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April 23, 1945
Today in World War II Pacific History
Day by day chronology

MONDAY, 23 APRIL 1945

CHINA THEATER (Fourteenth Air Force): In China, 5 B-25s blast the Hsuchang railroad yards, completely demolishing a locomotive repair shop; two B-24s attack targets of opportunity in the South China Sea; 39 P-47s and P-51s attack troops, horses, trains, and rivercraft at or near Nanyang, Burma and Taiku, Shanhsien, Hsihhsiassuchi, Loning, Sinyang, Chenghsien, Sichuan, Lushan, and along the Pinghan railroad, and render a railroad tunnel near Sinyang unusable.

INDIA-BURMA THEATER (Tenth Air Force): In Burma, 7 P-61s attack with napalm, rockets, and cannon several targets during sweeps from Laihka to Loilem to Hopong to Wan Yin; Laihka Airfields, a bridge S of Wan Yin, trucks, and other targets are successfully pounded; 40+ fighter-bombers attack troop concentrations along and behind the lines at several points including Loilem, Nawng Leng, Mong Pawn, and Naungtaw; a bridge at Namhkok is temporarily out due to bomb damage to approaches; 570 transport sorties are flown to forward areas throughout the day.

AAFPOA (Seventh Air Force): Thirteen B-24s from Guam pound positions on Marcus. The 28th Photographic Reconnaissance Squadron, Seventh AF at Kualoa Airfield with F-5Es, sends a detachment to operate from Okinawa, the first Seventh AF unit to arrive (another detachment is operating from Saipan Island).

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA [SWPA, Far East Air Force (FEAF)]: On Formosa, B-25s hit the Shinei railroad yards, P-51s hit Karenko Airfield and P-38s attack various targets of opportunity. Fighter bombers continue to support ground forces in the N and S parts of Luzon Island pounding numerous artillery positions, supply areas, and general targets of opportunity. B-24s bomb a military depot at Shanghai and shipping in Yulin Harbor off Hainan. B-24s bomb the naval base at Saigon. In Borneo, other B-24s bomb airfields at Sepinggang and Jesselton and P-38s drop napalm on Tarakan. Other B-24s fly a shipping sweep over the Makassar Srait and damage several small vessels.

USN: Lost is F4U Corsair 57897 (MIA).

VBP-109: PB4Y-2 Privateers from Patrol Bombing Squadron 109 (VPB-109) piloted by Lt.Cdr. Hicks and Lt. Kennedy release two ASM-N-2 Bat glided bombs against Japanese shipping in Balikpapan Harbor in the first combat employment of the only automatic homing bomb to be used in World War II.

References: Patrol Bombing Squadron 109 (VPB-109) War Diary, April 1945 page 3
"23 April: Lt.Cdr. Hicks and Lt. Kennedy on a special strike at shipping in Balikpapan Harbor, Borneo dropped to defective BAT (SWOD Mark 9) with negative results. Two unaggressive Hamps made one pass at Lt.Cdr. Hicks. Lt. Kennedy damaged a radar station on the coast of northeast Borneo by strafing."

Kriegsmarine: U-183 was sunk in the Java Sea by a torpedo fired by USS Besugo SS-321.



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