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March 3, 1942
Today in World War II Pacific History
Day by day chronology


IJN: Nine A6M2 led by C5M2 Babs pilot Akira Hayashi from the 3rd Kokutai (3rd Air Group) took off from Koepang Airfield on Timor for a strike against Broome. Over the target at 9:20am flying at an altitude of 500', three Zeros flew top cover while C5M2 Babs pilot Akira Hayashi with observer Shinobu Nagasawa flew reconnaissance and took a photograph during the raid. The six Zeros use their machine guns and cannons to strafe parked aircraft at Broome Airfield. and seaplanes moored in Roebuck Bay. During the strike, A6M2 Zero pilot Kudo was hit by anti-aircraft fire and crash into the sea. Returning, another Zero ditched.

Australia: At 10:00am Japanese aircraft attack Broome, Broome Airfield and Roebuck Bay shortly after the arrival of 9 bombers evacuating personnel from Java. The Japanese destroy 2 B-17's, 2 B-24's, 12 seaplanes, and 2 Hudsons, and kill at least 45 Dutch civilians and 20 US airmen. Lost were Loadstar LT9-18, B-24A 40-2373, Loadstar A16-119, Do24 X-1, RAF PBY Catalina, Dutch Navy PBY Catalina, S.23 "Centaurus" A18-10, S.23 "Corinna" G-AEUC, B-17E 41-2449 and B-17E 41-2454. Shot down is B-24A 40-2374 (MIA). The Japanese attack on Broome is the second worst air raid against Australia. In total, 70 were killed and 24 aircraft destroyed (including 16 flying boats).

RAAF: Five Hudsons took off from 7 Mile Drome on nighttime bombing raid on Gasmata. Lost overnight are Hudson A16-101 and Hudson A16-165.

USN: USS Perch SS-176 is damaged by depth charges and forced to the surface then scuttled by her crew who become Prisoners Of War (POW).

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