forces on Los Negros Island. In New Guinea, more than 30 B-24s with fighter escort, pound airfields in the Wewak area; 20+ other B-24s bomb Hollandia; and A-20s bomb buildings and gun positions in the Saidor area. Moves in New Guinea: HQ 38th Bombardment Group (Medium) from Port Moresby to Nadzab; HQ 43d Bombardment Group (Heavy) from Dobodura to Nadzab.

SUNDAY, 5 MARCH 1944

CHINA-BURMA-INDIA THEATER OF OPERATIONS

BURMA-INDIA

(Tenth Air Force): B-25s, A-36s, P-51s and P-40s fly more than 60 sorties against targets in Burma, including artillery positions, storage areas, ground troops, roads, and a bridge; the targets are in the Zigon, Shingban, and Myitkyina areas.

CHINA

(Fourteenth Air Force): 8 B-25s bomb and strafe Chiengmai Airfield, China, destroying 9 aircraft, the water tower and nearby railroad station; the barracks area is also damaged. EASTERN AIR COMMAND (EAC): During the night, British Major General Orde C Wingate's Special Force of long-range penetration troops begin dropping by glider onto Japanese lines of communication in C Burma. US engineer troops drop first, followed by the British 77 and 111 Brigades. USAAF Colonel Philip G Cochran's Air Commando unit flies them in, dropping them on a strip designated Broadway, about 50 miles (80 km) NE of Indaw. Another projected drop site, Piccadilly, is unusable as the Japanese have blocked it with fallen trees. Of 67 gliders dispatched, 32 reach Broadway. 539 men, 3 mules and 65,972 pounds (29,925 kg) of supplies are safely put down, including such items as bulldozers and lighting apparatus.

EUROPEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

STRATEGIC OPERATIONS

(Eighth Air Force): Mission 248: 219 B-24s are dispatched to hit airfields at Mont De Marsan, Cayeux and Bordeaux/Merignac, France but bad cloud conditions force a target change and multiple aborts; 62 hit Bergerac Airfield, 60 hit Cognac/Chateaubernard Airfield, 41 hit Landes de Bussac Airfield and 1 hits La Roche Airfield; they claim 14-2-5 Luftwaffe aircraft; 4 B-24s are lost, 1 is damaged beyond repair and 23 damaged; casualties are 1 WIA and 35 MIA. Escort is provided by 34 P-38s, 185 P-47s and 88 Eighth and Ninth Air Force P-51s; 2 P-38s are lost, 1 is damaged beyond repair and 1 pilot is killed and another MIA; 1 P-47 is damaged and 1 pilot is KIA; the P-51s claim 14-0-6 Luftwaffe aircraft in the air and 0-0-6 on the ground; 3 P-51s are lost, 1 damaged beyond repair and 1 damaged; 1 pilot is WIA and 4 MIA. Mission 249: 5 of 5 B-17s drop 250 bundles of leaflets on Le Mans, Paris, Orleans and Reims, France at 2132-2152 hours without loss. A CARPETBAGGER mission is also flown.

TACTICAL OPERATIONS

(Ninth Air Force): 217 B-26s attack NOBALL (V-weapon) targets in the Saint-Omer-Abbeville, France area. HQ 365th Fighter Group and 386th, 387th and 388th Fighter Squadrons move from Gosfield to Beaulieu, England with P-47s.

MEDITERRANEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

STRATEGIC OPERATIONS

(Fifteenth Air Force):HQ 451st Bombardment Group (Heavy) moves from Gioia del Colle to San Pancrazio, Italy.

TACTICAL OPERATIONS

(Twelfth Air Force): XII Troop Carrier Command (Provisional) is disbanded at Palermo. Weather again severely hampers operations in Italy, but P-40s hit Pontecorvo and A-36s attack Formia.

PACIFIC OCEAN AREA

(Seventh Air Force): The Seventh Air Force continues to hit the Marshall and Caroline Islands; P-40s from Makin Island carry out fighter-bomber mission against runways and airfield installations at Mille Atoll; B-25s hit Maloelap and Mille Atolls; B-24s bomb Ponape Island and last resort targets at Kusaie Island and Mille Atoll.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA

(Thirteenth Air Force): On New Britain Island, 22 B-25s, with USN fighter escort, bomb Simpson Harbor; 4 RNZAF Venturas on patrol hit barges anchored off a supply dock at nearby Raulavat Plantation; 9 B-24s follow with a raid on the Rabaul town area; 13 others, with USN fighters covering, blast the revetment area and airstrip at Tobera; 11 P-38s hit Borpop Airfield, and P-40s and USN fighters hit barges at Kabanga Bay and off the Warangoi River; 16 P-39s attack AA positions at Monoitu bridge, and 3 P-38s hit Siar.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA

(Fifth Air Force): About 30 B-24s bomb enemy positions on Los Negros Island. In NE Nea Guinea, elements of the US 32d Infantry Division land at Yaula; A-20s bomb and strafe the area; P-39's pound the areas around Madang and Erima; Australian ground forces break out of the Ramu Valley and retreat toward Madang. 71st Bombardment Squadron (Medium), 38th Bombardment Group (Medium), moves from Port Moresby to Nadzab, New Guinea with B-25s.

MONDAY, 6 MARCH 1944

CHINA-BURMA-INDIA THEATER OF OPERATIONS

BURMA-INDIA

(Tenth Air Force): In Burma, 4 B-25s knock the center span out of the Sittang bridge and blast 2 AA positions; 14 B-25s lay mines around Kham Yai Island, bomb nearby Prong Island, and hit the marshalling yard at Pegu; 18 P-51s and P-40s attack Sawnghka bridge with poor results, start fires near Lalawng Ga, and bomb dumps near Walawbum. A flight of the 20th Tactical Reconnaissance Squadron, AAF India-Burma Sector (attached to Tenth Air Force), begins operating from Kisselbari, India with P-40s; the squadron is based at Guskhara, India.

EUROPEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

STRATEGIC OPERATIONS

(Eighth Air Force): Mission 250: 504 B-17s and 226 B-24s are dispatched to hit industrial areas in the suburbs of Berlin; fierce fighter opposition claims 69 bombers (the highest number lost by the Eighth Air Force in a single day) and 11 fighters; the bombers claim 97-28-60 Luftwaffe fighters; details are: 1. 248 B-17s hit secondary targets in the Berlin area; 18 B-17s are lost, 2 damaged beyond repair and 172 damaged; casualties are 2 KIA, 8 WIA and 184 MIA. 2. 226 B-17s hit targets of opportunity at Templin, Verden, Kalkeberge, Potsdam, Oranienburg and Wittenberg; 35 B-17s are lost, 3 damaged beyond repair and 121 damaged; casualties are 15 WIA and 354 MIA. 3. 198 B-24s hit the primary target (Genshagen industrial area), secondary targets in the Berlin area and targets of opportunity at Potsdam; 16 B-24s are lost, 1 damaged beyond repair and 54 damaged; casualties are 15 KIA, 8 WIA and 148 MIA. Escort is provided by 86 P-38s, 615 Eighth and Ninth Air Force P-47s and 100 Eighth and Ninth Air Force P-51s; results are: 1. P-38s claim 3-0-1 Luftwaffe aircraft; 1 P-38 is lost, the pilot is MIA. 2. P-47s claim 36-7-12 Luftwaffe aircraft; 5 P-47s are lost, 3 damaged beyond repair and 4 damaged; casualties are 2 WIA and 5 MIA. 3. P-51s claim 43-1-20 Luftwaffe aircraft; 5 P-51s are lost and 2 damaged; casualties are 5 MIA. The fighters also claim 1-0-12 Luftwaffe aircraft on the ground. Mission 251: 5 of 5 B-17s drop 250 bundles of leaflets on Nantes, Cambrai, Lille, Chateauroux and Lorient, France at 2029-2130 hours without loss. CARPETBAGGER missions are also flown. A detachment of 22d Photographic Reconnaissance Squadron, 7th Photographic Group (Reconnaissance), ceases operating from Attlebridge and returns to base at Mount Farm, England with F-5s.

TACTICAL OPERATIONS

(Ninth Air Force): In France, 260 B-26s bomb NOBALL (V-weapon) targets, Hirson marshalling yard, and Beauvais/Tille, Airfield; heavy clouds cause 50+ B-26s and A-20s to abort missions. Arriving in England from the US are: 93d and 94th Troop Carrier Squadrons, 439th Troop Carrier Group, at Balderton; 510th and 511th Fighter-Bomber Squadrons, 405th Fighter-Bomber Group, at Christchurch with P-47s (first mission is 11 Apr).

MEDITERRANEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

TACTICAL OPERATIONS

(Twelfth Air Force): In Italy, P-40s pound gun positions N of the Anzio beachhead (mostly NE of Ardea), and bomb Frosinone and hit guns near Littoria; A-36s fly armed reconnaissance of roads and railroad NE of Rome, hitting several vehicles and bombing railroad cars at Capranica. 302d Fighter Squadron, 332d Fighter Group, moves from Montecorvino to Capodichino, Italy with P-39s.

PACIFIC OCEAN AREA

(Seventh Air Force): A-24s and P-40s from Makin Island bomb and strafe runways at Mille Atoll. B-25s from Tarawa Atoll pound the airfield at Wotje Atoll.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA

(Thirteenth Air Force): On Bougainville Island, P-39s hit Monoitu Mission and huts and bridge on the Miwo River. 24 B-25s with fighter escort, pound Tobera, New Britain Island while 24 B-24s and 12 P-38s hit Kavieng and Panapai Airfield on New Ireland Island.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA

(Fifth Air Force): B-25s continue to hit Japanese forces on Los Negros Island. In New Guinea, B-24s bomb the airstrip and other targets in the Awar-Nubia area; P-39s and RAAF aircraft hit Japanese forces around Madang. On New Britain Island, P-39s and P-38s strafe and dive- bomb the Cape Hoskins-Talasea area as US Marines land about midway up the coast of the Willaumez Peninsula in preparation for a drive on Talasea. 405th Bombardment Squadron (Medium), 38th Bombardment Group (Medium), moves from Port Moresby to Nadzab, New Guinea with B-25s.

TUESDAY, 7 MARCH 1944

AMERICAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

ALASKA

(Eleventh Air Force): In the Aleutian Islands, B-24s and B-25s fly a negative search mission for an enemy submarine.

CHINA-BURMA-INDIA THEATER OF OPERATIONS

BURMA-INDIA

(Tenth Air Force): In Burma, 20+ P-51s and A-36s on armed reconnaissance hit targets of opportunity from Walawbum to Shaduzup; 2 B-25s hit troop concentrations NW of Shaduzup and another attacks road bridge and barges near Shwebo and along the Irrawaddy River; offensive reconnaissance over several airfields in Burma results in no major action.

EUROPEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

STRATEGIC OPERATIONS

(Eighth Air Force): HQ 466th Bombardment Group (Heavy) arrives at Attlebridge, England from the US.

TACTICAL OPERATIONS

(Ninth Air Force): In France, 112 B-26s and 18 A-20s attack V-weapon sites on the Channel coast, military installations near Criel-sur-Mer and Greny, and targets of opportunity in the area; bad weather causes the recall of 150+ B-26s before they attack targets. Units arriving in England from the US: HQ 371st Fighter Group and 404th, 405th and 406th Fighter Squadrons at Bisterne with P-47s (first mission is 12 Apr); HQ 405th Fighter-Bomber Group and 509th Fighter-Bomber Squadron at Christchurch with P-47s (first mission is 11 Apr); HQ 409th Bombardment Group (Light) and 640th, 641st, 642d and 643d Bombardment Squadrons (Light) at Little Walden with A-20s (first mission is 13 Apr); 422d Night Fighter Squadron, Ninth Air Force, at Charmy Down with P-61s (first mission is 3 Jul). 34th Troop Carrier Squadron, 315th Troop Carrier Group, ceases operating from Blida, Algeria with C-47s and returns to base at Spanhoe, England.

MEDITERRANEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

STRATEGIC OPERATIONS

(Fifteenth Air Force):Around 300 B-17s and B-24s hit targets in France and Italy; the B-17s bomb the Toulon, France submarine base; in Italy, B-24s hit marshalling yards at Poggibonsi, Pontassieve and Prato and air depots at Orvieto, Rome and Viterbo. P-47s and P-38s fly about 150 sorties in support of the bombers.

TACTICAL OPERATIONS

(Twelfth Air Force): In Italy, B-25s bomb the Rome/ Ostiense marshalling yard while other B-25s hit the Littoria marshalling yard; A-20s strike the Zagarolo railroad station; P-40s attack enemy positions in the Anzio beachhead area with good results, while A-36s hit communication at Montebello, railroad station near Civitavecchia, gun emplacements near Littoria Airfield, and a train at Monterotondo; P-40s over the Anzio beachhead encounter no air opposition.

PACIFIC OCEAN AREA

(Seventh Air Force): B-24s from Abemama Island hit Kusaie Island and Jaluit Atoll. P-40s bomb and strafe the airfield at Mille Atoll. B-25s pound runways, AA positions, storage areas, and barracks on Taroa Island, Maloelap Atoll.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA

(Thirteenth Air Force): On New Britain Island, 24 B-25s, with USN fighter support, hit Tobera Airfield; 19 P-40s bomb and strafe Rabaul. 24 B-24s and 14 P-38s hit Panapai Airfield, New Ireland Island. Fighter aircraft pound tactical targets on Bougainville Island including Koromira Mission, a supply area on the Jaba River, and bivouac S of the Maririei River near Menoavi.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA

(Fifth Air Force): B-24s and B-25s continue to hit targets on Los Negros Island and other of the Admiralty Islands and bomb Boram Airfield, New Guinea. P-38s and RAAF aircraft attack targets in the Talasea area of New Britain Island. 823d Bombardment Squadron (Medium), 38th Bombardment Group (Medium), moves from Port Moresby to Nadzab, New Guinea with B-25s.

WEDNESDAY, 8 MARCH 1944

AMERICAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

ALASKA

(Eleventh Air Force): In the Aleutian Islands, bombers fly negative search and patrol missions for an enemy submarine; B-24s fly cover for a convoy en route from Adak to Shemya Islands.

CHINA-BURMA-INDIA THEATER OF OPERATIONS

BURMA-INDIA

(Tenth Air Force): In Burma, 28 P-51s hit the airfields at Anisakan, Shwebo, and Onbauk, destroying 30+ Japanese aircraft; later 5 B-25s and 2 P-51s hit Shwebo, scoring hits along the runway and in the dispersal area and leaving several Japanese aircraft aflame; 3 B-25s hit 2 bridges at Lalawng Ga and Warazup, knocking out the latter; and 16 A-36s and P-51s hit targets of opportunity from Chanmoi to Shaduzup.

CHINA

(Fourteenth Air Force): 26th Fighter Squadron, 51st Fighter Group, based at Kunming, China with P-51s sends a detachment to operate from Nanning.

EUROPEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

STRATEGIC OPERATIONS

(Eighth Air Force): Mission 252: The primary target is the ball bearing plant at Erkner, a suburb of Berlin; enemy opposition is fierce and 37 bombers and 16 fighters are lost; 320 of 414 B-17s and 150 of 209 B-24s dispatched hit the primary; 36 B-17s hit Wildau and targets of opportunity; 33 B-24s hit Berlin and targets of opportunity; the bombers claim 63-17-19 Luftwaffe aircraft; 28 B-17s and 9 B-24s are lost, 1 B-17 and 2 B-24s are damaged beyond repair; casualties are 4 KIA, 14 WIA and 364 MIA. Escort is provided by 104 P-38s, 613 Eighth and Ninth Air Force P-47s and 174 Eighth and Ninth Air Force P-51s; claims/losses are: 1. P-38s claim 9-2-5 Luftwaffe aircraft; 3 P-38s are lost, 1 is damaged beyond repair and 2 damaged; casualties are 1 KIA and 4 MIA. 2. P-47s claim 49-6-18 Luftwaffe aircraft; 10 P-47s are lost, 13 damaged beyond repair and 4 damaged; casualties are 2 KIA, 2 WIA and 10 MIA. 3. P-51s claim 29-4-9 Luftwaffe aircraft; 5 P-51s are lost, 2 damaged beyond repair and 1 damaged; casualties are 4 MIA. An additional 8-4-7 Luftwaffe aircraft are claimed on the ground. 786th Bombardment Squadron (Heavy), 466th Bombardment Group (Heavy), arrives at Attlebridge, England from the US with B-24s; first mission is 22 Mar.

TACTICAL OPERATIONS

(Ninth Air Force): In the Netherlands, 225+ B-26s attack Volkel Airfield once and Soesterberg Airfield twice in morning and afternoon missions. Units arriving in England from the US: HQ 303d Fighter Wing at Ashford; 95th, 97th and 98th Troop Carrier Squadrons, 440th Troop Carrier Group, at Bottesford with C-47s.

MEDITERRANEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

STRATEGIC OPERATIONS

(Fifteenth Air Force):Moves in Italy: HQ 306th Bombardment Wing (Heavy) from Lucera to Torremaggiore; 724th, 725th, 726th and 727th Bombardment Squadrons (Heavy), 451st Bombardment Group (Heavy), from Gioia del Colle to San Pancrazio with B-24s.

TACTICAL OPERATIONS

(Twelfth Air Force): In Italy, B-25s strike at the Orte marshalling yard and Orte-Fabrica di Roma railroad; B-26s hit the Rome/ Tiburtina marshalling yard and dock area at Porto Santo Stefano; P-40 fighter- bombers hit gun positions and a road junction near Rome while A-36s attack a road junction near Montalto di Castro, also hitting a bridge and a train, and guns and a castle SW of Celano; P-47s hit gun emplacements; P-40s strafe vehicles near Rome/Via Appia.

PACIFIC OCEAN AREA

(Seventh Air Force): B-24s, striking from Makin Island, bomb Ponape and Kusaie Islands. A-24s and P-40s, also from Makin Island, bomb and strafe runways and AA positions at Mille Atoll. Tarawa Atoll-based B-25s pound Wotje Atoll.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA

(Thirteenth Air Force): On New Britain Island, 23 B-24s and 23 B-25s pound Rabaul, blasting Chinatown and the wharf area; 46 P-40s and P-39s pound the dock area E of Rabaul; 9 P-38s, turning back from Rabaul bomb Buka Airfield on Buka Island. In the Solomon Islands, 390th Bombardment Squadron (Medium), 42d Bombardment Group (Medium), based in the Russell Islands with B-25s begins operating from Stirling Island

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA

(Fifth Air Force): B-25s carry out a number of low-level strikes as Allied ground forces capture Lombrun Plantation on Los Negros Island, virtually completing the capture of the island. In New Guinea, 70+ B-24s, B-25s, and A-20s bomb Nubia and Awar airstrips; the bombers and escorting fighters claim 17 aircraft shot down in the Wewak area. Fighters continue to strafe coastal targets in NE New Guinea and on New Britain Island. 822d Bombardment Squadron (Medium), 38th Bombardment Group (Medium), moves from Port Moresby to Nadzab, New Guinea with B-25s.

THURSDAY, 9 MARCH 1944

CHINA-BURMA-INDIA THEATER OF OPERATIONS

BURMA-INDIA

(Tenth Air Force): In Burma, 6 B-24s bomb Tavoy Airfield and office area while 8 others hit the town of Mogaung; the town area, supply dumps and road bridge at Kamaing are pounded by 10 B-24s, 16 P-51s, and 10 P-40s; the bridge is knocked out; 10 B-25s score numerous hits on airstrips at Indaw and Katha; and P-51s, P-40s, and A-36s hit storage at Pyindaw, and support ground forces at Walawbum and Shaduzup.

CHINA

(Fourteenth Air Force): 18 Chinese-American Composite Wing (CACW) B-25s and 24 Chinese P-40s pound a foundry and floating docks at Shihhweiyao, China. In French Indochina, 40+ P-40s carry out several sea sweeps off the coast and fly armed reconnaissance over the NE; the fighters damage vessels off Campha Port, strafe the airfield at Mon Cay, bomb the airfield at Weichow Island (causing heavy damage), hit barracks at Luc Nam, damage vessels at Hongay and bomb military installations at Cao Bang.

EUROPEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

STRATEGIC OPERATIONS

(Eighth Air Force): Mission 253: 8 bombers and 1 fighter are lost on missions to Germany; the bombers claim 1-0-0 Luftwaffe aircraft; 221 bombers are damaged; details are: 1. 339 of 361 B-17s dispatched hit Berlin; 6 B-17s are lost and 1 is damaged beyond repair; casualties are 10 KIA, 6 WIA and 43 MIA. 2. 150 of 165 B-24s hit secondary targets at Hannover, Brunswick and Nienburg; 2 B-24s are lost and 1 damaged beyond repair; casualties are 12 WIA and 20 MIA. Escort is provided by 83 P-38s, 572 Eighth and Ninth Air Force P-47s and 153 Eighth and Ninth Air Force P-51s; no claims are made; 1 P-38 is lost, 2 P-38s and 1 P-51 are damaged beyond repair; casualties are 1 KIA, 1 WIA and 1 MIA. 784th, 785th and 787th Bombardment Squadrons (Heavy), 466th Bombardment Group (Heavy), arrive at Attlebridge, England from the US with B-24s; first mission is 22 Mar.

MEDITERRANEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

STRATEGIC OPERATIONS

(Fifteenth Air Force):HQ 463d Bombardment Group (Heavy) arrives at Celone Airfield, Italy from the US.

TACTICAL OPERATIONS

(Twelfth Air Force): In Italy, B-25s strike the dock area of Porto Stefano, some bombs falling in the Port'oErcole area; B-25s bomb a bridge at Montalto di Castro; A-20s hit a tank repair depot N of Tivoli; P-40s blast gun positions W of Campoleone, W of Pratica di Mare, and S of Ciampino; A-36s bomb Capranica railroad station and targets nearby; and fighters fly uneventful patrols over Anzio.

PACIFIC OCEAN AREA

(Seventh Air Force): B-25s based on Abemama Island attack Taroa Island, Maloelap Atoll. B-24s from Tarawa Atoll hit Ponape and Kusaie Islands.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA

(Thirteenth Air Force): On New Britain Island, 24 B-25s bomb the dock area along the N shore of Simpson Harbor at Rabaul; 19 B-24s follow with a strike on Rabaul town and wharf area and also hit airfields in the vicinity; and 40+ P-39s and P-40s hit the dock area E of Simpson Harbor. At Empress Augusta Bay, Bougainville Island, 2 squadrons of B-25s hit Japanese installations on the nearby hills. Detachment of 17th Photographic Reconnaissance Squadron, 4th Photographic Group (Reconnaissance), begins operating from Munda, New Georgia Island with F-5s; the squadron is based on Guadalcanal Island, Solomon Islands.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA

(Fifth Air Force): B-25s pound Lorengau and other targets on Manus Island. Numerous other Fifth Air Force aircraft carry out armed reconnaissance over wide reaches of the SWPA, attacking a variety of targets.

FRIDAY, 10 MARCH 1944

CHINA-BURMA-INDIA THEATER OF OPERATIONS

BURMA-INDIA

(Tenth Air Force): In Burma, 23 B-24s pound the town areas of Mogaung and Kamaing during the afternoon, following an earlier B-25 raid on Kamaing; 40+ P-40s, P-51s, and P-38s hit gun positions S of Walawbum, troops and storage areas W of Mogaung at Pahok, trains near Myitnge and Anisakan, the airfield at Anisakan, and the town area of Laban.

CHINA

(Fourteenth Air Force): In China, 6 B-24s bomb Kowloon Docks; B-25s from Suichwan sink a motor launch and damage 2 cargo vessels and a barge in the Anking area; escorting P-38s shoot down several interceptors; P-40s and P-51s on armed reconnaissance bomb or strafe barracks and shipping at Foochow, airfield and barracks at Nanchang, factory, barracks, and bridge near Sienning, and in French Indochina, freighters at Hongay and Campha Port, barracks at Ha Coi, and the area E of Lang Son.

EUROPEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

STRATEGIC OPERATIONS

(Eighth Air Force): Mission 254: 5 of 5 B-17s drop 250 bundles of leaflets on Brussels, Antwerp, Ghent and Monceau-sur-Sambre, Belgium at 2127-2137 hours without loss.

TACTICAL OPERATIONS

(Ninth Air Force): Units arriving in England from the US: 96th Troop Carrier Squadron, 440th Troop Carrier Group, at Bottesford with C-47s; 585th Bombardment Squadron (Medium), 394th Bombardment Group (Medium), at Boreham with B-26s (first mission is 23 Mar).

MEDITERRANEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

TACTICAL OPERATIONS

(Twelfth Air Force): In Italy, B-26s bomb the Rome/ Tiburtina marshalling yard and unsuccessfully attack the Orvieto railroad bridge, while B-25s hit the Littoria marshalling yard; P-40s and A-36s strike at enemy positions on the coast at San Felice Circeo, gun positions E of Littoria, guns and tanks at Cisterna di Roma, railroad at Montalto di Castro, train at Monte Libretti station and railway buildings at Zagarolo; and fighters patrol the Anzio area without incident. Flight of the 5th Combat Mapping Squadron, 3d Photographic Group (Reconnaissance), begins operating from San Severo, Italy with F-5s; the squadron is based at Pomigliano, Italy.

PACIFIC OCEAN AREA

(Seventh Air Force): A-24s and P-40s from Makin Island and B-25s from Tarawa Atoll attack airfields, AA positions and radio installations at Mille and Wotje Atolls. B-25s, operating out of Engebi Island in Eniwetok Atoll, Marshall Islands (secured by invading forces on 22 Feb) for the first time, bomb Kusaie Island.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA

(Thirteenth Air Force): On New Britain Island, P-40s and P-39s attack the Wunapope supply area; 19 B-24s pound the Rabaul area, starting several large fires. On Bougainville Island, 40 B-25s hit Japanese positions in the hills near Empress Augusta Bay; P-39s attack targets at Kepiai Plantation.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA

(Fifth Air Force): 11 B-25s bomb Lorengau and several targets of opportunity on Manus Island. B-24s and P-39s, operating singly or in pairs, attack numerous scattered targets of opportunity throughout the SWPA during armed reconnaissance flights.

SATURDAY, 11 MARCH 1944

CHINA-BURMA-INDIA THEATER OF OPERATIONS

BURMA-INDIA

(Tenth Air Force): In Burma, 70+ fighter-bombers (P-40s, P-51s and A-36s) and 2 B-25s hit fuel and ammunition dumps, gun positions, roads and general targets of opportunity in or near Saungka, Pandaw, Walawbum, Labang Gahtawng, Shaduzup and Mogaung.

CHINA

(Fourteenth Air Force): In French Indochina, 10 P-40s damage 3 barges at Campha Port, hit buildings on Weichow Island, China and attack the town area at Ha Coi.

EUROPEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

STRATEGIC OPERATIONS

(Eighth Air Force): Mission 255: France and Germany are hit in two raids; 1 B-17 and 4 fighters are lost; both forces use blind-bombing techniques due to thick overcast: 1. 120 of 124 B-17s dispatched hit the marshalling yard at Munster; 1 B-17 drops on Bentheim as a target of opportunity and 3 drop on Burgsteinfurt accidentally; 1 B-17 is lost and 24 damaged; casualties are 10 MIA. Escort is provided by 90 P-47s and 50 P-51s; 2 P-51s are lost and 2 P-47s are damaged; casualties are 2 MIA. 2. 34 of 51 B-24s hit V-weapon sites at Wizernes, France; 1 B-24 is damaged. Escort is provided by 40 P-38s and 213 P-47s; 2 P-47s are lost, 1 damaged beyond repair and 2 damaged; casualties are 1 WIA and 2 MIA. HQ 467th Bombardment Group (Heavy) and 789th, 790th and 791st Bombardment Squadrons (Heavy) arrive at Rackheath, England from the US with B-24s; first mission is 10 Apr.

TACTICAL OPERATIONS

(Ninth Air Force): 61 B-26s bomb V-weapon sites in N France; 53 abort because of weather and navigational difficulties. Arrivals in England from the US: HQ 53d Troop Carrier Wing at Greenham Common; HQ 394th Bombardment Group (Medium) and 584th, 586th and 587th Bombardment Squadrons (Medium) with B-26s at Boreham (first mission is 23 Mar); HQ 440th Troop Carrier Group at Bottesford.

MEDITERRANEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

STRATEGIC OPERATIONS

(Fifteenth Air Force):About 100 B-24s, escorted by 30+ P-38s, bomb the harbor at Toulon, France. In Italy, 100+ B-17s, escorted by 50+ P-47s, hit the marshalling yard at Padua; other B-24s bomb the marshalling yards at Pontassieve and Prato and hit the airfield at Iesi. The bombers and fighters claim destruction of 30+ enemy aircraft in the air. 772d Bombardment Squadron (Heavy), 463d Bombardment Group (Heavy), arrives at Celone Airfield, Italy with B-17s; first mission is 16 Mar.

TACTICAL OPERATIONS

(Twelfth Air Force): In Italy, medium bombers strike at Florence, Orvieto and Fabriano marshalling yards with good results; P-40, A-36, and P-47 fighter-bombers attack a supply depot, railroad station, and factory in areas NE of Monterotondo, and numerous other targets, including gun positions in the battle areas, railroad facilities, and 2 supply trains.

PACIFIC OCEAN AREA

(Seventh Air Force): B-24s, operating out of Kwajalein Atoll, for first time, carry out the Seventh's first raid from the Marshall Islands against Wake Island. P-40s and B-25s, operating from bases in the Gilbert Islands, pound Mille and Maloelap Atolls.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA

(Thirteenth Air Force): On New Britain Island, 40+ B-24s and B-25s, supported by 20+ P-38s, pound Rabaul town area; and 20 P-40s bomb Wunapope. On Bougainville Island, 43 P-40s bomb the Mosigetta area while 4 B-24s pound Monoitu Mission.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA

(Fifth Air Force): 12 B-25s pound Lorengau, Manus Island while 7 B-24s bomb enemy positions to the W of the town, as the preliminaries for invasion of Manus increase. In New Guinea, 80+ B-24s, B-25s, and A-20s hit Boram Airfield while 40+ A-20s and P-39s attack targets in the Madang area; P-47s strafe the Hansa Bay area; other aircraft carry out armed reconnaissance and sweeps over wide reaches of NE New Guinea and the New Britain coastal areas. 64th Bombardment Squadron (Heavy), 43d Bombardment Group (Heavy), moves from Dobodura to Nadzab, New Guinea with B-24s.

SUNDAY, 12 MARCH 1944

CHINA-BURMA-INDIA THEATER OF OPERATIONS

BURMA-INDIA

(Tenth Air Force): In Burma, 50+ P-40s, A-36s, and P-51s, along with a single B-25, pound troops and supply areas at Shedwiyang and near Kamaing, bomb the town of Shaduzup, and hit storage areas near Manywet and Malakawng.

EUROPEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

STRATEGIC OPERATIONS

(Eighth Air Force): Mission 256: 46 of 52 B-24s dispatched hit a V-weapon site at St Pol/Siracourt, France and 6 hit targets of opportunity, all using blind-bombing techniques; 1 B-24 is lost and 26 damaged; casualties are 1 WIA. 788th Bombardment Squadron (Heavy), 467th Bombardment Group (Heavy), arrives at Rackheath, England from the US with B-24s; first mission is 10 Apr.

TACTICAL OPERATIONS

(Ninth Air Force): HQ 474th Fighter Group and 428th, 429th and 430th Fighter Squadrons arrive at Moreton, England from the US with P-38s; first mission is 25 Apr.

MEDITERRANEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

TACTICAL OPERATIONS

(Twelfth Air Force): 345th Fighter Squadron, 350th Fighter Group, ceases operating form Corsica with P-39s and returns to base on Sardinia.

PACIFIC OCEAN AREA

(Seventh Air Force): B-24s from Tarawa Atoll bomb Mille, Wotje and Maloelap Atolls and Nauru Island, Gilbert Islands. B-25s hit Jaluit Atoll.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA

(Thirteenth Air Force): On New Britain Island, 22 B-25s, with USN fighter cover, pound the Rabaul area, concentrating on the N rim of Simpson Harbor; 18 B-24s, with USN fighter cover, follow with a strike against Rabaul customs wharf area; the B-24 strike is followed by an attack on the town area of Rabaul by 64 P-40s, P-38s, and P-39s.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA

(Fifth Air Force): 12 B-25s hit enemy positions and communication at Lorengau, Manus Island as landings on small offshore islands continue with a beachhead being established on Hauwei Island. 40+ B-24s B-25s, and A-20s hit the Wewak, New Guinea area. 403d Bombardment Squadron, 43d Bombardment Group, moves from Dobodura to Nadzab, New Guinea with B-24s.

MONDAY, 13 MARCH 1944

AMERICAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

CARIBBEAN

(Sixth Air Force): 32d Fighter Squadron, XXVI Fighter Command, moves from Hato Field, Curacao to France Field, Canal Zone with P-39s.

CHINA-BURMA-INDIA THEATER OF OPERATIONS

BURMA-INDIA

(Tenth Air Force): In Burma, 140+ P-40s, A-36s, and P-51s along with 2 B-25s pound numerous targets of opportunity in the Shaduzup area, knock out a span of a bridge in Shaduzup, hit the town of Loilaw, pound supply and ammunition dumps near Warazup and Seton, and bomb a building area N of Namti.

CHINA

(Fourteenth Air Force): In China, 8 B-24s and 4 P-40s attack the airfield and seaplane anchorage at Kiungshan on Hainan Island; and 16 P-40s bomb a bridge at Puchi, scoring direct hits on both approaches. HQ 312th Fighter Wing is activated at Kunming, China.

EUROPEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

STRATEGIC OPERATIONS

(Eighth Air Force): Mission 257: 127 B-17s and 144 B-24s are dispatched to bomb V-weapon sites in the Pas de Calais, France area but the strike is cancelled due to bad weather; 7 B-17s bomb Poix Airfield as a target of opportunity; 2 B-17s are lost, 1 B-24 is damaged beyond repair and 61 B-17s and 13 B-24s are damaged; casualties are 6 KIA, 1 WIA and 20 MIA. Escort is provided by 213 P-47s; 1 P-47 is damaged. Mission 258: 7 of 7 B-17s drop 350 bundles of leaflets on Reims, Orleans, Paris, Amiens, Rouen and Chartres, France at 2104-2137 hours without loss.

TACTICAL OPERATIONS

(Ninth Air Force): 40 B-26s attack a V-weapon site at Lottinghen/Les Grands Bois, France; 37 abort due to bad weather. Moves in England: HQ 97th Combat Bombardment Wing (Medium) from Marks Hall to Little Walden; 153d Liaison Squadron, IX Fighter Command (attached to First Army), from Keevil to Erlestokes with L-5s.

MEDITERRANEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

STRATEGIC OPERATIONS

(Fifteenth Air Force):775th Bombardment Squadron (Heavy), 463d Bombardment Group (Heavy), arrives at Celone Airfield, Italy from the US with B-17s; first mission is 18 Mar.

TACTICAL OPERATIONS

(Twelfth Air Force): In Italy, B-26s bomb railway bridges NW and W of Sarzana and at Viareggio. hit tracks S of the latter, and, along with South African Air Force (SAAF) light bombers, bomb Fabriano marshalling yard; B-25s bomb Spoleto marshalling yard, hitting E and W chokepoints and line to Terni, and also attack Perugia marshalling yard with less successful results; and A-36s bomb a railroad station between Orte and Orvieto while P-40s hit a supply dump near Velletri and gun positions along a beachhead line directly S of Rome.

PACIFIC OCEAN AREA

(Seventh Air Force): B-25s from Engebi Island, Eniwetok Atoll, bomb Kusaie Island while B-24s from Tarawa Atoll hit Ponape Island. B-25s from Abemama Island and Tarawa Atoll pound Mille Atoll. 38th Bombardment Squadron (Heavy), 30th Bombardment Group (Heavy), moves from Nanumea Island, Ellice Islands to Kwajalein Atoll; the squadron continues operating from Makin Island with B-24s until 22 Mar.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA

(Thirteenth Air Force): On New Britain Island, 2 B-24s, with USN fighter escort, and 22 B-25s bomb the Rabaul area, hitting the NW part of Rabaul and harbor and waterfront section; and 27 P-39s, P-40s, and P-38s pound the Wunapope supply area. 31st Bombardment Squadron (Heavy), 7th Bombardment Group (Heavy), ceases operating from Munda, New Georgia Island with B-24s and returns to base on Guadalcanal Island.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA

(Fifth Air Force): 160+ B-24s, B-25s, A-20s, P-47s, and P-40s thoroughly pound the Wewak, New Guinea area; US aircraft claim 8 interceptors shot down. Other aircraft, operating singly or in flights of 2 or 3, attack several targets in the NE New Guinea-New Britain area. In the Admiralty Islands, Hauwei Island is cleared of enemy opposition and artillery is brought ashore. 340th Fighter Squadron, 348th Fighter Group, moves from Finschhafen to Saidor, New Guinea with P-47s.

TUESDAY, 14 MARCH 1944

CHINA-BURMA-INDIA THEATER OF OPERATIONS

BURMA-INDIA

(Tenth Air Force): In Burma, 90+ P-51s, A-36s, and P-40s, along with 3 B-25s, hit Japanese troops, bridges, dumps, and villages in the Mogaung Valley.

CHINA

(Fourteenth Air Force): In China, 20 Japanese bombers hit airfields at Hengyang and Suichwan; surprise prevents effective interception by AAF fighters.

EUROPEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

TACTICAL OPERATIONS

(Ninth Air Force): 12th Tactical Reconnaissance Squadron, 67th Tactical Reconnaissance Group, moves from Chilbolton to Middle Wallop, England with F-6s.

MEDITERRANEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

TACTICAL OPERATIONS

(Twelfth Air Force): In Italy, B-26s bomb Prenestina marshalling yard and nearby chemical plant; B-25s strike Terni and Orte marshalling yards, causing considerable damage, while A-20s attack tank repair facilities unsuccessfully; P-40s attack guns in the Anzio beachhead area and also hit a supply dump; and A-36s and P-47s hit railway stations and the town of Ortia.

PACIFIC OCEAN AREA

(Seventh Air Force): B-25s from Engebi Island, Eniwetok Atoll bomb Kusaie Island. B-25s from Tarawa Atoll hit Wotje Atoll.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA

(Thirteenth Air Force): On New Britain Island, 22 P-40s and P-39s hit Wunapope; 23 B-24s, with USN fighter cover, bomb the N waterfront area of Simpson Harbor; and 22 B-25s, with USN fighter escort, bomb the E section of town of Rabaul. P-39s, P-38s, P-40s, and USN fighters hit barges and other targets of opportunity around the coast of Bougainville Island and along the NE coast of New Ireland Island.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA

(Fifth Air Force): In New Guinea, 80+ B-24s, B-25s, and A-20s, supported by Allied fighters, pound the Wewak area; 17 other B-24s bomb the airfield at Tadji; and 8 A-20s carry out a sweep over the Madang area while 12 bomb the airstrip at Alexishafen. HQ 8th Fighter Group and 35th and 36th Fighter Squadrons move from Cape Gloucester, New Britain Island to Nadzab, New Guinea with P-40s and P-47s respectively.

WEDNESDAY, 15 MARCH 1944

CHINA-BURMA-INDIA THEATER OF OPERATIONS

BURMA-INDIA

(Tenth Air Force): In Burma, 31 B-24s and 20+ Royal Air Force (RAF) Wellingtons and Beaufighters pound supply dumps and targets of opportunity in the Rangoon area while 8 other B-24s hit barracks near Bangkok, Thailand; numerous US and RAF medium and fighter-bombers attack villages, Japanese positions, ammunition dumps, tanks, and many other targets of opportunity in the Chin Hills, at Chindwin, in the Mogaung Valley, and in areas around Mandalay.

EUROPEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

STRATEGIC OPERATIONS

(Eighth Air Force): Mission 259: 185 of 187 B-17s and 145 of 157 B-24s hit the industrial area at Brunswick, Germany and targets of opportunity; they claim 0-0-1 Luftwaffe aircraft; 1 B-17 and 2 B-24s are a lost and 31 B-17s and 15 B-24s are damaged; casualties are 1 KIA, 4 WIA and 30 MIA. Escort is provided by 121 P-38s and 467 Eighth and Ninth Air Force P-47s; 4 P-38s are lost, 1 damaged beyond repair and 4 pilots MIA; P-47s claim 39-3-13 Luftwaffe aircraft in the air and 1-0-0 on the ground, 1 P-47 is lost and 5 damaged, casualties are 1 MIA. Mission 260: 8 P-47s are dispatched, 2 with 2x1,000 pound (454 kg) bombs, against an enemy barge in the Zuider Zee, The Netherlands to test the feasibility of this type of operation; near misses are scored. Mission 261: 7 of 7 B-17s drop 350 bundles of leaflets on Rennes, Lille, Reims, Le Mans, Paris and Chartres, France at 2115-2152 hours without loss.

TACTICAL OPERATIONS

(Ninth Air Force): A directive states that the Ninth Air Force is released from first priority commitment to assist the Eighth Air Force. P-51s of the Ninth Air Force, committed to the Allied Expeditionary Air Force (AEAF), will continue to escort heavy bombers when required by the Eighth Air Force. Ninth Air Force Advanced HQ assumes the function of target selection and mission planning for the IX Bomber Command. AEAF HQ has the authority to indicate percentage of effect to be expended on each type of target on a long-term basis. In France, 118 B-26s attack marshalling yards at Aulnoye and Haine-Saint- Pierre and Chievres Airfield; during the afternoon, 10 B-26s using "Oboe" to test its accuracy, bomb Coxyde Airfield with poor results; dive-bombing missions using fighters begin with a 7-plane attack on Saint-Valery-en-Caux Airfield. HQ 368th Fighter Group and 395th, 396th and 397th Fighter Squadrons move from Greenham Common to Chilbolton, England with P-47s.

MEDITERRANEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

STRATEGIC OPERATIONS

(Fifteenth Air Force):In Italy, 300+ B-24s and B-17s bomb Cassino, the area S of Cassino and areas near Venafro in support of the US Fifth Army; 250+ other heavy bombers return to base without bombing because of complete cloud cover of their target areas; extensive fighter cover over the Cassino area is provided by P-38s, and P-47s fly 2 sweeps over the Viterbo-Canino area; there is no fighter opposition. Arrivals in Italy from the US: 773d Bombardment Squadron (Heavy), 463d Bombardment Group (Heavy), at Celone Airfield, Italy with B-17s (first mission is 30 Mar); 780th Bombardment Squadron (Heavy), 465th Bombardment Group (Heavy), at Pantanella Airfield with B-24s (first mission is 5 May).

TACTICAL OPERATIONS

(Twelfth Air Force): In Italy, medium and fighter- bombers, together with Mediterranean Allied Strategic Air Force (MASAF) heavy bombers and other aircraft of the Mediterranean Allied Tactical Air Force (MATAF) in the greatest air effort yet made in the MTO, rain bombs upon enemy concentrations in Cassino and surrounding areas as the New Zealand Corps begins the third battle of Cassino; light and medium bombers also hit a command post E of Ceprano and the town of San Benedetto de Marsi; fighters on patrol and a sweep over Anzio, Cassino and Rome meet no air opposition.

PACIFIC OCEAN AREA

(Seventh Air Force): B-24s from Kwajalein Atoll fly the first Seventh Air Force mission against Truk Atoll, Caroline Islands, hitting Dublon and Eten Islands before dawn; alternate targets of Oroluk Anchorage and Ponape Town are also hit. B-25s from Tarawa Atoll hit Maloelap Atoll. By this date the A-24s, P-39s, and P-40s used against Mille and Jaluit Atolls during Operations FLINTLOCK (operations against Kwajalein and Majuro Atolls) and CATCHPOLE (operations against Eniwetok and Ujelang Atolls) have returned to Oahu, Territory of Hawaii for rest and re-equipment. 27th Bombardment Squadron (Heavy), 30th Bombardment Group (Heavy), moves from Nanumea Island to Kwajalein Atoll with B-24s; they have been operating from Abemama Island since 26 Feb.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA

(Thirteenth Air Force): Major General Hubert R Harmon, Commanding General Thirteenth Air Force, becomes Commander Air Solomons (COMAIRSOLS). On New Britain Island, 50+ B-25s, P-40s, P-39s and P-38s and USN fighters pound Wunapope supply areas; 24 B-25s, with USN fighter escort, bomb Lakunai Airfield; 22 unescorted B-24s, finding Tobera clouded over, bomb the airfield at Rapopo as a secondary target.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA

(Fifth Air Force): In New Guinea, 200+ B-24s, B-25s, A-20s, P-38s, P-47s and P-40s pound Wewak township, blasting docks, warehouses, gun positions, and numerous other targets; fighters claim 11 enemy aircraft shot down. 36 B-25s bomb Tingo village and Lugos Mission area on Manus Island, where elements of the 1st Cavalry Division make an amphibious landing, take the mission and head E toward Lorengau.

THURSDAY, 16 MARCH 1944

AMERICAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

ALASKA

(Eleventh Air Force): 3 B-24s take off from Shemya Island shortly before midnight 15/16 Mar to fly armed reconnaissance over Matsuwa Island, Kurile Islands, but turn back prematurely. Some of the bombers jettison their bombloads over the target area.

CHINA-BURMA-INDIA THEATER OF OPERATIONS

BURMA-INDIA

(Tenth Air Force): 6 B-25s damage a bridge at Nattalin near Rangoon, Burma.

CHINA

(Fourteenth Air Force): In China, 7 P-40s on a Yangtze River sweep damage 2 launches near Yoyang and pound barracks and storage at Sienning.

EUROPEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

STRATEGIC OPERATIONS

(Eighth Air Force): Mission 262: 2 primary targets and targets of opportunity in Germany are attacked; fighter opposition is heavy against the first force of bombers over France and Germany; the bombers claim 68-32-43 Luftwaffe aircraft; 23 bombers and 10 fighters are lost and 179 damaged: 1. 401 of 501 B-17s hit Augsburg, 46 bomb Gessertshausen and 18 hit Ulm; 18 B-17s are lost; casualties are 1 KIA, 10 WIA and 171 MIA. 2. 197 of 213 B-24s bomb Friedrichshafen and 13 hit targets of opportunity; 5 B-24s are lost and 1 damaged beyond repair; casualties are 6 KIA, 7 WIA and 46 MIA. Escort is provided by 125 P-38s, 608 Eighth and Ninth Air Force P-47s and 135 Eighth and Ninth Air Force P-51s; claims and losses are: 1. P-38s: 1 lost. 2. P-47s claim 25-3-17 Luftwaffe aircraft; 3 P-47s are lost and 5 damaged; 3 pilots are MIA. 3. P-51s claim 53-4-16 Luftwaffe aircraft; 6 P-51s are lost, 2 damaged beyond repair and 5 damaged; 6 pilots are MIA. The fighters also claim 1-0-13 Luftwaffe aircraft on the ground.

TACTICAL OPERATIONS

(Ninth Air Force): 15th Tactical Reconnaissance Squadron, 67th Tactical Reconnaissance Group, moves from Chilboton to Middle Wallop, England with F-6s.

MEDITERRANEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

TACTICAL OPERATIONS

(Twelfth Air Force): In Italy, light, medium and fighter-bombers blast gun positions in the Cassino-Piedimonte area as the battle of Cassino rages on; fighter-bombers also hit gun positions along the Anzio beachhead front.

PACIFIC OCEAN AREA

(Seventh Air Force): B-25s from Tarawa Atoll and Abemama Island pound Wotje and Mille Atolls and Ormed Island, Marshall Islands.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA

(Thirteenth Air Force): On New Britain Island, 13 B-24s bomb Vunakanau Airfield, and 12 B-25s follow with a raid on Vunakanau radar installations; 9 B-25s, 12 P-39s, and 11 P-40s hit Wunapope supply areas; 10 P-38s attack Cape Tawui while 11 B-25s pound the N edge of Simpson Harbor; and 7 P-38s strafe barges W of Raluana Point. At Monoitu Mission on Bougainville Island, a raid by B-24s demolishes several buildings.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA

(Fifth Air Force): On New Guinea, 70+ B-24s, B-25s and A-20s hit AA positions, buildings and salvage dumps at Wewak and nearby Brandi Plantation; 19 B-25s bomb personnel and storage areas at Nubia; and B-24s and Catalinas attack a Japanese convoy near Hollandia. Other B-24s bomb docks and factory area at Soerabaja, Java. 8th Photographic Reconnaissance Squadron, 6th Photographic Reconnaissance Group, moves from Port Moresby to Nadzab, New Guinea with F-5s.

FRIDAY, 17 MARCH 1944

- ST PATRICK'S DAY

AMERICAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

ALASKA

(Eleventh Air Force): 3 B-24s fly armed reconnaissance over Onnekotan Island, Kurile Islands, before dawn releasing bombs through the overcast.

CHINA-BURMA-INDIA THEATER OF OPERATIONS

BURMA-INDIA

(Tenth Air Force): In Burma, 24 B-24s and 12 P-38s attack supply dumps in the Kalewa area in the Chin Hills region; 30+ B-25s, P-51s and A-36s damage Shweli and Mogaung bridges and hit positions and supply dumps in the Kamaing area; 37 P-40s blast the Myitkyina Airfield; numerous other aircraft fly miscellaneous sorties over the Sumprabum area; and 2 B-25s cause fires among oil installations at Chauk. 24th Photographic Squadron (Heavy), Tenth Air Force, based at Guskhara, India with F-7s, sends a detachment to operate from Hsinching, China.

CHINA

(Fourteenth Air Force): In French Indochina, 5 B-25s bomb and strafe boatyards at Vinh and hit lumber stores and sawmills at nearby Ben Thuy.

EUROPEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

STRATEGIC OPERATIONS

(Eighth Air Force): Mission 263: 135 P-47s are dispatched on low level strafing attacks against airfields in France; 25 attack Soesterburg Airfield, The Netherlands and 25 attack Chartres, France; they claim 3-2-8 Luftwaffe aircraft on the ground, 2 P-47s are lost, the pilots are MIA.

TACTICAL OPERATIONS

(Ninth Air Force): 70 B-26s bomb the marshalling yard at Criel-sur-Mer, France. HQ 441st Troop Carrier Group and 99th, 100th, 301st and 302d Troop Carrier Squadrons, arrive at Langar, England from the US with C-47s.

MEDITERRANEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

STRATEGIC OPERATIONS

(Fifteenth Air Force):200+ B-24s bomb Vienna, Austria and various targets of opportunity escorted by P-47s and P-38s; 100+ B-17s abort because of bad weather.

TACTICAL OPERATIONS

(Twelfth Air Force): In Italy, B-25s bomb Montepescali marshalling yard, Cecina, Roccasecca and Castrocielo, while A-20s hit troop concentrations in the Cassino area; and fighter-bombers hit guns in the Cassino area and attack a nearby railroad bridge and underpass with good results.

PACIFIC OCEAN AREA

(Seventh Air Force): B-24s and B-25s from Tarawa Atoll bomb, respectively, Ponape Island and Jaluit Atoll Atoll. 392d Bombardment Squadron (Heavy), 30th Bombardment Group (Heavy), moves from Abemama Island to Kwajalein Atoll with B-24s.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA

(Thirteenth Air Force): On New Britain Island, 31 fighter-bombers and 31 B-25s pound supply areas at Wunapope and at Ralum. On Bougainville Island, a few fighter-bombers hit a Japanese bivouac area on Matchin Bay. 20+ B-24s pound the airstrip at Namatanai, New Ireland Island.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA

(Fifth Air Force): In New Guinea, almost 100 B-24s, B-25s and A-20s attack the Wewak area; P-38s hit the Hansa Bay area while other B-25s bomb the Madang-Alexishafen area. Soerabaja, Java naval base is bombed by B-24s.

SATURDAY, 18 MARCH 1944

CHINA-BURMA-INDIA THEATER OF OPERATIONS

BURMA-INDIA

(Tenth Air Force): In Burma, 22 B-25s attack villages and oil storage areas near Kalewa while 16 B-24s and 41 RAF Vengeance's pound the same general area hitting Japanese positions and causing many fires; 20+ P-51s and B-25s support ground forces near Chindwin; 14 others hit a truck park and supply area near Mandalay; and 20+ fighter-bombers (P-51s, P-40s and A-36s) bomb the Kamaing area while 10 more damage several riverboats near Katha.

CHINA

(Fourteenth Air Force): In China, 16 P-40s on a Yangtze River sweep sink 1 large sailboat and strafe a transport ship at Chiuchiang. In French Indochina, 2 P-40s damage a bridge N of Haiphong and attack targets of opportunity in the area, while 2 others sink 2 large junks at Thuong Mo; 12 P-40s on armed reconnaissance from Nanning, China sink a barge and damage other craft at Quang Yen, sink a transport vessel at Campha Port and damage a nearby bridge, attack a train and several buildings in the Lang Son area, and damage a railroad bridge between Lang Son and Phu Lang Thuong.

EUROPEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

ICELAND

(Iceland Base Command): HQ 342d Composite Group is disbanded in Iceland.

STRATEGIC OPERATIONS

(Eighth Air Force): Mission 264: Aircraft plants and airfields in Germany are targetted; enemy fighters attack in force and AA fire is heavy; the bombers claim 45-10-17 Luftwaffe aircraft; 43 bombers and 13 fighters are lost; 1. 284 of 290 B-17s dispatched bomb the aviation industry at Oberpfaffenhofen, air depots at Lechfeld and Landsberg, Memmingen Airfield and targets of opportunity; 8 B-17s are lost and 102 damaged; casualties are 1 KIA, 9 WIA and 80 MIA. 2. 196 of 221 B-17s dispatched bomb Munich, the aviation industry at Oberpfaffenhofen, Lechfeld air depot and targets of opportunity; 7 B-17s are lost, 1 damaged beyond repair and 80 damaged; casualties are 3 KIA, 4 WIA and 70 MIA. 3. 227 B-24s are dispatched to aviation industry targets at Friedrichshafen/ Lowenthal (77 bomb), Friedrichshafen/Manzell (38 bomb) and Friedrichshafen/ Zeppelin (52 bomb), the city of Friedrichshafen (22 bomb) and 9 hit targets of opportunity; 28 B-24s are lost, 3 damaged beyond repair and 60 damaged; casualties are 6 KIA, 9 WIA and 286 MIA Escort is provided by 113 P-38s, 598 Eighth and Ninth Air Force P-47s and 214 Eighth and Ninth Air Force P-51s. Details are: 1. P-38s claim 11-2-1 Luftwaffe aircraft; 5 are lost and 1 damaged; 4 pilots are MIA. 2. P-47s claim 2-1-3 Luftwaffe aircraft; 2 are lost, 1 damaged beyond repair and 6 damaged; 2 pilots are MIA. 3. P-51s claim 26-2-6 Luftwaffe aircraft; 6 are lost, 2 damaged beyond repair and 3 damaged; 1 pilot is WIA and 6 MIA. The fighters also claim 3-2-2 Luftwaffe aircraft on the ground. Mission 265: 6 of 6 B-17s drop 300 bundles of leaflets on Cambrai, Lille, Paris, Amiens, Rouen and Caen, France at 2115-2139 hours without loss.

MEDITERRANEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

STRATEGIC OPERATIONS

(Fifteenth Air Force):In Italy, 950+ B-17s and B-24s bomb aviation targets; B-17s hit Villaorba Landing Ground and Udine aviation depot; B-24s bomb Lavariano and Maniago Landing Grounds and Gorizia aviation depot; 126 P-38s and P-47s carry out sweeps in the Udine-Maniago area and strafe aircraft at Udine Airfield, a tanker S of Marano Lagoon and a hangar, 2 trains, 2 radar stations, and a seaplane anchorage (destroying 6 seaplanes) at Belvedere; the bombers and escorts claim 48 enemy fighters destroyed, 9 US aircraft are downed. 774th Bombardment Squadron (Heavy), 463d Bombardment Group (Heavy), arrives at Celone Airfield, Italy from the US with B-17s; first mission is 30 Mar.

TACTICAL OPERATIONS

(Twelfth Air Force): In Italy, B-25s, B-26s, and A-20s bomb Foligno marshalling yard, Orvieto marshalling yard and railroad bridge, Poggibonsi railroad bridge, Piombino dock area, Colleferro railroad tracks and assembly area N of Anzio; P-40s, A-36s, and P-47s attack gun positions in the Anzio beachhead area, a factory at Carroceto, motor transport concentrations in the Cassino area, fuel dump, tank repair depot, and bivouac in the beachhead area, motor transport around Ladispoli, railroad bridge N of Rome, and railroad tracks and cars at other points.

PACIFIC OCEAN AREA

(Seventh Air Force): 2 B-25s from Engebi Island, Eniwetok Atoll bomb and strafe Ponape Island. 13 B-25s from Abemama Island bomb Jaluit Atoll while 5 from Tarawa Atoll hit the Atoll with bombs and cannon fire. 1 B-24 from Tarawa Atoll bombs Mille Atoll and photographs Mille and Majuro Atoll, Marshall Islands.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA

(Thirteenth Air Force): On New Britain Island, 12 P-40s pound fuel stores on Keravia Bay; 13 P-38s follow with a strike on an ammunition dump at nearby Cape Tawui; 12 P-39s later hit the Keravia Bay area; and still later, 24 B-24s and 13 B-25s blast the town of Rabaul and foothills nearby. On Bougainville Island, 18 P-39s, along with several USN fighter-bombers, hit shipping at the mouths of the Jaba and Tavena Rivers.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA

(Fifth Air Force): In New Guinea, 100+ B-24s, B-25s, and A-20s continue to pound the Wewak area, hitting AA positions and nearby Brandi Plantation; a Japanese supply convoy reaches Wewak but escapes bombardment.

SUNDAY, 19 MARCH 1944

CHINA-BURMA-INDIA THEATER OF OPERATIONS

BURMA-INDIA

(Tenth Air Force): In Burma, 20+ B-25s and P-38s hit Wuntho; 70+ fighter-bombers and 2 B-25s over the Mogaung Valley bomb supply dumps, enemy positions, and targets of opportunity throughout the area, concentrating attacks in and near Kamaing, Mogaung and Sumprabum; and 16 P-51s hit barracks and a supply area at Meiktila Airfield near Mandalay while B-25s hit Indaw. 82d Bombardment Squadron (Medium), 12th Bombardment Group (Medium), arrives at Tezgaon, India from Italy with B-25s; first mission is 21 Apr.

CHINA

(Fourteenth Air Force): In China, 2 B-25s, 9 P-38s and 3 P-51s on a Yangtze River sweep damage several river vessels, hit a fort at Chihchow and bomb Nanchang Airfield.

EUROPEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

STRATEGIC OPERATIONS

(Eighth Air Force): Mission 266: V-weapon sites in France are hit. 1. 117 of 129 B-17s hit sites at Wizernes and Watten; 1 B-17 is lost and 74 damaged; casualties are 1 WIA and 10 MIA. 2. 56 of 64 B-17s hit Marquise/Mimoyecques; 14 B-17s are damaged; 1 crewman is WIA. Escort is provided by 82 P-47s; 1 is damaged and the pilot is WIA. Mission 267: 6 of 6 B-17s drop 300 bundles of leaflets on The Hague, Rotterdam, Leeuwarden, Utrecht and Amsterdam, The Netherlands at 2114-2140 hours without loss. Mission 268: 35 P-47s [25 with 500-pound (227 kg) bombs] are dispatched to Gilze-Rijen Airfield, The Netherlands; 20 of the 25 bomb without loss; 39 P-51s fly a supporting sweep.

TACTICAL OPERATIONS

(Ninth Air Force): In France, 152 B-26s and 65 A-20s attack NOBALL (V-weapon) targets in the Saint-Omer area during morning and afternoon missions; 16 P-47s dive-bomb the airfield between Boulogne-sur-Mer and Le Touquet; the morning raids precede an Eighth Air Force attack with B-17s on V-weapon sites.

MEDITERRANEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

(Mediterranean Allied Air Force): Mediterranean Allied Tactical Air Force (MATAF) issues a directive for Operation STRANGLE, to interdict supply movements in Italy by destroying marshalling yards and attacking rail lines and ports in a concentrated campaign.

STRATEGIC OPERATIONS

(Fifteenth Air Force):460th Bombardment Group (Heavy) with B-24s is declared operational making a total of 14 bomb groups operational in the Fifteenth Air Force. 234 B-17s and B-24s, escorted by 100+ fighters, bomb the air depot at Klagenfurt, Austria; 150+ B-24s also hit the air depot at Graz, Austria and the marshalling yards at Knin and Metkovic, Yugoslavia; Luftwaffe fighters provide fierce opposition and along with AA fire, shoot down 17 bombers and 1 fighter; US aircraft claim 30 enemy fighters destroyed in combat.

TACTICAL OPERATIONS

(Twelfth Air Force): In Italy, B-26s attack a road bridge W of Arezzo and port installations at San Stefano al Mare; B-25s hit a bridge approach in S Orvieto, marshalling yards at Avezzano and Orte and a bridge at Orte; tank repair shops near Tivoli are bombed by A-20s; and P-47s and P-40s strike at enemy concentrations, dumps and guns in the US Fifth Army main battle area and in the area N of the Anzio beachhead.

PACIFIC OCEAN AREA

(Seventh Air Force): B-24s pound Wake Island from Kwajalein Atoll. B-25s from Abemama Island and Tarawa Atoll hit Maloelap, Jaluit, and Mille Atolls. 1 B-24 from Tarawa bombs Mille and photographs Mille and Majuro Atolls.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA

(Thirteenth Air Force): On New Britain Island, 30+ fighter-bombers over the Rabaul area pound an ammunition dump and other targets around Cape Tawui; and 24 B-25s blast the Wunapope area, concentrating on workers' quarters. 24 B-24s bomb the airstrip at Panapai, New Ireland Island, causing considerable damage to the runways.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA

(Fifth Air Force): In New Guinea, 100+ B-24s, B-25s, A-20s and P-47s pound the Wewak area, hitting especially hard the Cape Moem and Cape Boram areas; other B-25s and P-39s, along with RAAF aircraft, bomb the Hansa Bay, Nubia, Madang, and Alexishafen areas and hit targets along Bogadjim Road; and 130 B-24s, B-25s, A-20s, and P-38s virtually destroy a supply convoy proceeding from Wewak toward Hollandia, sinking at least 5 vessels. P-40s attack a bivouac area and AA on Garove Island, Bismarck Archipelago.

MONDAY, 20 MARCH 1944

CHINA-BURMA-INDIA THEATER OF OPERATIONS

BURMA-INDIA

(Tenth Air Force): In the Arakan area of Burma, 12 RAF Vengeance's hit Japanese positions near Kaladan and Buthidaung while 6 P-38s severely damage a bridge at Lamu; 20+ B-25s and P-51s hit communication and transportation targets in the Katha area; 6 B-24s bomb the Moulmein-Martaban area; and 100+ fighter-bombers strike Mogaung Valley buildings and supply areas, and fuel dumps at Mogaung, Myitkyina, Sumprabum and Sahmaw. 81st Bombardment Squadron (Medium), 12th Bombardment Group (Medium), arrives at Tezgaon, India from Italy with B-25s; first mission is 16 Apr.

CHINA

(Fourteenth Air Force): Photo reconnaissance sorties are flown over C China and NE Burma.

EUROPEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

STRATEGIC OPERATIONS

(Eighth Air Force): Mission 269: 353 B-17s and 92 B-24s are dispatched to targets in Germany but high clouds and the malfunction of blind-bombing equipment cause nearly 300 bombers to abort the mission; 7 bombers and 8 fighters are lost; the bombers claim 2-0-0 Luftwaffe aircraft; the bombers also drop 900,000 leaflets; details are: 1. 54 B-17s hit Mannheim, 51 hit Frankfurt, 19 hit Bingen and 22 hit targets of opportunity; 5 B-17s are lost, 1 damaged beyond repair and 150 damaged; casualties are 1 KIA, 8 WIA and 40 MIA. 2. 1 of 92 B-24s hit Bretuit Airfield; 2 B-24s are lost and 15 damaged; casualties are 3 WIA and 21 MIA. Escort is provided by 44 P-38s, 345 P-47s and 205 Eighth and Ninth Air Force P-51s; claims and losses are: 1. P-38s: no claims or losses 2. P-47s claim 1-0-1 Luftwaffe aircraft on the ground; 6 P-47s are lost and 9 damaged; 6 pilots are MIA. 3. P-51s claim 4-0-1 Luftwaffe aircraft; 2 P-51s are lost and 3 damaged; 2 pilots are MIA.

TACTICAL OPERATIONS

(Ninth Air Force): 67th Tactical Reconnaissance Group completes a series of 83 missions (begun on 23 Feb) during which photographs were made of 160 miles (256 km) of French coastline and 2 inshore strips, each 120 miles (192 km) long; 9,500 prints are produced and no aircraft are lost. In France, 200+ B-26s and A-20s bomb 4 NOBALL (V-weapon) targets and Creil marshalling yard; and 85 P-47s dive-bomb airfields at Abbeville, Poix and Conches.

MEDITERRANEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

121st Liaison Squadron, AAF, MTO, arrives at Oran, Algeria from the US with L-4s and L-5s; first mission is in Sep 44.

STRATEGIC OPERATIONS

(Fifteenth Air Force):HQ 464th Bombardment Group (Heavy) and 778th Bombardment Squadron (Heavy) arrive at Pantanell Airfield, Italy from the US with B-24s; first mission is 30 Apr.

TACTICAL OPERATIONS

(Twelfth Air Force): 310th Bombardment Group (Medium) is transferred from the XII Fighter Command to the 57th Bombardment Wing, thus consolidating all B-25 units of the Twelfth Air Force under 1 wing. In Italy, B-25s strike the harbor and shipping at Piombino, the Poggibonsi railroad bridge, Port' Ercole and the area around the Orvieto railroad bridge; B-25s hit Orvieto marshalling yard and underpass and road bridge nearby, Terni marshalling yard and dock at San Stefano al Mare; a factory at Fontana Liri is accurately bombed by A-20s; P-40s hit troop concentrations, guns and fuel dump in the Cassino-Fontana Liri area while A-36s blast the railway station at Frosinone and also drop food for troops in the Cassino area; and P-47s hit a fuel dump at Fontana Liri. HQ 62d Troop Carrier Group moves from Brindisi, Italy to Ponte Olivo, Sicily. 414th Night Fighter Squadron, 63d Fighter Wing, based at Elmas, Sardinia with Beaufighters sends a detachment to operate from Ghisonaccia, Corsica until Jul 44.

PACIFIC OCEAN AREA

(Seventh Air Force): 12 B-25s from Tarawa Atoll bomb the radio station and pier on Emidj Island, Marshall Islands. 1 other B-25 from Tarawa bombs Mille Atoll, rearms at Majuro Atoll, and again bombs Mille on the return trip. HQ 30th Bombardment Group (Heavy) moves from Abemama Island to Kwajalein Atoll.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA

(Thirteenth Air Force): On New Britain Island, 20+ fighter-bombers hit the Ratawul supply area; later 20+ fighters attack barges in the Rabaul area while 3 RNZAF Venturas blast several buildings at nearby Massava Bay; and 23 B-24s bomb the airfield at Vunakanau while 24 B-25s pound Lakunai. On Bougainville Island, 10 P-40s and P-39s bomb Numa Numa and strafe coastal targets of opportunity. A reconnaissance patrol of snooper B-24s cover US Marines moving onto Emirau Island, Bismarck Archipelago; a fighter patrol is unnecessary due to unexpected lack of opposition and after the initial landing by the Marines other Allied ground forces move ashore; by the afternoon of 21 Mar the occupation of the island is complete and construction of a base begins shortly. 868th Bombardment Squadron (Heavy), Thirteenth Air Force, moves from Munda, New Georgia Island to Los Negros Island with B-24s; this squadron uses radar-equipped "snooper" B-24s for low-level attacks at night and for pathfinder operations.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA

(Fifth Air Force): In New Guinea, 30+ B-24s bomb the airfield at Aitape; 20+ P-39s and A-20s hit Japanese HQ and other targets along the Bogadjim Road while B-25s and P-39s on armed reconnaissance hit targets at Milhanak, along the Gogol River, at Yeschan, Burui Airfield and at Erima; and at night B-24s bomb remnants of a supply convoy off Cape Terabu. On New Britain Island, P-40s on armed reconnaissance hit villages and barges along the Bangula Bay coast.

TUESDAY, 21 MARCH 1944

CHINA-BURMA-INDIA THEATER OF OPERATIONS

BURMA-INDIA

(Tenth Air Force): In Burma, 25 B-25s and P-51s destroy 1 bridge and damage another near Meza, pound buildings and targets of opportunity in the Mawlu area and hit a locomotive and several trucks in the Banmauk-Indaw area; 6 P-38s bomb Monywa oil dumps, causing several large fires; and 80+ fighter-bombers and 2 B-25s hit the town of Manywet, storage area at Myitkyina, buildings at Kamaing and Myitkyina, and warehouses, bypass, and bridge at Hopin. HQ 12th Bombardment Group (Medium) arrives at Tezgaon, India and 83d and 434th Bombardment Squadrons (Medium) arrive at Kurmitola, India from Italy with B-25s; first mission is 27 Apr.

EUROPEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

STRATEGIC OPERATIONS

(Eighth Air Force): Mission 270: 56 of 65 B-24s hit V-weapon sites at Watten, France; 7 B-24s are damaged; escort is provided by 48 P-47s without loss. Mission 271: 41 P-51s carry out a sweep of the Bordeaux, France area; they claim 12-0-0 Luftwaffe aircraft in the air and 9-0-4 on the ground; 7 P-51s are lost and 2 damaged; casualties are 1 WIA and 7 MIA. Mission 272: 6 of 6 B-17s drop 300 bundles of leaflets on The Hague, Amsterdam, Leeuwarden, Rotterdam and Utrecht, The Netherlands at 2102-2133 hours without loss.

TACTICAL OPERATIONS

(Ninth Air Force): All B-26s dispatched to bomb NOBALL (V-weapon) targets in France are recalled because of bad weather.

MEDITERRANEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

STRATEGIC OPERATIONS

(Fifteenth Air Force):Bad weather limits operations to photographic and weather reconnaissance missions.

TACTICAL OPERATIONS

(Twelfth Air Force): In Italy, B-25s make an unsuccessful attempt to bomb the Poggibonsi bridge; weather cancels other B-25 missions and all A-20 operations; B-26s attack Arezzo and Bucine viaducts and Poggibonsi and Cecina railroad bridges; P-47s hit railroad bridges N of Rome while P-40s bomb targets in the Anzio area; and A-36s drop food in the Cassino area.

PACIFIC OCEAN AREA

(Seventh Air Force): B-24s from Tarawa Atoll hit Mille and Maloelap Atolls and Ponape Island. Tarawa-based B-25s also pound Maloelap Atoll.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA

(Thirteenth Air Force): On New Britain Island, 30+ fighter-bombers and 24 B-25s pound the Lakunai Airfield area; 22 B-24s bomb Vunakanau Airfield; and fighters carry out barge sweeps in the Rabaul area. On Bougainville Island, 14 P-39s hit Numa Numa; small strikes are flown against Monoitu and a bridge at Meive, and fighter-bombers support ground forces and bomb a bivouac along Empress Augusta Bay.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA

(Fifth Air Force): In New Guinea, 140+ B-24s, B-25s, A-20s, P-38s and P-40s attack numerous targets in the Wewak-Tadji- Hansa Bay-Schouten Island areas; and P-39s and RAAF fighter-bombers blast Japanese positions in the Madang area. P-40s and A-20s on armed reconnaissance attack targets on New Britain Island and on Garove Island to the N.

WEDNESDAY, 22 MARCH 1944

CHINA-BURMA-INDIA THEATER OF OPERATIONS

BURMA-INDIA

(Tenth Air Force): Japanese troops move into India from Burma and penetrate to 30 miles (48 km) E of Imphal. In Burma, 100+ fighters and fighter-bombers over the Mogaung Valley attack troops, storage, and other targets and cause several fires throughout the area; 20+ P-51s and B-25s carry out ground support missions in the Mawlu area near Katha; near Rangoon 4 B-24s set fire to P-38 damages railroad bridges and several trucks at Pyinmana. 92d Fighter Squadron, 81st Fighter Group, arrives at Karachi, India from Italy; they will be equipped with P-47s and enter combat on 1 Jun.

CHINA

(Fourteenth Air Force): In French Indochina, 4 B-25s from Yangkai, China hit several targets in and around Phu Dien Chau, Ha Trung, Dong Giao and Nam Dinh; results include 3 locomotives destroyed and another damaged, 3 125-ft (38 m) steamers damaged, and a bridge roadbed weakened; 1 B-25 is lost.

EUROPEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

STRATEGIC OPERATIONS

(Eighth Air Force): Mission 273: 474 B-17s and 214 B-24s are dispatched to bomb aviation industry plants at Oranienburg and Basdorf, Germany but 8/10 to 10/10 cloud cover prevents an attack; the bombers hit the secondary target, Berlin, and targets of opportunity; the bombers also drop 6.368 million leaflets; 1 bomber is damaged beyond repair and 347 bombers are damaged; casualties are 20 WIA and 135 MIA. Details are: 1. 460 of 474 B-17s bomb Berlin; 7 B-17s are lost. 2. 196 of 214 B-24s bomb Berlin and 1 bombs Heide; 5 B-24s are lost. Escort is provided by 125 P-38s, 496 Eighth and Ninth Air Force P-47s and 196 Eighth and Ninth Air Force P-51s. There is no air combat and the only claim is for 1-0-0 Luftwaffe aircraft on the ground by P-47s. Details are: 1. 3 P-38s are lost and 7 damaged; 3 pilots are MIA. 2. 5 P-47s are lost, 1 damaged beyond repair and 9 damaged; casualties are 1 WIA and 5 MIA. 3. 4 P-51s are lost and 2 damaged beyond repair; 4 pilots are MIA. Mission 274: 6 of 6 B-17s drop 263 bundles of leaflets on Paris, France; and The Hague, Amsterdam and Leeuwarden, The Netherlands at 2135-2207 hours without loss.

MEDITERRANEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

STRATEGIC OPERATIONS

(Fifteenth Air Force):In Italy, around 100 B-17s bomb the marshalling yards at Verona while about 100 B-24s hit marshalling yards at Bologna and Rimini; P-38s and P-47s provide cover for all the missions; 2 bombers are lost to flak and another has to ditch.

TACTICAL OPERATIONS

(Twelfth Air Force): In Italy, B-26s attack the Poggibonsi railroad bridge and viaduct W of Arezzo; B-25s hit a road bridge near Poggibonsi; P-40s bomb guns in the Avezzano and Pico areas; P-40s on patrols over Anzio and Cassino claim 2 fighters destroyed. Moves in Italy: HQ 47th Bombardment Group (Light) and 84th, 85th, 86th and 97th Bombardment Squadrons (Light) from Vesuvius Airfield to Capodichino with A-20s; 486th and 488th Bombardment Squadrons (Medium), 340th Bombardment Group (Medium), from Pompeii to Gaudo Airfield with B-25s.

PACIFIC OCEAN AREA

(Seventh Air Force): B-25s from Abemama Island and Tarawa Atoll bomb Mille and Jaluit Atolls. 38th Bombardment Squadron (Heavy), 30th Bombardment Group (Heavy), ceases operating from Makin Island and returns to base on Kwajalein Atoll with B-24s.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA

(Thirteenth Air Force): On Bougainville Island, 30+ fighter-bombers hit a supply area along the Laruma River; a total of 13 B-24s carry out small strikes against Buka, Monoitu, Kahili, and Kara. On New Britain Island, 23 B-25s pound Lakunai Airfield, 10 B-24s bomb Tobera, and a single B-24 hits Rabaul.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA

(Fifth Air Force): In New Guinea, 130+ B-24s, B-25s, A-20s, and P-40s attack the Wewak area, hitting enemy positions, AA guns, storage areas at Wewak, Boram, and Yeschan and hitting shipping offshore. Japanese HQ and troops are hit by 25 other aircraft in the Aitape- Tadji area; P-47s hit barges at Alexishafen while P-39s hit a HQ and supply dump along the Bogadjim Road: and A-20s hit barges near Pondo Plantation and hit Ewasse village.

THURSDAY, 23 MARCH 1944

AMERICAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

ALASKA

(Eleventh Air Force): A detachment of the 11th Fighter Squadron, 343d Fighter Group, begins operating from Amchitka Island with P-40s and P-38s; the squadron is based on Adak Island.

CHINA-BURMA-INDIA THEATER OF OPERATIONS

BURMA-INDIA

(Tenth Air Force): In the Chin Hills region of Burma, 12 B-24s and 10 P-38s bomb Kalewa, and 9 B-25s attack Kaing and Shwebo; in the Katha area 12 P-51s bomb Naba Station while 12 others join 9 B-25s in attacking ammunition and gas dumps at Indaw; 4 P-40s bomb stores at Kamaing while 30+ other fighters fly armed reconnaissance over the Mogaung Valley in general; and 12 B-24s pound Moulmein jetty and attack Moulmein-Bangkok railroad targets, destroying 2 bridges, damaging several others, and scoring effective hits on 2 trains.

CHINA

(Fourteenth Air Force): In French Indochina, B-25s on a railroad sweep N from Vinh destroy 2 engines and several boxcars at Van Trai Station yards and attack 3 bridges between Vinh and Thanh Hoa. HQ 312th Fighter Wing moves from Kunming to Chengtu, China.

EUROPEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

STRATEGIC OPERATIONS

(Eighth Air Force): Mission 275: 524 B-17s and 244 B-24s are dispatched to attack airfields in W Germany and aircraft factories in the Brunswick area; due to unfavorable weather conditions, only 68 B-24s hit a primary target and 639 bombers hit secondary targets and targets of opportunity; the bombers claim 33-8-11 Luftwaffe aircraft; 22 B-17s, 6 B-24s and 4 P-51s are lost; details are: 1. 205 B-17s hit Brunswick and 3 hit targets of opportunity; 16 B-17s are lost, 1 damaged beyond repair and 221 damaged; casualties are 3 KIA, 6 WIA and 158 MIA. 2. 47 B-17s hit the secondary target at Munster, 83 hit Hamm, 67 hit Ahlen and 19 hit Neubeckum; 6 B-17s are lost and 56 damaged; casualties are 1 KIA, 3 WIA and 61 MIA. 3. 68 B-24s hit the primary target, Handorf Airfield; 36 hit Achmer City, 21 hit Achmer Airfield, 12 hit Munster, 52 hit Osnabruck and 14 hit other targets of opportunity; 6 B-24s are lost and 45 damaged; casualties are 1 WIA and 59 MIA. Escort is provided by 119 P-38s, 539 Eighth and Ninth Air Force P-47s and 183 Eighth and Ninth Air Force P-51s; details are: 1. P-38s: no claims or losses. 2. P-47s claim 4-0-10 Luftwaffe aircraft; 1 P-47 is damaged beyond repair and 1 damaged. 3. P-51s claim 18-1-6 Luftwaffe aircraft; 4 P-51s are lost and 1 damaged; 4 pilots are MIA. The fighters also claim 2-0-10 Luftwaffe aircraft on the ground. Mission 276: 5 of 5 B-17s drop 262 bundles of leaflets on Grenoble, Vichy, Lyon, Toulouse and Limoges, France at 2227-2304 hours without loss.

TACTICAL OPERATIONS

(Ninth Air Force): 220 B-26s on a morning mission bomb Creil marshalling yard and airfields at Beaumont-le-Roger and Beauvais/Tille; in an afternoon raid, 146 bomb Haine-Saint-Pierre marshalling yard. 31st Photographic Reconnaissance Squadron, III Reconnaissance Command, arrives at Chalgrove, England from the US with F-5s; first mission is 10 Apr.

MEDITERRANEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

TACTICAL OPERATIONS

(Twelfth Air Force): In Italy, B-26s bomb Florence/ Campo di Marte marshalling yard while B-25s hit the Pontassieve railway bridge and its approaches; P-40s attack guns in the Cassino-Esperia area, causing many fires and explosions; A-36s bomb the Cassino area with good results; the Germans have been forced into a narrow zone in the W edge of Cassino but still hold positions commanding the town and the Abbey; the New Zealand Corps breaks off the attack. HQ 340th Bombardment Group (Medium) moves from Pompeii to Paestum, Italy.

PACIFIC OCEAN AREA

(Seventh Air Force): B-24s from Kwajalein Atoll bomb Wake Island; B-25s flying out of Eniwetok Atoll hit Ponape Island; and Tarawa Atoll-based B-25s strike Maloelap and Jaluit Atolls, commencing a series of B-25 shuttle-missions between Tarawa or Makin Island and the USN's new base at Majuro Atoll which is used as the rearming base for the return strike.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA

(Thirteenth Air Force): 14 P-38s bomb targets of opportunity at Komaleai Point on Bougainville Island while 24 B-25s hit the Buka area of Buka Island after weather prevented scheduled attacks on Rabaul. On New Britain Island, fighters fly sweeps over Rabaul and general New Ireland Island area, and 12 P-40s bomb fuel dump at Keravia Bay; 15 B-24s out of 24 dispatched plow through the bad weather and bomb the Ratawul supply area.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA

(Fifth Air Force): In New Guinea, nearly 100 B-24s, B-25s, A-20s and P-47s hit numerous targets in the Aitape, Wewak, Alexishafen, and Hansa Bay areas; and B-24s bomb Babo and during the night attack shipping in the Bismarck Sea. On New Britain Island, 29 P-40s attack Talasea and nearby bivouacs, including Gogosi.

FRIDAY, 24 MARCH 1944

AMERICAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

ALASKA

(Eleventh Air Force): 3 B-24s fly a photographic mission over Onnekotan Island.

CARIBBEAN

(Sixth Air Force): HQ 25th Bombardment Group (Medium) and 12th, 35th and 417th Bombardment Squadrons (Medium) begin a movement from Borinquen Field, Puerto Rico; Coolidge Field, Antigua; Trinidad; and Losey Field, Puerto Rico respectively to the US; all will be disbanded on 20 Jun 44.

CHINA-BURMA-INDIA THEATER OF OPERATIONS

BURMA-INDIA

(Tenth Air Force): In the Mandalay, Burma area 12 B-24s and 10 P-38s bomb Pyingaing dump, 9 B-25s hit Shwebo railroad yards and a nearby factory, and 8 P-51s attack Gokteik Viaduct; 4 P-40s bomb Japanese positions near Shaduzup.

EUROPEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

STRATEGIC OPERATIONS

(Eighth Air Force): Mission 277: The B-17 primary target is Schweinfurt, Germany; the B-24 primary target are airfields at Metz and Nancy, France; the bombers make no claims of Luftwaffe aircraft: 1. 230 B-17s are dispatched; 60 hit Schweinfurt using blind-bombing equipment and 162 hit Frankfurt/Main marshalling yard; 3 B-17s are lost, 3 damaged beyond repair and 68 damaged; casualties are 14 KIA, 1 WIA and 30 MIA. 2. 206 B-24s are dispatched; the primaries are overcast and 148 hit the secondary target of St Diziere Airfield and 33 hit Nancy/Essey Airfield; 24 B-24s are damaged; casualties are 3 WIA. Escort is provided by 84 P-38s, 301 Eighth and Ninth Air Force P-47s and 155 Eighth and Ninth Air Force P-51s; details are: P-38s: 2 lost, both pilots MIA. P-47s claim 1-0-0 Luftwaffe aircraft in the air and 2-0-4 on the ground; no losses. P-51s: no claims; 3 P-51s are lost; 2 pilots are MIA. Mission 278: 5 of 5 B-17s drop 250 bundles of leaflets on Tours and Lorient, France; and Charleroi, Brussels and Antwerp, Belgium at 2133-2210 hours without loss.

MEDITERRANEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

STRATEGIC OPERATIONS

(Fifteenth Air Force):In Italy, 100+ B-24s bomb Rimini marshalling yard while 32 others attack Ancona, Senigallia and rail and road bridges over the Vomano River S of Giulianova; 200+ other B-17s and B-24s turn back before reaching the target and before rendezvous with the fighter escorts; and 3 B-17s and 1 B-24 hit targets of opportunity in Italy and Yugoslavia; 6 B-24s are lost; the bombers claim 10 enemy fighters destroyed.

TACTICAL OPERATIONS

(Twelfth Air Force): In Italy, B-25s pound supply and bivouac areas in Piedimonte and Castrocielo and harbor installations at Leghorn; B-25s hit bridge and railroad tracks NW of Orvieto, and A-20s bomb guns in the Cassino area; P-40s and A-36s in Cassino area hit guns, troop concentrations, road, and causeway; and P-47s on armed reconnaissance in the Rome-Orvieto-Orte areas hit a train and a bridge. Moves in Italy: 11th Troop Carrier Squadron, 60th Troop Carrier Group, from Gerbini, Sicily to Brindisi with C-47s; 487th and 489th Bombardment Squadrons (Medium), 340th Bombardment Group (Medium), from Pompeii to Gaudo Airfield with B-25s.

PACIFIC OCEAN AREA

(Seventh Air Force): B-25s from Tarawa Atoll bomb Jaluit while others, flying out of Eniwetok Atoll, hit Ponape Island and Ant Island, Caroline Islands.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA

(Thirteenth Air Force): On New Britain Island, 20+ B-25s hit the airstrip at Tobera; a few which lost contact with the formation bomb Vunakanau instead; and 30+ P-38s, P-39s, and P-40s hit Wunapope with incendiary clusters, causing numerous fires.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA

(Fifth Air Force): In New Guinea, P-39s and P-40s hit Alexishafen with a dive bombing and strafing attack at midday; a single B-24 bombs nearby Sek Island; other B-24s on armed reconnaissance score a hit on a minesweeper. Organized Japanese resistance ends on Los Negros and Bougainville Islands, although considerable time will be required for mopping-up operations. HQ 475th Fighter Group moves from Dobodura to Nadzab, New Guinea.

SATURDAY, 25 MARCH 1944

AMERICAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

ALASKA

(Eleventh Air Force): 2 Shemya Island-based B-24s bomb Kurabu Cape and the N coast of Onnekotan Island.

CARIBBEAN

(Sixth Air Force): 29th and 31st Fighter Squadrons, XXVI Fighter Command, begin a movement from Casa Larga, Panama and Howard Field, Canal Zone respectively, to the US.

CHINA-BURMA-INDIA THEATER OF OPERATIONS

BURMA-INDIA

(Tenth Air Force): In Burma, 8 B-24s hit Mogaung supply dumps, causing fires and much smoke; 12 P-40s bomb the Kamaing area; Japanese aircraft (5 medium bombers and 30 fighters) attack Allied airstrips at Chittagong and Cox's Bazaar, India and Anisakan, Burma; Tenth Air Force and RAF interceptors claim 7 aircraft shot down.

CHINA

(Fourteenth Air Force): In China, 6 B-24s from Chengkung bomb a motor pool and fuel dump at Mangshih, demolishing a sizeable portion of the target area.

EUROPEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

STRATEGIC OPERATIONS

(Eighth Air Force): 406th Bombardment Squadron (Heavy), VIII Air Force Composite Command (attached to 328th Service Group), moves from Watton to Harrington, England with B-24s; the squadron began flying CARPETBAGGER missions in Jan 44.

TACTICAL OPERATIONS

(Ninth Air Force): 140+ B-26s attack the Hirson, France marshalling yard.

MEDITERRANEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

TACTICAL OPERATIONS

(Twelfth Air Force): Weather severely curtails operations. In Italy, B-26s bomb the Leghorn dockyard and town of Rignano sull' Amo; P-40 fighter-bombers attack gun positions in the Anzio beachhead battle area; and fighters fly cover over the Anzio and Cassino areas. Moves in Italy: 28th Troop Carrier Squadron, 60th Troop Carrier Group, from Gerbini, Sicily to Brindisi with C-47s; 415th Night Fighter Squadron, 64th Fighter Wing, from Marcianise to Pomigliano with Beaufighters.

PACIFIC OCEAN AREA

(Seventh Air Force): Advanced HQ Seventh Air Force in Tarawa Atoll is disbanded and the Seventh's operations in the C Pacific forward area are placed under the VII Bomber Command at Kwajalein Atoll. B-25s from Eniwetok Atoll pound Ponape Island and claim 4 fighters shot down. B-25s from Abemama Island bomb Maloelap Atoll. HQ VII Bomber Command moves from Tarawa Atoll to Kwajalein Atoll.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA

(Thirteenth Air Force): On New Britain Island, 23 B-25s pound the Ratawul supply area while 34 fighter-bombers hit Keravia Bay fuel stores. On Bougainville Island, 20+ fighter-bombers hit a Miwo River bridge and nearby bivouac area and bomb a truck park W of the Omoi River.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA

(Fifth Air Force): In New Guinea, 100+ B-24s, B-25s, and A-20s continue pounding of the Wewak area, destroying supply dumps along the coast from Wewak Point to the airfield, a fuel dump W of Boram, and targets along the Sauri road and in the Cape Wom area; other A-20s attack the coastal area around Bunabun Harbor; and B-24s bomb the Babo-Urarom area. On New Britain Island, P-40s attack a Japanese HQ at Cape Hoskins. On Manus Island, the last major battle takes place; isolated enemy positions remain to be eliminated. Moves in New Guinea with P-38s: 80th Fighter Squadron, 8th Fighter Group, from Cape Gloucester, New Britain Island to Nadzab; 432d Fighter Squadron, 475th Fighter Group from Dobodura to Nadzab.

SUNDAY, 26 MARCH 1944

CHINA-BURMA-INDIA THEATER OF OPERATIONS

BURMA-INDIA

(Tenth Air Force): In Burma, 3 B-24s and 3 B-25s bomb troops along the Imphal-Tiddim road near Chindwin; 70+ fighter-bombers and a lone B-25 attack targets in the Mogaung Valley area, including airfields at Manywet and Myitkyina, and bridges, roads, railroads and targets of opportunity at Mogaung, Kamaing and Myitkyina; in the Katha area 8 P-51s and 3 B-25s hit a Japanese bivouac NE of Bhamo and claim 6 warehouses destroyed at Nankan. 20th Tactical Reconnaissance Squadron, Tenth Air Force [attached to 5320th Air Defense Wing (Provisional)] moves from Guskhara to Kisselbari, India with P-40s.

CHINA

(Fourteenth Air Force): 4 B-25s hit the Bakli Bay area on Hainan Island; 2 merchant vessels are claimed sunk, and damage is done to tracks and loading equipment. 4 P-40s on a sweep of the N coast of the Gulf of Tonkin sink an ore boat and damage 4 barges. '

EUROPEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

STRATEGIC OPERATIONS

(Eighth Air Force): Mission 280: V-weapon sites in France are hit. 1. 234 of 243 and 138 of 185 B-24s hit 9 sites in the Pas de Calais area; 4 B-17s and 1 B-24 are lost, 1 B-17 is damaged beyond repair and 134 B-17s and 38 B-24s are damaged; casualties are 2 KIA, 15 WIA and 50 MIA. 2. 128 of 145 B-17s hit 7 sites in the Cherbourg area; 64 B-17s are damaged. Escort is provided by 266 P-47s; they claim 1-1-4 Luftwaffe aircraft on the ground; 1 P-47 is lost (pilot is MIA) and 5 damaged. Mission 281: 6 of 6 B-17s drop 300 bundles of leaflets on Caen, Rennes, Amiens, Paris and Rouen, France at 2114-2206 hours without loss.

TACTICAL OPERATIONS

(Ninth Air Force): 338 B-26s and 35 A-20s attack the Ijmuiden, The Netherlands torpedo-boat pens. In France, nearly 140 P-47s and P-51s dive-bomb Creil marshalling yard and other military installations.

MEDITERRANEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

STRATEGIC OPERATIONS

(Fifteenth Air Force):60+ B-17s and B-24s hit targets in Italy; the B-17s bomb Fiume docks and shipping; the B-24s hit Maniago Landing Ground, Udine air depot and Rimini marshalling yard; P-47s and P-38s provide escort; 150+ other B-17s and B-24s abort missions because of bad weather.

TACTICAL OPERATIONS

(Twelfth Air Force): Operations are at a minimum as bad weather continues. In Italy, B-26s score numerous hits on Arezzo viaducts, B-25s attack the Perugia railway bridge, scoring near misses, and A-20s successfully bomb troop concentrations N of Velletri; P-47s achieve direct hits on a railway bridge NW of Stimigliano and near misses on a railway bridge SW of Tarquinia; and P-40s hit guns near Fontana Liri and N of the Anzio beachhead with good results. HQ 60th Troop Carrier Group moves from Gerbini, Sicily to Brindisi, Italy.

PACIFIC OCEAN AREA

(Seventh Air Force): Eniwetok Atoll-based B-25s strike Ponape Island; B-25s from Tarawa Atoll hit Jaluit Atoll, rearm at Majuro Atoll, and hit Jaluit again on the return flight to Tarawa.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA

(Thirteenth Air Force): On New Britain Island, 23 B-25s hit Vunakanan Airfield and 37 fighter-bombers attack supply areas along Talili Bay; B-25s continue to heckle the Rabaul area during the night. In the Bougainville Island area 3 B-24s and 20 fighter-bombers hit pillboxes and targets of opportunity on islands off the Tekessi River mouth and near Monoitu; fighter-bombers again support ground forces along Empress Augusta Bay, hitting a supply dump N of the Reini River and enemy positions near the mouths of the Tekessi and Maririei Rivers; the fighter-bombers claim destruction of a bridge over the Puriata River. 24 B-24s on a mission against Truk Atoll fail to reach the target and bomb Pulusuk Island, Caroline Islands instead; several of the B-24s are forced to land on Green Island, Solomon Islands because of fuel shortages.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA

(Fifth Air Force): In New Guinea, 220+ B-24s, B-25s, A-20s and fighters hit Wewak, Boram, Cape Wom, Aitape, the Hansa Bay coast, Mushu Island, and the general area along the N coast of NE New Guinea, blasting storage areas, barges, shipping, grounded aircraft, fuel dumps and enemy troops; other A-20s hit Bunabun Harbor while P-39s hit the Madang area. On New Britain Island, P-39s and P-40s attack Cape Hoskins and troops in the Talasea area. On Manus Island, A-20s hit buildings and Japanese positions on the S shore. 431st Fighter Squadron, 475th Fighter Group, moves from Dobodura to Nadzab, New Guinea with P-38s.

MONDAY, 27 MARCH 1944

CHINA-BURMA-INDIA THEATER OF OPERATIONS

BURMA-INDIA

(Tenth Air Force): In Burma, 8 B-24s hit supply dumps at Kamaing, while about 50 fighter-bombers and 2 B-25s hit troops in in the Myitkinya area and support ground forces near Kamaing; in the Katha area 12 B-25s and 16 P-38s and P-51s hit a bridge and railroad facilities near Meza and a railroad near Kawlin.

CHINA

(Fourteenth Air Force): 6 B-25s pound the Viet Tri, French Indochina area, damaging 2 factories, a bridge and several railroad cars. In China 60+ P-40s, P-38s, and P-51s attack troops and buildings at Sienning and Kwanyinchow, hit a bridge, warehouse, and general area at Anyi, damage bridges at Kienchang and Puchi and pound Nanchang Airfield and surrounding areas.

EUROPEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

STRATEGIC OPERATIONS

(Eighth Air Force): Mission 282: Airfields in France are attacked by 701 bombers. 1. 285 of 290 B-17s hit the following airfields: St Jean D/Angely (55), La Rochell/La Leu (59), Chartres (60), Tours/Parcay Meslay Air Depot (74), Usine Liotard Air Depot (35) and targets of opportunity (2); 1 B-17 is lost and 37 damaged; casualties are 1 WIA and 10 MIA. 2. 248 of 256 B-17s hit the following airfields: Bordeaux/Merignac (123), Cayeux (118) and Chartres (7); 2 B-17s are lost and 51 damaged; casualties are 11 KIA, 2 WIA and 20 MIA. 3. All 168 B-24s hit the following airfields: Pau/Ont Long (72), Biarritz (49) and Mont de Marsan (47); 3 B-24s are lost, 4 damaged beyond repair and 18 damaged; casualties are 20 KIA, 1 WIA and 31 MIA. Escort is provided by 132 P-38s, 706 Eighth and Ninth Air Force P-47s and 122 Eighth and Ninth Air Force P-51s; results are: P-38s: 2 lost and 1 damaged beyond repair; 2 pilots are MIA. P-47s claim 6-0-2 Luftwaffe aircraft; 5 P-47s are lost, 1 damaged beyond repair and 4 damaged; 1 pilot is WIA and 5 are MIA. P-51s claim 2-0-3 Luftwaffe aircraft in the air and 30-1-11 on the ground; 3 P-51s are lost and 1 damaged; 3 pilots are MIA.

TACTICAL OPERATIONS

(Ninth Air Force): 18 B-26s attack V-weapon sites in N France; 35 others abort due primarily to failure of blind-bombing equipment. The onset of bad weather makes this the last B-26 mission until 8 Apr. 303d, 305th and 306th Troop Carrier Squadrons, 442d Troop Carrier Group, arrives at Fulbeck, England from the US with C-47s.

MEDITERRANEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

TACTICAL OPERATIONS

(Twelfth Air Force): In Italy, A-20s successfully bomb the Sesti Bagni railway station; B-26s hit Poggibonsi railway bridge, and tracks and train cars in the area; and B-25s attack bridges at Marsciano, Perugia and Grosseto railroad bridges, scoring damaging hits at Grosseto; P-40s hit a command post and supply dumps, and fly road reconnaissance SE of Rome with good results; A-36s bomb Sesti Bagni railway station and nearby trucks, while P-47s attack a bridge, junctions and train cars on the Rome- Orvieto railroad; and P-47s and P-40s maintain cover over the Cassino and Anzio battle areas.

PACIFIC OCEAN AREA

(Seventh Air Force): B-25s and B-24s from Tarawa Atoll hit Maloelap, Mille and Wotje Atolls; B-25s from Eniwetok Atoll bomb Jaluit Atoll and strafe and cannonade Ponape Island; and a single B-24 from Tarawa Atoll bombs Jabor in Jaluit Atoll. 9th Troop Carrier Squadron, Seventh Air Force, moves from Hickam Field, Oahu, Territory of Hawaii to Abemama Island with C-47s.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA

(Thirteenth Air Force): On New Britain Island, 23 B-25s hit Wunapope with incendiaries; and 34 fighter-bombers follow in rapid succession with another incendiary strike, leaving the entire vicinity in flames. 9 P-40s hit fuel dump at the mouth of Tekessi River on Bougainville Island.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA

(Fifth Air Force): In New Guinea, 200+ B-24s, B-25s, A-20s, P-47s, P-40s and P-39s attack storage areas, shipping, bridges, fuel dumps, enemy troop concentrations and other targets in areas around Wewak, Hansa Bay, Ulipan Harbor, and Madang. Other aircraft carry out sweeps and armed reconnaissance over New Britain Island and the Bismarck Sea. 341st Fighter Squadron, 348th Fighter Group, moves from Finschhafen to Saidor, New Guinea with P-47s.

TUESDAY, 28 MARCH 1944

AMERICAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

ALASKA

(Eleventh Air Force): 18th Fighter Squadron, 343d Fighter Group, moves from Amchitka Island to Attu Island, Aleutian Islands with P-38s.

CHINA-BURMA-INDIA THEATER OF OPERATIONS

BURMA-INDIA

(Tenth Air Force): In the Mogaung Valley of Burma, 8 B-24s bomb the Kamaing storage area, while 60+ fighter-bombers and 9 B-25s furnish ground support in the Sumprabum, Mogaung, and Kamaing areas, and bomb storage and town areas of Manywet, Mohnyin and Kamaing.

CHINA

(Fourteenth Air Force): 4 B-25s bomb the barracks area at Vinh Yen, French Indochina, scoring direct hits on 4 buildings.

STRATEGIC OPERATIONS

(XX Bomber Command): HQ XX Bomber Command arrives at Kharagpur, India from the US.

EUROPEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

STRATEGIC OPERATIONS

(Eighth Air Force): Mission 283: 2 formations of B-17s are dispatched to hit airfields in France while B-24s are dispatched to The Netherlands. 1. 182 B-17s are dispatched to Dijon/Longvic Airfield (117 bomb) and Reims/Champagne Airfield (59 bomb); 1 B-17 is damaged beyond repair and 60 damaged; casualties are 3 KIA and 1 WIA. 2. 191 B-17s are dispatched to Chateaudun Airfield (127 bomb) and Chartres Airfield (61 bomb); 2 B-17s are lost and 59 damaged; casualties are 1 WIA and 28 MIA. 3. 77 B-24s are dispatched to the Ijmuiden, The Netherlands E-boat pens but they are recalled due to excessive clouds and failure of the escort to takeoff. Escort for the B-17s is provided by 46 P-38s, 284 P-47s and 123 P-51s; details are: P-38s: no claims or losses P-47s claim 0-0-1 Luftwaffe aircraft. P-51s claim 30-1-32 Luftwaffe aircraft on the ground; 3 P-51s are lost; the pilots are MIA. 36th Bombardment Squadron (Heavy), VIII Air Force Composite Command [attached to 801st Bombardment Group (Provisional)] moves from Watton to Harrington, England with B-24s; the squadron flies CARPETBAGGER missions.

MEDITERRANEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

STRATEGIC OPERATIONS

(Fifteenth Air Force):Almost 400 B-17s and B-24s, the largest attack to date, bomb marshalling yards in Italy; the B-17s hit Verona; the B-24s hit Mestre and Verona marshalling yards and railway and highway bridges at Fano and Cessno; P-38s and P-40s provide excellent coverage and no bombers are lost; the bombers and escorts claim 12 fighters destroyed; 5 US fighters are lost. 16th Reconnaissance Squadron (Bomber), 68th Tactical Reconnaissance Group (attached to AAF, MTO), based at Foch Field, Tunisia begins operating from Foggia, Italy with B-17s. 781st Bombardment Squadron (Heavy), 465th Bombardment Group (Heavy), arrives at Pantanella Airfield, Italy from the US with B-24s; first mission is 5 May.

TACTICAL OPERATIONS

(Twelfth Air Force): In Italy, B-25s knock out the bridge approach E of Perugia and bomb the railway junction and marshalling yard at Montepescali; B-25s bomb a railway bridge S of Mignano and viaduct to the SE, and hit Certaldo railway bridge; A-20s attack a tank factory N of Tivoli; P-40s strike guns in the Anzio area; guns, trucks, and roads during armed reconnaissance of the Cassino-Giulianello area; and supply dumps and truck parks near Velletri and Sora; A-36s attack 2 railroad bridges and tracks at Montalto di Castro and near Orvieto; and fighters carry out a patrol over the Anzio and Cassino areas. Moves in Italy: HQ 87th Fighter Wing from Caserta to Bastia, Corsica; and HQ 57th Fighter Group and 65th and 66th Fighter Squadrons from Cercola to Alto, Corsica with P-47s.

PACIFIC OCEAN AREA

(Seventh Air Force): B-25s from Abemama Island and Tarawa Atoll pound Jaluit, Mille and Maloelap Atolls; a single B-24 from Kwajalein Atoll, en route to Eniwetok Atoll, bombs Rongelap Atoll, Marshall Islands; and B-24s, flying a night mission from Kwajalein, bomb targets at Truk Atoll.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA

(Thirteenth Air Force): On New Britain Island, 24 B-25s bomb Tobera Airfield, causing considerable damage to the landing strip; fighter-bombers hit the Ratawul supply area and SW part of Rabaul. On Bougainville Island, a few P-40s attack the Numa Numa supply area, a single B-24 scores damaging hits on the Japanese-held mission at Monoitu, and other planes hit scattered targets of opportunity.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA

(Fifth Air Force): B-24s hit Hollandia, New Guinea and Penfoei, Timor Island. Moves in New Guinea: 26th Photographic Reconnaissance Squadron, 6th Photographic Reconnaissance Group, from Finschhafen to Nadzab with F-5s; and 418th Night Fighter Squadron, 308th Bombardment Wing, from Dobodura to Finschhafen with P-61s.

WEDNESDAY, 29 MARCH 1944

CHINA-BURMA-INDIA THEATER OF OPERATIONS

BURMA-INDIA

(Tenth Air Force): In Burma, 20+ P-51s and B-25s over the Katha area hit the railroad and warehouse at Indaw in support of the ground forces nearby; 12 P-38s join numerous RAF aircraft in strikes on airfields, railroads, riverboats, and a variety of targets in the Mandalay area; 12 B-24s pound the Victoria Lake region near Rangoon; 80+ fighter-bombers and a few B-25s blast targets throughout the Mogaung Valley, including the Waingmaw area, Mogaung, Nanyaseik, guns NE of Kamaing, and numerous scattered fortifications, supply areas, troop concentrations and pillboxes; 80+ other fighters maintain patrol of the Sumprabum area. HQ 1st Air Commando Group is activated at Hailakandi, India; the group consists of a HQ plus the following sections: bomber with B-25s, fighter with P-51s, light-plane with L-1 and L-5s, transport with C-47s, glider with CG-4As and TG-5s and light-cargo with UC-64s.

CHINA

(Fourteenth Air Force): In China, 12 P-40s and 3 P-51s attack the railroad station area at Nanchang, causing much damage to buildings and yards; the fighter-bombers also strafe the airfield and attack a nearby bridge.

EUROPEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

STRATEGIC OPERATIONS

(Eighth Air Force): Mission 284: 1. 236 B-17s are dispatched to Germany; 193 hit the secondary target (Brunswick), 20 hit Unterluss, 18 hit Stedorf and 2 hit other targets of opportunity; the B-17s claim 8-3-6 Luftwaffe aircraft; 9 B-17s are lost, 1 damaged beyond repair and 66 damaged; casualties are 2 KIA, 5 WIA and 90 MIA. Escort is provided by 50 P-38s, 242 P-47s and 136 Eighth and Ninth Air Force P-51s; the fighters claim 44-4-13 Luftwaffe aircraft in the air and 13-7-14 on the ground; results are: P-38s: 2 lost, 3 damaged beyond repair and 1 damaged; 2 pilots are KIA and 2 MIA. P-47s: 1 lost, 2 damaged beyond repair and 8 damaged; 2 pilots are WIA. P-51s: 9 lost, 1 damaged beyond repair and 3 damaged; 1 pilot is WIA and 8 MIA. 2. 77 B-24s are dispatched to V-weapon sites at Watten, France; only 30 bomb because of PFF failures; 2 B-24s are damaged beyond repair and 6 damaged; casualties are 18 KIA and 1 WIA. Escort is provided by 37 P-47s; no claims or losses.

TACTICAL OPERATIONS

(Ninth Air Force): Units arriving in England from the US: HQ 48th Fighter Group and 492d, 493d and 494th Fighter Squadrons at Ibsley with P-47s (first mission is 20 Apr); HQ 442d Troop Carrier Group and 304th Troop Carrier Squadron at Fulbeck with C-47s; 34th Photographic Reconnaissance Squadron, III Reconnaissance Command, at Chalgrove with F-5s (first mission is 19 Apr).

MEDITERRANEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

STRATEGIC OPERATIONS

(Fifteenth Air Force):About 400 B-17s and B-24s (largest total to date) hit 3 targets in Italy; the B-17s bomb the ball bearing factory, marshalling yard and industrial area at Turin; the B-24s hit Bolzano and Milan marshalling yards; P-47s and P-38s fly escort; the bombers and fighters claim 13 aircraft destroyed; 6 US aircraft are lost. HQ 325th Fighter Group and 317th, 318th and 319th Fighter Squadrons move from Foggia to Lesina, Italy with P-47s.

TACTICAL OPERATIONS

(Twelfth Air Force): In Italy, B-25s attack Viterbo Airfield, causing considerable damage to the target; B-26s hit Leghorn and many small craft nearby. French B-26s attached to the Twelfth Air Force bomb Portoferraio on Elba; P-40s attack supply dumps and a bivouac area SE of Rome, a tank repair shop E of Rome and guns and supply dumps E of Velletri; P-47s cut lines at a railway overpass W of Rome while A-36s bomb harbors at San Stefano al Mare and Civitavecchia and hit nearby targets of opportunity; Spitfires, P-40s, and P-47s patrol the Anzio battle area. Unit moves in Italy: 7th Troop Carrier Squadron, 62d Troop Carrier Group, from Brindisi to Pone Olivo, Sicily with C-47s; 12th Troop Carrier Squadron, 60th Troop Carrier Group from Gerbini, Sicily to Brindisi, Italy with C-47s.

PACIFIC OCEAN AREA

(Seventh Air Force): B-25s from Kwajalein Atoll hit Jaluit and Rongelap Atolls; B-25s from Eniwetok Atoll strike Ponape Island while others from Tarawa Atoll bomb Maloelap and Jaluit Atolls.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA

(Thirteenth Air Force): In the Rabaul area of New Britain Island, 19 fighter-bombers hit targets of opportunity along the Miwo River and at Mawareka and Kimaku; 8 others abort because of bad weather; fighters sweeping the vicinity of Rabaul strafe shipping in Keravia Bay and knock out a gun position at Cape Tawui; 24 B-25s and 11 P-40s get through the bad weather and pound supply areas at Wunapope and Ratawul, respectively. On Bougainville Island, a few P-38s hit Numa Numa while other fighter-bombers again support ground forces at the mouth of the Tekessi River. B-24s of the 307th Bombardment Group (Heavy) carry out the first daylight raid on Truk Atoll, bombing the airfield on Eten Island; the mission is staged from Munda, New Georgia Island through Torokina, Bougainville Island for arming and Nissan Island, Solomon Islands for refueling before the strike; the unescorted B-24s claim 31 interceptors destroyed, along with almost 50 aircraft on the ground; 2 B-24s are lost.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA

(Fifth Air Force): Brigadier General Paul H Prentiss is announced as Commanding General V Air Force Services Command and Brigadier General Warren R Carter as Commanding General 64th Troop Carrier Wing. In New Guinea, B-24s bomb Hollandia; B-25s and A-20s pound the Wewak area, hitting targets at Cape Wom and Dagua and attacking shipping throughout the day; more A-20s pound the Bogia-Bunabun area and P-39s hit an AA position at Erima in the Madang area; and P-47s and P-40s on a fighter sweep and armed reconnaissance strafe coastal targets of opportunity in NE New Guinea and New Britain Island. Moves in New Guinea: HQ 348th Fighter Group from Finschhafen to Saidor; 433d Fighter Squadron, 475th Fighter Group, from Dobodura to Nadzab with P-38s.

THURSDAY, 30 MARCH 1944

CHINA-BURMA-INDIA THEATER OF OPERATIONS

BURMA-INDIA

(Tenth Air Force): 6 P-51s hit Anisakan Airfield, Burma.

CHINA

(Fourteenth Air Force): 2 B-24s fly a sea sweep from Kunming, China around Hainan Island, and across the Gulf of Tonkin to Nam Dinh, French Indochina; en route, a freighter is strafed; 1 B-24s bombs spinning mills at Nam Sinh, causing considerable damage.

EUROPEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

STRATEGIC OPERATIONS

(Eighth Air Force): Mission 285: In The Netherlands, 24 P-47 fighter-bombers escorted by 50 other P-47s dive-bomb Eindhoven and Sosterburg, Airfields without loss; 22 other P-47s strafe Venlo, Deelen and Twente/Enschede Airfields; they claim 1-0-0 Luftwaffe aircraft in the air and 1-0-2 on the ground; 1 P-47 is lost and 3 damaged; 1 pilot is MIA. Mission 286: 6 of 6 B-17s drop 300 bundles of leaflets on Rouen, Rennes, Reims, Paris and Amiens, France at 2125-2155 hours without loss. HQ 93d Combat Bombardment Wing (Heavy) moves from Elveden Hall to Mendlesham, England; groups will be assigned in May 44.

TACTICAL OPERATIONS

(Ninth Air Force): IX Engineer Command is formally activated by the War Department with Brigadier General James B Newman as Commanding General.

MEDITERRANEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

STRATEGIC OPERATIONS

(Fifteenth Air Force):463d Bombardment Group (Heavy) with B-17s becomes the 15th bomber group declared operational by the Fifteenth Air Force. Nearly 350 B-17s and B-24s bomb marshalling yards at Sofia, Bulgaria and an industrial complex and airfield at Imotski, Yugoslavia. Escorting fighters and the bombers claim 13 enemy fighters shot down; 4 bombers are lost. 777th Bombardment Squadron (Heavy), 464th Bombardment Group (Heavy) arrives at Pantanella Airfield, Italy from the US with B-24s; first mission is 30 Apr.

TACTICAL OPERATIONS

(Twelfth Air Force): In Italy, B-25s hit the harbor at Leghorn and railroad bridge NW of Orte; P-40s and A-36s attack an ammunition dump NW of Roccasecca, trucks and supply dump NE of Tivoli and near Fumone and Gaeta, railroad bridges SE of Civita Castellana and NW of Stimigliano and Orvieto and motor transport N of Cori and at scattered points. 64th Fighter Squadron, 57th Fighter Group, moves from Cercola, Italy to Alto, Corsica with P-47s.

PACIFIC OCEAN AREA

(Seventh Air Force): B-24s from Kwajalein and Eniwetok Atolls hit Truk Atoll before dawn. B-25s from Kwajalein and Tarawa Atolls strike Wotje, Mille, Jaluit and Maloelap Atolls.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA

(Thirteenth Air Force): 11 B-24s fly a long-range strike against Moen Island in Truk Atoll; the B-24s score damaging hits on the airfield and claim 11 fighters shot down; 1 B-24 is lost; this raid follows a snooper strike by 2 B-24s the previous night. In the Rabaul area of New Britain Island, 10 P-38s hit the SW part of the town with incendiaries while 24 B-25s pound nearby Wunapope. On Bougainville Island, fighters and B-25s, operating mainly in pairs, hit a supply area on the Mupeka River and Japanese-occupied areas at the mouths of Puriata and Mamaregu Rivers; fighter-bombers continue to support ground forces along the Empress Augusta Bay perimeter hitting a bivouac and truck park at Numa Numa, fords across the Hongorai River, and a bridge across the Puriata River.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA

(Fifth Air Force): In New Guinea, 60+ B-24s, with support from more than 90 P-38s and P-47s, hit Hollandia in the first big daylight raid; airfields and fuel dumps are bombed; a large number of enemy aircraft are destroyed or damaged on the ground; escorting fighters claim about 10 interceptors shot down; B-25s, A-20s, P-47s, P-40s, and P-39s continue to blast Japanese installations and forces in areas around Wewak, Tadji and Madang. Moves in New Guinea: HQ 91st Photographic Wing (Reconnaissance) to Nadzab from the US; and 342d Fighter Squadron, 348th Fighter Group, from Finschhafen to Saidor with P-47s.

FRIDAY, 31 MARCH 1944

AMERICAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

ALASKA

(Eleventh Air Force): HQ XI Bomber Command and HQ XI Fighter Command are disbanded. Their headquarters personnel are absorbed by the 28th Bombardment Group (Composite) and the 343d Fighter Group, respectively.

CHINA-BURMA-INDIA THEATER OF OPERATIONS

BURMA-INDIA

(Tenth Air Force): In Burma, 9 B-25s hit the Pinlebu area; 10 P-51s hit Japanese positions near the "Broadway" airstrip; 12 P-40s bomb the Warong area while others patrol around Sumprabum; near Katha 3 B-25s and 6 P-51s hit a warehouse, railroad cars and track at Zawchaung. HQ 8th Photographic Reconnaissance Group arrives at Bally, India from the US. The 9th Photographic Reconnaissance, 20th Tactical Reconnaissance and 24th Combat Mapping Squadrons will be assigned on 25 Apr; the 40th Photographic Reconnaissance Squadron will be assigned on 18 Jul.

EUROPEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

STRATEGIC OPERATIONS

(Eighth Air Force): HQ 486th Bombardment Group (Heavy) arrives at Sudbury, England from the US.

MEDITERRANEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS

TACTICAL OPERATIONS

(Twelfth Air Force): Weather prevents completion of most Twelfth Air Force operations; P-47s carry out a sweep N of Rome, Italy.

PACIFIC OCEAN AREA

(Seventh Air Force): B-24s from Eniwetok Atoll bomb Truk Atoll in a predawn mission. B-25s from Eniwetok hit Ponape Island while others, flying out of Tarawa Atoll, pound Maloelap and Jaluit Atolls. 431st Bombardment Squadron (Heavy), 11th Bombardment Group (Heavy), moves from Tarawa Atoll to Kwajalein Atoll with B-24s.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA

(Thirteenth Air Force): On New Britain Island, 23 B-25s bomb a Ratawul supply point; 11 P-40s hit Wunapope, and 26 P-39s and P-38s bomb the NE part of Rabaul with incendiaries; and fighter sweeps over Rabaul and New Ireland Island continue. 25 fighter-bombers pound the Numa Numa supply area on Bougainville Island.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA

(Fifth Air Force): In New Guinea, 60+ B-24s, with P-38 support, pound Hollandia for the second successive day; 3 airfields in the area are thoroughly blasted and a large number of enemy aircraft destroyed; US aircraft claim 14 interceptors shot down; supplies, enemy troops, and coastal targets in the Tadji, Wewak, and Hansa Bay areas are hit by 120+ A-20s and B-25s.