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January 16, 1944
Today in World War II Pacific History
Day by day chronology


(CBI) CHINA (Fourteenth Air Force): 8 P-40's attack the town of Pingkai, China and strafe targets of opportunity in the surrounding valley area.

PACIFIC OCEAN AREA (POA, Seventh Air Force): 25 A-24s, 16 P-39's, and 8 P-40's from Makin strike Mille Atoll; A-24s bomb and strafe AA positions and storage areas, the P-40's bomb and strafe barracks and AA emplacements and the P-39's strafe runways; 2 P-39's are lost including P-39Q 42-19469; P-39's sent up on interceptor missions claim three Japanese airplanes destroyed over Mille and Makin. Transfers: 28th Photographic Reconnaissance Squadron, Seventh Air Force from the US to Kipapa Field with F-5's. 431st Bombardment Squadron (Heavy), 11th Bombardment Group (Heavy) from Funafuti to Tarawa with B-24's.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA (SWPA, Fifth Air Force): Madang, Erima, and Bogadjim areas are hit by B-25's, A-20's, and P-40's; P-39's strafe the area from Sio to Bogadjim; and B-25's bomb the area north from Cape Croisilles. Lost are B-25G 42-64827 (MIA), B-25D "Exotic Express" 41-30179 (MIA), B-24D 42-72804 (MIA), P-40N 42-105909 (KIA) and P-38H 42-66739 (MIA). B-24's and B-25's attack positions near Arawe. B-24's carry out a light raid on the harbor of Amboina.

Over Saidor, P-40N Warhawks from the 8th FG, 35th FS intercept a formation of Japanese fighters including Ki-43 Oscars and Ki-61 Tony (incorrectly identified as Hamps, Oscars and Tonys). They claim 19 confirmed kills and 3 probables. This combat set the wartime record for 5th Fighter Command for victories claimed by a single squadron during a single engagement.

JAAF: Ki-43 Oscars from the 59th Sentai, 63rd Sentai and 248 Sentai plus Ki-61 Tony from the 68th Sentai conduct a sweep over Nadzab Airfield. Lost were ten Japanese fighters including Ki-61 pilot Noguchi (POW).

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