|A6M3/A6M5 Zeros taking off and landing at Lakunai Airfield
Likely, these are aircraft and pilots of the 204 Kokutai. On January 16, 1944 intercepting were A6M Zeros from the 204 Kokutai at Lakunai Airfield plus 16 Zeros from the 252 Kokutai at Tobera Airfield took off to intercept USAAF 13th Air Force fighters escorting US Navy bombers attacking the Rabaul area. The sequence begins with Zeros warming up at the flight line behind revetements made from empty fuel drums stacked three rows tall. Zeros with tail code 9-XXX take off and land for servicing. One Zero has bullet holes from air combat. Ends with a group of pilots receiving a gift.
Credit: Nippon News "Rabaul Kokutai" Date: January 16, 1944
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